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The remains of my mate's Series 2a SWB


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Hi everyone,

You may have read some of my other posts asking advice on behalf of my mate Ben, who's been rebuilding a SWB Series 2a.

He's been going great guns; brand new galv Richard's chassis, Autosparks loom, Disco Tdi engine, Steve Parker exhaust, parabolic springs, all new brakes and hubs with rebuilt diffs, axles and steering box.

Just the body work to do, which was going to be sympathetic rather than making it look brand new.

Then Ben had the fire in his workshop.

His entire workshop, some 40' x 30' was raised to the ground. It was so hot, it did this to a 12" RSJ that was used as a hoist mount:


In terms of the S2a, the gearbox and transfer cases melted, the waterpump and even the pistons and radiator were melted and distorted.

The beautiful galv chassis could be 'reshaped' with simple finger pressure.

It was so hot that spanners have melted and his allen keys are one amorphous mass!

As with many of our projects, certainly as mine are anyway, Ben didn't have insurance on the S2a.

He's waiting for confirmation from his insurers as to the rebuilding process and has had assessors round in respect to tools and possessions.

I've helped his put the remains of the building and his possessions in the skips and it wasn't a happy process.

So, the moral of the story is to make sure you have individual "automotive" items insured, because they aren't covered on your regular insurance. Even things like roof bars and his little trailer (which both melted!) aren't covered.

I've given Ben my old Series 3 bulkhead to cheer him up and to act as the basis of his next project. If anyone has anything they'd like to donate, then drop me a pm and I'll give you Ben's email so you can talk to him direct. He doesn't know I've posted this on here so will no doubt be surprised when I forward him the page link and he reads people's good wishes.

Thanks very much and stay safe in your workshop.

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That's very sad and one of my worst nightmares, along with theft!

at least nobody was injured in the fire. A real shame to see a project that sounds like it was progressing so well to vanish like that :(

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Yeah, his lad had to go to hospital with smoke inhalation, and two days after Ben was rushed in with a suspected heart attack, but they decided it was stress rather than a 'proper' heart attack.

Incidentally, if everything was robbed they only cover £500! As everything in the Machine Mart catalogue came to about £15k, that's a LOT of tools not replaced.

The Series 2a is in the pic on the right.

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That sucks :(

Glad no-one was seriously hurt though. Any clues on what happened - arson?

I've some seats from my S3 Lightweight - front cushions and backs, along with rear benches, that he could have, but I'm the other side of the country from you, so probably not much use.


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That's terrible luck :( did he have a chance to try to fight it or was it while the workshop was unattended?

Having experienced a bin full of petrol-soaked rags going up in a small workshop I keep several extinguishers handy in mine.

If any of the junk from my shed would help he's welcome to it :unsure:

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Guys, you rule. Thanks for the offers I'll pass them all on.

To answer a few of the questions...

The chief fire investigator reckons it was something to do with one of the fluorescent lights that ignited some of the insulation in the roof. Somehow.

They hadn't done any hot-work or had lead lights or anything else going.

Used 6 fire extinguishers trying to fight it, but once it caught it just went insane. Alloy wheels have melted to nothing, not little pools of molten metal, to properly nothing!

Ben and Max (his lad) had just gone down to the house for a brew when the neighbour rang and said "there are flames by the workshop". Minutes later we were staring at a wall of orange 20 foot from the house...

Anyhow, I'm going to give him a buzz just now and tell him what you've offered.

Thanks again. You rule.

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Hi Dunc, that's a sad sight, I can't offer any Series parts as I don't have any, just my condolences on his lose 7 best wishes for a good result via insurance.

Thanks Ralph.

If we find a chassis down in the west country, we'll get you to drag it up here next time you're on a Welsh rally!

Just out of interest, when Ben was made redundant from his last job (he's a Postie now, so skint!) the last of his redundancy money went on the galv chassis. Now that's commitment to a Landy!

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Oh bugger, that's a crying shame :( Nice to see people responding so generously to this chaps misfortune though :)


Absolutely Mo. There are some damned good folks hidden away in our little part of the interweb.

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What an awful shame! Nice of people to offer parts, unfortunately I don't have anything series related to offer.

Just out of interest what companies offer insurance for this sort of thing and what policy would be required? I want to do some work on my truck and it will be taken off the road and sorn with no MOT until it's ready........I don't want something similar to happen but am unsure what path to follow to have the truck insured as most policys for the road say it must be taxed and tested don't they? I don't have a garage as it will be on my drive so I'm a bit stumped. My tools are also in the house so I'm presuming that if someone could lift my toolbox this also wouldn't be covered by my house insurance so how would I insure these as well?

Sorry to hijack the thread but it is kind of related and maybe useful info for people in a similar situation.


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@smego - I suppose you have read all the small print of every one of your insurance policies and are perfectly insured for everything :rolleyes: come off it, insurers put as many loopholes and exclusions into policies as possible and will wiggle out of as much as possible in the event of a claim. I doubt any of us is as well insured as we'd like to think we are.

Also, now is not really the time to gloat :angry:

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Hi all, thanks for the kind offers of parts etc, so if and when we get the workshop back up I may take you up on them.

One thing of interest that came out of the whole thing was that yes the Landy was not insured (hindsight is a wonderful thing) but even if it was, none of the spares would be. The 4 sets of wheels and tyres, the pickup body, the station wagon back, spare head, winch etc etc etc where not covered on the 'contents' because they are 'motor accessories' and would not be included on the vehicle policy because they were not 'on' the vehicle, so as pointed out by the Loss Adjuster 'uninsurable'.

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my i send you best wishes for the future,i have a pair of 88" side panels you are welcome to,along with some 90 seats and a set of steel rims with 7.50/16 tyres,we had a fire on the farm where i work last back end,barn was full of hay and straw,the flames licked my workshop which is brick built,luckily the fire bregade stopped it going up,i count myself very lucky.

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