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Submitted on
March 9, 2008
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GM PD-4905 Buffalo... by zekesgraphics GM PD-4905 Buffalo... by zekesgraphics
... In 1965, GM introduced its final styling change with the introduction of the PD-4107 "Buffalo" --- a viable competitor to the Euro-styled Eagle... The 4107, 4108, and 4109 were all 35' coaches with two large cargo bay doors on each side...
... The 4500 series (beginning with the Scenicruiser) were 40' models, easily distinguished by the third cargo bay doors on each side...
... Interestingly, on the majority of the 40' "Buffalos" --- the third bay was NOT actually a cargo bay...
... GM and Greyhound were still catching flack from the federal government over these larger models... Many local, state, and federal highways had established bridge and axle-weight distribution laws on the books that left the coach industry owners and operators vulnerable to legal harassment...
... The problem was that there were length restrictions that assumed added weight would be a factor --- as it WAS in most trucking situations... But, GMs coaches were ALL built of aircraft alloy aluminum, and remained well below the weight restrictions on the bridges and highways being used...
... Not wanting to restyle the attractive appearance of the "Buffalo" (and, not wanting to be harrassed), the 40' "Buffalos" got somewhat devious in their unwilling compliance... The buses ran fine and legal on their two-axle set-up, but for travel in those regions where enforcement was an issue, there was a retractable tag axle concealed behind the third cargo bay doors that could be unobtrusively lowered where a tag axle would be required...
... Eventually, laws were relaxed with better understanding of structure, and most owners stripped the retractable axle so the third bay could be used for cargo...
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