As many J van owners will know, a couple of pictures of YLH 799 have been about on the web for many years. The owner at the time who did the splendid conversion has recently published on his flickr site a full set of pictures of "the van".
I have copied his captions and these are shown in red type.
These were basically single seat delivery vans that were widely used by the GPO and other utility services. The front and rear wings of the GPO models were made of rubber, and the 'dent' on the N/S front wing would just 'boing' back into
This old van was fairly unique in 4x4 guise, and it performed well enough off-road.
This ex GPO van was mine back in the 1970's. For an experiment I decided to convert it to four wheel drive.
The 4x4 experiment resulted in one wierd looking van ! I added the Turner winch to complete the conversion.
Both BMC marques, Austin and Morris, produced these J series vans. Fundamentally they both looked the same but mechanically the Morris had a side valve engine and the Austin an OHV 'B' series engine.
I sold it to a landscape gardener named Simon who used it for his work. I was living in Birmingham at the time and he was located in London. A mutual acquaintance tells me that when he sold it he regretted it and in fact tried to buy it back. I lost his contact details so hopefully someone will see it and give him a nudge.
Mostly Austin Gipsy stuff used in the conversion, the ratio's matched which meant less faffing about and I had the parts around the place.
When I was running this one my mate had the Morris version, great vans and great fun.
I used an Austin Gipsy front axle, ideal because the 5.125 diff matched the vans own rear axle. I just had to fit some spacers between spring and rear axle to make up the difference in height. I originally used a single speed Dodge WC52 transfer case mounted independantly, this allowed me to retain the vans original 1600 cc engine and gearbox. It soon became obvious that it needed more 'grunt' so I later replaced the lot with a Gipsy engine, gearbox with integral 2 spd transfer case. Thanks for your interest.
Check out his set of pictures here http://www.flickr.com/photos/66663687@N04/8619131060/in/photostream/
Can you add any information about this van, does it still exist?