An ambitious journey
A reader, Mr. A. Wilcox of Auckland, New Zealand, who has used Model-A Fords as his regular transport for the last ten years, tells us that, with two friends, he intends to set off on an ambitious journey from New Zealand, through Australia, East Asia, and parts of Russia, to England, where he hopes to appear this coming summer. He proposes to use a 1928 Model-A Ford converted into, a hoop-top pick-up truck for the journey, a car he has had for five years, in conjunction with a 1930 Model-AA 30 cwt. Ford truck. He says the 1928 Ford, while not in vintage order, has been kept running with correct parts for its year, apart from a strengthened front spring and Fordson shock-absorbers. It has what our correspondent calls the “proper” 3-3-litre engine.
The idea is to sell this Ford if it arrives successfully in England, together with the spares the adventurers intend to carry. They were hoping for sponsorship in return for advertising space on the truck’s sides and we have their Air Mail address should anyone wish to follow this up. After completing the run the money raised by selling the Model-A would go to buying motorcycles for the return journey!
While we cannot vouch for the expedition, we believe in encouraging adventure of this kind, in this mundane World, and we hope to meet the travellers if eventually they conic to London. Mr. Wilcox says that Model-As are becoming less practical as daily transport in New Zealand, because of rising fuel costs and the diminishing availability of spares, but that his Model-AA is serving well on his farm and in his building business. He is, however, turning to motorcycles, finding an Army Indian uncomfortable on the metal roads but having a 1952 BSA B33 that was bought after “total failure” of a new Russian 650 c.c. Ural. He hopes to replace his Model-A Ford with a touring Motu Guzzi.
V-E-V Odds & Ends.—An Old Wolseley saloon, possibly just pre-war, is reported in a delapidated shed near Exeter. We have a map-reference, if anyone wishes to follow this up. Rotherham Borough Council inform us that they will he staging the Rotherham Vintage Vehicle Rally at Clifton Park on June 27th. There are no entry fees and the event is open to all classes of vintage vehicles. Details from: Department of Amenities and Recreation, Recreation Offices, Wellgate, Rotherham, S. Yorkshire. It is nice to hear that when a reader required a metal instead of a plastic GB plate for his 1929 Morris-Cowley the RAC very quickly found him one, the officer concerned having himself owned a 1926 car of the same make until a few years ago. The Monmouth Archaeological Society has produced a duplicated 24-page book “Charles Rolls And The Hendre” by Gareth Jenkins, BA. CMS, about the famous pioneer motorist and aviator and the house where he was brought up. Incidentally, many of the medals won by the Hon. C. S. Rolls have been lent by Lt.-Col. Harding-Rolls to Monmouth Museum.
A 1932 Ford one-tonner van, bought by its present owner in 1936 and converted into a truck, is still going strong on his farm in Worcestershire. Now lacking front mudguards and one headlamp, the mechanical parts are said to be all original and its 71-year-old owner says he cannot remember having any trouble with it. It has done over 76,000 miles and carries 130 bales of hay and up to 2 1/2 tons of corn about the farm. Keeping it company is a 1950s tractor and the old Ford got its picture in the Bromsgrove Messenger earlier this year. The reader who supplied this information says he visited a Motor Museum in Nova Scotia last year, which abounds in Fords and other American vehicles. A La France fire engine there is owned by a Company whose trademark is the Mackay car, said to be the only motor vehicle manufactured in Nova Scotia—over to more expert historians! A reader living close to the former site of the Campbell car factory, which is now a petrol station in Christchurch, Dorset, would like to know more of this defunct make. Our recent references to which was the first motor car in Wales have caused Mr. Norman Riddell of Llandudno to recall three 15 h.p. two-cylinder Benz brakes used there in 1898 by a touring company, which, he says, The Autocar referred to in August that year, the article being reprinted in 1923.
On the Austin Seven front, Neill Bruce has acquired Adnams’ replica of the car in which Chace took the Class H 24-hour record at Montlhery in 1928 and intends converting it from twin SUs to a Solex carburetter, while Barry Clarke is converting the ex-John Miles’ 1928 Super Sports Austin Seven to original condition, with correct supercharged engine, and he requires data relating to its racing and production history.