The chassis had taken a fair bit of time to complete and get into the shot blasters, but we still had all of the body to build, and we started to get the detail drawings done that would give us the information we need to order materials from. We had already been in touch with Aalco's technical rep, and he had been talking to us about their range of transport extrusions for body building. He had also suggested a local bodybuilder that could help if we couldn't do it ourselves. Unfortunately this was to prove a bit of a dead end, as the company concerned didn't take us seriously when we showed them our drawings, and never responded to our request for a quotation, so we decided to go it alone and build the body ourselves, outside the house.
Another version with the details of the corner posts etc:
What we did do was to get the extrusions and panelling sorted out, so that we could call for delivery with a few days notice, that meant that we could respond quickly once the chassis was ready.
Decoration for the side of the body was being discussed about this time, and I wanted to see about getting a big Ruston decal printed, but a big one that would be about 800mm to 1000mm diameter. There was no master image available, and the examples I had were small transfers that I had bought from Ray Hooley, but after a while I decided that if scanned at a high enough resolution, we could clean them up and make good adhesive labels from them. It was to be more than a year before we actually got them printed and fitted!
This was the chosen image for the transfer:
By the end of March, we had delivery of the extrusion sections for the body. There were 8 different types by memory, and we had to go back twice for more material before we had finished. Aalco were great to deal with, I had excellent service from their Nottingham branch with prompt deliveries by their own trucks:
Ratings for the wheels and axles were being discussed at this point in time, and with 3900kg total axle capacity and 4380kg tyre capacity we were well covered for our design weight of 3500kg. In fact, with overrun brakes we couldn't have any more weight if we wanted it, plus the Discovery we towed with had a maximum limit of 3500kg, so it all fitted pretty well.
Finally, on the 13th April we were able to get down to collect the chassis from the shot blasters. It had taken nearly a month instead of the week they promised, which put us at risk of running out of time before the Nuenen show. The shotblasters were located at Waltham Abbey, and it was a fair run down for us, then we had to take it over to Royston to the powder coaters.
Front Drawbar frame:
Close up of the quality of finish:
Main chassis hanging on the oven trolley:
Hooked up and ready to leave for home:
Getting it all back home was a big relief, we were due to take the Ruston 1ZHR engine to Nuenen on the 10th of June!