LATEST NEWS

 

HY all,
With registers day just around the corner lets hope for a good turnout. I'm hoping our van will be ready, we've decided to repaint it, a darker shade of grey. I'll keep you posted.
 I've had one registration this month and some interesting pictures from Jeff Winterman. Also some updated pictures from Peter Mitchell.
 
The registration is from Martin Thomas who has a 1973 Hy 1.9 petrol engine blue and white van, its past history is that it used to be a French Outdoor Broadcast Vehicle. Martin says "This is my HY in its current state. I've old pictures of it before I owned it and before the restoration started but I thought I'd share a true representation of it. It's been like this for about 6 months now."
I think your making a great job of restoring the van Martin, its not easy and it takes up a lot of your time. I'm sure we'll see another great van back on the road soon.
Jeff Winterman got in touch and said :- " Hi Martyn, I was going through my photos and thought this one might be interesting for the magazine. My 4x4 couldn't get the van out". The picture was take East of Genoble. "Yes a Beautifull area. Not a good idea for me to collect a van in December. The harvester driver was drinking in the bar at 10 am before pulling the van out. I'm more careful now with collections".
Jeffs also nearly finished a restoration of an ex fire engine, I must admit he's got some shine on that paint work. Great looking van.
 
Peter Michell emailed saying:-"Hello Martyn,Van has been out and about and here are a few recent photos. As I lost my garage I have had to resort to parking it in a 'warehouse'amongst the local Porsches and a DeLorian but they do have a 4 tonne lift which is useful. I even have my own potted palm beside it and they have provided a ripple garage door to match! One picture shows the wooden floor which is enclosed in a metal frame and comes out in one if necessary. I inspected the van on the lift today and was very pleased to see that underneath it is completely solid - a few 50 year old dents but no rust or dodgy bits".
Continuing with the changes of the H Van thoughout the years to celebrate the 70th anniversary we are now up to 1952. In January there are changes to the rear glass, new 4mm thick vertical rear windows with rounded ends. New brakes, front and rear, with split drums, wings, and wheels with cooling openings. In March the height of the cylinder head is reduced from 85.5mm to 82mm. In June the cylinder head is fixed by studs instead of screws.

Well thats all for now folks and hope to see you in Princethorpe. Keep sending your articles in. Tube it don't lose it.

8th May 2017

 

 

 

Hy all,
I've had a couple of new registrations. The first is from Neil Tucker the details are as follows;1977 Hy Petrol 1900cc ex La Poste(PTT) telecoms van which I have redone its paint and blue bird logo. Seems it spent its life around Draguignan near the Cote de Zur,I have its bill of sale from the post office in Toulon to its next owner in Vidauban.I,ve owned it since May 2015 as for the French number its a departmental  one used on goverment vehicles but not all ?  if you google French PTT vans most will have a number followed by a D  DA  DB  DC  DE  etc depending on there age so I found out.   The orginal hand painted ones are still under the plastic UK ones which I take off at classic car shows    regards Neil

A lovely looking van and unusual to see one in the postal colours. The second registration is from Daras Rich who says :-

Hi Martyn.

 

I have just bought a 1965 LWB HY72. Although it’s been in the UK since the early 1990s, it’s still on French plates: 355MV54. I bought it from (Ex 2CVGB Chairman) John Blakely but I’m not sure whether or not it’s on the register. I’ve got it mot’d and will be getting it UK registered shortly.

 I have no history from its time in France but it seems to be an ex fire department ambulance. From looking at similar spec vans on the internet, I believe it’s probably a Filca France conversion, (judging by the half-frosted windows, type of rear doors, etc). I’ve attached some photos of my van.

 

Many thanks Daras, I will be doing an article later on in the year about Filca France conversions.

 

Simon Saint dropped me a line saying :- I thought it was about time that I made contact. You might have read snippets about Henry the H over the last two years but, to my shame, in all that time he has not been on the road. However I have been doing a bit of necessary body repair prior to taking him for an MOT and that has involved crawling around underneath. This activity reminded me of something that I already knew, that the many 50mm diameter 'access' holes in the box section chassis have mostly lost their blanking plugs. At least I assume that they are meant to have blanking plugs because a few still do. I have been checking some suppliers' parts lists on line and have made a couple of phone calls but so far I have drawn a blank. So my first question is whether you know of any supplier of these parts. It seems to me that it would be a good idea to close up these holes to stop the road rubbish and moisture getting in.

It would be a great idea to blank up the holes, as chassis box section can be very hard to come by and repair. Hopefully Citroworld has helped you out and it would be great to see it back on the road.

 

Continuing with the H Van changes through out the years we are at 1951, in Jan. A new flexible oil gauge with a rubber seal peplaces the rigid gauge. Feb. The steering wheel is made of molded plastic instead of ebonite. June the gearbox receives a positive locking of 2nd and 3rd gear controlled by the clutch pedal. Sept. A new type of lock system on the rear lower doors is intruduced. The starter motor changes the brushes from a postive to a negative. In Nov. a bodybuilder ironicaly called The Bastard changed a fleet Modalux Cafe H Vans with an enlarged grille an enveloping bumper and headlights that look like something from a science fiction movie.

 

Well thats all for now folks, keep sending stuff in.

Tube it don't lose it.

April 3rd 2017

HY all,
Spring is on its way, the blue tits are looking interested in the bird box, the daffs are out and the sound of H Vans turning over trying to start after being dormant for months. Looking ahead the thought of taking your van to meetings drives you on to get your van ready for the road. Talking of meetings I've had a email from Hans Sütterlin asking about meetings in the uk and if anyone is interested in going abroad for meetings. He told me a little bit about his exploits he says :-  I had a look on your pages and I was impressed that quite a lot of H vans are registered in UK.
I wonder whether you have H meetings like we have in Switzerland with our H van interest group ("IG HY"). 
I will send a copy of the list of our meetings to you, as soon as it is finalised. We had our annual discussion about when and where recently.  
It starts off with Easter weekend near Colmar, Alsace, and ends the last September weekend in Ticino, where it is still warm at that time.

My own van is not a HY, it is a HIN because of the Diesel engine. It is the yellow CW-HY 52 on the picture of the meeting near Berne on the long Ascension weekend.
I had 2CVs for 35 years, but in the moment I only own the HY. I am looking for a 2CV, but haven't found one. Of course there are offers, but either they are very well, then they are quite expensive, or they are in bad condition, then they have to be cheap (and quite often they aren't even then). 
But anyway we are also interested in the 2CV meetings (as I was already 1975 at the first world meeting in Pistohiekka, Finland). As I saw, there are dates already on the german CCRR pages, but I don't know whether it is the complete schedule.
So we have on Easter two meetings to visit, "Ostertreffen" of 2CV-Club Karlsruhe and the Easter meeting of out HY group, which is possible to do in a two days/tweo days split because there are not very far from each other.
I will send our timetable of meetings as soon as I have the final version!
Attached to this mail you'll find an invitation to the 44th meeting of the 2CV club which I founded with a few other people in 1972.  
HY forever, Hans
Thanks for that Hans its great to know that fellow H Vanners are reading the website and are finding it interesting.
Carrying on with the changes to the H Van through the years we are now at 1950 and in Feburary that year the front steps changed with a bevelled edge and a plain top, In May the torsion bar was extented on the H and the HZ from 658mm to 672 and made thicker. The clock on the dashboard was removed. In September the water pump receives a grease nipple and in December the sliding door is modified with a lock system that can be dismantled. The jack changed to a single lift instead of the original double lift.
Well thats all for now and keep sending your articles in.
Tube it don't lose it.
 
8th March 2017
 
Hy all,

I've had an email from John Sobey who says :-

The H Van and Friends Camp, Tudor Caravan Park, Slimbridge, Glos. GL2 7BP. 5-7th May 2017.  It is near the Wildfowl Trust so just follow the brown duck signs thoughtfully put up already. If you get to the ducks you have just passed it! £15 p.unit p. night. No need to book, but please let me know as we are in the Rally field
Lets hope for a good turnout.

This month I've had email's about water pumps, It seems the cold spell we had in January has took its toll on the cooling system. I've helped out Rui Principe who was struggling to find a water pump for his Indenor Diesel engine. see pic. I've pointed him to Citroworld who I hope has sorted him out.
Also Mark Fairbanks ask about his water pump and also how to adjust tappets for his Indenor diesel engine. Mark seems happy with the information I gave him.

As this year is the 70th anniversary of the H Van each month I'm mentioning the changes of the H thoughout the years. Last month we started with 1947. The launch of the H.  with its flat foot steps its chrome insert around the front windscreen rubber. Also the Citroen logo in the middle of the front bumper. In 1948 1st June The type H goes into marketing. In October subtle changes to the diff. having 4 planet gears instead of 2, lengthening the clutch pedal from 50mm to 100mm travel. The starter motor changed from cast iron to aluminium. Also the removal of the Citroen logo on the front bumper. (shame)
Birth of the HZ its trade name is Pick-up 850kg its technical characteristics are identical to those of the H except for the useful load reduced to 850.

On a lighter note, if you are thinking of starting a coffee business and can't afford a H then you could always give Big Kahuna Huts a call and get a Citroen H Cart.

 
Well thats all for this month enjoy the pictures and please keep sending stuff in.

Tube it don't lose it.

Martyn

5th Feb 2017

 

 

 

HappY
new year,

As you are all aware this year is the 70th anniversary of the H Van, so each month I'll be adding a piece about the changes of the H Van thoughout the years. So we'll start at the beginning. In June 1947 the H Van was launched, CEO Pierre Boulanger drafts the specifications: a unibody, front-wheel drive adopting lots of features from the four-cylinder Traction Avant with strong rear suspension. The main aim is to carry over as many parts as possible from the existing brand model. The picture shows the launch of the Citroen H.

Distinctive features of the early H are, flat foot steps, chrome insert around the windscreen rubber also the front bumper had the Citroen logo on it.

Our latest registration is from Roger Hoskins who says :-

I purchased this vehicle in 2008 in a very rough state, mechanically and body wise.
Worked on getting mechanics done first for MOT,  then did the body work repairs and sprayed.
MOT and British plates put on in January 2009. Also had a new tonneau cover made.
She has been exhibited in a couple of steam shows in Reading most years, and a couple of shows on the Isle of Wight.
 
Thanks for that Roger, keep sending in your articles. If you're having difficulty logging in to the website drop me a line and I'll sort it out.
Tube it don't lose it.
Martyn
 
2nd Jan 2017
 

 

Hy All

The website is up and running and I've received a great response, it still needs to attract people to use it and get involved in the Forum, time will tell. Our latest

addition to the register is from Paul Walters who wrote :-

I have for many years had a passion to own an H Van after visiting France on family holidays,  where I spotted these vans in various guises either as utility, camper or street food vehicles.  I bought my 1954 HZ van " Eric" in June 2013 as a restoration project for a camper van, after the van had been brought into the UK. The van was first registered in dept 49 - Pays de Loire in France and then re- registered in the Sarthe region, dept 72 where it was used as a camper by its previous owner. The electrics had previously been uprated from 6 volts to 12 volts. 
When I acquired the van it was driveable, however it needed some bodywork restoration, therefore I decided to strip off the paint to bare metal, working under a marquee on my drive, had some welding work done, followed by a complete paint job, replaced the rubber seals around doors and windows and then fitting out the interior with a folding bench/ bed, cooker, sink, radio, tv and electrical hook up with leisure battery. I completed the restoration in February 2014. 
The engine is the original 1911 cc petrol and I have only had to replace the usual service parts i.e. plugs, points and starter motor brushes, although there is a lack of synchromesh with the gearbox which I need to double de clutch when changing down through the gears. It's a good job there are only 3 gears + reverse !!
I use the van for day trips and occasional overnight camping,  mainly in North Wales and "Eric" always attracts a lot of interest wherever we go. 
 
I attach some photos which show the van before and after the restoration.
 
Kind regards, 
 
Paul
Many thanks for that Paul, your van is looking fantastic, I hope you can share some of your experiences about your van on the forum as I'm sure there are many out there who would love to be able to do the same to their van. Paul also sent in some photo's of van's he spotted whilste on holiday in France.

 

Bonjour a tous,

Tim James has reminded me that next year is the 70th birthday of the H Van, and not surprising its being celebrated in France.

 

 

The H Van website has now changed, its now www.hvan.hvan.co.uk please take a look and send me your membership number to receive your login details. If you have any idea's that you would like to see on the website then please drop me a line. If you haven't registered your van yet please fill in the registration form. On a lighter note, I've had a email from Matt, he says :-

Hi Martyn,
We spent half-term with our friend Les Kellen in Blaye (near Bordeaux) who has recently had this van restored rather than converted, and is using it as it should be used. The boxes in the back each contain six bottles of wine from a local chateau, Etalon Rouge (Red Stallion), making this an appropriate cargo for an ex horse-box!
Cheers!
Matt
Thanks Matt, if the horse box needs mucking out then I'm sure they'd be a queue.

Keep sending me articles in Tube it don't lose it.

12.11.16

 

 

Hy All,

We have a couple of new Registrations this month, the first is from John Owen who

has a 1955 H his history details are as such :- The Vin Plate has 'H' only. The story go,s,

First owned, by The Bridges & Roads Department, Next, A fighter pilot, and then an

English Couple, then brought to England by a chap, in Purley Surrey.Now under restoration.

I'm still waiting for some pictures from John so we can all have a look.

The next registration is from Martin Overington he's not sure what year the van is

but it was imported in 1970 Here's a couple of pics.

12th Aug.2016

 

 

Registers Weekend

HY all,

Registers Weekend turned out to be a scorcher, the turnout was great they where lined up from top to

bottem in the field. Everything bar H vans. 3 turned up  Charles Vacy- Ash and Richard and Melanie Sadler and Me and Caroline.

Seeing as we were the only ones that put the van in the line up for the vote...... WE WON best in show...

A win's a win I'll take that anytime. I had some great chats with people about there van that they didn't bring.

So I know they are out there somewhere. Here's a few pics of Registers Day. 2016

18 July 2016

 

 

 

Hy all,

Last Saturday (28th May) we were invited to an art exhibition in memory of Jon Winter. Sadly he

passed away in April,  and his paintings where being sold off, all proceeds would go to Ataxia UK. He was

a resident of Pytchley the village we live in, also an owner of a Citroen Light 15, and a member of the T.O.C.

So we decided to turn up in our H Van and our 2cv. Also Bernie Shaw a member of the Traction Owners Club

came along in his 1925 Citroen cloverleaf. We had a great chat about Citroen's and our vehicles. I

bought a lovely painting by Jon, of a light 15 set in Paris.

Johan Balslev joined the registration and sent me pictures of his van he writes:-

I purchased it in 2015 from Phil Archer near Luton. Phil had started the renovation,
but the job got too time consuming and too expensive and he decided to sell after
refurbishing the engine and other engine related repair.
I am now getting it rewired on the 6 volt and have got most of the interior made.
I intend to make the camping section with 12 volt with solar power to charge battery
plus having a mains socket installed for camping places and enable me to charge from the house.
I shall send more pictures when van completed.
Regards,
Johan
We'll keep a look out for the pictures and keep us informed on how its progressing.
 

 

 
On a different note  Andy Hughes who ownes the website is looking to upgrade it to a newer version.
So if any one is interested in advertising on the website please get in touch and I can forward the ad to
Andy.
Keep the pictures coming in. Tube it don't lose it.
Martyn
May 22nd 2016
 

Hy tout les monde,

Stu Whitell has registered his rare 1955 H , he tells me :- Not much known about it I'm afraid. The last owner brought it over to the UK 2 years ago but has not done anything with it. Bought it as a non runner  and have cranked the engine over by hand and it's free moving. Can move it easily by pushing and the handbrake even seems responsive. Will be cleaning the petrol tank, fuel line and carb first then having a go at firing it up.

It's great to hear that people like Stu are not daunted in taking on a project like this, I'm sure he will have great fun with his H, keep in touch and let us know how its going. If you need any advice then please don't hesitate to ask.

If you have carried out any restoration work on your van or modifications to improve your van and you want to share your experiences then please send them in and I'll add them to the site.

Tube it don't lose it

Martyn

 


 


HY All,

This month they've been a few new registrations, the first is from Tom Vickers from Colchester who has a 1977 HY Tom says :-I have attached a few pictures, still in the process of trying to get it running before we strip it down too much further. I am restoring it with the help of a friend asa catering van for my own business idea. I have no information on the van other than that it was built in February 1977, it came with no paperwork or history..... and I am head over heels with it (obsessed is another word that springs to mind). The shopping list gets longer and longer, and its going to be a struggle, I was hoping it was going to be more labour than parts, but with things like the window runners setting me back £100 each, there is a lot of 'unconsidered' costs to...... consider!

The bodywork is a worse than expected and I cannot weld myself, so need to get an eager person on board! All in all though its fairly solid, and I cannot wait to get it going, it don't plan at this stage to be doing huge miles in it around the country , but am looking forward to crawling along that country roads!
If you have any information/club details that may be of any help it would be much appreciated.
All the best!
It looks like he's got his work cut out on this one. My next registration is from Chris Davis from Ilfracombe he has a 1972 HW a beast of a H (groan) Chris is having trouble with his brakes and CV boot. Chris writes :-
Well I have taken the front brakes to pieces and one of the actuators (not my ability naming!) on the end of the bar that was attached to the handbrake arms by pinch bolts is the problem. The little bolt/pin thing that holds the little wheel in place won't stay in, I don't know what keeps it in normally as the ones on the other ones wont fall out at all?! So I'm curious if this is broken or usual? I have had a look around online and couldn't find one anywhere so I hope its not broken!
If I have confused you then I'm sorry! I'm not sure if I have explained it very well, in the instructions I have followed he said to be careful with them as they are handed, which I understand but might help you better understand the bit I mean!
Also!!
The rubber on the end of the drive shaft had a hole in it so whilst I was ordering the brake parts I also ordered a set of inside and outside rubbers. Could you give me a pointer as to how to actually fit them? Do I need to remove the shaft or can I take the cv joint off the end and slide them both on from there?
I have more questions but I will hang on and not bombard you!
Thank you very much for letting me pester you a bit!
That ok Chris that's what we're here for.....

 

 


 



 

 

 

H VAN STOLEN

 

I've had an email from Jay Jones who writes:-

 

 

To Whom It May Concern,
I am writing to let you know my Citroen H Van has been stolen from Birmingham on 24/01/2016. I would just like to make you aware incase anyone tries to sell it on your website. If you do see it please contact West Midlands Police and myself on 07739530874.
I have attached a photo of the van to this email and also have the chassis number is CHA5 515. It is currently a cream and brown van with Pietanic written on the side.
Any information would be greatly appreciated.
Best,
Jay Jones

www.pietanic.co.uk // @Pietanic // facebook.com/pietanic
Lets hope it gets returned quickly

 

HY Tout le monde,

 

We've had a couple of new registrations, the first is from Olle Westman who lives in Sweden, he writes :-

 

Jag vet inte om detta är chassinumret som fanns på den från början, detta nummer stansades in på hjälpramen vid importen till Sverige.
Årsmodellen är en knepig historia. Såvitt jag vet såldes den ny 1982. Vid importen så sägs det att den inte skulle gå att registrera på grund av svenska bestämmelser (avgas eller något sånt). Så den har fått årsmodell 1974 i registreringshandlingarna, vilket är gynnsamt då jag avser att modernisera den något vad det gäller motor och växellåda
Den har varit HY-grå men kommer att lackeras i en annan färg när den är färdigrenoverad.
Jag har arbetat med den sedan hösten 2013 och har som plan att provköra den sommaren 2016. Hoppas jag. . .
Tyvärr så har jag inte så många bilder hur den såg ut när jag köpte den, men jag skickar två som är tagna innan jag strippade den.

 

Thanks to the wonders of google translate I think he says this :- I do not know if this is the chassis number that was on it from the beginning, this number was punched into the subframe at import into Sweden.
Model year is a tricky history. As far as I know it was sold new in 1982. When imported, so it is said that it would not go to register because of the Swedish law (exhaust or something like that). So it has got model year 1974 registration documents, which is favorable then I intend to modernize it slightly in terms of engine and gearbox
It has been the HY-gray but will be painted in a different color when completed renovated.
I have worked with it since autumn 2013 and has been designed to test drive the summer of 2016. I hope. . .
Unfortunately, I have not so many images how it looked when I bought it, but I'll send you two shot before I stripped it.

 

 

The second registration is from Richard Burch who's white :-

 

These were taken at the CX Rally at Little Horwood the day after I had imported the vehicle in 2013.  I live in Winslow 2 miles down the road from Little Horwood, so the timing was perfect.

 

Since then I have registered and MOTed it, and carried out a few modifications including windows to each side immediately behind the cab, a pair of rear seats, and front seat belts.

 

I have since realised that although the body was made in 1972, a pre ’63 engine is fitted.  It’s working well, but I would be very keen to upgrade it at some stage.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

Hy all,

I've had a new registration from Stuart and Annabel Gentry, here's their story:-

We found Flo start of last December at a great wee find in Holmbridge - Graham Morton Garages, Citroen specialists. We had gone over thinking we wanted another Citroen HY van that was slightly out of our budget. Stuart had warned me that all Graham had in was a horsebox at the moment. Graham had just been over to get it from France from a French family who had it from the beginning & still used it as a horsebox up until Graham purchased it off them the month before. Stuart said it probably would'nt do us as our family Coffee Van on IOM.
But as soon as we both walked in we both went Wow - she's the one. Graham showed us around a few other Citroen HY vans he had in & some shells with no engines. But we knew we wanted the horsebox as it fitted the strict mobile catering unit guidelines on the IOM.
So we gave Graham an idea of our vision - he suggested a few ideas of his own after doing many of these. Then he started work on Flo. We went over about 4 times to check in on her & decide on how the hatch would be cut in her side and how the back 'horse' style trailer bit would be cut and open. Graham had so many helpful ideas & would always get a few other Citroen HY catering vans in for us to properly decide.
Flo was lined with aluminium sheets to fill in the horse box gaps. Had all her electrics & lights done by Graham Morton & his team. We picked her spray colour - it had to be cream for the coffee & cream aspect. And her name was always going to be Flo because it was my mums & Grans middle name. It was their little nest egg & Grans passion for baking each week, when I was small, gave me the starting chance & skills to get where I am now.
Flo is the first of her kind on IOM and she definitely has that wow factor at all the events here.
It definitely has been a labour of love as it took 3 months to get her through the Manx Government MOT as it is all computers & high tech equipment they use. So obviously they were picking every little thing up with her being 1968 & not techy at all. Never mind all the levers & KM speed dial & all the words in French. And she still grumbles when it is cold, damp & very wet. But we love her none the same, grumbles & splutters, the lot. She's one of the family & we are now known as Family Flo.

www.flothecoffeevan.com
@flothecoffeevan
find us on facebook as Flo The Coffee Van

Many thanks for that Stuart and Annabel, you can really feel the passion. If anyone else has a similar story please send them in.

Martyn

 


 

 

Hy tout les monde

The spotters have been out again, Mike Daly spotted this J reg short wheel base one at Blenheim Palace, if this is yours please send me your details so I can add it to the register.

Same goes for this Green long wheel base, spotted by Mike in Edinburgh.

 

 


 

 

 

 

Hy all,

Winter draws on, so I hope your getting your van ready for the cold period. Looking forward to next year John Sobey is organising an H Van meet. Here are the detail:-

Its the "HY Days and Holidays Camp". Location Tudor Caravan Park, Slimbridge Gloucestershire GL2 7BP. From the north

take the A38 south from M5 J13. and turn right at the roundabout s/p Slimbridge. From the south take the A38 north

from M5 J14 and left at roundabout to Slimbridge. Site is on left before the canal bridge. Pub with food at the entrance.

Date is 6-8th May 2016. No need to book but please let me know if you are coming on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The campsite is on www.tudorcaravanpark.com We will be on the Rally field with our big party tent. No hookups but modern heated toilets and showers. Close to the Sharpness Canal and Slimbridge Willdfowl Trust. Cycle hire and boat trips hopefully. £14 p.unit p.night. Welcome to all

H Vanners and friends.

Cheers
John
I've heard of a ship in a bottle but what about an H Van inside an airport lounge? Joolz sent in this quandary:-
Hi
Thought you might like this pic. Catering van recently 'installed' in the international departure gates area of Stockholm Arlanda airport. Two mysteries for me:
I've not seen a catering hatch on the starboard side before;
It's by the departure gates, accessible only by escalator, stairs or small lifts, so far as I can tell.
So how the hell did they get it up there?
Best regards
Joolz (Mehariste)
If you know the answers to Joolz problem then email me.