Sunday, 21 February 2016

A Ribble farewell - Sunday 3rd April

Stagecoach, as successors to Ribble, are pulling out of the Fleetwood and Thornton Cleveleys area and their final day will be Saturday 2nd April. Then, from Monday 4th April the former 84 route, and bits of the 74 and 87, will be replaced with a new service 24 and extension of service 22 operated by Catch22Bus.
So, on the day in between, Sunday 3rd April, to commemorate the end of the Ribble era in the area, the LTT will be running free bus services from Cleveleys to Fleetwood, and from Cleveleys to Thornton and  Poulton between 11.50 and 14.50, using the LTT's preserved Ribble buses 366, 1805 and 1997.  The main centre of operations will be Cleveleys Bus Station and the town is lively even on a Sunday with several cafes on the main street.
The event is sponsored by Catch22Bus and the journeys will operate over the routes of their new services 22 & 24 which start the following day. See www.ltt.org.uk for more details.

Leyland Lion soon to roar again!

It has been ten years since the oldest bus in the LTT collection last carried passengers and it was back in July 2008 that the bus passed into the collection from Blackpool Transport. In the summer of last year, Lytham Lion 34 was paint stripped and then treated to a repaint in original style blue and white livery.
Solving some on-going mechanical problems has prevented 34's reappearance thus far, but one of the issues on the vacuum braking system has now been solved. Two hairline cracks in a brake pipe were found and repaired but the biggest loss of vacuum was found at a silicon hose which looks like it had been used to replace a cracked piece of original pipe. Unfortunately, when "vacuum" was escaping from the pipe as it was sucking in the flexible pipe inwards & restricting the flow - the opposite of what you would observe on air brakes. There are still a few other issues to sort out, but hopefully the Lion will soon be roaring again!

LTT Catch Up....

Two restoration projects are currently being progressed in between other commitments. A full restoration of Blackpool PD2 No.346 has been started and the first phase has involved stripping of the lower deck panelling and saloon floor ready for chassis cleaning, de-rusting and painting. This has revealed that the vehicle is generally in a sound condition, although complete renewal of the cantilevered rear platform framing will be required.
The other restoration project now making progress is Lytham Leyland Atlantean No.77 which last carried passengers back in 1998 after it had received a quick repaint back into Lytham blue. The bus requires platform renewal and a front end rebuild. It has recently been stripped down for replacement of the fibreglass "Nottingham" style front, which has revealed some corrosion in the steel sections that this is secured to. An inspection on the body lift shows that some steel supports ahead of the front axle also require attention to reduce excessive bouncing and body movement.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

May Update

Firstly Ribble news - the new front springs have been fitted to the front axle of Atlantean 1805 which will soon to be ready for testing and a few panelling repairs have been undertaken. Meanwhile, the Gardner engine on Ribble VRT 1997 has been sent away for overhaul.
Blackpool PD3 529 has received a pre-MoT service and will soon have a new exhaust system fitted whilst work on the engine has finally identified and rectified its "sluggishness" and the bus is now capable of doing 50mph!! Swift 570 has received fuel line renewal and some brake overhaul work prior to MoT, following a complete de-rust of the chassis and silver spraying.
Handybus 575 has had a new starter motor fitted at a local VW service facility and is now being assessed for MoT.
The lower panelling of Lytham Lion 34 is currently being paint stripped and its seat cushions have been sent away for the original "horse-hair" to be replaced with modern foam fillings.


Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Ribble RE 366 back on the road!

Former Ribble RE 366 (OCK366K) passed its MoT today and can therefore return to operational use for the first time since 2011.
Other LTT fleet news includes Ribble Atlantean 1805 which has just had new front springs manufactured by Rossendale Road Springs in Haslingden at a cost of over £1,200. It is proposed to upgrade 1805 to Class VI MoT status.
Blackpool AEC Swift 570 is being fitted with new rear shock absorbers before being submitted for MoT whereas Atlantean 334 has returned from Preston Bus who were commissioned to undertake various jobs prior to MoT.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

LTT Fleet Update

Repanelling work has been undertaken on Blackpool PD3 No.529 recently in preparation for the summer season ahead and specific panels will be repainted.
Blackpool AEC Swift 570 has received a 75-point safety inspection prior to MoT work whilst the removed road springs have been sent away for Ribble 1805 and from these new ones are to be made at a cost of £600 each.

Saturday, 14 March 2015

MoT prep work starts on Ribble1805

In addition to the work currently in hand on Ribble RE 366 & VRT 1997, the first vehicle to ever join the LTT is also now receiving attention. A few panels have been selected for replacement whilst as part of MoT preparation work, both front springs have been removed for replacement. It is proposed to upgrade 1805 to Class VI MoT status.