Old Bus Photos

Northern General – AEC Reliance – EFT 551 – 2154

Northern General - AEC Reliance - EFT 551 - 2154
Photograph by ‘unknown’ if you took this photo please go to the copyright page.

The Northern General Transport Company
1961
AEC Reliance 2MU3RV
Burlingham Seagull 70 C41F

On the subject of bus liveries that has been discussed on this site recently. Some operators seemed to adopt a one style fits all livery that hardly varied from one type of vehicle to another, and made little or no allowance for differences in body style or trim. This example from the NGT group is a rather sad looking AEC Burlingham Seagull that was once a rather attractive Wakefield’s coach number 251 based at Percy Main, the depot I worked at. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of one of these in coach livery, but in common with most other Northern group coaches ‘except Sunderland & District’ it would have been predominantly cream with maroon window surrounds and skirt, I cant remember if the roof was cream or maroon, but they did look rather splendid. This one seems to have had some other changes made, the centre roof window above the windscreen has been removed or painted out, and the seats appear to have been changed as the originals would have been red and didn’t have grab rails fitted. Sunderland & District had some Leyland Tiger Cub’s with identical bodies and they ended up in bog standard stage carriage livery.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ronnie Hoye

A full list of Reliance codes can be seen here.


30/10/11 – 15:02

Most regulars know that I am both an AEC and a Burlingham man. Whilst it is self evident and accepted that the original Seagull was a classic, unlike many others, I quite like the 60/70 models – even if they were not quite up to scratch with the original.
I never remember one of these in Manchester in the 70s but I only ever remember coaches in this livery, not the reversed cream version. Was the Tyne – Mersey service treated as a bus service for these purposes? This would still qualify as a quality livery by today’s standards.
One fascinating piece of trivia is that individual NGT group fleets were either AEC, Leyland or Guy fleets. So no standard corporate ordering there then.

David Oldfield


02/11/11 – 06:46

David, you are not on your own. Whilst, undeniably the Burlingham Seagull was the ‘Creme de la Creme’ I also had a soft spot for the 60/70 series.
My local operator Baddeley Bros. of Holmfirth had two original Seagulls on Royal Tiger chassis KWU 844 (1951) and LWY 653 (1953). They then had Bedford SBG/Burlingham RWY 277 in 1956, again still quite attractive. Then came four SB3’s in 1959 with the hugely curved windscreen Burlingham body (probably a coach version of the PA series Vauxhall Velox/Cresta cars of the period) Then in 1961 came Bedford SB1 2496 WY with the Burlingham 61 body. This body, I thought, suited the front engine Bedford better than the underfloor AEC/Leyland chassis. This coach was followed in 1962 by a Duple Gannet bodied SB5. Things were starting to slide Burlingham wise!
All these coaches served me as school buses between 1965/70 so perhaps I’m looking through rose tinted glasses.
I thought the 1959 petrol engined SB’s mundane, 2496 WY and it’s Gannet bodied sister 433 BWU, so-so but when we got the Royal Tigers with the classic Seagull body which was not that often, despite there age, that was the ‘Creme de la Creme’!

Eric


02/11/11 – 09:26

Couldn’t agree with you more, Eric. They were a superb coachbuilder but, towards the end, had more than their fare share of dogs – especially regarding design. Apart from the plastic roofs on Seagull 60s, I’m not aware of any considerable drop in quality and the Duple Continental and Firefly/Dragonfly were Burlinghams in everything but name and seemed to have a good reputation.
I’m a Sheffielder, who had relatives in the Barnsley and Huddersfield areas, and always thought Baddeley Brothers looked quite classy. I was only really aware of them as a student in the early 70s, passing through on the X19. By that time, the principal vehicles were Bedford YRQ/Plaxton Panorama Elite Express grant vehicles. They still looked smart, though.

David Oldfield


02/11/11 – 15:04

David, Your mention of plastic roofs on the 60’s has jogged my memory. I remember the cloth trim on the interior ceiling of both 2496 WY and 433 BWU being quite badly stained by the ingress of water when they would probably be only about five years old. Baddeley’s also had a Duple Alpine Continental on a Leopard chassis 474 EWW. Of course the other sizeable coach operator in the Huddersfield area was Hanson’s who had two batches of Firefly’s on Ford chassis in 1963/4

Eric


03/11/11 – 06:27

Strange, isn’t it, how many operators had heavy (or medium) weight service buses and lightweight coaches? Hanson and Booth and Fisher (recently posted) had AECs and Ford coaches, York Pullman was AEC/Bedford, the Doncaster indis went down a similar road and this was replicated around the country. Firms like Baddeley Bros were less common, but by no means unique, with their mix of heavy and light weight coaches.

David Oldfield


03/11/11 – 17:46

Hanson’s was rather a complex fleet in the fifties. The coaches were a mix of Regal III and Reliances and Bedfords and the buses were AEC with a smattering of Albions. Between 1956 and 1966 most of the AEC’s went on to be rebuilt as buses. The Bedfords were kept anything from 2 to about 5 years and from about 1959 all new coaches were Fords right to the demise of the Hanson business in 1974. This change of allegiance is thought to have being something to do with Hanson Haulage buying large numbers of Ford lorries.
Baddeley’s although being a smaller operator chose both Leyland and Bedford for new coaches in the fifties, many with Burlingham bodies, this policy continuing into the sixties. They also purchased quite a few secondhand coaches, including 2 that had been operated at one time or another with Hansons. Another feature of Baddeley’s was the hiring in for the summer season of coaches from local dealer Hughes and the Baddeley’s fleet name and number being applied. Several of these were in Wallace Arnold cream as the had be leased by WA for one or two seasons from Hughes when new. This led to Baddeley’s having quite an interesting and varied fleet. Wish I had owned a camera in those days.

Eric


04/11/11 – 07:04

I agree with you David. The last of what some would call ‘proper coaches’ to carry the Wakefields name were two Plaxton Embassy Bedfords ‘SB8’s I think’. The next Wakefields after that were Alexander ‘Y’ type DP’s on Leyland Leopard chassis, but I think that would have been a decision based on economics. Percy Main depot didn’t have any long distance or express routes, so the coach fleet was only used for private hires and excursions and most were de-Licensed at the end of Blackpool Illuminations, so apart from three double deckers the Wakefields name virtually disappeared from October until about Easter, where as the DP’s were used all year round and went onto stage carriage work in winter months. If memory serves, for the first couple of years some of them had the seats changed to ordinary bus type during the winter.

Ronnie Hoye


13/11/12 – 08:40

I remember going to the Lake District in the early 60s on one of these and it did indeed have the reversed coach livery the above is a later incarnation.

Malcolm Swaddle


18/04/13 – 17:40

EFT 550

Not in colour I’m afraid, but I’ve found this photo of one of EFT 551’s sisters in its original Wakefield’s livery. As I’ve said, Percy Main had four of these, EFT 550/3 – 250/3; and they remained in service as coaches until about 1970, they were then transferred to Northern and downgraded to D/P’s

Ronnie Hoye


 

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Northern General – Leyland Titan PD2/3 – CCN 139 – 2080

Northern General - Leyland Titan PD2/3 - CCN 139 - 2080
Photograph by ‘unknown’ if you took this photo please go to the copyright page.

The Northern General Transport Company
1951
Leyland Titan PD2/3
Leyland H33/26R

This is a photo of a very typical all Leyland Titan of the period the only thing that would be different to a thousand other all Leyland Titans would be the layout of the destination blinds. They were good, solid, reliable and economical workhorses so why change a winning formula, I am not sure just how many all Leyland Titans were built it would be interesting to know, if you know please leave a comment.
This bus was not new to Northern General it was originally delivered to  Gateshead and District Omnibus Company a subsidiary of Northern General and was number 39 in there fleet.
I do like the van at the side of the bus, if memory serves me correct I think it was called a ‘Morris Commercial’ but nick named a ‘Morris Comical’ its predecessor which was not as long was narrower but just as tall with a rather strange radiator grill. Anyway that’s enough wandering off the point this is a website for buses not vans.

A full list of Titan codes can be seen here.

———

Just thought I’d ask if anyone can clear up a mystery.

The final version of the Leyland body on PD2s was one of the best and most handsome around. It was derived from the earlier, more stark, version without radiused corners to windows.
The 1951 batch for Sheffield Corporation had rain guttering over the bays and half-drop windows. Making them different from any before or after. Most buses had gone to sliders rather than half-drop other than London Transport with the RT and RM family.
This Northern General Titan of similar vintage has similar detailing, as have all the other 1950/51 examples I have seen (or their photographs) recently.

Was it deliberate Leyland policy or just a coincidence?

David Oldfield

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I remember seeing these buses regularly in the early 1950s to 1967 approx, very smart indeed in their chocolate brown livery cream relief bands edged in black when in their original Gateshead Omnibus Company livery. Two at least CCN162 and CCN 171 ended their days operating with T D Alexanders "Greyhound" company at Arbroath. Note the unusual two aperture rear destination screens See this link.

Gerald Walker

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07/03/11 – 08:28

The van is a Morris LD (Light Delivery) the Morris Commercial you refer to was the PV (Parcel Van model)

Roger Broughton

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25/09/11 – 15:30

Northern General had a number of PD2’s with several different types of bodies, MCW Orion and Park Royal with rear doors were two I can remember, but for some strange reason Percy Main depot (Tynemouth & Wakefields)where I worked, we had five PD2’s with Willowbrook bodies, they were AFT 49 to 53 and the fleet numbers were 219/223

Ronnie Hoye

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18/01/12 – 06:37

P.S to my previous comments, if you go to Google and type in AFT 53, you will find a picture of one of Tynemouth’s Willowbrook bodied PD2’s fleet number 223 being used a a driver training vehicle. The next batch of buses at Percy Main were the first 30ft vehicles, they were Orion bodied PD3’s registration AFT 924/35 234/5 carried the Wakefields name as did the first Leyland Atlantean CFT 636 fleet no 236. Some of the PD3’s were later transferred to Gateshead but ATF 930 ‘230’ became the training vehicle replacing 223

Ronnie Hoye

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18/01/12 – 10:34

Not the most attractive of bodies, Ronnie, not helped by the heavy upstairs opening vents.

Chris Hebbron

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18/01/12 – 13:48

You’re not wrong Chris, but I don’t think they were best suited to this particular livery. the Northern group had several layout changes, when these buses first came they were all maroon with cream roof and centre band, but I always thought that they looked best in the all maroon with cream band, that was the style adopted for the ‘red fleet’ by the time the PD3’s came onto the scene, Sunderland and District remained in their dark blue and white, and Gateshead at first changed from chocolate and cream to the same green and cream livery as Tyneside but later went to all green with cream centre band

Ronnie Hoye

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CCN 139_lr Vehicle reminder shot for this posting

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19/01/12 – 05:24

It’s amazing that the fleet livery changes should be so many. And it’s amazing what a difference the right livery makes. Sometimes, a woman should be consulted, as long as there’s a veto on pink and princessy! Whatever, the principle is keep it simple!

Chris Hebbron

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19/01/12 – 12:28

Funny you should say that Chris, I don’t know where it came from or how long they had it ‘it may well have been a demonstrator’ but for a short while in the 70’s, Moor Dale Coaches had a Plaxton bodied Bedford in a Purple Lilac and White livery, it sounds hideous but in actual fact it did look quite attractive, but don’t tell anyone I said that, but you’re right about livery making all the difference, bright trim is also a factor. Moor Dale’s livery was Scarlet, Royal Blue and White, they seemed to favour Plaxton bodied Bedford’s, and they always seemed to stand out from the crowd, at the same time they had four ‘I think’ old double deckers of various types that were used on school runs, and whilst they carried the same colours they never seemed to look right.

Ronnie Hoye

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19/01/12 – 13:24

I know what you mean, Ronnie, about getting the colour-scheme right. Here are two local examples near me, worth mentioning.
Although I’m not a lover of swooping liveries, this Leyland Olympian, in Swanbrook livery of green, purple and white, works, IMHO, probably because of the expanse of white top. Unusually, for Swanbrook, this bus has a glossy finish! They operate a few stage services in Gloucestershire, but mainly do school runs. See: //www.flickr.com/photos/  
This Leyland Olympian with Gloucester operator, Bennett’s Coaches, has a pleasant, more or less, traditional livery. The somewhat disparate colours, with tricky orange, work together, aided by chrome hubcaps. Bennett’s (coach and NatEx operator) have no stage services, but operate Park and Ride and school services. This vehicle is on a layover from P&R duties, usually performed by swish coaches. See: //www.flickr.com/photos/  
Of course, I may have no taste for colour at all, being colour-blind! That’s why I got married, so that I could have a dress advisor! Of course, that’s between you and me!

Chris Hebbron


 

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Northern General – Leyland Leopard PSU3/3 – CCN 718D – 2518

Northern General Leyland Leopard

The Northern General Transport Company
1966
Leyland Leopard PSU3/3R
Marshall DP49F

Photo taken at Wellington Street bus station Leeds. The X97 route was Liverpool to Newcastle via Leeds obviously.
Information for this photo was found on the ‘Bus Lists on the Web’ website a very good site indeed can be seen here.


05/01/12 – 07:24

I think that the air intake below the windscreen of the Northern General Leopard indicates it was fitted with the UHV (underfloor heating & ventilation) system designed in conjunction with BET, supposedly a fully automatic system with temperature sensors and air operated valves and flaps opening and closing various air ducts through which fresh or recirculated air passed in theory. In practice it was a very different matter as the only automatic thing was both driver and passengers were very cold in winter and very very hot in summer there being few opening windows and two permanently open roof vents with plastic trays underneath to disperse the incoming air. The worst aspect from the drivers point of view was that there wasn’t a motor and fan in the demister the system relied on the forward motion of the vehicle you can imagine how well this worked on a local stopping service. I encountered this system when working for Southdown who also had it fitted to a batch of Plaxton bodied coaches, fitted with vinyl covered seats, there were of course no opening windows and only the two roof vents already mentioned plus two more under the driver or passenger control, no Jet Vent blowers were fitted and of course the same inadequate demister system which still did not work on long runs These vehicles were known as "sweat boxes" very inappropriate in winter and loathed by drivers and passengers alike.

Diesel Dave


07/01/12 – 08:52

How times have/haven’t changed. Fully automatic heating and ventilation systems are now commonplace, but they still don’t work!

Peter Williamson


07/01/12 – 10:15

…..problem is, passengers insist on breathing whatever the temperature or weather conditions.

David Oldfield


31/01/12 – 09:23

There was one automatic heating and ventilation system that worked very well and that was the one fitted to the A series Leyland National providing the filters were kept clear of the inevitable debris that collected it was very reliable. It appeared to defy the fact that hot air rises with the outlets in the roof coving,which had the added bonus of the demister clearing from the top of the screen first, much better for the driver, in fact the whole bus was comfortable. The B series was no better than any other vehicle with underseat box heaters. Although much maligned the National was not a bad bus to drive, personally I thought the Mk 2 with the 680 engine was one of the best buses I ever drove. That may stir up some controversy.

Diesel Dave


31/01/12 – 15:29

Because the National was integral it was considered as a whole. The 500 series engine, especially the 510, was abominable and overshadowed the fact that the body – admittedly very spartan – was very good. The National 2 was what it ought to have been from the start – and a worthy successor to the vehicle it killed off (or murdered?) the Bristol RE. I agree with you fully about the National 0680 – but what about the TL11 version, or for that matter the Gardner?

David Oldfield


31/01/12 – 16:35

There is a nice essay on the 500 and its problems on the AROnline site here: //www.aronline.co.uk/

Gary T


31/01/12 – 16:38

Are Leyland Nationals too late for this site? I never got too close to them for some reason, but they were certainly quirky – the Meccano body must have been the death-knell of "coachbuilding" -and they could also be used on the railways! Can any of our resident panel explain: -why they sounded like industrial food mixers (which engine was that)? -why they emitted clouds of diesel particulates which would put them off the road these days (ditto?) and -what that pretend (?) air conditioning unit/1930’s luggage box on the roof was?

Joe


01/02/12 – 07:56

Yes Joe, that’s the famous 510 engine you’re talking about – and they are strictly "too late". The fixed head was novel, and extremely unreliable, smoky and sounded like a can of marbles. The roof box was an advanced, but expensive, heating unit.You could, however, get me really wound up about the LEZ (London’s low emission zone). You only need eyes to see the filth which can come out of modern "clean" vehicles and some TRC Tigers and Leopards (to name but two)would not "pass the test" and yet are possibly cleaner. [You certainly don’t choke in a smoke cloud behind them!]

David Oldfield


01/02/12 – 07:57

I have to take issue with Diesel Dave on the heating system defying normal laws of physics. Things may have been better in the cab but I recall many instances of getting on what I thought was a ‘warm’ National, passing under the warm air curtain at the door and sitting down. After a while your feet told you exactly where all the cold air had gone! There was a real temperature gradient. I would agree about the demisting effect though, even the saloon windows had less of a propensity to steam up.

David Beilby


01/02/12 – 07:58

I cant comment on the MK2 National as I’ve never driven one, but the early MK1’s were an abortion. When we first got them at Percy Main they were sometimes used on dual crew, and the conductors claimed that when they went round a corner they leaned over that much that they were almost walking on the windows. They soon became known as the ‘kick start buses’ as some of the myriad of sensors on the lower inspection panels were so touchy that a hefty boot had to be administered to ensure that contact was made and the vehicle would start, the steering was far too light and had no feel, they scrubbed off front tyres at an alarming rate, and on a wet road, if the vehicle went in the same direction that the wheels were pointing it was more by luck than judgment, as for the heating, on cold winter days you could be sitting with sinus trouble in you nose and frostbite in your feet, they must have had some good points but off hand I cant think of any.

Ronnie Hoye


01/02/12 – 08:00

Well I can’t answer Joe’s questions but I do remember very well the roof mounted air conditioning and heating system with outlets along the length of the interior, just above the cove panels, which quickly became blackened by the warm air, or should I say fumes of the heating. It’s astonishing that it never occurred to the designers that the heat (such as it was) would collect in the roof whilst your feet were like two blocks of ice on the floor!

Chris Barker


01/02/12 – 08:00

Thanks Gary: answers to my questions are in your quoted article (except the roofbox which was presumably the heating….)… and I thought it was just the cars (I had a Princess & lived- never to buy BL again). Let’s get back to the good old days…

Joe


01/02/12 – 08:01

As an apprentice working for West Yorkshire Road Car when they were still very much a Bristol – ECW – Gardner operator, I noted that anything built by Leyland was viewed with the deepest suspicion by the old guard. So when WY’s first Nationals arrived, and caused major headaches for the engineering staff, those deep suspicions seemed totally justified. ("We’re all doomed – aye doomed!" to quote a well-known Scotsman).
As Diesel Dave comments, the ‘A-Series’ heating and ventilation system worked very well, even in the depths of winter. The system also provided a ‘hot air curtain’ (Leyland parlance) over the entrance to reduce heat loss when the doors opened. The 510 engine was its Achilles heel as David states, and in the early days engines were covering less than 100,000 miles before the big end and main bearings disintegrated. However, following various Leyland modifications – large and small – WY examples were achieving well over 300,000 miles between overhauls in their later years. (Regarding your comment about the National killing off the RE David, three of WYs RELLs suffered the indignity of being fitted with 500 engines when new in 1970, as part of the National development programme. To add insult to injury, they still sported SRG 118-120 as their fleet numbers, even though they did not receive Gardner 6HLX transplants until a few years later, by which time they had become 1318-1320).
With regard to Joe’s queries, the ‘industrial food mixer’ sound may have been due to its engine design, being a ‘small’ unit developing 180 bhp in the National and capable of greater outputs in other applications. Cam lobes were very pointed in profile compared to a 680 or Gardner engine for example, meaning that the 510 valves snapped shut faster. Also, if memory serves correctly, the injector pressures were higher on the 510 too, adding to the cacophony. The engine was also of overhead camshaft layout, with a train of large, straight-cut gears supplying the drive from the crankshaft. The smoke problem certainly persisted, despite revised injectors, revised fuel pump settings and a different type of turbocharger. I personally wondered whether the air inlet manifold may have been the culprit, as this was simply a rectangular pressed steel box bolted onto the side of the engine. Gardner turbo engines in contrast had nicely shaped manifolds to aid the flow of air being forced into the engine, whereas the 510’s affair could not have provided anywhere near such a smooth airflow in comparison.
As for the ‘luggage box on the roof’ Joe, that housed the automatic heating and ventilation system mentioned by Diesel Dave. The system was generally pretty reliable, but I do recall one occasion sitting towards the rear of a Mk I National en route to Bradford, and being dripped on every time the bus came to a halt, or went down a gradient! Needless to say the beast had sprung a leak, and the driver had it signed off at the Interchange, but I did wonder what fellow passengers thought about the roof leaking…….

Brendan Smith


01/02/12 – 16:21

Gentlemen, as someone who was never employed in the bus industry, I am fascinated to read that the commercial vehicle side of "BL" was every bit as bad as the car division. In 1971 I bought a new Morris 1300GT and it rained the first day I had it. Next morning I found around a gallon of water in the boot so drove back to the dealers where I was told to "Drill ‘ole in the floor and it won’t fill up then", Obviously a BL man to the core!
From memory, didn’t the Nationals also have a tendency to catch fire as I clearly recall one suffering a burnt out rear in Ashton Way, Keynsham and also reading of two or three others going the same way. I know I thought them very cheap and basic things so much so that I near enough gave up any interest in anything later than 1972 onwards!
I shall look out for any preserved examples and try to get a "sound effects" recording but from what you all say, finding one with a "510" engine still running seems unlikely!

Richard Leaman


01/02/12 – 16:22

Yes Brendan, and there were rather too many VRs with the 510 as well. Gary Ts link to aronline includes a query/comment about the New Zealand REs having the 510. This was yet another example of Leyland "choice" – you choose to take what Leyland "offered" or you choose to go elsewhere!

David Oldfield


02/02/12 – 07:10

The Leyland engine option in the VR was the naturally-aspirated 501 rather than the turbocharged 510. I expect operators had similar problems with them, but from a passenger point of view they were an absolute delight. They were very quiet, with none of the National’s clatter (which I believe came from a cooling fan coupling or something like that), and unlike the kick-you-in-the-back 6LXB, the power delivery was always ultra-smooth no matter how heavy the driver’s boot. And when coupled to the 5-speed gearbox they could motor too.

Peter Williamson


02/02/12 – 07:11

Richard, British Leyland shouldn’t be confused with Leyland Motors; the latter had stiff competition in the bus market from AEC Bristol Daimler and Guy, ‘Albion were already a subsidiary of Leyland’ and whist it’s fair to say they all had their share of lemons, it was a very competitive market and in the main they were all good vehicles, there were other manufacturers in the market but the companies I’ve mentioned all became part of BL. Before they eventually disappeared, ‘or to be more accurate were killed off’ most names became little more than badge engineered versions of the same BL know best product. BL had a guaranteed market as long as National Bus company was in existence, but as soon as deregulation came they found that their product was no longer in demand. An example of BL’s policy can be seen in the car market, pre BL, Rover’s were built up to a standard, then they became part of BL who in their wisdom or otherwise decided it would be a good idea to put a Rover badge on a Metro. Enough said

Ronnie Hoye


03/02/12 – 06:34

Just after West Yorkshire had converted its three experimental 500-engined RELLs (1318-20) to Gardner 6HLXs, in pursuit of standardisation and improved reliability, guess what came next? Yes, three VRT3s with ‘National’ engines fitted! Numbered 1971-73, these had the vertical 501 versions with turbochargers. (If memory serves correctly Peter I seem to recall that the naturally-aspirated versions were 500s in either vertical or horizontal form, but don’t ask me why as Leyland’s logic was a law unto itself in those days!). Reliability-wise they were marginally better than the 510s, but they suffered oil leaks, and engine vibrations caused problems with gearboxes, engine and gearbox mountings, and exhaust systems. Needless to say they too were converted to Gardner power (6LXB) a few years later. Viewed from the engine compartment, the 501 looked like a mass of pipework with an engine attached somewhere beneath. I think Leyland had tried to place everything on the accessible side of the engine for maintenance purposes, such as the injection pump, compressor, heat exchanger etc. More often than not however, it seemed that you couldn’t remove the faulty bit without first removing half a barrow load of other bits to get to it! As Peter states though, from a passenger viewpoint they did seem fairly smooth and quiet in the VRTs, but I’m afraid I’ll have to side with David that there were far too many VRTs with the ‘headless wonder’ fitted. Poor old East Yorkshire appeared to have lots, which seemed most unfair.

Brendan Smith


01/11/13 – 08:07

One Leopard I remember fondly is MRU 551W, a PSU5C/4R with Plaxton Supreme IV C57F bodywork new to Marchwood of Totton. I used to drive for Country Lion of Northampton. They operated it from May 1986 until July 1987. Most of the drivers could not master the Pneumocyclic Gearbox, which was why it went in PX for a Volvo B10M Duple 320 C57F in July 1987. Shame, as it was a lovely motor to drive.

Stemax1960


CCN 718D_lr Vehicle reminder shot for this posting


01/11/13 – 13:54

I loved the National. For three years in the 1970s the breed provided me with a great deal of commission as BL sought to master the monster it had created. I was supplying the BL spares operation in Chorley and the Workington factory with tags, tickets, labels and plastic ties and almost from first entry into service of the production models those products relating to the National showed a marked increase in demand.
It has to be said that "real" Leyland employees at Chorley hated the National for whilst it provided a constant stream of work, it also provided a constant stream of problems as sometimes the production of spares, many from outside suppliers, lagged behind the demand and the yard and workshops at Chorley always seemed to have more Nationals than any other Leyland product awaiting investigation.
Peter Williamson is quite correct in blaming the cooling fan coupling for much of the clatter.

Phil Blinkhorn


 

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