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4th March 1924, Page 25
4th March 1924
Page 25
Page 26
Page 25, 4th March 1924 — • PASSENGER TRAVEL NEWS.
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The Latest Doings and Developments in the Bus and Coach World.


Brief Details of Small Passenger-carrying Bodies Built by a Company who have had much Experience in the Design and Construction of Buses and Coaches.

IT WILL BE remembered that a few weeks ago we published an informative article which dealt at some length with the reason for the increasing popularity of the one-man-controlled type of motorbus. We laid stress at that time on the suitability of this type of vehicle for operation in rural districts linking up busy centres of population where the traffic which is available is not a constant factor, and, except at certain periods of the day, is insufficient to justify the adoption of vehicles of a greater carrying capacity which call for the employment of a conductor as well as a driver.

The Chelsea Motor Building Co., Ltd., of 164, King's Road, Chelsea, London, S.W,3, have given much consideration to the design and construction of saloon buses of the one-man-controlled type, and two of their latest productions are illustrated on this page. One of these is a 16-seater bus mounted on a 30-cwt. Maxwell eha.ssis, and we propose giving brief details of its construction in order to show the workmanlike manner in which the company undertake Use production of passenger-carrying bodies. Chelsea •bodies bear the hall-mark of quality and are scientifically designed to withstand the strains and stresses to which vehicles carrying varying loads over indifferent roads are subjected.

The framework of the 16-seater body is mainly composed of English ash with channel-iron and ash cross-members_ The flooring is of tongued and grooved pine, upon which wearing slats of ash are fitted. The bottom of the side and rear ribs have mild-steel braces let. into them in order to stiffen up the ass:tett:ire. The roof ribs are of ash, and these are also strengthened with mild-steel plates. Fine match-boarding is used for the roof, which is made perfectly water

tight by V-jointing the boards, which are covered with calico bedded in lead. A cornice made of spruce runs round the complete contour of the roof.

The sides and end of the body are panelled in steel, the top and rear corners being of plywood covered with white duck. Ash mouldings are used to cover the various joints between the panel sections. The inside panelling is carried out in plywood which, it should be mentioned, can readily be removed in sections if it becomes necessary to examine the drop windows. All the seats in the interior of the body face in the forward direction, three pairs of seats being disposed on each side of a central gangway, and another seat running the full length of the rear of the body to accommodate four people

The seats are of a special type supplied by the Bowden Brake Co., in which spring steel slats are used to give a comfortable and buoyant seat. The framework under the rear seats on cach side of the emergency door is made to form lockers for the reception of tools, etc., as also is the space under the driver's seat, the cushions being made detachable for this purpose. The door giving access to the interior is at the near-side front and extends below the body sills in order to cover the steps, so that they come within the overall width of the body proper. It is of the two-piece type and, as is customary in bodies of this pattern, its manipulation is under the sole control of the driver, who, it should be mentioned, is sereened off from the passengers by a partition at the back of his seat, although provision is made so that his view to the rear is not obstructed. The steps leading to the interior are built of ash and they are fitted with Ferodo stair nosing. A door is built into the rear panel for use in emergency, and this extends from the floorboards to the roof. The cushion used on the seat in front of the door is arranged to hinge over and downwards so that it can be utilized as a step when the door is opened, and for this purpose the underside of it is covered with aluminium matting.

The interior panels and framing are finished in the natural grain and varnished, the plywood beimg light in colour and the mouldings and waist rails stained a dark mahogany shade in order to effect a pleasing contrast. The roof, pillars and panels above the waist line of the body are finished in white enamel, so that an extremely clean and light appearance is given to the interior. In the design and construction of this body special attention has been given to the question of ventilation, and for this purpose three large windows, which are made to be lowered, are fitted on each side of the body. These are of the frameless pattern and slide in polished brass Beclawat channels. The glasses are made to lift over a fence plate on the waist rail, so that they are maintained in position.

Brass angle-plates are fitted to the pillars above the garnish rails in order to retain the top channels in position,

and no fillets are fitted to the sides of the pillars.

When the windows are lowered they fall on to suitable rubber blocks. Blocks of this material are also fitted above the cantrails in order to prevent rattle. There is a frameless horizontal sliding glass panel on the off side of the driver, the rear part of which is made to slide. This form of construction enables, the driver to signal his intentions to the drivers of approaching vehicles.

For the purpose of interior lighting, two roof lamps of G.E.C. pattern are fitted on each side of the body.

A capacious luggage box is fitted on the near side, and this runs from the rear pillars of the front entrance to the wing covering the rear wheel. Arrange-. silents are made for carrying a spare tyre and rim in a metal tray, which is slung under the off side of the body. The external appearance of this body is most handsome, the finish being in azure blue with the monlding,s painted to match. We also illustrate on this page a somewhat larger type of Chelsea oneman-controlled bus body, in which provision is made for seating 20 passengers. In this case the body is mounted on a Fiat chassis with an extended wheelbase. In general design and construction this body follows very closely that which we have already described,

although it differs in one or two small details. It possesses, however, 'a number of features which are characteristic of Chelsea productions. There is nothing shoddy in the construction or appearance of the bodies we illustrate, and the fact-that-they are offeredat extremely competitive prices should make Special appeal to many ut.ers. The difficulty at Liverpool with regard to bus operations in that the city is so well served by electric tramcars, which the public use as a matter of habit as the fares are So cheap, that motorbuses find it difficult to make headway. 'Ontside the ;city, .where the stranger might have thought that there would have been room for bus extensions to the tramway. services, a high-speed tram track is being laid, which will enable cars to travel at a speed up to 20 miles an.hour.

But there is another department Of passenger. vehicle operation in Liverpool which is most interesting, namely, that of the steamship companies, who either hire us' operate. their own units for conveying passengers to and Trona Steamers in dock or at the landing stage. The Atlantic steamship companies, the White Star Co., C.P.R. Co., Cunard Co., etc., hire whatever coaches and buses they require from local owners. This trans