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Old 28th July 2013, 11:17   #181
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Question Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

Hi Dr Anjan,

Your landmaster was featured in todays DNA paper! There was an article about Amby's, and your black 1955 Landmaster was featured in the article along with the Amby's of a few more enthusiasts.
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Old 28th July 2013, 12:10   #182
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Thank you sir , that made for a fantastic read on a sunday morning.Here is wishing you many more trouble free motoring miles.How about getting the car detailed black would look even better.
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Old 2nd August 2013, 11:54   #183
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

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Originally Posted by abishek2222 View Post
Thank you sir , that made for a fantastic read on a sunday morning.Here is wishing you many more trouble free motoring miles.How about getting the car detailed black would look even better.
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Originally Posted by W.A.G.7 View Post
Hi Dr Anjan,

Your landmaster was featured in todays DNA paper! There was an article about Amby's, and your black 1955 Landmaster was featured in the article along with the Amby's of a few more enthusiasts.
Thanks W.A.G. 7 and abhishek2222. Yes, the car with other Ambassadors were featured in the DNA Sunday magazine, in all their editions (Mumbai, Bangalore, Jaipur, Indore, Pune and Ahmedabad) last Sunday 28/07/2013.
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Old 2nd August 2013, 22:25   #184
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

It is joy to see a Landmaster or an Ambassador with original "Smith" instrument cluster ! the only sad part is that the ammeter in the cluster having failed, an after market a-meter had to be installed which does take away some beauty of this nicely maintained automobile. Overall, this car is worthy of the love and care showered upon it !
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Old 2nd September 2013, 20:19   #185
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

The car had outlived its 5 year fitness as on 24/08/2013, as the previous fitness test was conducted in August 2008.

The car was taken for its Fitness 2013 TEST last week to the local RTA office. The fitness fees are reasonable viz. Rs 200=00 for the fitness plus Rs 100=00 fine (delay as fitness was due on 24/08/2013.

The clerical formalities take a very long time to be completed.

- Firstly, one has to get clearance from the Prosecution Section, who certify that there is no pending case against this automobile.

- Then one has to go to the counter where the registration series "BYJ" records are maintained. Here they certify as to how much fee has to be paid for fitness.

- Next is the Cash Counter where the requisite fee is paid.

- Then armed with all these forms, cash receipt (counterfoil is kept with the applicant viz. me), PUC certificate,copy of Green Tax paid, one reaches the Fitness Section.

- the once active (saw and faced a huge queue of trucks, buses, cars, even two wheelers) Fitness Section looks forlorn and deserted like a Ghost Section (we have Ghost Towns) and the most likely reason is the Green Tax imposed by the Maharashtra Government on 15 year plus old motor vehicles. So most prefer not to pay the Green Tax (though many may be loving the greenery in our Orange City viz. Nagpur). If you do not pay Green Tax your automobile is not qualified to face the Fitness Test. So "Better Remain Unfit" is perhaps the present day "mantra".
Back to the topic, I found the Fitness Section to be quite efficient. The work was over in no time, though all crucial parameters were checked. The Motor Vehicle Inspector (MVI) was known to me luckily, but he tested all the parameters with a smile (that smile was for knowing me).

- Armed with the signature and certification by the MVI, one again has to reach the counter where the records for the "BYJ" series are maintained.
This was done on Saturday (31 Aug) last.

Today, I got all the documents with relevant entries.

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-692013-031.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-692013-032.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-692013-030.jpg

My Good 'Ol and Faithful Lady in Black is now Fit till August 2018 !

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 2nd September 2013 at 20:23.
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Old 2nd September 2013, 22:30   #186
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

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It had never occurred to me that BYJ 276 will be mine. The Landmaster has been a one-owner car since December 23rd 1955, till 2003. the late Mr Balamukund Kamathikar, its first owner, who passed away at the age of 82 years on July 19,2007, was the grandson of Rai Bahadur D. Laxminarayan. His wife Mrs D. Bahnabai,had been driven in this car till 1984, the year she breathed her last. The late D. Laxminarayan was a philanthropist, who in 1935, had donated about Rs 35 lakhs, a princely sum in cash those days and tens of acres of land in Nagpur city for the Nagpur University. In fact, Drs Homi Babha, Raja Ramanna both Chairmen, Atomic Energy Commission, Govt of India and Bal Gandharva, the classical singer , have all been driven in this car. When important cases used to come up, Shri D. N. Sheorey alias Dadasaheb, the then Advocate General of CP and Berar State, liked to be driven to the court in this car, as it proved lucky for him. The day this car was sold, in 2003, Mr Balamukund was so sad that he skipped his meals! He was the one who kept the car spick and span, all the 48 years!
As the car was not in regular use for the last few years, it took me some months to make it road-worthy. Mr Mahesh Misal has also struggled to get the car back in top shape. To my very pleasant surprise, Mr Chandrakant Birla, Chairman, Hindustan Motors, India responded personally to my request with a very cordial reply. He was happy that I could buy a Landmaster in mint condition and sent me a 350 page, Xeroxed workshop manual of the car, free of cost. The car's British name was Morris Oxford Series II and is more than 90 % British. Messrs Hindustan Motors, Calcutta, India, manufactured 11600 Landmasters during April 1954 to March 1957. These were available in grey, green, beige, and black colours. Only a hundred odd of them may still be roadworthy. Most of the post-war British cars of the 1950’s are an embodiment of the marvels of design, engineering, and technology. The British car industry was at its zenith then. In fact, the world’s top-rated manufacturers were located in the U.K. until the early 1970’s. The solid- build quality of these cars is sorely missed these days in the Japanese and Korean imports that have flooded the Indian market.
My tryst with this car has created quite a few anecdotes, but I 'll like to share a few. An old friend appeared one day and upon seeing the car said," this car is like the ones shown in old black and white Bollywood movies, where villians kill someone and put the corpse in the cavernous luggage boot, to carry it for dumping. This twist begins the film plot.” Once in 2003, while ferrying my daughter Onjula, to her school in Sadar, Nagpur, the car stalled at a traffic signal and became a barrier for the traffic to move on, at the turn of green. My instant worry was - 15 minutes for the school bell to ding-dong. I sighted another father ferrying his son wearing the school uniform, to the same school and waved at his car requesting him for a lift. He immediately agreed and it shows that the Orange City of Nagpur still has many good Samaritans. A police constable on duty at the West High Court Road helped me push the Landmaster to the roadside - another Good Samaritan. I wish I could photograph him doing such a splendid job in uniform! A lot of petrol had purged on the road- maybe all of five litres. The fault was traced to the cylindrical, carburettor float, which is of brass. The float had sunk within the float chamber of the SU (Skinners Union) carburettor, instead of floating. The float had a leaking joint that made it fill up with petrol.
I have also become a member of the famed Morris Cowley, Oxford and Issis Owner's Club of Oxford, UK and the upcoming and vibrant Hertiage Vehicle Owner's Club of Thane

The Hitavada( a vernacular newspaper from Nagpur) - ICJC Vintage and Classic Car Rally of 2004 and 2007 were a pleasure to take part in. I had pasted a copy of Mr C. K. Birla's letter on the windshield, which attracted many viewers. While on the move, many enthusiastic onlookers waved and cheered us. During the nearly 45 kms run the solidly built car, drove like a fortress on wheels and never faltered even once. Its hats off to Babubhai and Noorabhai, the two garage owners and doyens, who have repaired such cars since decades. For my Mrs and daughter, it was a very memorable drive.In 2007 we won the Best Maintained Classic Car (runner up ) award among the nearly 50 cars that had participated.
I know, this is a piece of history. The “Lady in Black,” with its gleaming paint and British chrome-work, refuses to succumb to the vagaries of weather, even after 51 years! Its mechanism is simple to work upon for a D I Y enthusiast like me. Be it either body shell or the mechanicals like the engine and transmission or the electricals-these are quite user-friendly and always thrilling to handle and repair. While doing the repair jobs I often get pleasantly surprised to see “Made in England” tags on many components that are serving tirelessly since 51 years! Touchwood! Even Sir William Morris called the Oxford simple, reliable, and well-engineered machines. It was Britain’s best-selling car for many years.
My Landmaster instantly acknowledges and responds to any repair and/or maintenance job performed upon it. The response is felt through the steering and gas pedal, that show a marked improvement in the performance sweepstakes after almost every such job. The newer cars are not so instantly responsive sometimes, even if one or more spares are replaced. “Replacement of parts” is a somewhat alien phrase for my “Lady in Black.” Most of its components are repairable, which is a boon as spares are not so easy to come by. The present –day cars have just a few repairable components. I have now started building up a spares stockpile for my Landmaster. The parking and taillight covers need the most frequent replacements. So also the wiper blades, distributor rotor, and fan belt are subject to wear and tear. I have stockpiled these along with some other mechanicals and electricals.
The car weighs 1120Kg and is fitted with the 1489cc, side valve B M C engine. The contemporary Morris Oxford Series II in the U.K., then used to be fitted with the 1489cc, O H V, B M C engines. The side valve engine was carried over from the Hindustan 14 (Morris Oxford Series I) to the Landmaster by Messrs Hindustan Motors . The same engine was fitted to older Ambassadors (Morris Oxford Series III) during 1958-59. In 1960, the proven 1489 cc O H V, B M C engine made its debut in India and continued its innings till 1992, when it was replaced by the 4 cyl, 1817cc/ 75bhp/ 135Nm Isuzu engine to power the Ambassador. The Ambassador was and still rules the roost as a VIP car in India. It is a potent symbol of power and despite the Indian car market being flooded with a galaxy of cars right from the Maruti Suzuki Alto to the Rolls Royce Phantom, most VIP’s prefer the ubiquitous Ambassador with a beacon. Prime Ministers in India until only a few years ago used the Ambassador. The terror-threats since the mid 1980’s made many VIP’s beef-up their security by ordering armour- plated Ambassadors. Thus, the first of the VIP fleet cars were fitted with the Isuzu engines in the mid-1980’s, as the 1489 cc engine was underpowered and less torquey to power the heavier body shell. With the introduction of peppier cars in competition, this engine became the heart of all Ambassadors since 1992. The Ambassador has turned 50 in India in 2008!
I can recollect that sometime in 1999, some trans-continental rallyists participating in a vintage car rally had touched Mumbai. They were commemorating 100 years of the automobile and one rallyist driving a 1912, Rolls Royce, Silver Ghost quipped, " Most of us know our cars like the back of our hands, in fact better than our wives. The cars have been with us, longer. The cars' eccentricities can be tackled with greater ease, whereas our wives eccentricities, sometimes attack our nerves !These cars thus have much simpler mechanisms as compared to our better halves."

So who says 'Yours Truly' cannot have two wives? The real one and the other my "The Lady in Black"! Will post pictures very soon!
This is completely off thread but I wish to know what happened to a workshop by name "OMEN ENGINEERING WORKS" this was situated in Civil Lines behind Vidharbha Cricket Grounds and one of his cars BYJ 1791 - ADLER 1936 is now at the Car Collection at Dharmasthala in Mangalore (Dakshin Kannada) I need to know where the then owner Mr. Kalyan Adhikari is residing- whether he is at Nagpur or shifted to Jabalpur?
Than you fello BHPian for any efforth that you may take in this search.
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Old 29th July 2014, 18:19   #187
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This is completely off thread but I wish to know what happened to a workshop by name "OMEN ENGINEERING WORKS" this was situated in Civil Lines behind Vidharbha Cricket Grounds and one of his cars BYJ 1791 - ADLER 1936 is now at the Car Collection at Dharmasthala in Mangalore (Dakshin Kannada) I need to know where the then owner Mr. Kalyan Adhikari is residing- whether he is at Nagpur or shifted to Jabalpur?
Than you fello BHPian for any efforth that you may take in this search.
Karadi, nice to know about your nostalgic memories of the Orange City. Mr Adhikari is no more. He was a great person and also a Master in the field of automobiles.

Meanwhile, some more pictures of My Great Lady in Black clicked today - was sunny today after a rainy phase and hence the car had to go out for a spin--n--n!

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-001.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-002.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-003.jpg

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My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-009.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-010.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-011.jpg

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My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-018.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-019.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-020.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-021.jpg

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My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-07272014-kol-023.jpg
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Old 29th July 2014, 20:05   #188
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

Thank you for the information about Mr.Kalyan Adhikari.
May his soul rest in peace.
He was only a matriculate, but was able to envisage that the variance in the mixture strength to the different cylinders being fed by a single carburetor, and devised a simple mixing device using the Bernoulli's principle to provide better atomisation post the carburettor and prior to being branched off in the manifold to the four cylinders. My fathers car was also one of the test mules and he was able to squeeze out 8 miles to the litre on an OHV Ambassador with an SU carburettor. The vehicle also exhibited much better torque at very low revolutions in top gear.
This device was submitted to the patents office in the early 70's and to the best of my knowledge it was accepted.

The pictures of your car makes me nostalgic about my 55 Land master which I owned from 1982 to 2002 which was in similar condition as your car is today.
In the year 1995 I undertook a midnight run to Hyderabad from Bangalore at 2 am as I could not locate a car for hire to take six passengers. The car behaved very well.
The previous year I had taken the car on a temple tour of south India and had a very safe drive along the east coast from Pondicherry to Nagapattinam etc.

A suggestion regarding the ammeter, please look for a working ambassador Meyer and transfer the dial of the Land master and change the colour of pointer, this is the nearest fit that you can achieve.
Happy Motoring.
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Old 23rd December 2014, 14:04   #189
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

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Meanwhile, some more pictures of My Great Lady in Black clicked today - was sunny today after a rainy phase and hence the car had to go out for a spin--n--n!
They say life begins after 40. Quite possibly, yes.

So, happy 19th birthday 276! May you have many, many more years ahead!

59 years since she touched the roads of Nagpur, registered BYJ 276.

Calls for a celebration, eh, Anjanji?

Last edited by FINTAIL : 23rd December 2014 at 14:17.
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Old 23rd December 2014, 21:08   #190
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They say life begins after 40. Quite possibly, yes.

So, happy 59th birthday 276! May you have many, many more years ahead!

59 years since she touched the roads of Nagpur, registered BYJ 276.

Calls for a celebration, eh, Anjanji?
Thanks FINTAIL. Thanks for your wishes. The Elegant Lady in Black has turned 59 today (23/12/1955 is its date of registration).

Meanwhile, I took it out for a spin the day before yesterday (Sunday 21/12/2014) and am uploading some pictures.The car is minus the wheelcaps here. A new wheelcap set is with me and shall be fitted soon.

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-004.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-007.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-008.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-009.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-010.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-011.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-015.jpg

Some curious onlookers seen clicking and having a look at the car

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-016.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-020.jpg

My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)-12212014-lm-018.jpg

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 23rd December 2014 at 21:11.
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Old 24th December 2014, 14:35   #191
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The car is minus the wheelcaps here. A new wheelcap set is with me and shall be fitted soon.
You Ambywallah's and Standardwallah's are very lucky.

Those new wheelcaps you speak about- Aren't these of stainless steel? And of "COX" (!) make, IIRC?

5775 had some replacement wheelcaps from later Padminis. Brand new. Peti packed. Installed them, and Voila! Rusted even before the year was over.

Greased the hubs. Balanced & aligned the wheels. Painted the rims a dull silver. And, conviniently forgot to fit the hubcaps. They're in the boot, as of now.

Do these COX caps fit the Fiat rims as well?
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Old 24th December 2014, 20:23   #192
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You Ambywallah's and Standardwallah's are very lucky.

Those new wheelcaps you speak about- Aren't these of stainless steel? And of "COX" (!) make, IIRC?

5775 had some replacement wheelcaps from later Padminis. Brand new. Peti packed. Installed them, and Voila! Rusted even before the year was over.

Greased the hubs. Balanced & aligned the wheels. Painted the rims a dull silver. And, conviniently forgot to fit the hubcaps. They're in the boot, as of now.

Do these COX caps fit the Fiat rims as well?
COX used to manufacture stainless steel wheel caps for Ambassador and Maruti's. They also used to manufacture mufflers and tail pipes. COX was based in Madras. not sure whether they still are active.
Their wheel caps dont fit FIAT rims!!
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Old 25th December 2014, 10:57   #193
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COX wheel caps dont fit FIAT rims!
Dear Ajay99 and Fintail - Ajay, I do not have any reason not to believe your above comment, but I have fitted original Ambassador wheel caps on the Padmini wheel rims without any issue whatsoever and used them for many years. Actually the Padmini looks very nice with Ambassador wheel caps. So if COX made wheel caps for Ambassadors, logically they should fit on the Padmini also. Also, COX was never used as original equipment. COX made stainless steel wheel caps, the base material was thinner than the original steel wheel caps material. Also, they made them with a silly starlike embossing which I do not like at all.

Dear Anjanji - HAPPY 56TH BIRTHDAY SIR! . The car looks very nice and period.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
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Old 25th December 2014, 15:15   #194
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Default Re: My Lady Love in Black (1955 Landmaster)

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Originally Posted by FINTAIL View Post
You Ambywallah's and Standardwallah's are very lucky.

Those new wheelcaps you speak about- Aren't these of stainless steel? And of "COX" (!) make, IIRC?

5775 had some replacement wheelcaps from later Padminis. Brand new. Peti packed. Installed them, and Voila! Rusted even before the year was over.

Do these COX caps fit the Fiat rims as well?
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay99 View Post
COX used to manufacture stainless steel wheel caps for Ambassador and Maruti's. They also used to manufacture mufflers and tail pipes. COX was based in Madras. not sure whether they still are active.
Their wheel caps dont fit FIAT rims!!
Quote:
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Dear Ajay99 and Fintail - Ajay, I do not have any reason not to believe your above comment, but I have fitted original Ambassador wheel caps on the Padmini wheel rims without any issue whatsoever and used them for many years.
COX made stainless steel wheel caps, the base material was thinner than the original steel wheel caps material. Also, they made them with a silly starlike embossing which I do not like at all.
I did get a set of new SS COX PLAIN (the early convex type, which also came on Heralds) hubcaps for my Herald a few years ago. But I was told the plain types are no longer available! The ones with the 3-pointed logo unfortunately are more 'popular'! :(

And, as Behram says, they do fit Fiat rims as well. Even the later padmini 'dimpled' hubcaps fit Herald and amby rims.

Last edited by Stanher : 25th December 2014 at 15:18.
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Old 25th December 2014, 21:20   #195
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And, as Behram says, they do fit Fiat rims as well. Even the later padmini 'dimpled' hubcaps fit Herald and amby rims.
And they look wonderful on 1526.

Do they have any sort of contact details, BTW? On the packing or something? The Mech (as usual) opines that the Merc ones are easily available.

I'm thinking of doing some reverse R&D, and creating some sort of moulds, or a press of some sort.

Or perhaps, the FIAT Grande Punto/Linea rims will do just fine. They fit. 98 PCD. Ditto.

Or perhaps we can import similar ones thru. EBay? Eh, Stanher?
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