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Old 12-09-2005, 05:29 PM   #1
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the british airstream has been retired!

hello all

well today was the last run.

the roadmaster bus, for many people worldwide, it's double decker profile is the image of london.....but no more.

these british icons made their last offical runs today and were retired. this has been coming for awhile but still the finality did not seem real till now.

does lightweight alloy construction, stressed skin design and aircraft heritage sound familiar?

just like our airstreams the roadmasters were designed and built to be as light as possible; not rely on traditional body on frame construction, instead using the stressed skin (monoque) principles. pieces were meant to be interchangeable and replaced/repaired. like their airplane cousins they had a "expected service life" but this was extended by ongoing inspection, maintence and repairs.

suspension/drivetrain segments were mounted on segments of subframe for/aft while the bus coach was supported by it's aluminum ribs and skin. at 14000lbs they do weigh a bit more than our trailers but also carry 60-70 people.

saw this in the paper today. will likely be on the evening news...

here's a photo and link.

i'm sure some of you know lots more than i and admire the roadmasters....

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Old 12-09-2005, 05:55 PM   #2
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I guess I'm one of the few who can say "I've driven one." During an election year I got to drive one that belonged to a congressional candidate in MD. It was a beast. Top end was about 45 MPH. Very cool crash box transmission. RH drive was different. You get more looks than an Airstream going down the road too.
Lots of room for all your stuff if you did a MoHo conversion.

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Old 12-09-2005, 06:38 PM   #3
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Unhappy Sorry to see them go--times change...nice pix

Talk about an icon going by the wayside. Heard that on the radio tonight, couldn't believe my ears.
On the other hand as a moho conversion a person could fit more kayaks, bikes, and the 4 leggeds could have their own window...dibs on the green one.
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Old 12-09-2005, 07:07 PM   #4
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What a bummer! Fisrt time we rode in one and came to a Round A bout, almost had heart failuer! WE GOING THE WRONG WAY. Then we realized it was the right way there. Sorry to see them go!
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Old 12-09-2005, 07:40 PM   #5
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as i re read this thread, realized i misspelled airstream in the title.

please forgive my transgression. since we're only allowed 11 seconds for editing, i cannot correct it.

here's some rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr's for whoever needs them.

and here's another shot of the bus in cabriolet.

looks like the roadmaster may have been airstreams inspiration for the skydeck.....imagine the hanky panky that could go on up there!

these buses actually had some seats arranged near the back of the bus shall we say.....lovers.

the british are so practical about basic human needs.

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Old 12-09-2005, 09:22 PM   #6
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I wonder what's in store for all those retired double deckers. I'll take the first red one. Looks fairly new and would convert quite nicely to a moho. If they're aluminum, they'll polish up nicely. Kitchen, dining, living and bath room down stairs, upstairs for the sleeping quarters. The morning views would be awesome next to the lake. Wonder what it would cost to have one shipped over here.

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Old 12-09-2005, 10:00 PM   #7
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You can build an exact (almost) duplicate of this same bus. All it takes is vision and hard work.
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Old 12-10-2005, 02:11 AM   #8
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Hi there;
I've heard you can buy one for €8000, now; With that, no need to tow an Airstream, all the space is inside and on the top... like the newest A/S MH but with a small price...

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Old 12-10-2005, 04:37 AM   #9
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Just watch out for those overpasses!
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Old 12-10-2005, 06:11 AM   #10
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The registry shows lots just north of us up in Canada. If you really wanted to convert one it would be far more economical to find one up there than ship on over from the Brittish Isles.
Also for those who have never ridden on one the upper deck only provides about 5'6" or 5'4" headroom.
A lot of US highways are built to accomodate the standard height trailer of 13'6" with a little grace.... but 14'6" would have you looking at every route prior to passing.
You'd also have to do something about the driveline as they are built for city work and not geared for highway speeds.
Disney or NASA had some double decker units for sale last year that where newer designed USA units with LH drive.
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Old 12-10-2005, 07:52 AM   #11
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I was born and raised in London, so Routemasters (pronounced Rootmaster, please!) have been part of my life. The distinctive feature is the rear access platform with a vertical grab handle. This enabled one to get on or off the bus while it was in motion. Imagine the challenge for us kids! Jumping on at speed looked heroic, but jumping off was the scary bit. In 1947 my mother was travelling in a Routemaster through London with my brother, aged 5, and me in a carry-cot, aged 3 months. My mother got off at stop with my brother, and forgot that I was still on the bus. When she arrived at her sister's house, my Aunt said "Where's baby Nick?" I was later found at the coach station. My 90 year old Aunt still laughs about it.
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Old 12-10-2005, 08:15 AM   #12
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Just in the Nick of Time

No pun intended Nick.

I'm glad I got the chance to ride them in London last year.
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Old 12-10-2005, 08:53 AM   #13
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I was in NY city last year or should I say I was on Manhattan and they have the open top buses for tour of the city .It was winter and snowing and they had some people up top. It was a sight Billy
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Old 12-10-2005, 10:08 AM   #14
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Lol Nick...

...Say Nick, I was born in Essex ( Great Chesterford - Saffron Walden ), bk in '53, My Gran ( Bless Her ), used 2 go-up-smoke, & told Me many a good story, one realy made Me laugh was when She & a few of Her Friends would "" Jump the bus "" ring the Bell & jump off asap...LOL..., She says She done it one day in winter & slipped on the ice, in2 a street lamp, She nvr said if She done it agn...Mmm. I 2, used 2 "" Smoke "" London in the late '60s / early '70s, at Victoria Gardens, Gee I don't ever recall payin My bus fair... ( Shame on ME )... but Hell it WAS FUN... Carnaby Street, Baywaters Road street market on a Sunday mornin... SIGH !...DON'T ASK *** LOL Soho, done all the discos, I was a MOD bk then, done the London 2 Brighton run on a Lambretta SX200, Hey Man, Geared Man, absolutely Geared Man...LOL Fantastic, Cool, With-It Man... & all the rest...Blah blah, blah... The Beatles, Kinks, Stones, Small Faces, Fortunes, Oh ! & ELVIS of course... But I DO agree abt the BUSSES...JUS one "Q" tho... WHY ????? ...London revolves around the ROUTEMASTER, FX Taxi Cabs, Boutiques & Hyde Park...Famous ALL over the world, & many were indeed sent ALL over the world... Chris.....
**** I bought a black SHIRT from the Baywater Rd market, it was FAB, apart from havin one LONG & one SHORT sleeve, I wore a GLOVE on the short sleeve arm, the weatherman said it may RAIN, but ON THE OTHER may NOT rain... LOL, U with Me Nick ???... ( IT did HONEST, & it cost Me a ruddy FIVER, GUV. ) Got bk from our vacation in Florida jus Yesterday, after 21 perfect days, & I MISSIN the place already... even talkin abt our NEXT trip out over the pond...LOL...

It's NICE 2B Important...but it's more Important 2B NICE...Chris.....
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