Monday, April 20, 2009

Victoria's Inner Front Wings - Nice!

'Victoria' (J-Van, left hand drive) has a photo on his blog ( showing his recently sandblasted inner front wings ... nice job! The question was asked which of the holes were standard Morris drillings, and which were added later? I checked Bugly (JB-Van, right hand drive) and found that the inner wings were identical, except for the additional holes. I have digitally altered Victoria's photo to show the original drillings. Hope this helps, mate!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Cairns J-Van Sold

The Morris J-Van advertised on eBay and shown below attracted two bidders and sold for A$270 (GBP127.00). Perhaps this is another potential roadworthy J Van?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Rusty Right-Side Sill

I had a good look under Bugly this afternoon, to check the extent of the panelwork required. The right sill needs to be reconstructed with the lower side panel, to remove all of the rust that was simply panelled over. The biggest challenge is trying to figure out what was original and what was repaired, and then deciphering where it goes and how far.

The photo above is of the inside of the right sill, immediately in front of the rear wheel arch, looking towards the outside. Evident is the rusted out support channel, with the two bolts vertically in line. To the outside of this is the original outer panel which is rusted out on the bottom. To the outside of the original panel is the repair, simply welded to the original (the weld is visible at the top of the photo). The repair is bent at 90 degrees at the bottom, and tack welded to what's left of the original panel.

I am making an assumption that the original outer side panel had a flange at 90 degrees at the bottom which was bolted to the support channel (evident in the photo with the two bolts horizontally in line). Can some kind soul please confirm that this is correct? And of the length of the turned-under flange?

Also, can somebody please advise whether the sliding door recess has an open pocket below the track, just inside of the outer side panel? If this is so, it must fill up with debris (or water in heavy rain) and would need to drain somewhere. Does this drain to the rear, coming out where the support channel ends in the photo? Or is it supposed to be a sealed sill area, with any debris or water draining forward to the step?

Any comment would be much appreciated.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Brown and Burns Bakery - Subiaco

I was lucky enough to find tucked into the recess at the top of the windshield some old bread delivery dockets from Bugly's early days. After restoration, the Brown and Burns Bakery logo will be applied back onto the sides of the van. I will leave off the name of the locality "Subiaco", as this will then make Bugly non-specific as to origin. Subiaco is a suburb of Perth, in Western Australia.

Right Side Door Off

All was quiet on the fire front today, so I was able to take the right side cover panel and door off Bugly. This side too had had a previous rust repair on the lower side panel, and not too tidily done on the inside. Both sides appear to have had their repairs undertaken without the sliding doors being removed, so it ended up being just a cosmetic repair on the outside of the van. This side too will be redone.

While the drivers door was off, I noticed a dent right on the horizontal swage, which had been 'bogged' on the outside to hide it. The outside also showed a longitudinal depression on the swage line, which extended through the repaired dent. By removing the filler in the dent, I was able to panelbeat the swage back to an almost perfect alignment. Very pleasing.

Now that the cover panels, sliding doors and tracks are removed, I can start on a few simple panel repairs. This will allow me then to paint the inside, which had been painted black. I need to paint it a light colour, to tone in with the ultimate maroon exterior (to be similar to LDG584) and to introduce a bit of light into the rear of the van.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Left Side Door Off

I managed to spend a bit of time on Bugly this afternoon. I finished taking off the left sliding door cover panel, and removed the door and sliding track. I found a few items in the lower recess that were stopping the door sliding right back, so removed them.

I also found a previous rust repair in the lower left side panel ... in the photo of Bugly above a slight irregularity can be seen in the lower body which is the welding line of the repaired section. I might take this out and redo it while I am working on her, as the rusted panel is still in place but covered over. Not so good for long term peace of mind. The photo shows the rusty bit on the bottom.

Now time to disappear outside and crank up the barbeque!

New (?) J-Van on eBay

On eBay at the moment there is a J-Van from Cairns, in Queensland Australia. The starting price is A$100 (GBP46.59) and the description reads:

Here we have a slightly weathered Morris j van.
It has a 4 cylinder side-valve engine and a 3 speed gearbox.
The chassis is in excellent condition but the body is quite rusty as you can see in the picture.
There are quite a few new panels that the previous owner had fabricated and was going to use in a restoration project that ground to a halt before I acquired it.
Also not shown in the picture and included are the rear doors, side doors plus numerous other bits and pieces.
It would not be out of the question for a really keen enthusiast to restore, however it would be a big job indeed!!
As is where is.
Happy bidding!!

Yes, it would be a big restoration but no, not impossible! Value in spares for Bugly? As Bugly is a JB Van, the value is in other than the engine and gearbox. But Cairns is more than 3000km away! Might let this one go.

It demonstrates that they are still out there though!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Bugly's Rear Wings

Well, I have bitten the bullet and asked Iain MacKenzie of Fairmile Restorations in England to manufacture Bugly a set of rear wings. Iain is about to do a small production run of J-Van wings, so hopefully they will soon be on the way. Meantime, not much progress has been made on Bugly's restoration, as too many other things keep cropping up. And I guess we need to be realistic with our priorities.

My excuse is that my other half and I are volunteer firefighters in our local rural community, and we are rostered on call for one week in four. This is on top of our normal day-jobs, so we can find ourselves rather busy on weekends, especially from now on as we come into our fire season. As Captain of the Brigade, I also need to fill in for other crew members on their shifts if they are unavailable, just to keep the wheels turning.

I am also an accredited trainer/assessor of volunteer firefighters, and often need to commit time to these functions. No rest for the wicked, as they say!