The restoration of AEC Reliance CDK172L

Project Dairy May 2014

May          Our first report of 2014 and plenty of progress has been made!

Steve has fitted 4 new mud flaps complete with stays and from our previous list of outstanding jobs several have now been ticked off…..


1. Complete the painting of the rear panel.
A job deferred until the weather warmed up, this was something that needed doing with the coach moved forward from it’s usual position to give better light. The boot doors have proved troublesome as the positions of several of the screws which attach the fiber glass doors to the wooden framework inside had begun to show through despite being well countersunk and back filled. It’s taken several sessions of rectification to make these ‘disappear’ and we can only hope that vibration will not make them rear their ugly ‘heads’ again in the future! Anyway, the paintwork is finished and we will now be able to add the Yelloway ‘garter’ transfer, boot lock handle, rain and weather strips, bumper trims and number plate lights.

2. Finish the fitting of the upper stainless trims.
Completed including the plastic/rubber infill and the end caps. The channel on the ‘double height’ trim halfway up each body-side was a fraction wider than the single trims and the infill required careful application of adhesive to stop it from simply dropping out. A relatively straightforward task but another which took hours to complete not to mention giving me back ache from all that bending over and sticky hands from the Evo stick.

3. Purchase and shape some wood battens as internal support for the lower ‘D’ section stainless trims and fit.
Wood sorted. The original black plastic backing strips which this trim profile section sits in was in poor condition so we have made use of the best pieces for the offside and used some ‘Supreme’ rubber versions for the nearside, indeed all the nearside trim has now been fitted with stainless steel screws to match. Offside sections are awaiting cutting to size. We were recently donated some rare ‘new old stock’ plastic end caps for those sections on the access panels (thanks Andy) although we will still need to make some more to replace the missing / broken originals.

4. Fit the wheel arch trims.
Still outstanding as we are struggling to source a ‘U’ shaped rubber which sits in the channel on the trim. Without this the trim would ‘chatter’ on the body-side panels. A compromise may be to use an ‘L’ shape instead as I have found a rubber which is deep enough nut is a fraction too wide.

5. Complete the front light panel.
Still outstanding. The paintwork needs a topcoat before the stainless steel backing plates for the headlights can be added prior to the headlights themselves being attached.
Finding some 5 ¾ inch Lucas fog lamps is proving rather difficult.

6. Fit the stainless trims around the light panel and add bumper trims.  Completed.
 

7. Add material to rear end internal pillars.  Completed.

 

Trimming rear window aperture


8. Visit Manchester Museum of Transport to measure / trace the name-glasses and legal lettering on HVU 247N.  Completed.
 

9. Get said legal lettering made up and apply.
A supplier yet to be sourced who can make up the required transfers – we already have ‘fuel’ and ‘water’ from our own stock but need ‘emergency exit’, operator details and vehicle weight etc.
 


10. Carefully varnish in logos & lettering.

We are hoping to apply the large body-side Yelloway rising sun logos shortly.

11. Somehow get the ‘Yelloway’ lettering onto the inside of the front & rear name-glasses and fit.

Local sign-writer located and we hope to deliver the 2 name-glasses to him shortly.

12. Add light and trim fittings to rear panel.

See above. Brand new ‘coffin’ light lenses fitted.

13. Re-fit remaining door rubber.
Here we have come up with a problem. Well 2 actually. All those years ago when Steve replaced the wasted steel framework at the bottom of the front nearside pillar he didn’t take into account the subtle curves of the body profile, replacing the metal with a straight section instead of one with a slight curve to it. This became evident when we couldn’t work out why the entrance door wouldn’t close without forcing the door edge brush into a distorted shape at just about the centre trim height. With the front fibreglass moulding attached to this pillar and painted there is no way to rectify the shape of the metal so a solution involving altering the shape of the door brush, or how it mounts to the body is going to have to be investigated.
Problem 2 centres around where the entrance door butts up against the large vertical rubber which is attached to the first pillar of the body side. Upon fitting this rubber the entrance door will not fully close. Although the large rubber is very slightly misshapen in one or two spots it is the correct rubber for the application so attention has turned to the rubber on the door edge which we suspect is not the correct profile. Inspection of a similar vehicle on site would seem to lend credence to this thinking. Further investigation is required but other outstanding tasks have shunted this down the queue for now.


14. Replace all missing screws in luggage racks (window side) and clean up.
New stainless steel screws fitted.

15. Re-fit all windows.
In December we took delivery of our new window rubbers - from NuFox in Middleton - for the side windows (at great expense!). The guys there were a pleasure to deal with and are thoroughly recommended. We had to pay for a tool to be made as this profile is no longer a stock item, so if any other Plaxton Elite owner requires new rubbers you may use our tooling for a small charge (contact us).
Previously we had purchased enough rubber to replace that for the front and rear screens (still a stock item) although the centre ‘bar’ was of a different profile. Luckily this too is still a stock item with COH Baines Ltd so a suitable length has been purchased.

MAY
May Day weekend has seen us take the plunge and after setting up the trestles Steve gave a skillful demonstration on how to fit windows (some assistance from myself just at the right times)! This really is a tricky thing to do and I would recommend that it should only be attempted by someone with the required knowledge and preferably experience if broken glass is to be avoided. In our instance it will also help to have an extra pair of hands too as the large body-side windows weigh a ton and are not easy lift with the rubbers attached.

 

Saturday May 3rd saw us re-fit the rear screens - after washing off 10 years worth of accumulated workshop grime first. They put up a bit of a struggle for a while but we won in the end. As can be expected for a vehicle of this age they are not without numerous scratches.
 

 

Refit of rear windows

The roof destination box glass has also been permanently fitted, sealed and the lock strip inserted. Unfortunately our route number blind has torn, this being a paper one it has deteriorated with age and a replacement will have to be made.
After an early start on Sunday the front screens went in much quicker although the driver’s screen is showing signs of beginning to de-laminate so a replacement will, at some point, be required. The nearside screen, like the rear ones, is suffering from quite a few scratches which it has acquired during it’s working life – not from storage as all the screens have been living in WEB 410T for the last 6 years or so.
Anyway, they are in and what a transformation it has made! New wiper units have been fitted as the originals were past their best. The next session Steve is hoping to seal the rubbers before adding the chrome locking strip (lace) to finish them off a treat.

 

Bank Holiday Monday and an even bigger challenge would be to fit the first of the nearside ‘picture’ windows. At over 7 feet long these are heavy buggers just to move around the workshop let alone lift 5 foot up onto the trestles. We managed to fit and cut to size the rubbers for the first 2 windows but deferred attempting to fit them until we can find someone to lend us a hand for a couple of hours as this will be a 3 man job!

Refit of new window rubbers

16. Re-fit wing mirrors. Completed.

17. Full interior clean up and polish.  Awaiting completion of the window re-fit.
 

18. Finish rebuilding / re-foaming seat backs.
Several more seat backs have been re-built over the winter months with 10 now having been completed and sent to the trimmers. Work on the rear ‘five-way’ is almost complete. We have had the first completed seat returned to us for approval and although it looks great the trimmer hasn’t quite got the lines of the material to line up centrally with the headrests on the rear so before we take any more we are asking them to make sure they get this correct. To say they probably haven’t had to trim this kind of seat in a considerable number of years, they haven’t done too bad. One thing required to complete them is an aluminium beading which runs down the edges of the shoulders - something we have yet to source.

1 Refurbished seat set

19. Pay for re-trimming and fit seats.  See November 2013 entry.

20. New tyres.  Outstanding.

21. Paint wheels.  Outstanding.

22. Purchase correct pattern number plates.

Tippers Vintage Plates in Cornwall manufacture 1973 style plates with the raised plastic numerals (amongst others) – thoroughly recommended as they turned our order around in 24 hours!  CDK has now got an identity again after 10 years.

23. Get the steering wheel re-coated. Outstanding.

24. Final mechanical check.
Outstanding although a chance browse of Ebay earlier in the year turned up an exhaust brake mechanism of the correct pattern as per that fitted to HVU in the Manchester Museum. The one we previously purchased we believe is for a Leyland Leopard and Steve had just finished modifying it when I announced I’d found the correct type! Steve has carefully fabricated some plates to attach the unit in-line with the exhaust tube off the manifold and the tail pipe and the completed unit has now been fitted. The airline to the solenoid is still in place (but disconnected) so we just need to establish how to set it up correctly with the micro switches.

25. MOT
Soon hopefully!

Friday 9th May          After a short 3 hour stint all the N/S windows are now fully fitted.
A massive thank you to Mick Baker of Nationwide Coach and Bus Glazing for his very kind help.

LATEST NEWS as from 24th June - After 26 years

CDK is a

YELLOWAY AGAIN

 

Thank you Mick Baker

Thank you Steve Pye

 

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