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Styled in Italy, built in Britain - The story of the blue Ital Van


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#91 OFFLINE   busmansholiday

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 08:17 PM

Purchasing that has brought some memories Trigger.

Back in the early 80's, the Scunthorpe Division of the then nationalised British Steel Corporation (BSC aka Billy Smart's Circus), leased a shed load of these, and a few Metrovans, from the local BL dealer, Kennings, all in that shade of blue. I recall the departmental manager asking me to take our current van, an old Vauxhall Viva HA down to the works garage and collect our new van. It was, bigger, more comfy but not as much fun going sideways around the gravel roads in the quarry as the Viva, but was otherwise OK.

Being a small department ours was reasonably well looked after, we'd actually wash it regularly, preferably with the garages' high pressure cleaner. This not only got most of the shite off under the wheel arches but also removed all the BSC badges as well. This made the chip shop run less hazardous! What it didn't do was remove the shite that got behind the rear bumper which eventually rotted and fell off.

It wasn't that far into the lease that the bean counters started having squeaky bums. There were more and more bills coming in from Kennings for work required outside the warrenty and T&C of the contract. On one occassion I was driving the van when the drivers door window fell out of it's runner whilst trying to open it.
Arriving at Kennings I was greeted with a "what have you done to this one?" followed with a "at least this doesn't need the inside steam cleaning before the fitters will touch it". They were returned as soon as the contract ended, how many found new homes I don't know, but a fair few 3 year old ones received a one way ticket to the moon, not necessarily because they were shite, more due to the couldn't care a fuck attitude of some of our employees.

Look forward to seeing it in all it's glory, but without BSC's copulating caterpillars logo.
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#92 OFFLINE   quicksilver

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 09:15 AM

Or even better the 2.0 as briefly offered in the Ital.

I think the vans were only offered with 1.1 and 1.3 A series.

There is this 1.7 pickup about, rebuilt from a wrecked saloon with quite an interesting backstory that featured in the aforementioned mag.

35303423860_29bf9fa646_c.jpg

1978 Morris Marina 1.7 HL pickup by Adam Floyd, on Flickr

 

And a couple of pickups still working for a living. This one has spent its whole life on a potato farm and took first prize at last year's FOTU.

28232962770_f750f75fc4_c.jpg

1981 Morris Marina 575 pickup by Adam Floyd, on Flickr

 

This one appeared at the FOTU this year covered in brick dust

36107100061_7fc6a34b62_c.jpg

1983 Morris Ital 575 pickup by Adam Floyd, on Flickr


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Always look on the Shite side of life

 

1999 Vauxhall Zafira - shit or shite?

1978 Austin Maxi - proper shite or proper classic?

1972 Renault 6 - genuine garage find

 

Rusty Old Rubbish - a shite blog about shite and stuff


#93 OFFLINE   The Reverend Bluejeans

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 03:06 PM

Marina vans were excellent; what was a very average car became a great Estate car as well.

 

Approval rating 9.69/10.


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#94 OFFLINE   eddyramrod

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 04:24 PM

Ray Doyle memorably used a Marina version, in Teal, in one episode of The Professionals...

prof21122tw4.4248.jpg


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#95 OFFLINE   AngusToledo

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 07:28 PM

Back in the late 80's, a friends mum parked up her old LWB Landie as it was pretty much ruined. She replaced it with a scruffy white Marina van which she christened 'Hetty'. Even then, I don't rememeber them being a common sight on the roads?

Them yellow cubes from out of a proper old-school urinal are easy to sneak in and a better buzz than any modern chemical shit. Never done me any harm.


#96 OFFLINE   DodgeRover

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 11:12 PM

Pickups were massively popular upto about 1983 as new shells weren't a lot of money, then simply add one rotten or crashed Marina and register as a new vehicle.
Father DR had one built from an 1800TC that was deadly in the wet with no load in the back.
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#97 OFFLINE   dollywobbler

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 08:21 AM

I love the "Styled in Italy" claim.

Yeah, the first 6 inches of car maybe.

 

Not even that. Ital Design's only input was to take Harris Mann's facelift idea and ready it for production. That's why it has a 'corporate' nose, like the Ambassador. Why Ital Design didn't sue, I've no idea. BL just went along with the myth that the car now had Italian styling!


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#98 OFFLINE   NorfolkNWeigh

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 08:58 AM

Seeing that Proffesionals van with slotted wheels, reminded me that 7cwt vans had saloon type wheels but the bigger payload (9cwt ?) and pickups always had solid , slightly wider or at least different offset rims.
Somewhere in the dusty recesses of my brain, I think there's more to it than just wheel design, different axles maybe?
Possibly the reason you see more pickups/vans with alloys or MGB rims than saloons.

Also a mate was given a brand new Ital van as an apprentice sparky for EMEB, we never* towed a 3.0 Capri at up to 80mph from Oswestry to Milton Keynes with wallpaper masking taped over the sign writing .
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#99 OFFLINE   richardthestag

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 09:31 AM

Early 80s the builder / la la labourer over the road from my folks house used an utterly ruined Marina van, started it with a lolly stick, drove it like he stole it. It lasted longer than most of his other chod


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#100 OFFLINE   trigger

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 09:36 AM

I'm told these share the same rear axle as a MGB, lower ratio so it can tow the heavier weight meaning quicker acceleration but rubbish top end.

I quite like a cool set of wheels for it seeing as all the tyres are shagged but to keep costs down I'm tempted to just get a set of part worns fitted instead.

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#101 OFFLINE   NorfolkNWeigh

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 09:47 AM

A bit of googling reveals that the 10cwt , ie solid wheels does indeed have an MGB axle. Which means it has a different PCD , 4.5" instead of 3.75" of 7cwt and all saloons, coupes,estates.

This must be true, the info came from MrBollox on an old Blue Forum thread.
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#102 OFFLINE   tooSavvy

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 09:49 AM

^^ PW FTW M8

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Wallsend?.....it's not the End of the Walled ;<)

35942490325_3f0da8b633_m.jpgSUCKS


#103 OFFLINE   adw1977

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 09:57 AM

Hopefully this scan from a 1979 brochure will answer the wheel/axle questions:

 

Morris Vans and Pickup brochure Feb 79 11.jpg

 

https://www.flickr.c...57666494648746/


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#104 OFFLINE   Hooli

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 12:55 PM

I'm told these share the same rear axle as a MGB, lower ratio so it can tow the heavier weight meaning quicker acceleration but rubbish top end.

I quite like a cool set of wheels for it seeing as all the tyres are shagged but to keep costs down I'm tempted to just get a set of part worns fitted instead.

 

Wire wheels it is then!


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#105 OFFLINE   0ldCh0d

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 01:56 PM

Royal Mail it.....

 

14265459430_f0b8a74b02.jpg


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#106 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 02:55 PM

I'm told these share the same rear axle as a MGB, lower ratio so it can tow the heavier weight meaning quicker acceleration but rubbish top end.

I quite like a cool set of wheels for it seeing as all the tyres are shagged but to keep costs down I'm tempted to just get a set of part worns fitted instead.

 

Ebay Gumtree MongSwapz is full of wheel/tyre combos of ROstyles and stuff

Rather than shod those old rims, buy a good set of the lot

 

 

 

Otherwise, knock-on wires will need knocked-off hubs, as they are quite expensive


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#107 OFFLINE   trigger

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:04 PM

I've been offered a set of MGB Rostyles with good tyres and chrome trims for £100 but I don't think they will suit it.

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#108 OFFLINE   shumarialto

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:07 PM

Original wheels for me. If i win the lottery i will buy this if and when you sell.


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#109 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:15 PM

I've been offered a set of MGB Rostyles with good tyres and chrome trims for £100 but I don't think they will suit it.

 

Nor do I, what with the side exit exhaust, twin-carb trumpets standing tall through the bonnet, and ZZ-Top style graphics.


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#110 OFFLINE   Capree

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:22 PM

Have no pics but a mate of my dad's was a Hotpoint service engineer fixing washing machines, fridge-freezers, etc. Around 1980/81 he was allocated an Ital van in the new early-80s Hotpoint-livery chocolate-brown and beige!

I've had a quick look on t'net for period Hotpoint van livery pics and not found any yet. His Ital van was later replaced with a Mk1 Astra estate-based van in the same colours. They maybe had Transits in the same livery in other areas at that time, don't know. Transit links are maybe a possible source for livery pics.
I remember it was generally a period of downsizing and the Ital had replaced a very early Mk2 Transit 2.0 which was in the previous livery of blue/white. He had been regularly allocated spacious new Transits since 1970. Understandably, the compact 1275 Ital van was not well received, under the circumstances!
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#111 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:26 PM

AS Colours

 

e8fca8d4cb785ddeceb5f541555dd85b.jpg


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#112 OFFLINE   Capree

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 03:31 PM

I like that 'vanne. Check out the sales display in that travel-shop window.

I could be wrong but I think Hotpoint-brown was a darker brown for their vans. That sort of early 80s plasticky dark brown still seen today on some vintage fucked cooker-hoods and double-glazing surrounds. I think maybe Hoover later took over the colour franchise.
To top it off, our mate I mentioned above is actually called J. Brown, a long retired top bloke, former Mk1 Capri and met-green Renner 30 owner back when they were new-ish, and we still go to watch home-match football games.
Fuck, sounds like something out of Viz but it's real.
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#113 OFFLINE   kinkersaab

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 04:06 PM

I have already commented on this thread. but i feel i need to again.  I LOVE this van.  I will be eagerly awaiting updates and a for sale thread.  :)


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My car cost less than your one loses every month..... Who's the knob?

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#114 OFFLINE   tooSavvy

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 04:19 PM

Fuck, sounds like Viz is real.


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Wallsend?.....it's not the End of the Walled ;<)

35942490325_3f0da8b633_m.jpgSUCKS


#115 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 04:27 PM

Around 1980/81 he was allocated an Ital van in the new early-80s Hotpoint-livery chocolate-brown and beige!
I've had a quick look on t'net for period Hotpoint van livery pics and not found any yet.

 
168.jpg
 
s-l1600_1.jpg

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#116 OFFLINE   greengartside

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 04:39 PM

 

That van used to deliver my post back in the 1980's! It was 'stationed' at my local P.O.


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#117 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 04:45 PM

If you did paint it red (or black even), Trig, then ideal* opportunity to fit that set of Rover BRM leather rent boy seats you've always wanted.

 

ebay379831.jpg

 

Well, ok.  What I've always wanted.


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#118 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 05:30 PM

I've been offered a set of MGB Rostyles with good tyres and chrome trims for £100 but I don't think they will suit it.

 

050316-Barn-Finds-1982-Morris-Marina-2-6

 

Yes, too Seventies - needs a proper Marina. 

 

Ital does not have the extra brightwork to carry it off.  Ital is all SinclairResearch-esque black plastics


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#119 OFFLINE   Zantimisfit

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 06:44 PM

https://barnfinds.com/wp-content/uploads...

 

Yes, too Seventies - needs a proper Marina. 

 

Ital does not have the extra brightwork to carry it off.  Ital is all SinclairResearch-esque black plastics

 

We're trying to find somewhere to rent in UK over Xmas - this would do for me!


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#120 OFFLINE   flat4alfa

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Posted 16 November 2017 - 07:49 PM

Found one of your yearning postings from 7 years ago

 

http://autoshite.com...a-van/?p=128728

 

Destiny.

 

 

I reckon Superlites would be more fitting on an Ital.  Because Eighties cusp.

 

morris-marina-van-06_1.jpg


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