AEC ROUTEMASTER - 1708
This vehicle was delivered new to London Transport in October 1963, having been bodied by Park Royal Vehicles of London. It was registered 708-DYE, and operated in London until withdrawal in February 1988.
It was sold in August 1988 to Mr Collins of Dianella, Western Australia, and subsequently shipped to Western Australia, where it was registered 7NO-115. It was used at as a school bus at Dianella. In March 1992, it was re-registered TC-2323. In October 1998, it was purchased by the Historic Commercial Vehicle Association for display at the Sydney Bus Museum, and transferred to Sydney by ship.
The vehicle has undergone a comprehensive restoration at the museum, including replacement of most of the body panels and extensive repairs to the roof. Several parts had to be sourced from the UK. The exterior and the ceilings have been resprayed in their original colours.
The Routemaster was the last bus to be wholly designed by London Transport. Four prototypes appeared in 1956, with full production commencing in 1958. A total of 2876 buses were built in various versions, the last batch being constructed in 1968. The Routemaster differs from earlier London designs by being of integral construction. It uses an aluminium frame with lightweight aluminium panels, and does not require a chassis to take the stress. The mechanical units are mounted on front and rear subframes which can be removed if required at overhaul. Other features include independent front suspension, coil rear suspension, power steering, semi-automatic transmission and lockheed power hydraulic braking.
Engine: 9.6 litre AEC AV590 diesel engine developing 115 B.H.P. at 1800 RPM.
Transmission: AEC direct selection semi-automatic 4-speed epicyclic gearbox with electric control, air operation and fluid flywheel.
Brakes: Lockheed continuous-flow power hydraulic.