The on-board pump had been presenting us with problems and had recently failed to start. After much searching and testing, it was established that the fuel pump had become defective so it was removed, thoroughly overhauled by group member Mike Cotton and refitted. A little tweaking and checking and once again the pump has fired back into life and runs beautifully. It is our intention to have the appliance fully functioning in all aspects so this is a significant step towards that goal.
To complement the mechanical repairs, the pump deliveries and collecting head have had their ( non original) blank caps cleaned and reconnected via new galvanised chain. Unfortunately, the original chain remnants, (of which there was 3 different sizes) is no longer available so the closest match to that seen in the pre delivery pictures we have was purchased and used.
The driver’s dashboard gauge cluster had for a long time been in need of complete overhaul. Some of the more vital gauges in fact didn’t function at all so after much thought, this task was handed to professionals and the results are fantastic. A new set of cables were made and now that it is connected and reinstated, it completely finishes the repainted cab and dashboard.
Also fitted in the cab was a modern 2KG dry powder extinguisher. It had been considered a sensible precaution in case a member of the public approached us in an emergency, or, we needed it for ourselves!!
The exterior has continued to have finishing items added. The cable reel to supply the Francis searchlight has been refitted to the roof of the pump bay having been fully restored by Graham Pearce. It is likely we will be replacing the 50 year cable though as it looks rather unsafe!
The original windscreen washer system, including the plastic reservoir in the OIC footwell looked quite serviceable, however, it became clear that it wasn't pumping so a replacement pump has been sourced and installed and the system is once again working correctly.The Raydyot hand lamp for the OIC had developed a sever crack in the swivel joint since it was installed last month. Fortunately, one of our group members is a dab hand with brazing equipment so out it came and has been repaired and now sits back in its position, this now needs wiring up.
The Original radio channel plaque was in a bad visual state and, as this is on show, it was concluded that a new one was probably more suitable.This has been made and now sits back on top of the radio control box on the dashboard and reflects the early period in the Brigades radio history.
The " Licence" holder is now in place complete with the Joe Milner period certificate of ownership, we can however switch this to Mr Leete's period in tenure if we desire as we have one of those as well.
The drivers side floor has had its coat of black metal paint and this now means we can go ahead and install the rubber matting.
Attention will now turn to the 3 lockers on the outside. There are 2 foot lockers and a rear hose locker. All 3 were hand made by the group and the original skins then laid over. All 3 are currently still in the paint primer stage and it is our intention to get all 3 fully repainted and then refitted with the myriad of brackets, hooks and wooden formers that we removed some 3 ½ years ago. Once completed, this will allow us to restow the appliance with all the original LFB gear and equipment we have been able to collect since November 2015 and be one giant step closer to being able to proclaim 240FLM as “ On the run”.
Finally, a start has been made by Dave Porter on cleaning the original checkerplate decking which has been long overdue, initial impressions are that it will come up a treat for the summer.