COMMER Trucks Luton England UK 1905

Commer QX

Commer

Commer
Fate Discontinued
Founded 1905
Headquarters Luton, England
Products Commercial vehicles
02 1907 Commer bus reg EC 634 1907

 Front of a 1909 Commer bus

Commer was a British manufacturer of commercial vehicles from 1905 until 1979. Commer vehicles included car-derived vans, light vans, medium to heavy commercial trucks, military vehicles and buses. The company designed and built its own diesel engines for its heavy commercial vehicles.

History

The company was formed as the Commercial Car Company, and was initially based in small premises in Lavender Hill, South London. In order to go into volume production a site was bought at Biscot Road, Biscot, Luton, where production of the first truck, the 3-ton RC type started in 1907. In 1909 the first bus was made. With the outbreak of the First World War the factory turned to the manufacture of military vehicles for the British Army, and by 1919 more than 3000 had been made.

In 1926, after being in receivership several times, Commer was taken over by Humber, which in 1931 became part of the Rootes Group.

The Commer name was replaced by the Dodge name during the 1970s following the takeover of Rootes by Chrysler Europe. After Peugeot purchased Chrysler Europe in 1978, the Commer factory was run in partnership with the truck division of Renault, Renault Trucks. It continued to produce the Dodge commercial truck range for some time, with Renault badges and a small amount of product development, eventually these were cancelled in favour of mainstream Renault models and switching production at the factory to production of Renault truck and bus engines in the early 1990s.

Many Commer vans and lorries are notable for being fitted with the Rootes TS3 engine, a two-stroke diesel three-cylinder horizontally opposed piston engine, which came to be known as the “Commer Knocker” owing to the distinct noise it produced. Newer Commer vehicles had Perkins and Cummins diesel engines, and less commonly Mercedes diesel engines.

Trucks

Main article: Karrier

Commer acquired the Karrier company as part of Rootes acquisition of Karrier in 1934. In the early 1960s production moved to Dunstable where Commer, Dodge (UK) and Karrier were all brought together.

The Karrier trademark is now owned by Peugeot.

Buses

https://myntransportblog.com/2013/11/25/buses-more-commer-1905-1979-luton-england/

52 Commer TS3 Don Everall Tours VJW 882

A Commer TS3-engined bus at the Isle of Wight Bus & Coach Museum‘s 2008 running day

Commer produced buses and is recorded as delivering four to Widnes in 1909. The Commando was released after the Second World War, and the Avenger on 28 February 1948, fitted with the TS3 engine from 1954.

Light commercial vehicles

Commer Light Pick-up

The Commer Light Pick-Up was a pickup truck based on the Hillman Minx saloon and produced by Commer during the 1950s; a similar Hillman-badged model was also produced. The Mark III was powered by a 1184 cc four-cylinder engine, the Mark VI by a 1265 cc unit and the Mark VIII by a 1390 cc engine. Production ended in about 1958.

Commer Express Delivery Van

The Commer Express Delivery Van was a light commercial vehicle produced by Commer during the 1950s, competing in the 8-10cwt van range. It was based on the Hillman Minx saloon and evolved in parallel with that model, with designations ranging from Mark III to Mark VIIIB. The 1957 model, which featured a load space of 100 cu ft (2.8 m3) and a payload of approximately 9 cwt, was powered by a 1390 cc four-cylinder Hillman engine and was fitted with a four-speed column-change gearbox.

Commer Cob

The Commer Cob is a 7 cwt delivery van introduced in early 1956 based on the Hillman Husky, itself a derivative of the Hillman Minx Mark VIII. In 1958 new Cob and Husky models were introduced, based on the “AudaxHillman Minx.

Commer Imp Van

Main article: Hillman Imp

The Commer Imp Van was introduced in September 1965 and was based on the Hillman Imp saloon. It was renamed as the Hillman Imp Van in October 1968, with total production reaching 18,194 units prior to it being phased out in July 1970. The Hillman Husky estate car, which was introduced in July 1967, was based on the Imp Van.

Commer BF

Ambulance_Coventry_Transport_Museum (1)

 Commer BF based ambulance

Many examples of these vans were coach-built as ice cream vans.

Commer Walk-Thru

Commer Walk-Thru van as used by the Dutch company Van Gend & Loos

 Commer Walk-Thru van as used by the Dutch company Van Gend & Loos

The Commer Walk-Thru was introduced in 1961 as a replacement for the Commer BF. The Walk-Thru was offered in 1½ ton, 2 ton and 3-ton van and cab-chassis variants with a choice of diesel or petrol engines.

Commer FC/PA/PB/Spacevan

Commer FC
1968 Commer FC
Overview
Manufacturer Rootes Group
Chrysler Europe
Production 1960–1982
Body and chassis
Body style Forward control panel van. Numerous conversions and adaptations to special purposes
Powertrain
Engine 1500 cc Straight-4
1725 cc Straight-4
Transmission 4-speed manual
4-speed manual + Laycock Overdrive (from 1973)
Dimensions
Length 170 in (4,318 mm)
Width 75 in (1,905 mm)
Chronology
Successor none

Commer became known in later years as a maker of vans for the British Post Office—particularly the Commer FC which was introduced in 1960 with many body styles, including a 1500 cc van. After engine and interior upgrades it was renamed the PB in 1967 and the SpaceVan in 1974. As noted above, it would be sold as a Dodge and Fargo model until 1976, when both Commer and Fargo names were dropped. These were rounded-front forward-control vans with narrow front track—a legacy of their Humber car-derived suspension. Utilising at first the Hillman-derived 1500 cc 4-cylinder engine in the PA series, then the larger 1600 cc, and from 1968 onwards the 1725 cc unit in the PB, only the cast-iron-head version of this engine were used. A Perkins 4108 diesel was also available.

The “1725 cc engine” (as it is known; it actually displaces 1724 cc) was available in the 1970s with a Borg Warner (BW) Model 35 3-speed automatic transmission with a dashboard-mounted selector. This was not a popular option and few were built.

The 4-speed gearbox on manual transmission models was based on those fitted to contemporary Hillman Minx (of the “Audax” generation) and later Rootes Arrow series cars such as the Hillman Hunter.

An unusual feature of the model was that the handbrake operated on the front drum brakes.

One of the reasons that the van was less popular with fleet operators than the Bedford and Ford Transit models it sold against was that, as on the BMC J2 and J4 models the forward-control design restricted access to the engine and made engine changes labour intensive; the only way to remove the engine without dropping the suspension subframe was to remove the windscreen and crane the engine out through the passenger door. A 1974 road test of a motor caravan version fitted with the 1725 cc engine reported a maximum speed of 70 mph (113 km/h) and a 0–50 mph (km/h) time of 25 seconds, indicating a higher top speed but, in this form, slower acceleration than the BMC competitor. However, the testers reported that at 70 mph the van was “plainly at its absolute limit, screaming away in a most distressing fashion”; readers were advised to view 65 mph (105 km/h) as a more realistic absolute maximum.

Reportedly, one condition of the government bailout of Chrysler’s British operations in 1976 was a commitment to upgrade the Spacevan, which was praised for its brakes, cornering, and price, but criticized for its power, comforts, and top speed. A revised Spacevan was thus introduced in 1977, using the same mechanicals but with numerous cosmetic changes, conveniences, and a new interior. Although outdated by its demise in 1982, by which time Commer had been taken over by Peugeot, the Spacevan remained a familiar sight in the UK thanks to its role with Post Office Telephones—which was almost solely responsible for it remaining in production for so long and these vans and outstanding orders were inherited by British Telecom on its formation in October 1981. By this time, there were three engines: two 1.7 L petrol engines of 37 kW (with low compression) and 42 kW (with high compression), and a small diesel engine (31 kW), with a four-speed manual transmission and no automatic available. The last Spacevan was built in 1983.

Military vehicles

1951 Commer Q4 330811951

Commer made a range of military vehicles for use during the Second World War, with the range still in use in the 1980s. While serving in the army, British humourist Frank Muir reported a broken-down vehicle over his radio with the words “The Commer has come to a full stop.”

Engines

Commer designed and manufactured its own diesel engines for its heavy commercial vehicles and buses. They were low-profile units designed to be deployed under the floor of the cab.

TS3

Main article: Commer TS3
1954 Commer tractor unit The front-mounted exhaust silencer shows that this is fitted with the Commer TS3 disel engine.

The TS3 engine was a two-stroke diesel unit with three cylinders each containing a pair of pistons arranged with the combustion chamber formed between the crown of the piston pair and the cylinder walls. It was designed specifically for the Commer range of trucks. The TS3 and derivative TS4 were unique in using rockers to deliver power to the single crankshaft.

TS4

The TS4 engine ran 1.2 million miles as a pre-production prototype. It was a 4-cylinder version of the TS3.

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Rondaan Berlikum, een DAF uit 1950 en een Bedford uit 1954 1956 Commer WrT Escape. Fire Engine 1957 CHW Commer Ambulance 1957 Commer 57 Ramblers on KAT rig 1957 Commer Karrier 1957 COMMER VAN Black 1958 Commer C Series Dropside Registered LSU 422 1958 Commer Groet RS-75-43 1958 Commer MUR530 Farming Yesteryear 1958 Commer Q4 1958 Commer Van Gend & Loos RN-85-86 1958 Commer WDG655 1959 Commer bestelwagen 1959 Commer Ecurie Ecosse 1959 Commer img314 1959 Commer Karrier 4,752cc KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA 1959 Commer Knocker with history 1959 Commer QX 1959 Commer R541 Assen 1959 Commer WrE - WYA 559 1959 Commer 1960 Commer 01 1960 Commer 1,1.5 T Brochure 1960 Commer 3 vierde ton Brochure 1960 Commer Avenger TS3 Transporter Engine 4200cc ECURIE ECOSSE 1960 Commer Carmichael 1960 COMMER COB 1960 Commer Karrier Model F Mk V 1960 Commer Miles NDG 690 1960 commer stw draw 1960-71 Commer Caravanette PA 1600 cc 1960-82 Commer FA-PB-Spacevan 1960-82 Commer FC-PB-Spacevan Van Powered by either a 1500cc or 1725cc S4 1961 Commer b 1961 Commer catalog 1961 COMMER FIRE ENGINE 6000cc 2998VF 1961 Commer Fire Tender Engine 6000cc VF 1961 Commer img315 1961 Commer Water Carrier Manchester airport 1962 Ambulance Commer Light Truck Ambulance Warrnombool 1962 Commer Bl 1962 Commer Busje 1962 Commer Hengelo 3 1962 Commer img316 1962 Commer Sleeping car 1962 commer-1500-2500-Motor Manuel 1963 Bussen Commer Beetles 1963 1963 Commer Bus White 1963 Commer Catalogue 1963 Commer Delivery van 1963 Commer FC .75 ton Van Hearse 1963 Commer qx 1963 Commer СВ (FV-13901), 4x4 1964 Ambulance Commer 2500 1964 Bussen Commer built in 1964 with Harrington B12 bodywork 1964 CC Model Commer 1964 Commer 727BWC 1964 Commer ACE Bus Australia 1964 Commer Camper 1964 Commer FC Van 1964 Commer Walk Thru Bus 1964 Commer Walk-Thru [KC40] 1964 Commer-Coaster-Dormobile-Conversion 1965 Commer Ambu 1965 COMMER COB 1500cc VAN DYK32C 1965 Commer VB Flatback Registration EDD 451 C 1965 commer-bus-01 olympic 1966 commer 06 1966 Commer CC Maxiload Registered JAH 575 D 1966 Commer type KAL 4023 1966 Commer Van Grey 1966 Commer VCA 715 1966 Commer VV-99-42 1966 Commer WrT L 1966 Commer XA-50-64 1967 Commer Brochure a 1967 Commer GGJ 1967-COMMER-CC15-TRUCK-HISTORY-PHOTO-SPEC-SHEET 1968 Commer Camper ZA 71 58 1968 Commer FBH 398 ZJ-08-54 1968 Commer FC 1968 Commer Flat Bed PB WPG 1968 Commer Kampeerwagen 1968 commer santana velocidad 1968 publicidad pegasoesmicamion 1968 Commer type FBH398 Bouwjaar 23-07-1968 1968 Commer VCA 715 1969 ce16 commer knocker 1969 Commer - Dodge VCC40 walk Thru 1969 Commer CE Maxiload Bulk Tipper Registered UVF 988 H 1969 Commer Horsebox 1969 Commer img311 1971 Commer Maxiload gvw 1973 Commer Maxiload Moteur Perkins 1974 Commer Schiphol Oost 1974 Commer TS Ambulance Commer Commer (2) Commer 0001 Commer 02 COMMER 2 (2) COMMER 2 Cementwagen Commer 2 Commer 03 commer 100 ft ladder Commer 504 londres (222) Commer AD KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA Commer Bantam Airfield Control (GFU 659 L) Commer Beveren (B) Commer BF based ambulance Commer Brandweer Ambulance Commer Brandweer Hengelo Commer Bus of Fire Engine Commer Car Hauler Commer CC 15 Triple Deck Car Transporter Commer Daver coe Commer Devenish CASTLE COMBE STEAM RALLY 2009 commer folder Commer Garmt Molenhuis, Broek Pieterburen Commer Hauler commer Herder commer knowles Commer ladderwagen uit 1950, de ladderconstructie is van Merryweather Commer Maxiload schiedam Commer Q25 Van Commer Superpoise Commer truck at the Whitton Museum Commer TS3 Commer Van commer vans poster Commer Walk-Thru van as used by the Dutch company Van Gend & Loos commer

KARRIER Cars and commercial Vehicles Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, UK 1908

1900-karrier-logo

Karrier Motors

1952 Karrier Bantam
 Karrier Bantam ca 1952

Karrier is a marque of car and commercial vehicle, the origins of which can be traced back to Clayton and Company, a 1904 company founded by Herbert and Reginald Clayton from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire,UK. In 1908, they started making Karrier cars and in 1920 changed the company name to Karrier Motors Ltd. It also produced buses and in latter years, especially during the Second World War, trolleybuses, notably the Karrier ‘W’ model.

Colt, Cob and Bantam

In 1929, Karrier started production of the “Colt” three-wheeler as a dustcart chassis for Huddersfield Corporation. In 1930, this was developed into the “Cob” tractor to haul road trailers for the London, Midland and Scottish Railway. The “Cob” was similar to the Scammell Mechanical Horse. In the mid-1930s, the “Cob” range was supplemented by the four-wheel “Bantam”.

Takeovers and mergers

Rootes Group

After takeover bids in 1934, the Rootes Group acquired Karrier and moved production to Luton, closing the Huddersfield operation. In the late 1950s and 1960s, some Karrier vehicles were fitted with the iconic Rootes TS3 two-stroke opposed piston diesel engine. Other engines used in this period include Humber Hawk 4- cylinder petrol engines (L-Head and OHC), Humber Super Snipe 6-cylinder (L-Head and OHV) and Perkins Diesels.

At Luton, the only designs carried over from the previous era were the three wheeler and the six-wheel trolleybus chassis.

The trolleybus business became integrated with that of Sunbeam following its absorption into the Rootes group. In 1946 the trolleybus operations and the Wolverhampton trolleybus line was sold to Brockhouse Ltd, who in 1948 sold it to Guy Motors.

Under Rootes ownership, Karrier trucks were generally smaller size than their sister, Commer brand, with “Bantam” models using 13-inch and “Gamecock” models using 16-inch wheels, to give lower loading height. Partly because of this, they were particularly popular with local authorities for varied applications, including highway maintenance tippers, refuse collection vehicles and street lighting maintenance tower wagons. Karrier trucks and chassis were also popular with airport operators and airlines for baggage handling trucks, water bowsers and toilet servicing.

Dodge (UK)

The Dodge Brothers company came to the UK in 1922 and began importing United States Dodge knock-down kits to build in the UK at a production line in Park Royal, London. Eventually, production was moved to the Chrysler plant at Kew; Dodges built there were known as “Dodge Kews”. During the Second World War this factory was part of London Aircraft Production Group and built Handley Page Halifax aircraft assemblies.

In 1965, production moved to Dunstable where Commer, Dodge (UK) and Karrier were all brought together.

Chrysler Europe

By 1970, the Rootes Group had been taken over (in stages) by Chrysler Europe, with support from the British Government which was desperate to support the ailing British motor industry. The Dodge brand (also used by Chrysler in the USA) began to take precedence on all commercial models. The last vestige of Karrier was probably in the Dodge 50 Series, which began life badged as a (Chrysler) Dodge but with a Karrier Motor Company VIN (vehicle identification number) plate.

Peugeot and Renault

Chrysler eventually gave up on UK operations, selling the business to Peugeot. The new owner had little interest in heavy trucks and the factory was then run in conjunction with Renault Véhicules Industriels, (then part of Renault though now Volvo). The combined company used the name Karrier Motors Ltd, although the vehicles took on Renault badges and were sold through Renault Trucks dealers. Renault had been keen to secure a UK manufacturing operation for engines for its own models, and did relatively little to market or develop the British designs, favouring its existing French range such as the Renault Master. The end of the Karrier name could not be far off; eventually, Renault severed ties with Peugeot and introduced a Renault Truck Ind. or Renault Vehicles Ind. VIN plate (RVI).

The Karrier trademark is still in the possession of Peugeot, and it is not uncommon for vehicle marques to be reinstated.

Ro-Railer

Karrier’s Ro-Railer was a hybrid single decker bus capable of running on both road and rail. It was introduced in 1932 and tested by the London, Midland and Scottish Railway but it was not a success and was not perpetuated. One of the few operational bus rail systems is to be found in Adelaide (Australia) called the O-Bahn Busway.

road sweeper

Karrier Motors started life in 1904 in Hudersfield as Clayton and Company. In 1907, they started making Karrier cars, and in 1920 changed their name to Karrier Motors Ltd; they evolved into truck and bus chassis builders, with municipalities being major companies.

Karrier’s early vehicles were designed to be tough, no-frills vehicles, built to have large load spaces, short length, and a powerful engine to tackle Yorkshire hills. The first public service vehicle to climb Porlock Hill, Somerset, was a Karrier bus with 21 passengers and a 50 horspeower engine.

Early on, Karrier, like Commer, produced a design for World War I trucks, and many were built before 1914; during the war, 2,000 more were made for the military. After the war, Karrier gained a new factory and a new range of vehicles, and by 1924 was making 17 different models; pneumatics were first sold in 1924 on a 25-cwt chassis, and in 1926, the first purpose-built passenger chassis was made. The chassis were progressively improved, gaining pneumatic tires and having excess weight excised.

During the late 1920s, Karrier build numerous six-wheel chassis, two of which were the first vehicles of any kind to make a circuit of Australia, running for 22 weeks through 11,000 miles of harsh terrain, running on schedule. In 1927, the Super Safety Six Wheel Coach was launched; in 1928, the Karrier-Clough Six Wheel Trolleybus followed. The KWF6, a rigid six-wheeler engineered for use “in the colonies” and for hard road work, had an eight-ton payload with single sets of wheels on each of three axles.

1929 Karrier GYR tractor

In 1930, Karrier produced a “mechanical horse” design, the Karrier Cob, engineered jointly with the London Midland & Scottish Railway for package delivery; it was powered by a two-cylinder Jowett engine, and could couple with horse-drawn trailers with the shafts removed. The London and North Eastern Railway had the same idea, and turned to Scammell Lorries, which developed a similar concept but with an automatic couple/uncouple system for trailers; Scammell appears to have first used the term “mechanical horse,” in 1934 (they would later use Perkins diesels, followed by the same Leyland OE160 used by late Karrier Bantams).

The Colt, launched in 1931, was a similarly designed tractor version, a two-ton three-wheel tractor, also powered by the Jewett horizontally opposed flat two-cylinder engine, with the “Colt Major” providing four cylinders.

Karrier also created the “road railer,” which had one set of wheels for roads and another for railroad tracks, and later developed a two-ton truck called the Bantam, a good seller particularly with parcel carriers such as British Rail. Its coupling was compatible with the Scammell system.

Karrier was, after a couple of takeover bids, acquired by Rootes Group in 1934. In Rootes’ standard fashion, production was quickly moved to Luton, where a new assembly area was built, and Hudersfield was closed; the model range was reduced to avoid competition between Commer and Karrier, and shared components were sought out. Karrier was now focused on three items, the Cob and Colt three-wheel “mechanical horses” (just three Cobs are known to survive), the Bantam (which could also be used as a mechanical horse), and the CK3 and CK6 chassis of three and six tonnes for municipal use. There were no visible similarities between the two truck brands, hiding their common owner. (Mechanical horses were lightweight, low-powered tractors usually used for local delivery. Their appearance could be similar to standard chassis-cab trucks, though many had three wheels.)

The Bantam started out with just 9 hp, raised to 18 hp via a Humber engine after Rootes took it over.

1948 Karrier ambulances-and-refuse-collector

By 1939, over 600 municipalities used Karrier vehicles; the company had close relationships with aftermarket body builders, who made garbage collectors, tower wagons, and gully emptiers, as well as a left-hand-control road sweeper (a Karrier branded item based on a Commer chassis) and ambulance (also branded by Karrier but based on a Commer van).

During World War II, there were separate designs for the two trucks; Karrier made cross-country four and six wheeled trucks. Overall, 10,000 Karrier trucks were used by the military during the war.1949 karrier

Around 1949, the Karrier Bantam switched to a cast aluminum raidator shell, replacing pressed metal. In 1952, the Bantam was updated with a new cab and Perkins diesel engine, and the CK3 was replaced by the Gamecock (seen above on a historic journey from South Africa to London); this had a new cab similar to Commer’s forward control cabs. The Karrier Bantam lasted through 1970, using a 3-ton coupling gear.

dodge spacevan

Bigger garbage trucks demanded bigger chassis, and Karrier supplied its Transport Loadmaster based on the Commer QX. A new engine, the TS3, was launched in 1954 by Rootes, using three cylinders and six pistons, designed as a military multi-fuel diesel engine but available in relevant Karriers.

A major success was the Spacevan, launched in 1960 as the 1500, renamed PA, then renamed PB, and later given its final name. Sold as both a Commer and Karrier, the Spacevan had a diesel early on, with automatic transmissions coming in 1965 and a 1-ton payload version coming in 1962. The Spacevan was a major success, and was restyled in 1978.

BBC Bantam

In 1965, due to increased demand, production moved to Dunstable, where Commer / Dodge and Karrier were all brought together (Luton was refitted as a transmission plant.) The Dodge badge was used more and by the mid-1970s, it was on all Commer / Karrier / Dodge vehicles. By then, Rootes Group had been acquired by Chrysler.

The 50 series was the result of subsidies by the British goverment in 1975/76, giving Dodge / Karrier / Commer a boost in developing a 3.5 to 7.5 tonne range of vehicles to help keep the UK truck building business on an even keel. It came out in 1979, badged as a Dodge but with a Karrier nameplate, just in time for Peugeot’s acquisition of Chrysler Europe, which included Rootes and Simca. In January 1980, all Commer / Karrier / Dodge vehicles officially became Talbot. Peugeot had no interest in truck building and sold it on to Renault in 1981; but for 1980, the 50 series was still badged as a Dodge under the Talbot name.

In 1983, it switched to being sold as a Dodge under the Renault name, and in 1985 the Renault logo joined the nameplate; but the Dodge name was retained until 1987, when the trucks were replaced by the New 50 series, badged as Renaults only. Due to poor sales, the entire line was shut down in March 1993, with the line becoming the UK distribution center for French-built tractor units. The production line was taken away in 1994 by a Chinese group, and presumably Dodge medium duty trucks are now being produced in China. (For more details, see dodge50.co.uk.)

Models

  • K Type (1920-1931) 3/6 tons
  • CYR Low loading garbage truck
  • H Type (1922- ) 20-26 seat bodywork.
  • C Type (1923- ) Dorman engine.

http://www.gracesguide.co.uk/W._H._Dorman_and_Co

  • Z Type (1924- ) 14 seater one-ton
  • ZA (1929- ) 1.5-ton
  • KL (1925- ) passenger range with a low-height chassis and pneumatic tyres.
  • WL (1925- ) first six-wheeler
  • KW6/KWF6 8-ton six-wheeler
  • CL6 (1926) carried 32 passengers. Around 50 of these were produced.
  • Cob (1931- ) 3-ton
  • Cob Major 4-ton
  • Road Railer Additional wheels for use on tracts
  • Colossus (132- ) 12-ton six-wheeler
  • CK (1935-1952)
  • Bantam
  • CK3 3-ton
  • CK6 6-ton
  • Gamecock (1952- )

For Karrier Buses look

https://myntransportblog.com/2014/04/24/buses-more-karrier-huddersfield-west-yorkshire-uk/

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