In that time there has been even more stripping down. I'm still working towards removing any parts that get in the way of replacing the platform or battery risers. In parallel I am also working on the nearside to ensure that the work taking place to repair that side does not get hindered.
With the batteries now relocated, the old battery bay has been taken out. That sounds a lot easier than it was - it's a heavy beast made from strong angle iron. Some of the nuts and bolts connecting it to the rest of the bus required cutting off with an angle grinder. The panel forward of it (between the offside rear wheel arch and the battery compartment was removed to gain access to the offside end of the platform riser and the pillar attached to that end. Most items that come into contact with either riser have now been disconnected or removed, although the bus is still movable and does not yet need the back end supported.
On the nearside the panels in bays 4 and 5 have been removed revealing corrosion to the short waist rail in bay 5 (just ahead of the platform area) and the waist rail bracket connecting it to the pillar between bays 4 and 5. The corroded half of the bracket had to be cut off. A new half of waist rail bracket will be added to this pillar and a new short section of waist rail will be created for the short section of bay 5. With all the loose rust removed, the remaining parts were scrubbed with a wire brush and a wire brush attachment for the power drill and then treated with Vactan (http://performance-chemicals.net/vactan/). The pictures show the before and after (second picture taken 24 hours after application. You don't want to get that stuff on anything important, as it permanently stains (black).
During this period I have:
- Removed most of the beading from the lower saloon external bodywork
- Removed the horizontal tray under the stairs (keeps weather out)
- Received new bulbs from CEAG (www.ceag.co.uk - 24v 20w 50mm pearl - product code 0601548) - they look great!
- Removed rear offside panels and rotten wood
- Removed over platform cant rail panel and rotten wood
- Removed the small step at the rear of the lower saloon (over riser)
- Removed battery bay
- Ordered new pillar brackets (wood supports) for manufacturing
- Placed an order for treated ash (half a bus worth)
- Acquired 7 scrap window pans for possible cannibalization
- Obtained an estimate for new aluminium window pans
- Rust treatment (as previously mentioned)
- Charged batteries
- Had a good tidy up!