Tom suggested I post this as people may be interested.
To give an outline to this, I collect and restore classic cars and when I got over 20 she became concerned, when I neared 30 she made me agree to not buy any more cars, instead I came back with a Scammell, followed by an AEC Militant which does wheelies it has so much pulling power, then a Pacific, which contrary to popular belief were Canadian built trucks built specially for the logging industry. To put them into perspective they are massive and designed to operate on the extreme dirt tracks logging trucks have use, and everything is removable so it can be repaired or replaced in the field, and they had nothing they didn't need in the cab, but had some interesting technology fitted to them; they are the ultimate Meccano set on steroids.
Modern trucks have Jake brakes or retarders if you live in the UK and these are a valve in the exhaust which closes and uses the engine compression to slow the truck down on steep hills, Pacifics have a Lear retarder which wraps around the rear prop shaft and the front part uses the motion of the prop shaft to produce electricity, it feeds this to the rear section which acts as a motor in reverse and brakes the prop shaft. What do they fit to cars today? oh yes brake regeneration to charge batteries and claim its new technology, bullshit, Pacifics had them fitted as standard but they slowed the truck down. Pacifics also had water cooled brakes which was unique.
Went out with a bang in 2013 as I had a strange phone call on Monday from Leics Police asking if I still had heavy haulage trucks as they had someone with a heavy load to move and if they could give them my number, intrigued I agreed as me and Grandson were fitting new drive belts to the Pacific air pump. Phone rang and a desperate heavy haul company owner gave me a tale of how two of his prime movers had been involved in an accident and he was in desperate need of two prime movers to form a 4 lorry heavy convoy on a time sensitive load, he gave me all the details and faxed across copies of all the paperwork while I rang a couple of drivers who agreed to come in. Many heavier Pacifics had 2 stroke diesels fitted to them and a 2 stroke diesel cannot create enough vacuum to suck air into the engine, so had a belt driven blower or air pump which turns when the engine is cranked to provide air under pressure to the engine.
Decided to take both the MAN heavy haulers and the Pacific and headed off to Leics to pick up a 480 tonne transformer and a locomotive and join their convoy for Felixstowe and got a surprise when I got to Leicestershire, he had an old Mack V8 and the last of them at that, he had never even heard of Pacific let alone seen one.
He was even more surprised to see grandson especially when he reversed the Pacific up to the heaviest trailer with the 480 tonne transformer on, and he had to have a look at it and began bragging how good the Mack was for heavy haulage work as it was the only one with 500 BHP from a V8 diesel, he was gutted when grandson said "is that all, we have 635 BHP from a V16 two stroke diesel in a truck 20 years older than yours and its not the most powerful they made". This seemed to upset him a little when I told him we wouldn't be double heading the transformer as I would pull it alone with the pacific, he seemed to think I couldn't do it without double heading it.
Out of the mouths of babes. Double heading is where you connect a tractor unit or prime mover to the trailer to be towed, then connect another prime mover to the one connected to the trailer.
He looked even more strangely when both lads began decorating both the loco and transformer with Christmas lights and he asked what they were doing, they told him it was Christmas and decorated the loads and even put a Christmas tree on the back of each trailer. South of Leics I began losing a little power so we pulled up and Grandson jumped out and onto the front wing and lifted the bonnet, the guy (Brian) we were doing the favour for asked if we had a problem with the truck and Grandson shouted "slack air pump belts, we were putting new ones on when you rang and they've stretched a bit and need readjusting" and set about tensioning them.
The front wings on these trucks are massive and in warm climes the drivers used to roll out a bed roll and sleep on them, that's how big they are, and Grandson is still small and he just climbs under the bonnet and onto the engine to work on it.
Off we went, all the other trucks with their fancy automatic transmissions were left to their own devices and I had the job of double declutching and gear jamming through its 9 gears and none of them could catch me, especially going uphill, and we had to keep jamming down to let them catch up with us, we made Felixstowe in record time as the roads were quiet and it was Police escort all the way.
When we got to the docks it was great fun as they were closed and when they let us in they told us to go the east dock which is massive as it was empty of containers, you never appreciate just how large they are until you see them without containers, and the shipping agent came to meet us and inform us of the unloading sequence as it has to be done in a specific order to keep the ship balanced. Grandson drove it round across the docks to the cranes and lined it up perfectly and it was unstrapped and offloaded and put straight onto the ship, another larger transformer was offloaded and dropped on the trailer to go back to Leics for repair and grandson drove off onto another part of the docks for strapping.
He asked if we could do a return with these loads, but it didn't matter if we couldn't and we said fine so he arranged a return trip as the paperwork was valid until midnight and it would save him having to send down two prime movers for the two largest transformers, I had the largest at 527 tonnes and we coupled both MAN's to the next largest as 402 tonnes for the return trip. On the A1 I got pissed off with these new trucks holding me up when going uphill so I overtook them going uphill and this really pissed Brian off as he thought the pacific was working at its limit with a load of over 500 tonnes on the back, he found out it still had more.
When we got back to leics we dropped the trailers and his wife came and paid us in cash ( I like cash) and he gave me, both my drivers, and grandson a cash bonus each for our troubles.