On The Road
(click on any image to enlarge)
28th March 2003
The registration arrived today!
So, now that we are legal, we can take it on the road.
It's noisy!!! - We needn't have bothered with the stereo - you
can't hear it! It's not too bad from outside - similar to a scooter as you'd
expect, but at certain speeds everything vibrates inside the cab!
(Note - since we have increased the primary ratio - see Repairs - it is a lot better)
It attracts lots of smiles & waves from other drivers and pedestrians, and it's a talking point wherever it stops!
It is classed as an Historic Vehicle, so we don't have any road tax to pay (not that it was a lot, at 15 GBpounds!) but we still have to apply each year for the tax disc.
Well, it's been on the road for a few weeks and
Patrick is using it as his daily transport to college and back.
He refuses to deliver pizzas or fruit & veg though!
As you can see, we have added a box to the rear which, as well as being useful, we think makes it look better.
The engine is now running fine and is being run-in gently. We might strip it in the summer to put a higher ratio primary drive in the gearbox to increase the top speed a bit more - it seems to rev out at about 30mph
We have now fitted the new primary drive cogs (see 'Progress, May 2003') and we are much happier with the top speed (about 45mph!) and the noise levels. You can actually hear the stereo now!
NAS 962 has been put into storage!
After using it as his daily transport to go to college and back for nearly two years, Patrick is now away at University (St Andrews) and doesn't need to use the Ape. Rather than keep on paying the insurance for the short times Patrick will be at home, we decided to mothball the Ape until we needed it again.
We haven't done anything special to it, not even drained the fuel, so we'll see what it's like when we need it again.
The time has come to put
NAS 962 back on the road!
Patrick is home for the summer (he still has one year of his four year course to go) and has a summer job, so we decided to put our Ape back on the road.
We pulled it out of the garage, dusted the windscreen down, pushed it up and down the drive, and it started! This is with pre-mixed 2-stroke fuel 3 years old! After charging the battery overnight and a bit of a check over (lights, brakes etc.) we towed it to an MOT station where it passed with flying colours. Patrick drove it home (about 6 miles) and found it will still do 45mph, even with the old fuel, so we are well pleased.
There are a few cosmetic blemishes which we want to sort out, and we will possibly replace the engine with one we bought on Ebay (electric start) when we find time, and possibly rub down the paintwork and give it a 'proper' spray as we were never completely happy with our original paint job.
Patrick has tidied up the
paintwork a bit, and we have swapped the
engine for the one we bought on Ebay, so we now have electric start.
We swapped the cylinder kit and primary drive kit from the old engine and we can now start at the touch of a button!
We always had a problem with the charging circuit; if the battery was flat, the main fuse in the 12V battery line would blow when the engine started, so we've now put on a regulator/charger unit from a modern Piaggio scooter which seems to do the job just fine.
We entered it in a local Classic Car show this month, and although it didn't win any prizes, it probably got more attention than many of the other 'normal' classic cars.
It still draws the crowds, and still attracts waves and smiled wherever it goes.
Patrick has returned to
University for his final year, so the Ape is back in the garage.
We intend to keep the Ape insured, so we can take it out occasionally for 'fun drives' rather than mothballing it again.
We might also investigate a better heating system as the current hose from the cylinder cowling isn't really doing much to keep the cab warm.
Patrick has now finished
University and is home again, so the Ape is back in daily use.
Even though this vehicle is now over 40 years old, it is still very reliable. Just fill up occasionally with petrol/oil and it just keeps on running!
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