Work has continued both at Romford and various individual homes to push forward with getting 240FLM ready for this years events.
Both Pete Weight, Graham Pearce and Trevor Barnwell have all been busy working on different projects and these should all be completed for the end of June.
Trevor had been working on a sound system through which to play some original radio traffic commensurate with the service period of the appliance. We had considered 2 options to do this: A wholly digital system utilising a Bluetooth mini speaker and an Ipod, or, a portable CD player and played through the original radio speaker. It was finally decided to follow the CD player route and accordingly, a "new old stock" Goodmans CD player was located for £10, a 24 volt to 6 volt inverter and a miniature Mono amplifier.
One of our new "recruits" John Lewis set about the task of connecting everything up and hey presto, It worked! The whole arrangement has been installed behind the OIC seat out of general sight. Whilst moving this project forward, it was also considered sensible to install a couple of USB ports at usable locations to cope with the modern requirements of the crew and we now have one in the OIC glove box on the dashboard and one in the rear crew cab. This has brought a tremendous sense of realism to the project, especially when the vehicle is static on events as the real life dramas that occurred so long ago are still so vivid coming out of the original speaker.
Attention has also been focussed on the door handles and catches with another new recruit, Martin Baker, getting on to them. most are now restored to full working order and the door straps are next in line for attention.
A noticeable issue was identified on several of our recent events, events where kids climb into the rear crew cab. We do have any suitable step system for getting them in safely and exiting the other side so thoughts turned to sourcing a pair of appropriate steps. When we originally purchased 240FLM, she came with a single set of steps, fortunately, we had photographed them before they " disappeared" so had a visual template to work to. Graham Pearce offered to undertake this project and today we have a lovely pair of tailor made, sturdy, dedicated steps almost ready to use this summer,final painting takes place this week.
Also offsite, Pete Weight had been busy making the hose ramp retaining parts that all sit on the roof of the pump bay. Nick Gunn had created the 3 flat bearers that the 4 ramps sit on but we still needed the wooden surround so Pete made this up and painted everything and while the brushes were out, also final painted the 2 hand made extinguisher brackets that sit in the rear cab.
Towards the end of May, all the parts that had been made offsite were brought to Romford and over a couple of days were installed.
The sound system is now fully integrated, the extinguisher brackets, complete with their original leather straps fitted and the 2 original extinguishers we had sourced fitted into place. The hose ramp securing system has been faithfully reproduced complete with original leather straps and the 4 ramps fitted. Colin Farrington has continued to make progress on the mechanical side resolving several niggly little leaks and issues and Steve Houston and Dave Porter have had periods cleaning the very dirty checker plate decking. Dave has also been busy refitting the dozens of fiddly metal securing plates that retain the rubber treads on the rounds, an extremely tedious and knee jarring job!