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Thomson Bennett Switch lost in fire


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Hi all, I am currently rebuilding my 1919 Thornycroft J type, a civilian flat bed bodied example. I have been slowly gathering correct pattern components to get as authentic as I can, including a genuine Thomson Bennett magneto switch, which I managed to purchase from a Bentley spares website. Unfortunately, earlier this week I had a fire destroy my home, in which I kept the switch and some other lorry components, including its set of lamps, original log book (and it’s sister J types’ original log book), and a spare radiator top tank casting, unfortunately all beyond repair. I’m absolutely gutted, especially the log books, which are amazing bits of history that can never be replaced.

I am therefore after sourcing these components once again. The King of the Road 722 type lamps shouldn’t be too hard to get hold of, however the switches are like hens teeth as I’m sure you’re all aware, I therefore am asking if anyone may have a a spare switch, or may know someone who might? 

Some of the lamps before:


And after:


The new top radiator tank casting:


The Thomson Bennett switch I managed to source before the fire:


Bit of progress on the J type:




Cheers, Toby.

Edited by S.S.F.
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How bad is the switch? If the metal is intact then I would imagine that the rest can be re-made? 
You can get suitable Tufnol / Bakelite  from eBay (amongst other places). I used some to make some replica Ner-a-Car light switches. (Now _there_ is a hens-teeth item: https://bodgesoc.blogspot.com/2014/11/the-last-bits-and-pieces.html )

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So sorry to hear about the fire, Toby.  I cannot imagine starting out again, but you and your family will survive.  Anyone who can put so much energy into restoring the beautiful vehicles shown in this forum certainly will recover, hopefully much quicker you could restore a vehicle. By chance was yours one of the thousands of  homes lost in the current California wildfires?   The image of such homes is always with us here; a sad one indeed.  Barbara and I are very proud of our son, a battalion chief here in San Diego, who is on one of the fires as I write this 


Bosun Al

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Was the radiator top tank a new casting? If so do you still have the pattern or was that lost in the fire too.

Do you have a photo of the back of the magneto switch?

I take it that the rest of the Thornycroft was stored elsewhere and was not involved with the fire.

 Such events should make us all aware as to how vulnerable some items are in storage. Copies or back up should be stored in a separate building, in case of fire and also out of  flood reach. 


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