Workshop Wednesday – Manifolds and MWs

Our first Workshop Wednesday update of 2015, we’ve had quite a bit of progress on a number of fronts.

Now the Bedford QL is in the dry of the running shed, work can progress on fixing it. The torn canvas tilt has been taken off to be sewn back together. On the engine, the exhaust manifold gasket had been blowing quite a bit. Rich and Mark took the manifold off and fitted a new gasket. Apologies for the darkness of the picture!


Meanwhile, Pete, the newest recruit to the workshop team, is taking on one of the mothballed restoration projects – a Bedford MW. This little truck resembles a scaled down OY in appearance, and one featured quite prominently in ‘The Imitation Game’.

The truck was dragged out of the storage unit a while back and placed in the workshop, where it quickly became a storage shelf in its own right. We cleared most of the clutter off to take a look at the cab and engine area…

After the war, this truck was used by a firm in Malmesbury. The old signwritten doors are pictured here, we have spares (seen here in blue) and will be keeping these ones intact.

The Bonser forklift is now running and edging closer to being back in action. The repaint is awaiting some warmer weather to be completed!

Make do Monday-How to sew on a button

Something that might seem very simple to your average tailor is how to sew on a button. I must admit though that there are many shirts and even more loose buttons that I keep putting aside because there is a small amount of concentration needed. It is nice to be able to wear your favourite clothes again after you’ve had them mended though, so here is a step by step guide so that you can give it a go!


You will need:

  • a button
  • some colour matched thread
  • a needle for hand-sewing
  • a pair of scissors to cut the thread

1. Thread the needle and make a knot at the end of the thread so that it won’t come out as you sew. If you make the thread double the job will be a bit faster. (My grandmother taught me to never sew with a thread that was longer than the distance from my hand to my elbow, that way you won’t get it tangled)


2. Locate where you need to place the button and pull the needle through one of the holes, from the back, to secure it in place.


3. Stitch up and back down in the opposite hole leaving a small gap between the button and the fabric so that you’re not sewing the button on too hard.


4. After about 3-6 stitches you can wrap the thread around the stitches you’ve made underneath the button.


5. Push the needle through the back of the fabric, tie another knot to secure the thread and cut off the excess with the scissors.


There you are, get started on those clothes in the “to be fixed” pile so they may return to your wardrobe!


Dig For Victory Show Raises £2000 for ABF The Soldiers Charity!

DFVS is in the news again – our team members have handed over a suitably large cheque for £2000 to one of our chosen charities for 2014’s show, ABF The Soldiers Charity (Formerly The Army Benevolent Fund).

DFVS Team with the ABF - Image is property of North Somerset Times
DFVS Team with ABF – Image is property of North Somerset Times

As a Community Interest Company, raising money for charity is one of the show’s key aims, and one we want to continue in 2015.

See the full article here:

Make Do Monday – Gardener’s Diary – January – Part II

GARDENER’S DIARY – 3rd Week of JanuaryCabbage

No flowers are gayer or more welcome during the often rather empty month of May than St. Brigid anemones. The Claremont Hybrids especially, with their wonderful reds, pinks and blues, are perfect for cutting, quite apart from the vivid show they make in the garden. What is more, they thrive in those shady spots which most other flowers despise. They should be planted as soon as the right moment occurs – that is, when the ground is neither frost-bound nor sodden. The soil should be well dug and if possible enriched with a little compost or rotted manure and Hamsptead Getty Imagesleaf-mould. Make the planting holes 4 inches deep and place a 1/2 inch layer of sand at the bottom of each before dropping in the bulbs. Be careful to place each bulb the right way up; the end with the sunken surface is the top. After planting, sprinkle more sand around each bulb before filing in the soil. Allow a space of 6 inches each way between bulbs. Finish by laying plastics over the bed to protect the young plants from cold winds. To keep plants of Christmas Roses healthy and strong for next season, cut off all faded blooms.

Urgent. If the ground is workable, a double row of broad beans can be sown. Put in the seeds 2 inches deep an inch apart, zigzag fashion.

GARDENER’S DIARY – 4th Week of January

If you have a g1940 Gardenreenhouse or cellar, you can use it to force some very early rhubarb. Dig up a few clumps, leave them on the ground for a few nights to get frosted, then bring them in, stand them on the floor and pack soil firmly round them. Water throughly and leave in total darkness for a few weeks, during which a crop of juicy young stalks will grow. If a cellar is used it will, of course, be dark enough; if a greenhouse, a space under the staging can be blacked-out by nailing sacking from the edge of the staging to the flour. After firing, roots Victorymust be discarded, so if your clumps of rhubarb are overgrown it is best to split them up, using one portion for forcing and the other for replanting in the garden. Only the vigorous outer parts should be used for either purpose; the middle piece must be chopped out. In mild districts a few early vegetables may be sown in sunny spot as soon as the ground can be raked to a fine surface. Lettuce (Continuity), carrots (Early Horn), spring onions (White Lisbon), and dwarf peas (Peter Pan or English Wonder) are all suitable.

Urgent. To stop birds from pecking out buds of gooseberry and currant bushes, wind black cotton among the shoots.

Alec Bristow’s tips from the 1940s