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Plastheniker

Scratch Built 1951 Büssing 12000 U13 6x4 Underfloor Engine Truck

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Hi,

 

I found no information if Büssing trucks were ever sold in Britain, so some facts may be interesting:

 

Büssing was one of the oldest and most renowned German truck manufacturers. After WW II they resumed production with big conventionals very similar to their pre-war models. From time to time Revell of Germany re-releases an outstanding model of one of these conventionals, namely the 1952 Büssing 8000 S13.
Today, however, Büssing is the synonyme for a completely different truck design.
 
In 1951 Büssing presented the Büssing 12000 U13 as the world’s first production underfloor engine truck. By comparison almost any truck (nota bene mostly conventionals) of other manufacturers in these years appeared obsolete:

  • The cab without doghouse offered incredible space. It was even high enough to stand upright in it. Its ultra-modern cubic design and its large windows gave excellent visibility.
  • Far from the engine the driver enjoyed  a riding comfort second to none: no noise, no heat, no vibrations, no fumes. Without the engine weight on the front axle the air-assisted steering gave outstanding manoeuvrability.
  • Engine accessibility for service and for repairs was unique.
  • The engine position improved traction and road holding of the unloaded vehicle considerably.

 

Though the 12000 U13 was too expensive too be sold in really large numbers it became the ancestor of many heavy and medium-duty Büssing underfloor engine trucks.

Technically ingenious the line of underfloor engine trucks, however, can be considered as the main reason why Büssing failed economically. The underfloor engine made it difficult to drive the front axle and the engine hanging under the chassis restricted ground clearance. Therefore this design was not usuable for the building trade. Thus Büssing  was compelled to produce three different types of trucks to match all customers’ needs:  underfloor engine trucks, conventionals and coes.  For a smaller company this scattering  was fatal. In 1971 MAN purchased Büssing and continued to produce underfloor trucks up to 1994.

 

Two 12000 U have survived. They are the undisputed highlights of any vintage truck meeting in Germany.

 

My  scratch build shows the earliest version of the 12000 U13 as shown on this contemporary picture.

 

comp_a68-vi.jpg
 

 

For full visibility of the engine I “removed” the engine cover - as most owners and later on even Büssing did. The intricate chassis, the open platform body and the cab without existing drawings made the project rather time-consuming. Though I could use some identical or modifiable parts of the Revell kit I spent more than 1000 hours building my model.
Among all approximately 250 models still in my hands (I really wonder how many models I have built during the past almost 60 years) this is one of my favourite models.

 

comp_Bssing00168-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00268-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00368-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00468-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00568-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00668-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00768-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00868-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing00968-vi.jpg
comp_Bssing01068-vi.jpg
 

Edited by Plastheniker
New picture links

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That is outstanding! Simply excellent modelling! Love the colour too!

 

Wonderful model!

 

Keith

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What a brilliant piece of work! Deeply impressive - it is also a very attractive subject. It would be great to see some more examples of your work.

 

Regards

 

Richard

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I'm new to modelling so I assume 'scratch' built means you have built this from scratch, ie not from a kit. I'd struggle to build something as good as that from a purchased kit. That is truly outstanding.

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Wow, I'm speechless, that's utterly fantastic!!! Although I've never seen one of the "old" Büssings in person, I vividly remember the later MAN/Büssing underfloor trucks from my childhood. Always fascinated with vehicles, technology and engineering even as a small boy I often wondered what that "thing" that looks like an engine was when clearly this is not the right place for an engine... :)

Once again congratulations, this model deserves not only a medal or two but to be put into a museum!

 

Cheers

Jeffrey

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This is a truly amazing piece of workmanship! Well done!

If I could even come halfway close to doing something like that, I would be well pleased with myself.

Seeing the engine, literally slung underneath the chassis reminds me of the Diesel Multiple Unit trains running on a number of British railway lines. At least there, they don't have ground clearance issues!

 

I assume that the ease of access reason is why the trains use this layout: Drive it over a mechanics pit, there it is all above you...

 

Again, congratulations.

 

Alan.

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Thank you for the response!

 

Maybe you find the three following contemporary pictures interesting.
 

The first photo shows the rather intricate chassis of the original vehicle.
The others show the typical engine peripheral of a (smaller) Büssing underfloor engine of the late fifties.

 

comp_12000U13Fahrgestell68-vi.jpg
comp_U5a68-vi.jpg
comp_U5b68-vi.jpg

 

Edited by Plastheniker
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This is a sensational build and you've just inspired me to put some kind of truck on my wishlist. Great work and I like the background info on it.

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Just came across youre build today..

What a mindblowing build and unusual subject, my father use to drive a 70's model in those days..

 

Cheers, Jan

 

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Clearly outstanding work. Do you ever do ‘work in progress’ threads. I’m sure we would all love to see one of these come together.

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Thanks for the recent comments!

 

On 13.4.2018 at 3:52 PM, Bandsaw Steve said:

Clearly outstanding work. Do you ever do ‘work in progress’ threads. I’m sure we would all love to see one of these come together.

 

No, I am sorry, as mentioned in the LP 333 thread I take no WIP pictures or WIP notes (with only very few exceptions). While building I perceive it as very disruptive.

 

BTW I have restored the picture links in post # 13. 

 

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I just had another look at this and think it’s even more amazing on a second viewing. Congratulations on a truely extraordinary accomplishment!

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