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Deciphering ID tags. 02 Jan 2017 15:25 #177861

  • Dave_64
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Well, after quite a bit of bad language and getting covered in crap, we finally got the 'Project Bantam' home today.
Next up, try and ID the little bleeder!
Has TWO tags on the firewall/engine cover, near side (or passenger side):-
TOP tag, B.S.L.P. KB21588
BOTTOM tag Karrier Ltd. 74A8283.
Sent an email to the Old Dart earlier to try and find out anything. I don't even know if they came out here fully imported (most likely?) or in CKD form. I don't even have a clue who handled them in OZ ,Commer/Karrier, before Chrysler got their hands on it??
Any help/links would be appreciated,Thanks,
Dave_64

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Deciphering ID tags. 02 Jan 2017 15:39 #177866

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Hi Dave .. these old Commer/ Karriers are a neat old bit of kit eh ? I think it is BLSP... which is the firm "British Light Steel Pressings". I can only assume that the KB is "Karrier Bantam" followed by the consecutive Bantam cab construction number. 74 A would be the overall model description followed by its consecutive chassis number.

... Google Karrier Bantam and see what pops up otherwise.
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Deciphering ID tags. 02 Jan 2017 15:42 #177867

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Dave

Neals Motors Melbourne (a part of the Lanes Group) were the Rootes distributors from vintage car days until the end in the early 70's when they were selling Hillman Hunters and Humbers with Valiants on the same showroom floor.

My Dad was the general manager of Neals from about 63-70 (that is why I bought a Commer as my first working truck). I remember he had a company Humber for the first couple of years which was replaced by Valiant Regals as Chrysler became dominant to fading British car sales. The Commer trucks started to have the Chrysler Pentastar badge discretely on the door for a while but soon had the Commer badge completely replaced with Dodge.

I will see what I can find about Karriers and their distribution.

By 1939, over 600 municipalities used Karrier vehicles; the company had close relationships with aftermarket body builders, who made garbage collectors, tower wagons, and gully emptiers, as well as a left-hand-control road sweeper (a Karrier branded item based on a Commer chassis) and ambulance (also branded by Karrier but based on a Commer van).

During World War II, there were separate designs for the two trucks; Karrier made cross-country four and six wheeled trucks. Overall, 10,000 Karrier trucks were used by the military during the war.

Karrier bus

Around 1949, the Karrier Bantam switched to a cast aluminum raidator shell, replacing pressed metal. In 1952, the Bantam was updated with a new cab and Perkins diesel engine, and the CK3 was replaced by the Gamecock (seen above on a historic journey from South Africa to London); this had a new cab similar to Commer’s forward control cabs. The Karrier Bantam lasted through 1970, using a 3-ton coupling gear.


Lang
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Deciphering ID tags. 02 Jan 2017 16:34 #177870

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The commer.org.nz website used to be gold mine of info, but looks like it has gone now
Beaver@ Museum of Fire
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Deciphering ID tags. 02 Jan 2017 17:23 #177872

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Dave

Neals Motors Melbourne (a part of the Lanes Group) were the Rootes distributors from vintage car days until the end in the early 70's when they were selling Hillman Hunters and Humbers with Valiants on the same showroom floor.

My Dad was the general manager of Neals from about 63-70 (that is why I bought a Commer as my first working truck). I remember he had a company Humber for the first couple of years which was replaced by Valiant Regals as Chrysler became dominant to fading British car sales. The Commer trucks started to have the Chrysler Pentastar badge discretely on the door for a while but soon had the Commer badge completely replaced with Dodge.

I will see what I can find about Karriers and their distribution.

By 1939, over 600 municipalities used Karrier vehicles; the company had close relationships with aftermarket body builders, who made garbage collectors, tower wagons, and gully emptiers, as well as a left-hand-control road sweeper (a Karrier branded item based on a Commer chassis) and ambulance (also branded by Karrier but based on a Commer van).

During World War II, there were separate designs for the two trucks; Karrier made cross-country four and six wheeled trucks. Overall, 10,000 Karrier trucks were used by the military during the war.

Karrier bus

Around 1949, the Karrier Bantam switched to a cast aluminum raidator shell, replacing pressed metal. In 1952, the Bantam was updated with a new cab and Perkins diesel engine, and the CK3 was replaced by the Gamecock (seen above on a historic journey from South Africa to London); this had a new cab similar to Commer’s forward control cabs. The Karrier Bantam lasted through 1970, using a 3-ton coupling gear.


Lang



...Not a lot of people are aware that " Neals" was just an anagram of Lanes, and was an offshoot to their other businesses.
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Deciphering ID tags. 10 Jan 2017 13:52 #178258

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HI ALL,
Just trying to ID this old Karrier Bantam, seems I have hit a bit of a brick wall.
Going by the replies posted above, seems 'Tective Phil was spot on about the cab being pressed by British Light Steel Pressings (B.L.S.P.) as well as the 'KB' designation referring to the series model.
Tried Vicroads registration site, entered previous rego, (KDR434) AS WELL as the BLSP # KB21588. Also tried the other tag, 'Karrier 74A8283', all returned "records not found".
Shot off an email to Vicroads to see if they can do any further checks.
ALSO, tried contacting the Commer/Karrier NZ website, like Beaver I had no luck either. Contacted the Karrier UK club, joined up, but although receiving a few 'hits' no-one has posted any replies as yet, been just on a month or so.
There were quite a few around going back a few years, since starting searches, have found an earlier two piece windscreen model locally, although a basket case, another restoration turned up at the Geelong Truck Show last weekend, but a MUCH earlier model.
Going by the link that Lang put up, a WAG plus a bloke who came around and had a look at mine, seems to put it in the late fifties/early sixties, but I wouldn't lay odds on that being correct. I don't know enough about them to say with any certainty, but just a few subtle hints like the position of the headlights, the maker lights in the footsteps, the position of the indicators, plus a few clues from inside the cab, combination key start/headlight switch, indicator switch, master cylinder position on a bracket on the lower steering column.
After removing the drivers side front and rear dual wheels and sussing out the manual that Zuffen sent me, it APPEARS that the Gamecock and Bantam used many interchangeable parts. After stripping the front wheel off, the OUTER hub with the adapter for the 13" hubs looks like it is the same as the larger model, except for the larger model running an EIGHT stud X either 15" or 16"rim. At first glance, brake drums, and all associated plumbing including master cylinder (either Girling or Clayton-Dewander), although this one has the parking brake connected to the rear wheels, some having the transmission brake at the back of the box.
If I could work out how to pin down a year model accurately, would go a long way. Not asking anyone to do it for me, just point me in the right direction please. may have got onto a workshop manual being held in the Newcastle (NSW) state library, won't lend it out, but just may photostat a few pages for me.
Thanks, Dave

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Deciphering ID tags. 10 Jan 2017 18:06 #178267

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A new mob has recently set up in the UK, with their first open day in Nov '16. either facebook or www.rootesarchivecentre.org.uk
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Deciphering ID tags. 10 Jan 2017 20:58 #178279

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Thanks Mammoth, shot them an email so will wait and see if have any better luck with that one. Cheers, Dave

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Deciphering ID tags. 23 Jan 2017 17:06 #178693

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Well Dave, sometimes things are right under your nose. Vic Roads donated all their pre 1984 paper engine records to The Association of Motoring Clubs (Victoria) who can now do a search for a fee, The owner part of the records were destroyed on the gounds of privacy :woohoo: They are called engine records because back in 1908 chassis often did not have a number, then bodies did even though there was a chassis.
www.aomc.asn.au/eng®records.htm

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Deciphering ID tags. 23 Jan 2017 17:20 #178695

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Mammoth,
Was informed of this association week or two back, went into a local sub branch of Vicroads and a very helpful young lady, after being given all the paperwork that I had, said to leave it with her and she would chase it up.
By the time I got back home, had a phone call from Vicroads archives and was told (again) that pre 1985 records had been archived and when I asked about A.O.M.C. she said she wasn't aware of any such association and that Vicroads would not be in the habit of onforwarding information. So, somebody either doesn't know or is not up to date with policy.
I explained (again) that I didn't need to know anything about previous owners history and that all I was trying to achieve was a build year. Was told that without an engine number AND a chassis number, I didn't stand much chance. Bloke in S.A. rebuilt one back in 2013 and he sent me a few details of his numbers and at this stage we reckon we can pin it down to around 1959-1961 give or take a year or two.
Waiting to see if the girl from our local sub-branch has had any luck, will give her a week or two. If no joy will try that A.O.M.C.
Thanks, Dave

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