"The first workman's train, I believe, leaves Charing Cross at
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4.35," said Mr. J. W. Bullard, the traffic manager of Cannon and (laze, Ltd., to us over the telephone on Thursday last. This simple phrase it was which forced us to rise at 3.30 on the following morning, and to scramble somewhat unwillingly into our heavy outdoor clothes. Our preparation for a full-day's trip on a five-ton Hanford vehicle for oar " One Day's Work " Series No. 3 had begun.
To Erith by "Workman."
In company with many hundreds of early workers employed at the Woolwich Arsenal, and the various factories near it, we travelled down to the little Kentish manufacturing town of Erith. At 5.35 a.m. we passed through the gates of the Erith Mill of Cannon and Gaze, Ltd.
This company has been a staunch believer in mechanical transport for the past nine years. Up to two years ago, steam only was employed, and a fleet of Foden wagons
was gradually acquired. The demand for quicker delivery, however, led to the introduction of petroldriven machines. The steamers are still doing excellent work on the shorter deliveries. Two five-ton Itallfords are now in daily service. One of these was taken over a little more than two years ago. The machine which we had to accompany throughout a long day's work on Friday last week was put into commission by its present owner on the Saturday preceding Whit-Monday of last year. To date, it has covered a distance of over 17,000 miles, The First Load was Too Early. A five-ton load, made up of 80 bags, had been placed on the wagon on the previous evening. In the milling trade, flour is delivered in
two units : a bag, weighing cwt., or a sack, weighing 21 ewt. Taking our seat by the side of Driver W. Dark, the wagon was run on to the weighbridge. Our gross weight was
tons II cwt., the tare -was 4 tons 4 cwt., and our actual load 5 tons 7 cwt., the odd 7 cwt. being represented by tools. kit and " us." The mileage recorder here registererl 6171.
We left the Erith Mill at 8 a.m.,
and commenced our first run to Hoxton. The heavy rain of the night had converted the roads into a series of water-splashes. Our way lay through Woolwich, and under the river by means of the BlackwalI Tunnel. At 7.45 we had arrived at
Feaist's Bakeries, New North Road, N. The run of 19 miles being accomplished without incident or stoppage, save that a bitterly cold cross-wind had chilled us to the bone_ Our early arrival was not expected, and a delay of some 15 minutes ensued while the men at. the bakery were making ready to take in our load. We occupied the time by performing vigorous cabmen's exercises in the effort to restore circulation in our bodies.
On the gates being opened, our two mates and " Bill" (as Driver Dark is usually called) soon carried the 80 " samples," as these lighter bags are somewhat caustically nicknamed by the men, into the bakehouse. This work is most excellent for driving away that tired feeling, and we can recommend it to those of our readers suffering from slug gishness in any respect. Starting up the engine, we were back again in .Eritli at 9.45 sharp, The roads by this time were becoming difficult to negotiate. A thick layer of top grease made driving a matter of
and several times the clever way in which skidding was corrected called forth our admiration. The workers were crowding into the city, and heavily-laden trams and buses, through which we threaded our way continuously, renewed our insight into London's wonderful passenger-traffic facilities.
A Run to Greenwich.
At 10.30 a.m. another five-ton load was taken aboard the wagon. This consisted of 40 sacks, which were to be delivered to Greenwich. Following, in part, the route of our previous journey, we travelled over the atrociously had Woolwich roads, on some of which the primitive horse-drawn tram still survives.
It is interesting to note that, during our four journeys over a particular stretch of road in Woolwich, we
the narrowness of the streets and lanes hereabouts, we were several times delayed, because of the presence of other vehicles, drawn up by the side of the street, which allowed us insufficient room to pass.
The wagon then being empty, and the last of our load safely delivered, we entered upon the return journey, hoping to arrive at the sheds before dark. The delays at the various bakeries had, however, eaten up much Valuable time, and, accordingly, at Dartford—the birthplace of the machine—we were compelled to make a halt in order to light the lamps. An hour's 111T1 then took us back to Frith, where the wagon was backed into its berth, and rags, brushes and oilcans were produced and applied, in order that it might he ready on the stroke of the hour in the morning to get away with its load. During the day we had covered e40 miles, had delivered 15 tons of flour. and had made eightcalls. The running time was 9. hrs. 35 min.
A Careful Driver is at all Times the Best Non-skid.
A word on driving may not he out of place. Running either loaded empty, throughout a trip of over mi.es, on greasy town setts and
tramlines, or on muddy country lanes, we never experienced an awxward moment by fear of skidding. Other machines we saw performing various gyrations, much to the detuiment of valuable rubber tires, and to the danger of life and property. During the day's work, we noticed with pleasure the care lavished on the vehicle by its driver. At each halt he glanced carefully over the tires, and extracted any injurious substance picked up since the previous stop. tie went over all the grease cups and lubricators in turn, giving half aturn when required, and assuring himself that the lubricant was reaching its -destination, It WKS never too much trouble for him carefully to wipe down the engine, and it was amusing to witness I is consternation on discovering thathe had supplied a pumpful too much of oil, and that it was oozing out over the crankcase. -Users who experience continual mechanical trouble with any machine would do well to take a day's run on the vehicle. and to witness for themselves the way in which the driver performs his work. No machine 18 so foolprocif that it can be properly operated by a really bad driver. The Behaviour of the Hanford.
The machine on which we did the day's work is entered by its present owner under the Army subsidy scheme, and it is fitted with the War Office towing hooks and in others ways conforms to the W.O. requirements. When rlinni n empty it was not necessary at any time during the day to use the third speed, and on only one oceasion, it surmounting a long and steep hill, was it necessary to drop to second, even with a full load aboard. The vehicle, a five-tonner, was, of course, not fast on hills, but it picked up speed handsomely, and was quite fast enough when °matsion required.
Chatting over the subject of transport with a responsible official of Cannon and Gaze, Ltd., we learned that the five-tonner had displaced eight horses and four vans. In addition, three men now do much more work than was previously accomplished by eight. "The wagon," said our informant, can do 20 miles a day more than the combined mileage of the horses. During 12 months of working 302 days were spent on the road. There were eight holidays, 52 Sundays, and three days wer, spent " The outward tonnage was 2530, and the inward loads amounted to 200 tons. The running cost for the year was L1/ 9s. id., averaging 6.51d. per mile."
"-And horse costs ?" we queried].
" Each horse cost us 35s. a week, including his driver. Nis day's journey was 16 miles. You can wrk it out for yourself. The wages of the driver's mates are not included in the figures I have given you at We (lid a rapid sum. " 1'728 seems to be the figure."
"That's very close to the actual cost." was the reply, " and do not forget the extra 20 miles per day that the wagon can do over the horses ?"