Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Discussions about the Bus and Coach Preservation scene for Midland "Red" Motor Services and related companies.
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TimBrown
Posts: 328
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Post by TimBrown » 11:42 Monday 2nd April 2018

A special treat was laid on by Mr Roger Burdett in the form of his recently restored Bristol GJW open topped double decker VG 5541. This bus was new to Norwich Electric Traction as no 43 in 06/33 with Weymann H24/24R bodywork and Bristol 6 cylinder petrol engine. It was taken into Eastern Counties stock in 12/35, re-seated H28/26R in 1937 and fitted with a Gardner 5LW diesel engine in 1938. It was converted to open top O28/26R configuration for sea front services in Felixstowe in 1950. Upon withdrawal it moved to California USA in 11/62 and was repatriated by Roger Burdett in 08/00. After extensive restoration completed in 2017 it is now in magnificent condition and well worth a ride to experience the sounds (and vibration) of Gardner 5LW engine and melody from the crash gearbox; not often you get the chance to experience a veteran 85 year old bus on the road! My thanks to Roger Burdett.
01 April 2018 Wythall 136.jpg
01 April 2018 Wythall 104.jpg
01 April 2018 Wythall 133.jpg
01 April 2018 Wythall 135.jpg
I didn't manage a trip on this occasion in The Transport Museum's Bristol L5G KFM 775 new to Crosville as fleet no KG126 in 06/50 with ECW B35R bodywork, but it was out giving rides later on in the day. This bus is well worth the ride to experience a typical Bristol Post-War half-cab single decker - it runs very well with a nice turn of speed in overdrive fifth gear.
01 April 2018 Wythall 130.jpg

DD12
Posts: 670
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Post by DD12 » 15:13 Monday 2nd April 2018

Thanks Tim for these excellent photos.
Yet again you have made me wish I had attended !

And thanks VERY MUCH to all you guys who have put so much time, effort, (and money) into preserving these vehicles from my childhood (and beyond).

One of my earliest childhood memories is of riding an ancient tilling cream open-top double decker on the south-east coast --
it may not have been a Bristol GJW, but even though I was on the top deck, I can still remember the sounds from the engine and gearbox as we approached a hair-pin bend with a sheer drop to the sea !
:)

TimBrown
Posts: 328
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Post by TimBrown » 17:53 Thursday 5th April 2018

I have visited a friend today who is very much a Bristol enthusiast and he provided me with some technical details on the Bristol GJW engine from a book about early Bristol buses. The original 6 cylinder side-valve petrol engine had a bore of 4.125", stroke of 5.5" and capacity of 7.26 litres. It produced 115 BHP at 2,600 RPM. As the current Gardner 5LW engine produces 84 BHP, or possibly 90 BHP if later type fitted, at 1,700 RPM giving a top speed around 33 MPH, the rear axle ratio must have been raised when the diesel engine was fitted, if not then the petrol engined double-decker would have been capable of 50 MPH with the much higher revs quoted.

Looking at a photograph of sister bus VG 5545 taken when new in 1933 the cab and front area looked different and an autovac is present on the front bulkhead below the window to the nearside of the engine bonnet. The front offside lower panel and both wings are much deeper now than the original version and the rake of the windscreen is more pronounced now. My guess would be that these changes happened either at the time the Gardner 5LW was fitted or when the roof was removed for the open top conversion. The headlights are positioned much lower now than on the original. These are just my observations and none detract from the wonderful experience of riding in such a special vehicle - priceless!

oldsitch
Posts: 1
Joined: 12:37 Thursday 12th April 2018

Re: Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Post by oldsitch » 12:41 Thursday 12th April 2018

Passed my PSV [any type of vehicle on 4107 at Bearwood in 1966. Any left at all ?

TimBrown
Posts: 328
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: Transport Museum, Wythall Sunday 1 April 2018.

Post by TimBrown » 10:09 Saturday 14th April 2018

oldsitch wrote:
12:41 Thursday 12th April 2018
Passed my PSV [any type of vehicle on 4107 at Bearwood in 1966. Any left at all ?
A few D7s have survived to my knowledge, (there may be more);

4082 THA 82 is owned by Brian Waldron of Bromsgrove. It is complete but may need extensive restoration if it was to be used on the public road again.

4482 XHA 482 is owned by The Transport Museum at Wythall. This bus is complete and looks good on the outside, is mechanically all there, but the metal frame of bodywork is corroded in places and in need of lots of work if it is ever to carry passengers again.

4767 767 BHA is now fully restored and roadworthy in all over red livery. However it is a cut-down single-deck breakdown recovery vehicle, so whilst recognisable as a D7 it is not really a bus any more. I hope the owners can bring it to some Rallies this year as I am looking forward to hearing an 8 litre KL engine running in a D7 on the road once again.

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