Old Bus Photos

East Midland – Leyland Tiger Cub – R 324 – ORR 324

East Midland - Leyland Tiger Cub - R 324 - ORR 324

East Midland Motor Services
1954
Leyland Tiger Cub
Saunders-Roe B44F

This batch was a favourite of mine. The Saro body looked so much better than many contemporary offerings. These were sometimes to be found on East Midland route 99 Chesterfield to Sheffield via Ford and Ridgeway. This picture is in the maroon livery but they looked even better in the chocolate, biscuit, and cream livery.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Les Dickinson


11/01/13 – 05:46

I couldn’t agree more, Les. We didn’t have any at Percy Main, but the Northern General group had quite a number of these. I always thought they looked particularly good in Sunderland District’s dark blue and white livery, they always had the look that they were built up to a standard rather than down to a price

Ronnie Hoye


11/01/13 – 05:46

Seeing the caption to this one has prompted me to look at the East Midland entries in the column on the left. Yes, the chocolate and cream style was distinctive. My only experience of Tiger Cub/Saro buses was with Ribble.
I note some comments about migrating managers who took their old operator’s livery with them. Readers will know that Southampton’s traditional dark red – cherry might be the simplest way of describing it – was supplanted on the Atlanteans with much more cream, and a lighter red. Bill Lewis brought that arrangement with him from Manchester.

Pete Davies


11/01/13 – 08:09

The Saro bodywork was a much more good looking version of the BET specification which spawned thousands of MCW Hermes bodies that took a number of iterations to look only half as attractive.

Phil Blinkhorn


11/01/13 – 15:58

Interesting to note that probably the three largest fleets of these Saro/Tiger Cubs, Ribble, East Midland and NGT all ended up in unrelieved dark red/maroon livery. Even so they still looked smart.

Eric Bawden


12/01/13 – 06:23

Interesting too that, to the best of my knowledge, this type of body was never built on a Reliance.

Chris Barker


12/01/13 – 13:55

Good point, Chris, I cant say that I’ve ever seen these on anything other than a Tiger Cub. According to the bus chassis lists, the NGT group had 31 in total, DCN 843/857 ‘Northern’ and OUP 655/670 ‘Sunderland District’ all delivered in 1954

Ronnie Hoye


12/01/13 – 16:28

One type that did share the body was the SARO Integral which was Gardner powered which appeared around 1953.
If I remember correctly this was unique and the sole example went to Maidstone and District as SO68 registered as RKE 540 see www.flickr.com/
It ended up with Berresford Cheddleton who ran it in a livery that looked very similar to PMT between 1966 and 1968 with the fleet number 28.

Phil Blinkhorn

ps I’ve found a photo in Berresford’s colours www.flicker.com/


13/01/13 – 07:30

…and preserved Guy LUF SARO demonstrator LJW 336!

Ian Thompson


A Guy UF demonstrator was also similarly equipped: www.sct61.org.uk/
Very similar bodies were fitted to BUT trolleybuses for Dunedin and Auckland New Zealand (the nearest we get to a Reliance?) and less similar, less attractive, 33 ft long Daimler Freelines also went to Auckland, the first as a complete build, the rest – 89 in number – ckd. Though looking different due to the panelling I gather the framing was the same.
Chris’s assertion about the lack of the body on the Reliance chassis seems to be correct

Phil Blinkhorn


13/01/13 – 07:58

LJW 336

Here is a shot of LJW 336, the Guy Arab UF demonstrator which was subsequently purchased by Blue Line of Armthorpe. This view shows it in 1969 at which point it had been just a store for a number of years. It seems surprising that it was on the heavier UF rather than the lightweight LUF chassis.

Alan Murray-Rust


13/01/13 – 14:11

Since posting my shot, I have found a number of views of LJW 336 in preservation, which refer to it as an LUF. I took my information from the PSVC fleet history PB4, which lists it as a UF. This is what also appears on the SCT61 site that Phil refers to. However, I have been back to my copy of PB4; this includes the PB4A appendix, which I had overlooked first time round. This corrects the original info and lists it specifically as an LUF.

Alan Murray-Rust


13/01/13 – 17:27

Alan, that makes a lot more sense though the Freeline as hardly a lightweight.

Phil Blinkhorn


15/01/13 – 06:20

LJW 336 was a special Guy Arab UF which was developed as a test bed for lighter construction. The result of this development was the Arab LUF, for which LJW acted as a demonstrator. The only objection to calling it an LUF is that the LUF hadn’t actually been invented when it was built!
I’m not sure about Manchester being the inspiration for Southampton’s new livery. Bill Lewis may well have taken the lighter red with him, but I think I’m right in saying he left Manchester before the Mancunians arrived (I was working under him at the time), and in any case the Southampton scheme doesn’t bear much resemblance to the Mancunian livery. However, I remember Ralph Bennett exhibiting a Bolton Atlantean to the Manchester public before then, and to my eyes the Southampton livery looks like the Bolton scheme with Manchester colours.

Peter Williamson


16/01/13 – 05:08

Peter, you may well be correct about the origins of the Bill Lewis style of Southampton livery. I suspect from what you say it is something of a hybrid: Bolton style so far as ‘what colour is where’ is concerned, but using the brighter Manchester red. It wasn’t just the Transport Department managers who had this idea of taking their old liveries with them: the then City Engineer in Southampton had come from Swindon, and brought that Council’s shade of blue with him.

Pete Davies


15/11/13 – 15:26

ORR 324

During the late 60s/very early 70s I was working in the Birmingham area but visited my folks in Nottingham most weekends. On fine Sunday mornings, I liked to borrow my Dad`s camera and trundle around the likely photo-spots in the city and here is one from that era.
This is parked up in the Ice Stadium car park and has all the clues to suggest it is one of the same batch as R324:

ORR 324_cu

Obviously by then operated by East Midlands Housing Association, it occurred to me that its previous "East Midland" fleet name had been neatly over painted in black with the extra "S" on the end. One letter overlaps into the bay in front, but two into the bay behind.
By now looking a little tired and work-stained, it nevertheless attracted my attention as a handsome machine worthy of recording, sadly not enough to note the date and reg number.

Rob Hancock


ORR 324 Vehicle reminder shot for this posting


31/12/13 – 07:04

Trent had 10 of these Saro Tiger Cubs. painted red below the waist rail white above and looked superb probably the best colour scheme of all. A couple ran in wales for a long time. I saw a photo of some Reliances with a similar body that were exported to the Caribbean.

Ron Stringer


 

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Glasgow Corporation – Daimler Fleetline – SGD 730 – D 268

Glasgow Corporation - Daimler Fleetline - SGD 730 - D 268
Copyright David Lennard

Glasgow Corporation
1963
Daimler Fleetline CRG6LX
Alexander H44/34F

Sorting through my photos recently I came across this shot taken I think in the late sixties in Glasgow. Whilst at a quick glance it looks like any of the Corporations large fleet of Atlanteans. But, a closer look shows it to be D268 their one and only Daimler Fleetline, delivered in 1963 with a body identical to the previously mentioned Atlanteans some of which were delivered with Albion badges. I have a slightly blurred photo of one of these if anyone is interested. Why Glasgow never bought any other Fleetlines in view of the number of CVG,s they had previously bought I do not know, perhaps someone may be able to enlighten me. I vaguely remember taking the photo somewhere near the Botanic Gardens I think, again I am ready to be corrected.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Diesel Dave


09/01/13 – 05:42

I’d heard of Kelvingrove, but Kelvindale is a new destination to me.

Jim Hepburn


09/01/13 – 16:01

Information about Kelvindale can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/. or at http://kelvindale.org.uk/

Ken Jones


10/01/13 – 17:50

Looking at this photo now makes me realise the Glasgow Alexander body design was a true classic and probably the most successful of the first generation rear engined body designs. In fact it doesn’t look to dated when set against the modern offerings on the low-floor chassis of today.

Philip Halstead


11/01/13 – 08:06

Somehow, the low height version of the body looked even better and, yes, it wouldn’t look out of place on today’s streets. Other 1960s bodies which would still look up to date would be the Mancunian, especially the 33ft version and the 1968 Park Royal body on Sheffield’s Atlanteans.

Phil Blinkhorn


13/01/13 – 07:37

Phil: I couldn’t agree more about the Mancunian; I was impressed with it from the outset. Although many people deride its squareness, I find it stylish, of its time, and yet timeless. Manchester took the bull by the horns by creating a brand new livery that was totally suited to the body.

Alan Murray-Rust


14/01/13 – 13:17

About Philip H’s comments and the Fleetlines….Have to agree that in design terms, they are probably ‘up there’ with the true classics of their time….I remember the first time I saw a NWRCC example in Mersey Square and standing fixated for what might have been fifteen minutes at just how futuristic they looked compared to everything else around them….But a question to those of you who are far more technical and knowledgeable than myself….Were the windscreens on these Fleetlines the same piece/part/whatever as the those on the NWRCC Alexander bodied PSU3/4R Leopards?? And was the upstairs front windscreen on the Fleetline the same piece/part/whatever as the rear window on the PSU3’s?? I’ve often wondered whether the size/shape of what at the time were fairly huge single pieces of shaped glass just Alexander’s ‘brand design’ or whether it was actually a very clever innovation by them to reduce component/stock requirements in their manufacturing process which just happened to turn out right aesthetically….

Stuart C


14/01/13 – 15:32

Stuart C the answer to both your windscreen questions id yes. Economy sometimes can be translated into a timeless design!!

Phil Blinkhorn


14/01/13 – 15:59

I agree entirely with Philip on the timelessness of this Alexander design. Modern double deck body builders seem to compete with each other to accommodate the greatest area of frontal glass. Replacement costs must be astronomic.

Roger Cox


12/03/13 – 06:33

Stuart, both screens were used on the Alexander Y Type single decker – in fact, the entire GRP moulding of the upper dome was used!

Anon


19/08/13 – 07:20

The bus was based at Maryhill garage from 1964 approx where I was a driver and have driven the Daimler many times on service route 3 which ran from Mosspark to Kelvindale. The Daimler was not first choice of the drivers the doors were operated by way of the gear stick. You had the normal gear change with an additional slot for opening and closing the doors the bus had to be at a halt before you could open or close the doors resulting in late running, hope this helps.

Frank


20/08/13 – 06:32

Truly understand where you are coming from Frank.
When I was driving at Swinton for LUT, we had 2 of the first batch of dual doored Daimler Fleetline 33 footers, nicknamed ‘Jumbo’s. They were fleet nos 360 & 361, ATC 273 & 4 J. Although there was no agreement in place with the TGWU for their use as one-manners, Management was adamant and Supervisory staff were were made to frequently check that they were being used, even in crew operation, as dual door buses, in what they saw/said was their ‘pending’ one man introduction. The problem with them, was the Doors ! The front door was air pedal controlled, but the REAR door was electronic, via a sixth gear position on the selector. The gear selector would not move until the rear doors, which had an electrical sensor, confirmed that they had closed. Well, even on the moderately timed 38 service, where they were allocated, this slow & time consuming operation meant that time was lost at every stop. I tried with my guard one day to use a ticket roll to tape off the centre door on a very busy trip (17:20 hours) out of Manchester one evening, but was caught by a ‘checker’ and reported for not using the centre doors. I think I had the last laugh however, as I found that by pushing the ‘Master switch’ to off, the centre doors closed automatically and the gear selector was released ! – but this trick needed two hands to perform.
Happy Days

Mike Norris


23/09/13 – 06:00

Diesel Dave thanks for your photo of Daimler D268 you are correct the location is at Botanic Gardens at the intersection of Byres Road and the Great Western Road hidden by the tanker to the left of Daimler D268 is the rest room then used by bus staff for meal breaks.

Frank


24/09/13 – 09:28

On the subject of modern classics I would add the Leeds Roe dual door Fleetlines and Atlanteans to the list together with the ECW body for Olympians and VRs. Anyone any thoughts on these or others to add to the list.

Chris Hough


 

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Alex Moulton – Moulton – Unregistered

Alex Moulton - Moulton - Unregistered

Alex Moulton
Moulton
1970
Moulton C23F

The Moulton was developed by Dr Alex Moulton of "folding bicycle and rubber suspension for cars" fame. He died, aged 92, early in December 2012. The coach was built in 1970 and is a one off. This curious-looking beast is now in the care of the Science Museum and resides at their Annexe at Wroughton Airfield, near Swindon, where I captured it on film during one of their too-rare open days, on 12 July, 1986. The bodywork, also by Moulton, seats 23 according to the PSV Circle listing. The vehicle was never registered for use on public roads.
The adjacent vehicle is a Bedford VAL/Duple new to and preserved in the livery of Reliance, Newbury: altogether more conventional in the "vehicles with three or more axles" department!

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies


06/01/13 – 07:09

Shows a certain amount of commonality with the Leyland Commutabus. This was the 1965 culmination of 1950/60s experimental work which laid the way for the Leyland National.

David Oldfield


06/01/13 – 11:21

I believe that the Moulton coach is available for sale to the right person. As part of the Science Museum’s quest to downsize its non-core exhibits, it is willing to part with this vehicle, for the right price, to someone or an organisation that will keep it in the right conditions (and probably to continue to allow public access). But as it has never been road-licenced, it would be a real challenge to get it certified at this stage in its life, with its range of strange features, in accordance with VOSA’s requirements.

Petras409


06/01/13 – 13:09

Can someone give us a run-down on the "strange features?"
-Perkins V8?
-Space frame giving lightness and flexibility of body shape?
Suspension? Independent? Rubber?
Two steering axles, two driving… or a FWD bus??!
Ventilation?

Joe


06/01/13 – 18:09

Sorry, Joe. all I know about the beast is in the caption.

Pete Davies


06/01/13 – 18:10

More pictures of this coach may be found here-: www.flickr.com/photos/

Roger Cox


06/01/13 – 18:10

It would be a complicated process, as the design has never been homologated for road use. Assuming it could be (and the Perkins V8 alone would almost certainly disqualify it under current regulations) you would have a mammoth task trying to build up a case for permitting this design to run on the road subject only to 1970s legislation. I don’t see anybody considering that task, with no guarantee of success, worthwhile, particularly when you consider that it would only run limited mileage due to its historic status.
Much simpler to give it an occasional run on a test circuit and avoid the bother!

David Beilby


07/01/13 – 15:38

Thanks Roger for the flickr ref which answers the questions. Wonderful, isn’t it! Lord Stokes- it seems- rejected it and drove away (metaphorically) away in his Triumph Herald.

Joe


07/01/13 – 15:39

Judging by the cab view in the Flickr set (thanks to Roger for the link) it looks a flimsy machine. Bedford running units? And quite apart from the air pollution hinted at by David B, I’m sure the screaming V8 would have blown itself up before long. The whole thing would have made the Bedford VAL look like a paragon of long component life and reliability. Forgive my blatant prejudices…

Ian Thompson


07/01/13 – 15:39

I hope it finds a good home as its certainly unique. I know this will sound a bit flippant, but it looks like the kind of thing you would expect to see on Thunderbirds.

Ronnie Hoye


07/01/13 – 15:40

With apologies for those not of a ‘certain age’ but maybe Mr Moulton was influenced by those Gerry Anderson "supermarionation" programmes like ‘Thuderbirds’? Perhaps this was a full-size mock-up of "FAB – 3" which might have stood for "Fairly Awful Bus"!

Paul Haywood


08/01/13 – 07:33

Ian- read the Science Museum description again: the idea was body strength and suspension. The engine/transmission was surely just a prototype. A very impressive machine and an indication of how British Engineering missed its way… could this have been our Setra? Lady Penelopes car was more VAL/Vauxhall- twin front axle and ghastly styling- in pink!

Joe


08/01/13 – 09:37

I thought this contribution might generate some comment. I’m a bit surprised there isn’t more!!!

Pete Davies


08/01/13 – 10:46

Maybe give it a run out at Sandtoft or Beamish.

Mr Anon


08/01/13 – 11:44

"Parker – get the Moulton ready to roll."
"Yes mi’ lady!"

Stephen Ford


08/01/13 – 16:15

I trawled obituaries for Alex Moulton and only one mentioned his coach. I paraphrase what was written: "Apparently, in 1969, he produced a revolutionary motor coach and invited Lord Stokes, then chairman of BMC, to his home, in order to examine the prototype. Moulton recalled: “He was supercilious: ‘Oh No, we couldn’t possibly do that.’”"

Chris Hebbron


08/01/13 – 18:08

As I said Chris- he drove off in his virtual Triumph Herald which was his tour de force in rescuing Triumph – but I think that is as far as he was going. Moulton’s obituaries are interesting: try reading them with Otto Kässbohrer who also took over a family firm and started producing self-supporting coaches (Setra). Moulton took over the family rubber firm and designed rubber suspensions for Minis, and then hydrolastic for cars and space-frame……coaches? I rest my case!

Joe


09/01/13 – 05:40

Moulton coach, original brief from BMC, fit your suspension to a Thornycroft 7 ton lorry, suspension good but chassis too weak allowing wheel hop. Lorry studies abandoned.
A stiff structure was required, ie the coach with a spaceframe body/chassis as a tubular all over "cage". When fitted with the Moulton "road bogies" the vehicle rode better than all else, BMC ordered the vehicle to be scrapped, "not invented here syndrome"
Dr Moulton ignored the instruction, hence the preserved one-off.
How nice to see this vehicle roadworthy again.

MM


09/01/13 – 15:58

Thanks to comments by Joe, MM and others I now realise that the Moulton was a serious project and not just a marketing department’s "concept (ugh!)!" vehicle, as I’d assumed it was. Chris H’s mention of Donald Stokes’s contemptuous dismissal of the Moulton prototype reminds me that as I was having a look round the Ailsa at the 1974 London Commercial Motor Show, tape-measure in hand and probably making admiring noises, someone sitting upstairs asked me what I thought of it. Having listened patiently to my enthusiastic but probably not very well-informed eulogy of the design, he said quietly "Well, I designed it. Glad you like it. My name’s Norman Watson. I work[ed] for Scammell at Watford, Herts. Donald Stokes doesn’t think much of it, though!" Somehow, I think Norman had the last laugh…

Ian Thompson


10/01/13 – 06:48

As someone who has driven Maxis, owned Allegros and Metros, and currently owns four Rover 100s (and whose contempt for Clarkson’s opinions is unequalled) I can confirm that the Moulton suspension concepts work extremely well. It does not surprise me in the least that Donald Stokes, a salesman rather than an engineer, should dismiss Moulton’s ideas out of hand. Once Stokes got his hand on the tiller of the once great ship "Leyland", it was full speed ahead for the rocks and oblivion.

Roger Cox


10/01/13 – 11:55

To be fair, ‘Red’ Robbo and his trade union cohorts hardly helped the whole unsavoury scenario.

Chris Hebbron


10/01/13 – 17:30

Stokes was a classic example of the Peter Principle in action. An excellent bus salesman but promoted far beyond his abilities and arrogant with it.
Having messed up the industry it was inevitable in this country that we gave him a knighthood and then a peerage.
You couldn’t make it up.

Paragon


11/01/13 – 05:23

It was ironic that Donald Stokes, salesman "par excellence" should have been duped into agreeing to a merger of LMC and BMC (Build More C**p) when BMC was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. It was the subsequent siphoning of funds to keep the ailing ex-BMC car/light-van business afloat that did for BLMC (Build Lots More C**p) – and as Chris says the Luddite (lemming?) tendencies of the car-workers at Longbridge didn’t help. Yet there was still a chance of salvation: I’ve read somewhere [and I will post the source if I ever come back to find it] that, in the early 1970s, GKN (steel manufacturers) wanted to purchase the Austin-Morris volume car/van business from BLMC – shorn of this, and concentrating on sports cars/executive/luxury cars (MG, Triumph, Rover, Jaguar/Daimler), 4x4s (Land Rover/Range Rover) and commercials (AEC, blah . . .), the future may have been so different.
Perhaps if (B)LMC had also sold on non-core activities – like Aveling-Barford/Aveling-Marshall (construction equipment), pedal-cars (factory closed 1971), Coventry Climax/Coventry Conveyancer (fork-lifts, fire pumps, competition/maine/military engines), Prestcold (refigeration equipment), Avon Bodies (body repairs and the odd hearse), Alvis (military vehicles) . . . and I don’t even know what Beans Industries, West Yorkshire Foundries, Alford & Alder (Engineers), British Gear Grinding & Manufacturing, Goodwin Barsby & Co, Barfords of Belton, Invicta Bridge & Engineering, and Grantham Electrical Engineering were doing or what their relevance to the core activity of BLMC was . . . earlier then the outcome for these businesses (many subsequently failed) would have been different too.
I’m not a BL-basher, I stuck with Rover to the bitter end (and when my father bought a new Triumph Dolomite [c.1972] was he proud!) – but now my wife and I run VAG-group cars (and now I know why MG_Rover failed). When I catch the bus to work next week it will be Volvo or Scania that pulls up. As an engineer I could cry.
But back to the Moulton! As an engineer I could rave about the engineering innovations and reported ride quality, but I’m with Ian’s views of 7/01: how much more work/development would have needed to take this design forwards to a viable project? AND if the design offered so many advantages why wasn’t it subsequently adopted by any manufacturer?: and as far as car suspension goes where are "Hydrolastic"(?) and, for that matter "Hydragas", suspension systems now? . . . Tooting Broadway, 5:45, mid-week, is not when you want your cars suspension to give up the ghost – believe me.

Philip Rushworth


11/01/13 – 08:38

I’m not too sure that Stokes was duped. Rather he was frog marched into the merger and then became enamoured with the level of power he found he wielded and his proximity to the levers of national policy.
The period spawned the appalling idea which has dominated British business ever since – "management experience in any given industry means the ability to manage any other".
This has been proved a fallacy on both an individual and corporate level thousands of times in the last 45 years when lifetimes of hard learned experience in a given industry has been steamrollered away by the money men who believe, to quote one ex boss of mine who was eventually sacked after destroying what had been a profitable company in one industry taken over by his company from a different sphere, "it’s the bottom line that matters, how you get the result you want doesn’t"

Phil Blinkhorn


11/01/13 – 14:26

Aerodynamically a bumble bee cant fly, but no one ever told the bee, some of these ‘bottom line’ accountants could learn a thing or two from that.

Ronnie Hoye


11/01/13 – 15:55

The bottom line accountant thinks that profit is the only thing that matters. Manufacturing products is an expensive nuisance incidental to the acquisition of cash. If you can make a profit without the manufacturing nuisance, so much the better. By this definition Dick Turpin got it right. "Stand and deliver!" The principle is well illustrated by Scott Adams’ Dilbert cartoons.

Stephen Ford


12/01/13 – 06:10

Dick Turpin had the decency to wear a mask, so at least, you new you were being robbed!

Eric Bawden


12/01/13 – 06:12

We all speak as we find, Philip. The Hydragas suspension gives much better pitch control over bumps in small cars with relatively short wheelbases. In 34 years to date of ownership of cars with Hydragas suspension systems, I have experienced only three occasions of unit failures. I think that this compares favourably with "conventional" springing, and all components have a finite lifespan. The Hydragas systems were more expensive to produce than ordinary suspensions, and pressurising the system has to be undertaken carefully by fully competent people. As we all know, accountants rule the roost in industry these days, and time is money. Bernd Pischetsrieder of BMW was very impressed with the Moulton suspension system, and was considering using it in the new Mini, but boardroom differences saw his departure for the VW group. (The less said about the present day oversized, overweight, overrated beast masquerading under the misnomer of "Mini" the better.) As for the bus that turns up being of Scania or Volvo manufacture, these machines are nowadays made in Poland – accountants, again, seeking low labour costs – and quite a few modern buses do come from Guildford, with Cummins engines and German gearboxes.

Roger Cox


12/01/13 – 10:19

So if Dennis still exists, technically, in Guildford, albeit not in the original premises I recall so well, what does it now do – assemble foreign manufacturers’ engines and gearboxes?

Chris Hebbron


12/01/13 – 16:21

Dennis – aka ADL – exists more than technically. It designs and produces chassis that operate in Britain and overseas. Yes, it uses proprietary engines and gearboxes nowadays (and Cummins does have a manufacturing plant in the UK) but so do other manufacturers, past and present – e.g. the bulk of Leyland Olympians had Gardner engines and ZF gearboxes. If buses were to be regarded as "genuine" only if all the components were produced "in house", then I doubt if any manufacturer would qualify. Do Volvo and Scania make their own braking systems for example?

Roger Cox


16/03/13 – 16:55

Philip R (11/01/13) included Beans in his list of BLMC companies whose purpose wasn’t clear. My father was on the management team briefly there in the late 70s. Then they were in the business of maintaining engines and conversion for marine use using a rather familiar brand name – Thornycroft.
Apparently the offices had photos of their old car and van production to act as a reminder of their past. I believe there was a foundry too.

Rob McCaffery


17/08/13 – 11:57

"Moulton Bus" I may be the last surviving member of the team to have built this bus. I’m 66 but was aged 23 at the time the bus was built. There was a comprehensive question list from "Joe" in the forum, I will try to answer. 4 wheel steering at the front, 4 wheel drive via a cast aluminium "transfer box" at the rear. The transfer from prop shaft to axles was by way of a chain drive (splash fed lube). The suspension was independent "Hydragas" modules with auto self levelling. We were working on making the front "Kneel" to accommodates elderly/infirm passengers. The body was aluminium "skin" pop riveted to a space frame and cosmetically prettied with strips. The bus had one accident when the nearside skin was torn off whilst trying to negotiate a passing oncoming truck in a narrow lane. The ride was akin to the smoothest motor car ride available at that time and I would suggest may still be comparable with todays rides. The bus was tested extensively at a nearby aerodrome, ride and handling were exceptional. The handling compared favourably with the hydrolastic cars of the day ! The bus could ride over a series of wooden railway sleeper with barely a jolt. I hope this has been interesting. If anyone would like to contact me please feel free. I hope the bus survives.

John Llewellyn


18/08/13 – 06:35

Thank you, John, for filling in some details of this unique vehicle. It must have been quite exciting being part of such an innovative team and project. Shame that it came to naught.

Chris Hebbron


05/09/14 – 06:30

I agree with the statement regarding Hydragas suspension, both Toyota and Audi entered into consultation with Alex Moulton to incorporate Hydragas into future models, Toyota planned to install a front-rear interconnected "bogie" system into their iQ car but bailed out for the contemporary setup of coil springs.
We have all been brainwashed into accepting modern cars with disagreeable ride action due to over-stiff suspension and the obsession with aggressive driving.

MM


05/09/14 – 18:00

Having had a look at the link Roger mentions above, 06/01/13 – I then went for a nosey before and after the Moulton and found this Ipswich single deck Trolley #44 DX 8871.

John Lomas


Moulton Vehicle reminder shot for this posting


20/05/15 – 05:59

John Llewellyn’s 17/08/13 accurate response heightened the nostalgia for me. It was a great project.
Yes John, I too survive.

John Allison


 

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