Author Topic: Australia's first Unimog?  (Read 6978 times)

Offline Mike C

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Australia's first Unimog?
« on: August 03, 2013, 11:13:14 AM »
No, it wasn't a U1700L trials vehicle, but many years before, and, as far as I can tell, a little Model 404. The curious things is that is carried the Australian registration 107394 during the trials, which registration was later 'migrated' to one of the International 2 1/2 ton No.1 Mk.1 GS cargo trucks (as we have seen elsewhere, the re-use of plates for trials vehicles was not uncommon).

The little Mog was given a fair hammering at Monegeeta and several other places around Victoria, before being given the 'errr, no, thanks....' like so many other vehicles tested during the 1950s.

Mike C

Offline Carzee

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2013, 11:32:31 AM »
 :) Hi Mike. These earlier models, earlier than the ones in 64... Were the 50's model 404 so much different?

http://remlr.com/forum/index.php?topic=962.0
« Last Edit: August 03, 2013, 11:34:28 AM by Carzee »

Offline Mike C

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2013, 01:18:57 PM »
Interesting document - good find, I hadn't read that particular thread until now.

Those registered 97016 and 97017 were supposedly the U32 model, ie '411-112' model mogs, except they are not 2120 mm (83.4 inch) wheel base, but appear to be the 1720mm (67.7 inch) wheel base, which would make them actually model 411-110. (The 'U32' designation came in either wheelbase.) The chassis numbers tend to support the 411-112 model designation, but the images in the RAE document clearly scale as the shorter 67.7 inch WB. Curious! Wonder what the Unimog at Bandiana's chassis number is?

These two vehicles are a lot shorter than the one registered 107394, and have a different tray configuration. 107394 had an all-steel traybody with military style fittings, a soft canvas, properly fitted cab roof, no winch, and was a longer wheelbase: 2120mm or 83 inches. It was altogether a more substantial vehicle than those shown in the RAE documents. I don't have a definitive date for the trials of this vehicle as yet, so it may actually be in the 60s: will have to go looking....  Whatever it is, I would expect that it would pre-date the use of the plate on the No.1 Mk.1 Inter.

Mike C

Offline Phoenix

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2013, 12:25:58 PM »
So is 107394 the 404 at bandiana??  Last time I asked about it they were not sure of it's origins, but then there are doifferent staff there now to last time I spoke with any of the staff.
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Offline Mike C

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2013, 03:10:33 PM »
Richard,

What is its wheelbase?  I must confess to never having paid it much attention in my many visits .... mae culpa!

If it's the longer wheelbase with the all-steel traybody, there's a reasonable chance it is not those pictured in Borneo, but the one to which I referred, viz 107394. Other than its use as a test vehicle , I have little that I can add, unfortunately.

Mike C


Offline Phoenix

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2013, 01:47:37 PM »
They have it listed on a spreadsheet with the following details

107699   Truck, 3/4 ton 4x4 UNIMOG, 1959   Trail vehicle? Flat tray with drop sides and canvas roof on cabin. Left hand drive.   Eng/Chassis 404113-950-1907   Trials vehicle; Model 404; Eng 9500038


So not 107394, however that registration 107699 in the ARN Ledger does match for a unimog with those engine and chassis details.   I have attached a photo I took of it in 2011.
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Offline Mike C

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2013, 02:25:30 AM »
Interesting: I see that it is listed as a 106 inch WB, and actually 1957 (not 1959). It certainly looks the same as the 107394-registered trials vehicle. The 107699 registration seems to fall within a group of odd-ball vehicles all in use/under trials at ADE. Wonder if the 107394 reg was simply for early convenience, then it was later properly registered as 107699? Curious, isn't it?

My bet is that it is one and the same vehicle, but unless something else shows up, I have nothing to prove or support that contention.

Wonder what the wheelbase of 107699 actually is?  I scaled it (107394) at 83 inches based upon the 20-inch rim size.

Who's visiting Bandiana and can run a tap measure from front hub to back hub for us, please??

Mike C

Offline Phoenix

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2013, 11:10:11 AM »
I went a few weeks back, but the issue hadn't arisen by then!

My presumption was much the same as yours, that the rego it wears now is probably what it had later on after a plate of convenience was used earlier on, and probably the same vehicle.

An interesting mystery, but we know more about it now than ever before!
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Offline Young Eric

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2016, 02:39:27 PM »
Is this true what he says about this being a trials Unimog ?
Would a trials vehicle then be allocated to a unit ?

http://www.gumtree.com.au/s-ad/crows-nest/trucks/historic-1st-unimog-u1700l-in-service-with-australian-army/1103902807


Offline aussiegregmac

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2016, 03:37:51 PM »
Agree with what he says in that Gumtree Ad.  I know the bloke who owns it and I've seen the truck.
Totally restored to Museum Specs and condition.  Was one of two taken on board as Initial Production
(and most likely trialled as well)   I've seen the paperwork and early history prior to being allocated
to an Army Unit.  Selling price is high but then again you never get back the true cost of restoration do you ?
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Offline armyjeep52

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2016, 12:52:52 PM »
Good day ,

There were 2 little Unimog open cab tippers in Borneo in 1964/65. There are pictures of them in the war diaries for the Indonesian Confrontation, I have often wondered what happened to those really short little trucks.

Cheers Ken
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Offline Carzee

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Re: Australia's first Unimog?
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2016, 05:36:07 PM »
Hi there Ken, the RAE report referenced in the file link above has been moved around on the Aust. War Memorial server.

The document with the Oct 64 test and photos in Sabah - Malaya - or Borneo is now this URL or address: https://www.awm.gov.au/images/collection/bundled/RCDIG1028478.pdf

AWM95/4/3/8
Commander Diary, 7 Field Sqn, RAE, Sabah, Malaya
Sept 1964

The report starts on page 163. Its a pdf file which many computer programs can read.