The Newsletter of the Omnibus Society Inc.,
NEXT EVENT… Midwinter Dinner, Saturday 24 June – separate Running Sheet Extra sent out re this.
COMING EVENTS FOR 2006…
15/16 July – Bus & Coach Assoc. Conference,
August – Evening meeting.
September – Garage visit.
October – AGM.
November – Trip to
December – Evening trip.
PAST EVENTS…Mana Coach
Services Waitangirua (Porirua) Depot Visit, 9 April
(Many thanks to Michael Berry for these two reports – Ed.)
The weather forecast said it was going to clear up so I ventured out into the rain to join six other bold members who were also keen to see developments at Waitangirua. We were warmly greeted by our host and fellow member, Mike Boyton, and we retreated into the new administration block while the thunder roared and rain teemed down. Mike is the Driver Supervisor and he gave the group an informative insight into the running of a bus depot. Juggling staff and vehicles is his daily challenge to ensure that the best service is delivered. The Mana staff is experienced and reliable but the vehicles can be a source of headaches. The sun soon started to break through so we went out to study the fleet. It had changed considerably since our first visit in 1987 and only a few Hino survivors remained from that time. The buses are now parked in dedicated spots grouped by type rather than fleet number sequence. This enables Mike to look out and see what types are available for a particular duty. It also enabled us to photograph like types together.
We were treated to a ride on 31/MG6548, Hino BX341, Coachwork Ranger body, to the new Aotea subdivision and could see that this older vehicle was performing well. Back at the depot, coaches 26 and 162, and bus 60, were moved around to form interesting groupings. Such opportunities are possible when the Society visits a depot as a group. It was a most interesting and busy visit getting round the extensive fleet and all the group felt that it was a morning well spent. Our grateful thanks are due to Mike Boyton and the Management of Mana Coach Services for facilitating our visit.
…Karori Depot Open Day, 21 May
So that members could see the extent of the Omnibus
Society’s fleet and workshop facility, an open day was held on Sunday, 21
May. Although details of the event were
given at short notice, the day had been notified in earlier editions of Running
Sheet. So it was pleasing to see seven
members attend and four potential members come along of which at least one has
signed up. It was an eye-opener in all
respects to what the Society has. The
depot features undercover storage for buses that are being worked on or are in
an unfit state to be outside. A
significant number of spare parts are neatly stored as well as the items in the
Society’s library. Ex Eastbourne No. 20
and Nimon’s No. 6 were in the main workshop area with work in progress
whilst ex WCT 249 awaits restoration to its timber framework. Outside were parked the Omnibus Society’s
work horses including 3583, 322 and 462 awaiting their
next income-earning duty. As well as
current Stagecoach Volvo/BBC trolleybuses, also in the vicinity were
trolleybuses that used to run for WCT, ARA and Farmers. The star attraction was our latest vehicle –
OUR FLEET… thanks to Henry Brittain, Peter Rendall, Morris Moller
4 - MAN ….
HERE IT IS….
Ex-Gisborne City Council No. 4, 1976 MAN 15.192R FOC-R, the first MAN PSV sold in NZ. Details are in the last Running Sheet.
It is pictured here, early on its delivery trip to
20 – …AND ONE DAY……!
Yes, here is our (and EBC’s) No. 20, 1958 Leyland Royal Tiger Cub, in its post-1984 condition (and in EBC livery) after acquiring this distinctive NZMB Commuter II body. Details are in an earlier RS.
(Photographer unknown – if anyone knows, please let me know – Ed.)
322 (AEC) and 462 (
OBSERVATIONS…Thanks to Anthony Greaney, Graeme Inwood, Morris Moller, Harvey Paterson, Peter Rendall, Nick Stoneman, Peter Thompson
Peter T. reports the following recent additions to Redbus, noting that all regos are checked from photos: 699/ CZZ672; 700/ DAH303; 701/ DAH304; 702/ DAH310; 703/ DAH311; 704/ DAU242; 705/ DAU246; 706/ DHE692; 707/ DHE687. All are new tag-axle MANs, B51D (though not all are to this seating/body configuration).
He adds it's now confirmed who got the tenders for all Otago Road Services work and, sadly, Otago Road Services have lost this work to Citibus which means that ORS will no longer have any contract work as of the 30th June this year.
79/ DFF257 (LPG); 120/ DGJ514; 121/ DGJ519
The rest are MAN 12.223 B43D the same as the Tranzit and Mana ones, as follows:
186/ DFQ 729; 187/ DFQ 733; 188/ DGJ 502; 189/ DGT 321; 190/ DGT 322; 191/ DGT 335; 192/ DGZ 810; 193/ DGZ 802
As well, Go Bus have some Stagecoach Auckland 1981/2 MAN SL200s, Hawke B45D, on lease. They are 1603/ KI6725; 1604/ KI6726; 1605/ KI6727; 1616/ KN4881; 1656/ KX9530
Go Bus have also bought 1671/ MD1203 and 1678/ MA6604 of the same type, but of 1985 vintage.
A very smart
reports and updates us on Nimons as follows:
79 & 80 went away to KBBL earlier this year as
44 (NCS44) has just come out of the paint shop resplendent in its Nimons livery. It is now working out of Havelock North depot doing
(Kiwi Bus Builders Lld. chassis codes:
KBBL have been remanufacturing recycled chassis for some time now -- to date on Volvo B10M and M/Benz 0305 chassis. These chassis are deemed to be new and comply with the 30 year rule. For those not familiar with their rebuilt chassis codes designations this is what they represent:
Format: KBBemm components.
KBB = Kiwi Bus Builders.
e = engine position . M = Mid mount. R = Rear engined.
mm = Two letter code denoting chassis. To date VO = Volvo. ME = M/Benz.
components = Components of model used on chassis.
To date, two types of chassis have been made: KBBMVO Volvo B10M and KBBRME Mercedes 0305).
Second on Nimons is this report of a recent visit from Harvey Paterson which complements both the above nicely, and also some earlier notes:
An interesting visit - apart from frothing at the mouth at the
line up of former Wellington Leyland Leopards, my attention was drawn to a
very tidy Bedford SB, a trad NZ Motor Bodies example dating from 1967 and new
to Northshore Transport. It had been tidied up ready for collection by
new owners, Motat,
Next to catch my eye was a pristine Leyland Leopard ex-Invercargill, more recently Newlands 44 (and latterly Mana 144). This vehicle has been completely re-panelled and resplendent in its new livery. The Company was hoping to buy sister vehicle, the former NCS 45. Unfortunately for all concerned they were beaten to the cheque book draw by a movanner.
New in the fleet
is a Mitsubishi school bus. Based on a truck chassis this is a prototype for a
possible series to replace
Charter coaches included two B12 Volvos. Among vehicles for sale were included a Volvo B58 and a Hawke-bodied Volvo.
The visit was a bus foamer’s delight.
And last, but far from least in these visits to Nimons, is this contribution from the inimitable Graeme Inwood. (Sorry it’s taken so long, Graeme!):
Spotted an unusual bus with a NDNZ badge on it at Dannevirke. Will get that on the way back.
We got in to
Napier about 10-20 am. Time for a cuppa and a stretch. Tanya now knows why
Napier does not have a sandy beach, only a stony one (1931 earthquake). Past the
old Napier prison and hard labour quarry, now a Backpacker's and park. Over the
hill via the Bluff lookout. Down by the West Quay buildings we sight a 1971
Daimler Fleetline. Tanya not impressed at all - RMs rule. Over to Nimon's
Napier yard in
Another smart Leyland, Nimons 109 (ex-WCT 466). Photo: Graeme Inwood
The first sight
that we fixed our eyes on were the ex-WCT
At Dannevirke I had a look at the NDNZ bus that was at White's. F/n 45 XK5380 1998 Nissan Diesel RBS501, fitted with an old (ugly) body. Back to the return trip and very heavy rain to south of Woodville, with a lot of flooding. Dropped Tanya off at Picked wife up at 6 -25 pm, normal time ! A great day out, good company, good subject matter, lots of pic's, long day but worth it. And the car needed a good run, anyway.
Stagecoach/Infratil/NZ Bus – Infratil-owned NZ Bus, trading under the Stagecoach name, are still not owners of Mana Coach Services. The firm was taken to the High Court on 30 March by the Commerce Commission after NZ Bus withdrew its clearance application (to the CC) on 13 March, saying it would proceed with the acquisition on 3 April. MCS seems determined to sell, so your guesses as to the identity of a possible new owner are as good as your Editor’s guesses – Tranzit?....Madge?....someone further north?....or south? Personally, your Editor does not care too much about commercial competition as long as comfortable, efficient and reliable services are provided by an agency that knows something about all requirements of the industry, especially those of the passengers, to use an accurate but now unfashionable word.
The other issue in
Here’s a shot of OS member, Richard Potts’ (Classic Coaches) neat and workmanlike Volvo in the firm’s pleasing livery.
It’s at Wellington Station and the photo is by Nick Stoneman.
Mana Coach Services – Porirua – Austral-bodied Hino BX341 33/ NA4779 is here at present (ex-Kapiti) being employed on service runs – at Kapiti, it was used largely as a school bus and emergency spare. Volvo B6FA 12/ RX 8163 has been at Kapiti having extensive engine work done, but has returned to Porirua. At present away at Kapiti, also for engine work, is 39, Volvo B10M, one of the ex-WCT Ansaldo trolleybus conversions.
Kapiti – See the Porirua section above. With the company awaiting a High Court decision (due very soon) about the possible sale to Stagecoach/ Infratil/ NZ Bus, there are clearly no new fleet additions at any of the three depots to report!
ENQUIRIES AND REPLIES…
Henry Brittain has replied as follows to the interesting query about Northland trolleybuses from Alan Smith, that appeared in the last RS:
Mike Flinn thinks they ceased in the early 1980s as he was still working for Wellington City Transport at that time. He has some movie film of them taken not long before they ceased, but he has not recorded the actual date. It could be recorded in John Herbert’s jottings and I will have a look through these when I am back from holiday in July.
were stabled at the Karori depot and the first morning buses left
this depot and travelled up
At the end of the
evening service they travelled down
carried route number 13 when they first commenced in 1955 and travelled down
The route from
Karori to Northland and return, apart from having very tight turns and
intricate overhead, would have caused traffic delays especially when
Alan, in thanking for this, comments as follows: Tinakori Rd. was disconnected by March 1967 (photos of tower wagons removing wire at that time).This was triggered by motorway construction between Hill St – Grant Rd and removal of lamp-posts etc. on the east side of the road. Didn’t know about the 2-way Karori Depot access wires, Karori P.O. destination etc – great to have this on record.
Return to Running Sheet Index
Home | About the Society | Fleet | Publications | Library | Bus History | Badges, Books & Posters | Links | Bus Location