Richard desided he wanted this ole bus fixed, and have all the cancer removed with a new lease of life rubbed and massaged into this ole bus.
After buying it in Victoria and driving it up from the Snowy Mountains Richard handed me the keys and said, treat it like you own it, and give it back when your done. (might be easier said than done, handing it back that is) But we finally handed it back and Richard took Paris home and proceeded to smooth out the repaired we welded in. Richard is definately a hands on bloke and wanted to do as much with Paris himself.
Rust can be hiden under nicky and paint for years, here's an example. This left rear guard or wheel arch. Looks pretty good in this shot, only a small hole.
Nice and burred, but you get the picture, clear out some of the bog/nicky and see what happens.
Remove the bad bits and the repair can start. Form up the repair, butt weld it in.
Inner and out skin has both been attacked by rust, but some patients and some new sheet and its underway.
Some plating on the inside was required as well. But its all pretty neat in that area now.
Surprise surprise it doesnt stop there, so we'll keep kruizin round th bus till all the rust we can see is gone and replaced with some clean metal.
doesnt look like much till its removed and back to clean metal we can weld.
Inner skin repair.
Then there are sill ends, these bits live most of their lives covered in thick tar and can keep a lot of moisture under the tar as the year go by causing quite a bit of unseen rust.
We keep working round the bus and cleaning up the body as we go.
The front is about the same as most 69 to 72 style front, catches plenty of water down the front.
Repair the inner skin first, then the outer skin and then once its all strong again the inner skin can be removed and repaired.
Out riggers dont get left out either, usually the top of the out rigger rots first.
Like most 72 bays there is some rust, but lucky enough for Richard, this is a very nice example of a 72 Bay.
Well its getting cleaner as the weeks go by.
Then of course there a hole in the floor..
But, then theres the bad news.... the old nicky up the front screen area trick......
Well........ guess the dash is coming out now.. wonder whats left under it.. not much inner skin left either..
So very common in a bus of this age. This is usually a result of Silicone used as a window sealant between the rubber and the body. Silicone has way too much acid in it for steel. Thats why the lower area of the front was so rotten. But its all good and what isnt will be soon enough.
Repairs are all dobe now though this picture tells another story, but its actually finished, all welds are ground and sealed now.
Suspension is the next issue, with later brakes from a Donor 77 bus giving us more availability of parts being later rotors, new drums larger front brake pads and better rear wheel cylnders and rear shoes. But of cours ehwile we are there, it would be a shame not to take a little out of the ride height, so on Richards behalf we are setting this ole sweet heart down a little and taking out sopme of the iar under it.
Adjustable beam, with new centre pin and bush kit, new ball joints, new master cylinder, caliper kits, rotors, bearings, tierod ends, draglink, and the list goes on, all to keep the customer happy and the bus a nice unit to drive and thats what its all about.
With the new beam in and all the new brakes sorted for the front, with rebuilt capliers, new master cylinder, brake lines bearings and shocks, it was time to look over the rear. After removing the rear torsion bars we found they were pretty shagged.
Fortunately we had a nice pair we had been saving for a rainy day, same size and without a blemish on them.
Once trosion bars are removed they have to be set up once again very acuately and this requires the right tools. We also grease up the new spring plate bushes we could have used baby powder, but I prefer rubber grease.
With both front and rear suspension set and all the brakes as new as we can make them, its time to start the engine transplant.
Richard is going for a 2ltr motor and transaxle, nice choice, as this bus will remain a well loved camper. Well the motors in and well run in by now its 2009.
Paris is home and Richard has started the smoothing out of the repairs. NIce work too.
Now this is a brand new 2 ltr motor new carbs new fuel pump and the list goes on Richard like attention to detail, so it had to be as new as possible.
Oops..... one of Richards OTHER bay windows...
And of course the new trim, and the trims and tyres, dress rims and moon disc's.....
Then of course is where Richard works......... Brass Monkey Town....... get a load of the weather... And I thought Penrith
got cold, But they like the cold dont they, show me an air cooled motor that doesnt like winter.
Stay tuned for the rest of the fun on this sweet ole Pearl.