Q1. What motivated to you continue partnering with NTI’s resto project for MND?
A1. NTI and the Royan Group have a strong history of working together, through our NTI Premium Repairer relationship. It makes sense to use our combined resources for a greater good.
It’s an opportunity to give back to the community while also giving us a chance to demonstrate our expertise and give a nod to the great people we have working here at Royans.
Our trades people are committed and love what they do – so it gives them a platform for showcasing their craft too.
Q2. What was the biggest learning from NTI’s previous Jailbar restoration that you’re now applying to this one?
A2.The biggest learning was how to marry new vehicle technology to older vehicles.
Having previous NTI resto projects under our belt – we also know what the final outcome needs to be and we have a clear benchmark.
It’s also given us the opportunity to get up to scratch with government engineering rules and regulations. You’re opening a can of worms when starting from nothing, restoring or modifying a heritage vehicle. Safety is the priority.
Q3. You’re on your third resto project with NTI now – having successfully completed the first charity resto truck, and NTI’s promo resto truck.
Does each project present its own unique challenges, or have you found consistencies across the three trucks?
A3. There are a few basic consistencies. However, each project has been very different from engine size, running components, body construction, size and the basic style.
The first project was one of a kind – as close to original spec as possible; whereas projects 2 & 3 are modifications.
There’s similar technology in project 2 & 3 using turbo charged intercooled diesel engines and electronic components such as ABS and electronic stability control, air conditioning etc.
The main difference between projects 2 & 3 is the transmission - #2 was manual, # 3 is automatic. It makes it a little easier for whoever wins the truck, and it’s nice for us to be able to change it up a bit too.
Q4. And finally, when it all comes down to it: do you prefer working to original spec or taking a bit of creative license in a custom, more modern build?
A4. The original #1 project (the K5 International) was basically a restoration using original components. It was fun – but projects like truck #3 really showcase our trades people. Projects of this nature really get people thinking and exploring solutions to the many challenges that come with it.
This project is anything but boring. Perhaps in comparison, the K5 International project wasn’t a huge challenge for the team because most of the original components were re-used.
This time around, fewer original components are being use (although the original cabin was re-paneled and reused). Even the replica chassis was fabricated by us here at Royans. There’s a lot of pride and ownership in this project; it really brings people together.