June 15th /16th I set off to Evsham on it's 2nd test run towing the Portafold Caravan.
The Ambulance on show at "Wartime in the Vale" weekend.
A few days before this weekend I did some road tests.
I was on my way to Stourbridge when the Ambulance broke down ?
It felt like it ran out of fuel ??
But knowing that I put a full tank in the other day, well I knew it was not that ? It tuned out to be a fuel Blockage in the feed pipe of Silicon Sealer ???? Yes it was enough to stop the engine running ? So after getting that out I bled the petrol through and got going again. the following day I removed the fuel tank out of the vehicle only to find MORE Gob's of silicon sealer in the bottom of the fuel tank ? Yep, it was ALL MY FAULT ! When I put the new tank unit in the fuel tank back in Feb, to be sure I put some silicon sealer around the old gasket !!! It must have fellinto the bottom of the fuel tank and got sucked up the 1/4" feed pipe ! I then cleaned it all out, fitted a gorze on the end of the fuel pipe, fitted a new in line fuel filter.........the Ambulance went to Evesham and back with NO issues.
The star of this show was Guy Martin's WW1 Replica Tank he had built.
June 31st. Bridgenorth Seven Valley Railway 1940's event.
Saturday June 31st.
I took the Ambulance to Bridgenorth Seven Valley Railway Station to put on show for the day.
I got on the 11.30am train and only got as far as Highley as there was plenty to see anddo there, including a re-enactment of a group of English Parratroopers stopping a German train by blowing up the tracks and exanging gunfire !
The day was very hot indeed around 28 deg c
The Trains were packed out most of the day, before I got back to Bridgnorth for 5pm.
Drove the Ambulance back to the workshop in Lye.
June 31st at Highley Station 3.30pm train........Can you see yourself ?
Saturday July 7th. Line up at Bridgnorth Station
Saturday July 7th.
2nd Part of the 1940's at Seven Valley Railway.
I took the 1941 Packard Ambulance to Bridgnorth again.
Again it was a very HOT day
Somewhere around 30 deg c.
England were playing in the semi-finals of the World Cup at 3pm so the trains were very quite this day.
This time I made it to Kidderminster Station to see the Vehicles there plus saw the "D.Day Darling's" play on stage.
As the trains were quiter It was a lot better to get around this time calling at all the stations on the way back to Bridgenorth.
We had Laural & Hardy entertaining us at the Arly Station.
8am Friday 13th July, Just off to Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway, aprox 90 mile away, 2 1/4 hours drive.
Got to the Pits in the Pod for 11.30am that moring, then spent 2 hours setting up camp, next to my old Apollo Altered who Max Spaans own's now.
5.30pm Friday 13th, getting the two cars ready for their first run in the staging lanes, that is the old Apollo car that Max owns from Germany.
This was the first race against my old Apollo Altered.
Yes, the old Apollo Chassis and body is 40 years old now, from 1978 to 2018.......we had a Choclate cake to celebrate
Saturday 14th was a long day.
I raced Max for our 2nd round at 11am I WON again with a 11.71@109mph to Max's loosing
Red light 12.72@104mph.
3rd round at 4.30pm.
I WON Again with 11.53@108mph to Max's 11.99@103mph, Max had lost oil pressure on that run, we elected NOT to do a 3rd run this day as we both wanted to join in the Cracklefest later on.
So it was a case of getting Max's car ready and get his oil presure back.
The day was VERY HOT with 32 Deg c Temp, the air was very bad for the engines as I noticed we were going slower ?
I did do a jet change, went leaner to compinsate but it was getting hotter !
During the Lunch time we had time to cut the Choclate cake I bought with me to celibrate 40th aniversary of the old Apollo Altered.
So at the end of the day it was England 3 Germany 0.
On the Sunday,Max did not want to risk running with very low oil presure, so I put one last run in the heat, as it touched 34 deg c today and my run was 12.30pm I slowed to a 11.93@105mph. We spent the afternoon packing up and getting home before the rush. But A great weekend racing was had by all......Sorry Max, you will have to wait till next year to get you own back now !
Max and myself joined in the Cracklefest on the Saturday night, a good line up of cars here.
Since I towed the race car back from a VERY HOT Santa Pod Raceway I deleloped a misfire in the 350ci V8 Engine ?
On the Monday I started checking the engine over, this took most of the week to do.........I suspected I slightley burnt a valve ? I did a compression test which came out at 130lbs per cylinder, that seemed good, so I started looking elsewhere, tride swapping spark plugs, Ign leads etc........in the end I fitted NEW Spark Plugs/Points/Condenser/Distributor cap, roter arm, leads etc.
Adust valve clearences, having waited for the new parts to arrive I got the all fitted before the Welland Steam Rally.
28th/29th July. Welland Steam Rally.
Having got going for 8am the intention was to get on site for 9am for a good spot with the caravan..........nope that did not quite work out !
As I past Junction 5 going South on the M5 the Chevy truck started BACKFIRING & SLOWING DOWN !!!! I'm on what they call a "Smart Motorway", this part of the M5 is 4-Lanes wide.......fine......if you DON'T breakdown !
I was going slower & slower in the left lane, I had just passed a lay-by when the engine was okay, I could not make the next Lay-by ! There was a crash barrier right alongside the edge of the tarmac so I could NOT get out of this Lane ! Then ......By luck the barrier finished, I was doing 10mph at the time and was getting worried that someone could run into the back of me !
I managed to pull onto the grass, up a slight bank and OFF the carrageway !
PHEW ! At least I was out of the way.......the truck would not start up ?
After having a look at the engine, I decided it MUST be a Condenser Problem ?
I've only JUST fitted a new Condenser in the Distributor which has only done about 25 miles so far ????? Anyhow I had the old one with me, so I quickly changed it.......as I was nearly finishing off, the Police turned up and coned off the nearside lane for safety.......he said he would have to tow us to the next Lay-By if I could not fix the problem ?.......As luck would have it the engine fired up and was running, I slammed the bonnet down, pulled out into my empty lane and got going. I got to the Welland Steam Rally at 9.45am, a bit later than what I wanted, hence to say I did not get my spot on the fence as I wanted, I had to set things up in the middle of a very pack out field FULL of Commercial trucks, yes this is a very BIG show.
Having Got in place and set up, the weather was dry to start with till around 2pm when the heavens opened up with RAIN, it rained all afternoon till about 5pm, during Saturday night the festivitys went ahead, beer tent was in full swing, the fairground was going well and the working traction engines were in full hot steam, tractor pulling was going on in the background with a Neil Diamond tribute band played on the outdoor stage, later we had 20 mins of Fireworks to round off the night.
On the Sunday morning........well it was raining ! It did ease off a bit during the middle of the day, but that was down to a drizzle ? The field was well muddy to get out after.........Shame.
4th/5th August. Trimpley Vintage Gathering.
Friday 3rd August. I drove the Old Ford A Coal Truck to Trimpley ready for the Auction first thing Saturday morning .
Saturday, 4th August, having had a lift back home I picked up the Race Car and Chevy Truck first thing, GETTING TO Trimpley for 9am. I got the Ford A truck started, drove it up to the top field for the Auction to commence along with other vehicles up for sale.....mine was one of the last ones to be Auctioned........It did not make the reserve, so it was taken down to my other exhibits down in the bottom field for the rest of the weekend, I did have a lot of interest in the truck, but not managed to sell it yet.
Saturday was a nice steady day, weather was great, sunny and around 24 deg.
Stetting up my classic caravan along with the large R.66 Gazeebo to put the race car inside then another gazeebo over the AutoJumble stall I had bought with me, we were all set up for a busy day on Sunday.
Sunday, weather was hot.....Very Hot, around 26 deg today, loads of people around, vehicles coming in most of the morning, the RAT ROD next to me lives just around the corner from me, it has a 383ci Small Block Chevy engine with a Supercharger on top..........and it's noisy......really noisy !
Later on, The tribute band "The Shadows" were playing opposite me, they took a liking to my truck and wanted their photos taken next to it, below.
Friday 10th August.
I drove up the M6 Heading to my next show at Saddleworth up by Oldham which was around 120 miles away. Friday was showery with rain, but the M6 was very slow with all the roadworks up there.
As I got into Salybridge I heard this big BANG from the rear tyre ! The tyre had blown itself apart due to a rubbing brake that got VERY HOT INDEED !
The brakes got that hot, it melted the bonding off the brake linings !!!!!!
I've never had that happen before ???
But it ment I had NO BRAKES !
I was only about 10 miles from Saddleworth, so I clamped off the rubber flexi pipe with some mole grips I had in the tool box, with just the front brakes working I carried on to the event.
Taking it steady I finally got there.
11th/12th August. YANKS WEEKEND at Saddleworth.
Having got to Saddleworth School in Uppermill the Caravan was put in the Playground and the Ambulance was put up with the displays on the top field.
SATURDAY was a very nice day, about 26 deg c and very sunny. a good turn out of WW2 Vehicles, re-anactors and public made it a fantastic day all around.
The highlight of the day was the Lancaster WW2 Bomber gave us a fly past just above our heads which sounded great. later on during the Sat night, whist the dance was on it started to rain, it rained all night and stopped about 9.30am Sunday.
As I was about 120 miles from home with only the front brakes working on the Ambulance I decided to drive the Ambulance out onto the road and passed the road closer that was about to happen for the YANKS Parade. Then call for the RAC Breakdown Recovery Service to take me home. but as this Packard is 21 ft long It proved dificult to find a truck big enough to take it ?
The Caravan was no problem, I ended up coming back with that on the Sunday evening whilst the Ambulance was picked up out of the road and put into storage overnight. It took till Tuesday to get the Ambulance back to me at work ! after the original flat bed broke down on the way to me !!!
During The week I finally got the Ambulance back on Tuesday, then stripping the O/S Rear wheel off I looked closley at the damage, the brake drum was scored very badley, so that went over the road for Malcolm to skim out. During Wednesday I went over to Stateside Auto Parts in Atherstone just on the A5. Takeing the old brake parts up there Richrard matched up the new brake shoes and brake cylinder okay plus hunted about for the rest of the broken parts.
On Thursday I finally cured my missfire on the Chevy truck, yes I tried a new set of H.T. Ignition leads and it cured the problem, with a bit of other tuning, the engine sounds great now.
Friday, I started on the rear brakes on the Packard, fitting the new brake cylinder and new riveted brake shoes....I don't like these bonded on ones ? Just waiting for the brake drum to be skimmed out now.
Malcolm had to take out 50 thou to get the brake drum smooth again. I left off the self-adjusting mech as I suspected that it was that was causing the problem with in automaticly adjusting the brakes up and causing the binding ?
Anyhow, I've made it so I can manually adjust the rear brakes now. Later I took the fuel tank out AGAIN ? and found MORE silicon sealer in there ??
Anyhow, gave it a good washing out again till no more could be seen coming out ? so I assume now it all should be good. Later I gave the Ambulance a road test, filing up the tank with fuel at the same time.
Sunday 26th August. Webbs Car Park car show, A wet day was had by all !
Monday 27th August I took the Packard out for a road test to a show I had it booked into at Enville Cricket ground nr "The Cat Pub"
A better dryer day than yesterday's wash out, plenty of classic cars here. I was parked next to a couple of 1940's jeeps. Saw a nice 1920's old Bentley here in a very nice condition indeed.
Sunday 2nd September I took the Packard Ambulance to a 1940's event at Bantock House in Bantock Park, Wolverhampton. A nice dry sunny day.......this was only a small event with only about a dozen 1940's vehicles on show, the park and house was very nice, the Bantock House itself was very interesting to walk around.
Anyhow The Ambulance went very well, brakes seem to be working okay and running cool
Tipton Clean up time.
6 of us got together and all met up at the Portal, we got onto Bittell and the Flying Scott joey boat, 10 mins up the Old Main Line we came to the site of the Tipton Festival. Our job today was to clean the weeds off the wall's on the offside of the canal. it proved to be a wet day, but that did not stop us, we just got wrapped up in our waterproof clothing and got on with the job.
By 4pm we had got all the walls cleaned off and looking a lot cleaner than when we started.
We did have some dry spells in between.
The joey boat was FULL with weeds by the end of the day, which had to be emptyed out.