Kenworth, Fords &
To really get right away from everything to do with
computers, I go and visit my neighbour Mick Gardiner. Such
visits often lead to me helping out with work on one of his car, truck or
farm machinery restoration/maintenance projects.
Mick has a 1964 S model Kenworth truck, the Seattle
Star, which he built from the chassis rails up
in his shed. In spite of being an everyday working highway
truck, the Seattle Star has won
numerous prizes at truck and custom car shows. It's powered
by a Detroit 12V-71, with twin turbo chargers and
inter-cooling. (That's twelve cylinders at 71 cubic inches
per cylinder, i.e. 852 cubic inches or 13.96 litres in
total.) Power output is as Mick puts it, "More than 500 horse power."
It's amazing the level of detail and customisation that
has gone in to the Seattle Star. And
every time Mick starts to do anything to it, he ends up making
numerous "improvements" along the way. But that's just
typical of the way Mick does things.
The first major "project" I helped Mick with was a 1952
Chamberlain tractor with a Detroit 3-71 engine. He'd bought it
cheap and we were just going to "clean it up and get it
going", as Mick put it. That turned in to a complete
rebuild and renovation of everything. Plus numerous
"improvements" along the way. I was to learn this would be
typical of the way Mick worked.
Mick also has a 1955 Ford Thunderbird (being restored),
a 1956 Ford Victoria, a 1957 Ford F600 truck, a 1958 Ford Customline, a 1959 Ford F100 truck (customised), a Grove RT38 crane, a GM Blitz crane, a Terex bulldozer and
Beetle based All Terrain Vehicles.
Mick's work car is the Ford F100 truck. Mick's,
"let's just get it cleaned up and roadworthy," turned in to
a complete strip and rebuild. The Cleaveland V8 that
was in it was replaced with the Y-block V8 motor that Mick
prefers of the
car's era. The F100 now also sports a
front tilting bonnet.
And if we're not tinkering with trucks, cars and farm
machinery, then there's always something else to be done.
Like turning a hay shed in to a six vehicle, three sided
shed. Or turning a single car garage in to an eight car
garage using main bearers cut on the property and the
weatherboards and roof cladding from an old farm house that
had to be torn down. Or extending the main shed/workshop so
as to be able to part the Kenworth together with its trailer
and the Terex bulldozer under cover.
There's usually something interesting on the go at
Monday, 01 April 2013