Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

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Bluebird's original Bloctube HP Fuel control box; what to do?

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by rob565uk » Mon Nov 16, 2009 1:50 pm

bluebirdsback wrote: It has always been the object of the project to use every piece possible to make her original. if we dont put that piece back as best we can then where do you stop? I can understand respect for Donald but if we didn't change things he did that day we would not have a rebuild. So from the man who took it off my, vote is it goes back on.
Nicely put, Rob - I agree fully

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by markgengine » Mon Nov 16, 2009 8:41 pm

Ok, I retract what I said about making a new one, lets get the real memorial to our hero up and running.
I vote for rebuild/repair the original, and will leave obvious puns etc about the Donalds c**k being put back into service to others !
Mark G.

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by sal the diver » Mon Nov 16, 2009 11:55 pm

i am 50/50 on this, this was one of the most memorable pieces i'd recovered on a dive and i obviously want the right thing done.

because it was put in that position by donald for his attempt i do feel it should be left and a replacement made.
it would make an interesting museum piece, photos of it on display wont do it justice.

however, if gina and the team want to use as much as possible of the orginal material then i will go with that decision.

sorry being vague as always
who me???

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by Terminator » Tue Nov 17, 2009 1:35 am

Some really good cases put forward. However I've still got the Jury out on this one personally !
Going to sleep on this I'm afraid and see if I get some divine inspiration on the matter! :D
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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by sheppane » Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:27 am

Put it back where it belongs in working order to be used again.

DMC was never too sentimental about any of his Boats or Cars... They were a means to an end to be used as he saw fit, for a purpose.
Remember the K4 hull, left at Coniston on the slip for 9+months after the crash, eventually taken away to Coley's and then burnt many years later. Not too much romance there, although I'm sure it hurt to see his fathers boat end up like that.
K7 was continually modified throughout her life, with no thought to preserving her heritage - again, a means to an end. Remember K7 in 66/7 was in many respects a new boat... just as his fathers 35 car was derived from all those that had gone before, right back to 1927... destroying history in the process of each rebuild.

DMC was nothing if not practical. He would see the answer to this question as a practical problem... with a practical solution...

'When you go down into the arena, you know that sometimes, you're likely to get your nose punched. You do it with your eyes open. You take the risks'

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by Terminator » Tue Nov 17, 2009 11:01 pm

Hi Bill I have an Email that Paul has asked me to copy and paste on the forum regarding his thoughts on whether to Conserve or rebuild? I will also cast his vote as requested if that is OK with yourself? Although Paul and I have had lengthy debate these past two evenings I take my hat of to him for sticking to his original " Gut Feeling" in the workshop when you first presented the dilemma to us all present.

Posting below posted on behalf of Mr. Paul "Scoop" Hannaford otherwise known as Mr. Red Socks :D

"As I am not on the Forum (shame on me!) I cannot directly add my vote on the
straw poll on whether to conserve or rebuild the Bloctube HPC. Bill asked me
directly the same question on one of my rare forays into the workshop on the 7th
November, so I have asked Novie if he could add my vote and convey my opinion on
the Forum?

Already posted are good and reasoned arguments on both sides but my gut feel
when Bill asked me the question in the workshop was that this particular
component should be conserved in the position that Donald left it in on 4th
January 1967.

Of all the things that happened that morning, this was the one action that he
intended and that we can still measure. All the other material Bill has in his
workshop were in their respective conditions as a result of a series of events
out of The Donald's control. Every twisted piece of metal was not of his doing.
Putting the HP Cock in that position was.

Bill does not have the dashboard, but if he did, all the readings on those dials
would just have been recording the performance of the craft. The only dials that
were recovered were the small dials on the starboard flank at the base of the
engine cover, but again these were just readings of the operation of the craft
and/or levels of compressed air/lubricants etc. They just reflected what Donald
was doing in the cockpit, just as the timekeepers watches were just a means of
measuring the speed he was going. He didn't physically put those dials in that

Bill has the throttle pedal but it is not in the position that Donald left it
and we know the water brake was in the down position, but we don't know if that
was put there by Donald or whether it got there as a result of the impact. All
the pumps can be made to work again, the fuel system rebuilt, the steering
linkages straightened and made operational again. The HPC is the one remaining
piece of what made the boat move that has direct evidence of his actions and
decision making on 4th January. Donald put the HPC in that position that morning
and I think that leaving it as it is would be a powerful and poignant reminder
of one of the great man's final actions.

Whilst I fully and wholeheartedly support the full rebuild of the craft to
working order and incorporating every possible reusable component into the
rebuilt craft, I feel that a concession should be made in this instance of the
one tangible component that can be directly attributed to the final actions of
Donald Malcolm Campbell CBE, on 4th January 1967.

Therefore, I would like to add my vote to conserve the Bloctube HPC.

Regards to all

Paul Hannaford
The Bluebird Project"

Posted by Novie on Paul's behalf.

"I'll Be Back"
"Never ride faster than your Angel can fly"

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by Mike Bull » Tue Nov 17, 2009 11:15 pm

Two things come to mind there- 1, that's the first argument in favour of conservation that I have no real reply to, and 2, why on Earth isn't our 'Mr Lover Lover' a member here himself?

I remain pro-rebuild though, and I think that the BBP long ago made the rule for itself by which it must now still stand- to prove wrong the idiot who talked about 'loss of original fabric'.

To paraphrase a certain strop-related situation from the BBC documentary on the lifting of the boat, 'It's making LOOF for no good reason'.

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by bluebirdsback » Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:22 am

Got to agree with you Mike, Although i can see the point of the sentimentalists in all this, we did set out to get every original part back to the way before the boat set out in 67.not after the set off. After deciding not to resign the floors to the loof bin and succesfuly restoring them we are now looking at other panels to save which is not now beyond our remit. We have proved the H.L.F wrong beyond belief on the loss of original fabric so it would be wrong not to use original parts we know fine well will work with a couple of hours fettling. We could even replicate the exact bloctube lever in its position to put alongside the photographic evidence of where Donald pushed it that day. Put the original back on the boat and a fabricated copy in the glass case. After all most museums are stuffed with mock ups anyway.
The moment you make something idiot proof a new breed of idiots will come along and prove you wrong

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by Terminator » Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:30 am

Thanks for the previous posting Paul I value your opinion old boy :) . However my own personal Opinion on the matter is to Rebuild the original and make it fully operational as it once was on the morning of the 4th January 1967. This is a rare occasion indeed that Paul and I have been split over the decision to move the lever in question. Why rebuild and not conserve it? The aims of the project have always been to rebuild K7 using as much original fabric as possible. If we do not use the original H.P.C we go against the ethics we have adopted from day one! "Reality Dictates" that the H.P.C is a fully serviceable component and can operate once again as it was intend. To go against these ethics are we not all be it to a small degree giving ground's to the H.L.F by losing a very important serviceable part of K7's original fabric? And for what? to display it in some dusty cabinet! I have to agree most strongly with Neils, Malcolm 's,Mike ,and Robs observations in their relative postings. This is not intended to discount anybody else s thoughts its just I've known and respected these people for years.We almost have a "complete original system" as Mike stated so why spend loads of time making a totally new none original H.P.C? Donald was certainly practical as Neil also states. Can we be 100% sure without question that the Lever was still in the position Donald Malcolm Campbell C.B.E had placed it in? And could it not have been as a direct result of the crash and the G's pulled? Not to mention the impact of hitting the water very hard indeed could it have been this that placed the lever in it's final position?? Most Certainly Gina's thoughts on the matter should also be known Bill I think personally speaking. The lever should once again be doing the job for which it was intended and will once again every now and then return to the position Donald allegedly placed it?

So rebuild it is my decision.

Come on Sally no sitting on the fence allowed go cast your vote Girl. :D
"Never ride faster than your Angel can fly"

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Re: Opinion Poll- Rebuild or Conserve?

Post by Renegadenemo » Wed Nov 18, 2009 1:02 am

Fascinating stuff, I feel it's important to point out that this is not about proving the HLF wrong - they did that to themselves many years ago. This is our project - and by that I mean everyone who ever takes an interest - not theirs. They can go perform rude acts on a rolling pastry these days, so far as I'm concerned. Keep the feedback coming, the more we have the better equipped we'll be to make the final call.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

'Sometimes you gotta be an S.O.B if you wanna make a dream reality' Mark Knopfler

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