Longer-serving readers might recall I met Tim Allen, Managing Director of M J Allen Castings and Machining Ltd, at the Kent Manufacturing Expo last October. We had a meeting shortly after to see if they could help us with parts for the bike, but at the time we agreed there was nothing needed at that time that matched their capabilities, but I promised to keep in touch.
Well, during recent design reviews on the gearbox it occurred to me that M J Allen, based in Ashford in Kent, were an ideal partner to manufacture the gearbox cases as they currently manufacture - from the castings through to finish-machining - the gearbox and differentials for the "County" 4-wheel drive Ford Transit. I remember these vehicles from when I was in the All Wheel Drive Club many years ago. At that time they were after-market conversions but it's now a factory option which is fitted on the Ford production line.
M J Allen clearly have the capability and quality to be supplying direct to a major OEM, so I contacted Tim to see if they could help with our one-off gearbox. We haven't finalised the deal yet, because the drawings are still being prepared, but I'm pleased to say that, subject to seeing them, Tim has offered us help with this very important component.
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