After looking at the pix of the axle( as against a picture on a phone without my glasses on, that I was shown ) I agree its not T ford like I first thought. I also think the axle would be late 1920/early 1930's era from its appearance.
But Cols advice is the best way to go I think, to properly identify the stud pattern. That could help identify the axle as well.
Its possible that the wheels were changed over time, same as the possibility that it was an earlier or later version of the Jennison in the ad. Unfortunately with very little records kept, its hard to make accurate assessment of an old van.
But it is old, & I believe likely to be a Jennison.
I dont think anyone would have been likely to have constructed a homebuilt so close to that style, especially with the pop top.
Hi Dennis I can't believe we only put most of these photos up since this morning & already everyone has identified this van! It really is pretty amazing when everyone puts their heads together isn't it?
And lucky for us that you came along for the haggling state of the purchase! smiles
Post by Don Ricardo on May 12, 2013 7:46:38 GMT 10
Hi Smiles two,
Interesting to see the exterior pics of the van with the roof up. The way the pop-top looks certainly seems very Jennison with the two pieces visible side on. And of course, as you say, we have no evidence that John Jennison persevered with his patented roof raising method, so perhaps he ended up using a simpler, lighter system.
Wow wow wow wow. I don't know what to say. I am over the moon with this and have no doubt it's a Jennison!!! Have a look at the photo with jaj mum(12yrs) and uncle john(10yrs) that van would be about that size. I dreamt but never believed we'd find one and Andrews right ... All we need to find now is the coupe or a jeep! This shows its quite possible!!! Good one smiles but now you will have to put up with a visit from me one day I just have see and touch it. Home from Bahamas tonite and can't wait to check the photos on a full size screen. Thank you thank you thank you for finding and buying it . First built in 1934 and patented 1935 could be as late as 1937/8. See you all on site tonite. Jenno
Rob & I have been having conversations for days now about functionality versus preservation. Everyday it all changes! Today he's gotten under the chassis again & done a detailed drawing for Cobber. Cobber can you PM your home address please so we can send you the drawing or I suppose I could scan & email or fax it to you!
Firstly we plan to oil metal bits & find hardware for bunk beds so internally, as much as possible is returned to working order without changing anything. We plan to leave everything else the way it is for some time to work out the vans future, as its been badly neglected. Its fragile. The fantastic thing about this van is that it really fills a gap in the history of vans in Australia & there is so much info already out there about your grandfather & his patent, so we feel its worth preserving.
I love the feeling of being inside the van as its so easy to imagine you're back in the 30's doing basic camping. It's too precious to pass on to someone else who might put a fridge & a tele in there.
When we get the rat shit out & do some basic cleaning, I'll post a short video
I believe that whatever you decide to do with that van, will be the best decision for it. I've seen your work, and your attention to detail with your previous vans and know that this van is in good hands. Between you, you have the skills and love for vintage vans that's needed to bring this little beauty back to its former glory.
Australia has a unique place in caravanning history in the world setting and has come up with some ingenious inventions, even in this area. Just a shame that there isn't more government interest shown in preserving some of it.
Personally, I think that the job ahead of you is the guts of what this site is all about - preserving our history of caravanning through the decades.
What a great find. Geoff (Jenno) was just showing Andrew and I pictures of the poptop a couple of weeks ago and mentioned his fruitless search for one of these old vans. This is amazing that this has turned up - and that you guys even spotted it. Well done.
Cathie and Rob, The more I look the more I have no doubt whatsoever that this is a jennison caravan cruiser pop top. ;D There is no record of any one else at that time trying this. The shape etc too much of a coincidence and too close to the patent diagrams and photos not to be. ;D (Just look at my picture/avatar on the left next to this posting!! )
## Also given JAJ patented it in 1935/6 surely it would have been a breach of patent rights for anyone to copy it wouldn't it? ##
I admit I am unashamedly biased but believe what you have found here is an example of one of the most significant prewar vans in aussie caravanning history......the first true "pop top" (patented design) caravan. ;D ;D Couldn't be in better hands jenno
Last Edit: May 14, 2013 9:44:09 GMT 10 by Jennison
Hi Jeff Thanks for that! When the rain clears later in the week, we'll pull her out of the garage & take a side profile shot just like the patent drawings.
Rob's done more sleuthing in the van & has worked out where the table went. It's unbelievable! When he told me I said you're a bloody genius to work THAT out but hey! whoever worked the table arrangement out WAS a genius, even if it was an after-thought! Picture soon!
As some of you know this pop top has been bought by Mark and it is residing at my place until he can pick it up.
I have just posted the following information ( with slight modification ) on the English "old classic car forum" to see if they can identify the axle used.
.......................................................................................................................... There have been two methods used to keep the wheels in the straight ahead position.. The small piece of steel welded to the middle of the king pin housing and the idler arm and then to the axle. I imagine that didn't work to well so then a piece of flat iron was bolted between the idler arm and the spring U bolt.
Another complication I think you might find identifying this axle is the hub arrangement. It looks to me like two hubs have been welded together. The one on the inside nearest the beam axle looks like it was a five stud with a PCD of 4 & half inches, to it has been welded another hub with a one and five eighth inch spacer between them, that hub was originally a six stud with a 4 & three quarter inch PCD so it has been re drilled to accommodate the five stud set up
The spring hangers might give a more reliable clue,
This is the front one
And this is the rear one
The springs are 27 inches apart on the axle ( centre to centre ) and the axele is 51 inches long ( kingpin to kingpin )
If I know you blokes somebody will identify it from that last photo without all the other waffle I went on with.
Thanks for looking, you've been a great help to me in the past so here's hoping you can do it again.
............................................................................................................... So there you go....... come on Aussie come on ... who will be first to identify what car the axle came off.
The bloke on the UK site was a Victorian too...... lot of knowledge in Victoria . aye?
What do you reckon about the hubs ? Early Chevs were six stud right ? ..... was the PCD 4 3/4 inch ?
Hiya Cobber, only the Chevs from 37 thru 48 were 6 stud ( light trucks were 6 stud until the 60's)....before that they were same as FE-HG Holden. Without that hub being cleaned up properly it's hard to guess what it is...but...do you think it might be a modified hub similar to the one shown on the Chevy axle with the wooden wheels?.....without the wooden spokes of course .......
Interesting stuff re the axle...keeping in mind to that jaj was not averse to using whatever bits from whatever cars he could find for his projects ie the sellicks beach cars had a combination of chev and ford bits identified on them by those in the know. Look at the front axle in the petrol stn shot of the car at Salisbury Ps cobber will ring you a visit and look see soon please. Jenno
Last Edit: Sept 23, 2013 16:47:03 GMT 10 by Jennison