SBM 2015

AEC Regent V 2D3RA, 282 DWN. Body: Roe B37F

SWT AEC Regent V single decker number 38 (282 DWN) is the sole survivor of only eight such buses specially designed to pass under bridges with clearances as low as 9 feet in the New Dock area of Llanelli.

To meet this rare height challenge, South Wales Transport and AEC came up with the simple solution of marrying a traditional standard Regent V double deck chassis (front engine and 'half cab' layout) with a specially-designed low height single deck body, produced by Charles H. Roe of Crossgates, Leeds.

Since the chassis was designed to take the weight of a double deck body but only carried single deck bodywork these buses had an impressive turn of speed but could also give a hard ride over poor road surfaces and level crossings.

38 was one of a batch of six (35-40, registered 279-284 DWN) that were introduced in 1963 to replace the 1950 batch of Regal III models as well as supplement another two such vehicles, 33 and 34 (TCY101/2) purchased in 1959.

35 in Trinity Road

38 was withdrawn in 1972 and sold to Bedlington & District in Northumberland before being bought by the West Yorkshire Transport Circle. The National Museum of Wales acquired the bus in the late 1980s with SWT restoring it for display. It was also for a time loaned it to the 447 group, based at Pembrey, near Llanelli. Having been kept at the National Museum’s store in Nantgarw for several years, Swansea Bus Museum finally acquired the vehicle, complete with two engines, a gearbox and numerous spare parts, in April 2011. Following much restoration effort, 38 passed the MOT and returned to the road in May 2013.

Shown below are pictures of 38's collection from the National Museum and a storyboard of its progress towards restoration.


In storage
38 rear
April 18th 2011: Peter with 38 in the National Museum of Wales storage area

38 about to leave storage. Light rear offside panel damage is evident

38 inside
38 interior forwards

Interior is generally good, with 3 seats missing and some damage to rear floor near emergency exit

Interior looking forwards

External inspection
Push!!

Having been moved outside, the bodywork is inspected

Rhodri & Mal prepare to push 38 back to Swansea!

Removal team
Hitching up
The removal men!

38 is connected to the tow truck

38 arrives 38 reverses in
38 arrives at the Swansea Bus Museum site

Being reversed into the museum

In situ with grille Array of spares
April 20th 2011: Bodywork cleaning has commenced with grille refitted. Engines and gearbox are alongside

Array of spares include 2 engines and gearbox

Engine refitted The cab
May 1st 2011: Engine has been refitted and runs. damaged rear floor area has been replaced. Cleaning of exterior & interior continues. New glass to be fitted to destination panel

The cab with the instruments, steering wheel and mechanism removed. The steering box needs a new seal, with instrument panel being refurbished.
May 13th 2011: Steering mechanism and instrument panel has been refitted. With engine timing now set correctly, 38 starts first time. However, a noticeable lack of oil pressure indicated that there is no oil pump fitted! The sump has been removed and fitting will be attempted with engine in-situ.
 
May 19th 2011: Oil pump fitted and engine runs perfectly. Mechanical reassembly underway.
 
June 24th 2011: 38 is now being prepared for MOT. Electrical problems with headlights and indicators are being worked on.

38 being driven Openday Oct11
July 3rd 2011: 38 is seen here having been driven out of the museum. This identified clutch problems, which together with the ongoing electrical issues mean that 38 will not be attending the Transport Rally in Llanelli on July 10th. It is anticipated that it will undergo an MOT during the second half of July.
October 30th 2011: 38 is on show during our Open Day. It is now running OK but is still suffering from minor problems such as a leaking water pump. Such problems have meant that has not yet been submitted for MOT, but it is planned to have it fully roadworthy in time for the Regent 30 event in February 2012
Update July 2012: As a result of MOT failure, much more work has been necessary on 38 than originally thought. New brake slack adjusters have had to be ordered and we are awaiting delivery. Once these are fitted and tested, it is planned to re-submit 38 for the MOT. Let's keep our fingers crossed! May 10th 2013: Following more work on the brakes, 38 has today passed its MOT. She will therefore now be attending shows during the forthcoming summer rally season, and a return to its original stomping ground in Llanelli is eagerly anticipated by many.
WoW1 WoW2

May 18th 2013: 38 is pictured above during the Wales on Wheels event at the National Waterfront Museum in Swansea. It's also planned that 38 will attend the Barry show on June 9th and Festival Fields in Llanelli on July 14th.

Further cosmetic work is planned, including repairs to the upholstery, outer panelwork and a respray.

38 gets repainted - Sep 13September 2013: 38 receives an external makeover. Damaged panels at the side and rear of 38 have been replaced and the rear towing eye removed. The picture above shows the rear three quarters of the bus sporting a new paint finish while panel repairs are under way around the side of the cab. New front wheelguards have been made and fitted.
Right: the finished product ready to travel to Llanelli and Pembrey on the weekend of September 28th/29th 2013

38 repaint is finished
Next on the cards is an overhaul of the interior.........watch this space!

© SWTPT 2013