One step forward and another back! A well known saying and one which has definitely applied this month. At the start of the month on April 6th, the team set with 240FLM for the overdue replacement of the rear differential oil seals which had been delayed from earlier in the year due to a " fail to start". However, this time no such problems and the small team of group members made their way to a local HGV repair facility kindly loaned out to us for this task. The appliance was carefully driven onto the hydraulic lift and the team set about the task in hand. Everything went as planned and the seal was replaced fairly simply and without any great issue. However, it was at the point of concluding the days work that the problems started. The starter motor refused to engage and there was a distinct smell of burning rubber or similar and so it was concluded that the only thing to do was to return the appliance back to the hydraulic lift and have a look. On investigation it was found that the starter motor had indeed failed and there also appeared top be a fuel system issue. By now it was mid afternoon so the decision was made to call for a heavy recovery lift back to our base at Romford, it had been a long day with the driver finally parking the appliance back in the station at about 8.00pm.
During the week that followed, the starter motor was stripped and a full overhaul conducted. Fortunately, within the group we have the skills to do this work so it didn't take long for the motor to be returned and refitted. With the fuel system bled, the appliance burst back into life and hopefully the starter motor will provide another 50 years of service.
Later in the month we held a busy working party during which the hand bell, which had required a new strap was refitted. Some woodwork around the OIC door had been stripped back and this was primed ready for coating up.
The hose ramp retaining frame that sits behind the cab, but had been mostly missing when we obtained 240FLM, had been constructed offsite and this was trial fitted and the fixing holes drilled out. It will now be brought to a full paint finish and the 3 base runners that the ramps sit on will be finished.
The 12mm radio cable was trial fitted and reaches from the radio on the dashboard to the rear seat area under which the transceiver will sit but some alterations are required to the connector to get it to fit, this is in hand and once installed, the cable will complement the "original" appearance as it is in fact a period item found by chance for £5 plus postage on an internet auction website.
Offsite, 2 new "original" extinguisher brackets had been made for the Foam and Water Stored Pressure extinguishers in the back cab, These had been routed out to accept the straps on the back and are now ready for final painting, strap attachment and fitting.
On the same day, attention was given by some of the team to the problem with the communications system that runs between the operators consul at the bottom and the speaker box at the head of the ladder. Although the whole system is now installed, the cable should run smoothly when the ladder is extending or housing, To assist the functionality of the cable, there is a twin wheel runner set that sits in a channel above the cable, It was noticed that the twin wheels were sticking at various points and after much investigation it was discovered that the trough that they sit in was heavily congealed with old muck and rubbish. This has now been fully cleaned out and should allow the system to perform correctly.