Lottery Win Needed to Restart Retro Fleet!!!

How many driver application forms will I need to send out?? For those not in the cool club, I run the ACH page on Facebook and recently the interest has gone through the roof. Loads of ex ACH employees on the page and also loads of photos which is what it’s all about. Those who were there and part of it can reminisce and for those of us who weren’t can enjoy what we missed out on. It’s a true fan page and I have to say it’s a pleasure to have started such an enjoyable page. 

Anyway that’s not the reason for tonight’s blog. I’ve been on a bit of a retro mission the last few months, enjoying lots of 80’s and 90’s that seem to be appearing from various companies and drivers. Now as a retro truck fan I’d love to put a retro livery truck on the road, my choices would be a Ralph Davies truck in the famous black and red or probably more uniquely the beige and black of ACH. If your going to do this wouldn’t it be awesome to find an ex ACH truck to restore and then put a trailer behind. Hard work and impossible you may think…..aha well running the company page means I get to hear about the lost and found department!


As it stands right now I know of two tractor units that are still taxed and on the show circuit and three box trailers that are still bearing the beige paint work. Admittedly two of the box trailers do need new chassis to sit on but it’s a start! The Volvo above is F81 HFC and is still taxed and on the road in Ireland. The picture above in white was taken at a truck show in Ireland back in 2015 but I’m sure I’ve seen it in some show photos this year. I have to say that it is still in very good conditio and looks like it would just need a coat of paint. I know some of you won’t agree but just imagine rubbing it down and fining the original paint underneath. As we all know the main stay of the ACH fleet was Volvo and Scania so I was very pleased to see a reader post on the page today, showing one of the 143’s at the Shropshire truck show last month. Apparently she now resides in Mid Wales, does anyone know the owner?? This really got my brain working overtime as both myself and my truck show buddy, JC have talked over a late night beer about rolling up to the Oldtimers section of the Truckstar Festival in Asset in a pair of ACH trucks……perhaps that dream isn’t a million miles away, if only the lottery numbers would come in!


Why does it all come down to money?! All I want is show truck, Richard Branson can you lend me some cash please? As I say the trucks are both still on the road and being kept running but sadly the dream comes to very rusty and slightly wheeless hurdle when we talk about the trailers. I know where (lots of you know where) Euro 94 is sat, a tri-axle box that has been sat for a good number of years, but at least it still has wheels and a chassis. I say this as the other two trailers haven’t faired quite so well, they are now used for storage but have been lifted off their wheels and put on the floor. Hey ho, I’m sure one of you has the skill set to get the majority of the wriggly tin back on something towable. 

There can’t be many firms that are no longer around that still have a number of vehicles still around. I know all the ACH trailers got taken to France after the Norbert Dentressangle buy out as there are photos on the Facebook page. In fact a friend of mine bought a couple of the tilts, fetched them back to the UK where he cut them down to flat beds and sold them to Russia. The very same friend claims he still has the tilt cover some where, but as yet I’ve not seen it. You know who you are! 

If only the dream could come true and these five could get back together. The truck show trips would be unbelievable but it did get me wondering how many drivers I could recruit if I put them both back to work?? Who’s in? It’s 2017, who wants to join up to drive an F12 Globtrotter and a flat top 143 to Europe and back for me?

Do you know of any other ACH vehicles that are still about? Please comment below. 

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Swedefest 2017

What a show it was this year!!! On site were 240 Scania and Volvo trucks from all over the UK. That’s an amazing turnout, well done to all who organised and also those who took part. Having been involved in the show a little bit for a number of years it amazes me how the show has evolved and Michelle and Rob (and team!) deserve all the credit for getting the show to where it is. The thought that people would be coming from far and wide across the UK in Swedish trucks of all ages, to take part in a fairly exclusive small truck show is just awesome. Every model line from both manufacturers were on show, all bar a 0 series Scania I think. 240 trucks is far more than last year and walking round the show there were still some gaps so still room for more next year?! The thrill of the show for me is organiser Robs biggest head ache I’m sure. The parking. Walking along past the various model sections is just genius. I love walking past all the new V4 Volvo’s or even all the 2 Series Scania’s. I don’t know why but for me it just works, perhaps it’s my inner OCD coming out! It also helps in judging. A difficult job trust me,by no means is this show a Truckfest event or not do we ever want it to be but still, judging this year was the hardest it’s ever been and please don’t think I mean this in any other sense. It was a tough, tough choice this year and I was totally and utterly split down the middle with my category. So much so I’m going to share my judging sheet with you. I sponsor and judge the Best 3 Series Scania in the show. As a judge at Swedefest we have always been asked to judge our category based on our judgement of the best for the category title. This doesn’t have to mean the newest, the oldest, the most expensive, the cleanest or even the one with the least amount of rust or the most amount of accessories on, just the best in our opinion to suit the category. The show has never been pretentious enough to always go with the cleanest and most money spent on and testament to this was best in show a few years ago. The one and only Coopers Scania 112. It is a truck that everyone just loves for one reason and another. For me because it used to fly past my primary school and it was the stuff boys dreams were made of. The rust just added to the been there done it (at speed) feel of the truck with its similarly aged bull bar and stone guard. Hopefully when you judge in this way it breeds an air of friendliness into everything. Yes we look at those that are spotless and those that are brand new but if your fussed by a little road dirt still on a truck then perhaps a larger national brand of truck shows is more your cup of tea. Swedefest is the same as the Retroshow. It’s a unique, niche show that is for truck enthusiasts and to some extent the trophy winning is a little added bonus. It has been discussed many times about abolishing trophies altogether, again like the Retro Show. But for me I think a little trophy is a sign of appreciation for a well deserved winner. As you will see on my judging sheet, I narrowed the entries down to seven trucks that all have a star on the right. This was after an initial walk around looking at each entry and also photographing each entry. Then I usually narrow the short list down again to the final few, which I’ve put  four squares next to. Then I walk around again and just stand back and look at each of the final four trucks. What am I looking for? Exactly as asked, the best 3 series in my opinion. For me this year it was a nightmare. I love a 143 and am saving for my own. Those who know me know I love a custom truck as I used to own an airbrushed 10 tonner with metallic paint, alloy wheels and lots of lights. Then again I love and can totally appreciate a truck that is as original as it came out of the factory. This is what the decision came down too and I was torn. 100% original or 100% custom. As soon as I walked passed it, the CS Ellis 113 360 Streamline caught my eye as it took me straight back to 1995. Its as I remember seeing Streamlines when I was a teenager and this is when I fell in love with 3 series Streamlines. Also as a worthless piece of info a 113 360 Topline Streamline was the first truck I ever had a night out in at the age of 15. The other truck is The Ken Thomas 143 500 owned by John Thomas. I don’t need to say much, it’s stunning and totally a custom truck. The paint is amazing, the interiour is incredible and the metalwork is like a work art. So there’s the choice. What do you pick? For me this year 100% original won. It was clean, original and best of all is a straight out the box 3 series. This said I can honestly say I was so torn I have suggested next year I give a winner and a runner up but I know this idea won’t float with the organisers. Perhaps not a bad thing as then I’d have to award two trophies and not just one! As I’m sure you’ll agree, all in all a difficult decision to make and I’m sure it will split you all, in fact I know it will split you all. So my winner was CS Ellis and Ken Thomas 2nd but by a knats knacker, a cats whisker it’s even a fleas foot. I sincerely hope next years choice is slightly easier but please don’t go thinking original is my preference over custom. It isn’t. For me it’s the truck that fits the bill. As for the rest of the show, it was great. I am really beginning to like the “new” V4 Volvo’s and I think I have finally accepted the new Next Gen Scania if it’s painted correctly. I just hope next years show has as many or more trucks and I also hope we are still giving trophies to appreciative participants. Remember folks this is Swedefest not Truckfest. Well done Michelle and Rob, please put me down to sponsor Best 3 Series again if that’s ok. Bring on 2018!

Palms from Beach

I’m here sitting on a very sunny beach and if we had Palm tree’s on the beach we could be anywhere else but the UK. This has lead me to writing a small blog on one of my favourite company’s from the Truckstar Festival. I would say this year but without checking I’m sure I wrote about KE Palms Åkeri AB last year. The trucks from Schweden are in my all time top trumps truck list as they are timeless. They have Scandinavian style but in a retro way, they look like classic trucks from yesteryear but they are definately not from the 70’s or 80’s. The Scania 144 460 may be slightly older than the R580 Topline but both are styled to perfection. Once again I find myself loving green trucks but who cares! I’m sorry to say my photographic skills have been overcome by the excitement of seeing these trucks, therefore I have failed to get photos that show the trailers and the “less-is-more” livery. The step frame box behind the R580 once again looks like it’s come straight back from the desert but enough lights to make it look simply stunning. As for the tilt behind the 4 Series, I’m not sure I can put down the right words! The only thing that topped last year was the stunning 141 Rigid in proper classic retro Palms livery. This is 100% straight out of the 1970’s, just spot on. As clean as a whistle and restored perfectly. For me a small fleet doesn’t get better than these. I just wish that sitting here the beach, I could sit under these type of Palms, possibly the only way to make my holiday better than it already is!! 

Special Edition Trucks

What do you want in a special edition?

If you wanted one thing in a special Edition truck what would it be? Stereo system? Metallic Paint? Alloy Wheels? Top of the range engine or a choice so company bosses can still buy the most fuel efficient? Leather seats? Have a think and comment below. If someone has already answered then perhaps suggest something else. In my book of the trucks on the European market I think Volvo seem to have it about right. It seems that the Special Editions those from Gothenburg offer have minimal options to chose from. I think this is right, right? Why have a special edition if there is a load of options to choose from? Surely then it becomes a fairly normal production truck? Take the Canadian Edition Peterbilt I blogged recently, the options list on that is virtually none existent as it comes with all the bells and whistles and a special paint job. Where as looking back at the Scania Centurion, it was 100 hundred trucks that in the main started out as big power, newest cab but supposedly became a choice of which ever cab and which ever engine. Surely then your just buying a truck with a set of special badges? This little blog does have a purpose so all feedback and comments will be read and taken into account. 

For me it’s a couple of engine options as I don’t think it’s fair just to go billy big power. I think the physical truck itself needs to be all singing all dancing otherwise it’s not special. And finally any options such as paint need to be a minimal number, perhaps two or three choices maximum. I think the specification has to be set and the choices very limited. Now it’s over to you, the drivers and the owners are those who need to respond as your the ones who’ll spend the time and money on such a beast. Please get commenting!! 

Special Scania – For Sale!!

Te Koop – Zum Verkauf – Till Salu – Per la Vendita – Pour la Vente – Para la Venta!!!

This very rare, very unique, very well loved Scania R560 is now for sale, due to a new replacement. The long list of spec is as follows; 

LHD V8 560 euro5

3.1. M wheelbase 

2 pedal automatic with overdrive 

Scania Retarder

Clutch still 100%

Brakes linings

71% 72%. F

70% 67%. M

83% 84%. R

1 owner from new

6×2 twin tag all on air

Special Types 

Front Axle – 8t air. 385/65 

Middle Axle – 12.7t air heavy duty 315/70 , 

Rear Axle – 8.3t air twin wheel 315/70

Alcoa Dura bright wheels centre trims on all wheels

Heavy duty Twin chassis 29t tractor 

Gross train weight 72,000kg

Low air slider 1150mm 

Full infill + between wings 

Rear lockers (easy removed )

Fuel 710ltrs NS 

320 ltrs OS

SB side skirts 

Change over box (exhaust)

Topline cab

Full BWS body work

Computer + 2x pto prep (this is needed if tipping gear/ crane/blower is ever fitted with auto box)

Air horns

Night cooling (not water) 

Twin sets of beacons

Head bored

Deep sun visor 4 spots

Running lights

Fogs 

Rear work lights x4

NATO + split charge 

Engine heater (plug in)

Fuel heater

Rear batteries (new )Cab scania black/grey 

lockers both sides

Both side lux seats

Full leather lux pack including large dash display 

Piano Blackwood/ leather steering wheel

Large bed 

Top bed 

Water night heater 

Microwave 

Fridge/freezer 

Coffee maker 

TV + sat

2din radio

CB

German toll

Side pockets rear (scania)

4 sets of keys 

Full scania service from new 

1 driver apart from 3 rescues bk to yard 😂

Registered Nov 2011

557,000 km

If you serious about this vehicle it comes with a big price tag but is one of a kind! Needs a new home soon but happy to wait for the asking price. Please email me; ben@truckblog.co.uk and title your email “Tasker Scania”

I Love Dutch Trucks! 


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if I have my time again Lord please let me be Dutch. Not just the home of the best curry sauce in Europe, not just home to the tallest men in Europe, not just home to Europe’s only native wooden shoe and not just home to the most beautiful blonde  people in Europe (Sorry Sweden!), but home to what I consider to be the best looking trucks in Europe and possibly the world. The vast majority of Dutch trucks are painted and by this I don’t mean over the top or hideous colours. Very few trucks are sold in the manufactures standard white and plastic, but on the opposite side of the scale when have you ever seen a fleet of over top painted trucks?? Never. They all seem to be painted to just the right level, subtle, stylish, simple and generally stunning! Just look at the ever delightful Chickliner fleet…..


Living near to Harwich I see plenty of Dutch trucks, but even with all the gorgeous flower trucks that come in and out of the port with all of our Friday gifts for our partners(!), the fleet of Chickliner trucks stands out. White trucks yes, but full white paint with simple lines and painted wheels. As far from a plain white truck as a painted white truck can be! Match these gorgeous paint jobs to another Dutch invention, the full custom interior. The Netherlands is home to 3 or 4 custom cab interior companies but one of the original and best known is the one and only Special Interiour. The Hazelanger Scania is another of Special Interiours creations and sumptuous is probably the best English word to describe it, not sure on the Dutch translation though. I’ve not seen another custom Interiour company who make their work look so, hmm, look so right. The work carried out looks like a manufacturer finish rather than aftermarket if that makes sense. 


Yes I like Italian trucks and yes I like Spanish trucks, Danish trucks can be pretty close but for me Dutch are top of the league. Long live the Hoek Harwich ferry and long live the Truckstar Festival!! 

SCOOP!! Scania S730 in Stock

In stock here in the U.K., ready for delivery and registration. Spec as follows; 

  • Scania S730 High Cab
  • 2 x 6×2 and 1 x 4×2
  • Left Hand Drive
  • 2 peddle opticruise
  • V8 leather package
  • Premium radio with sat nav
  • Fridge
  • Led spotlights in roof and grill
  • 9ton front axles on air
  • All the toys you could want!

Need I go on?! Get yourself something nice with your Christmas money, surely Nannie gave you some vouchers??? Get yourself onto www.moodyinternational.co.uk and get yourself a happy new year. Love them or hate them, there aren’t many stock units in the U.K.  so I can’t imagine they will be around for long. First come first served give Mr Moody a call……