The Land Rover Wrecker is one of the more unusual variants used by the Australian Army. Whilst the Long Wheelbase unit was a fairly early example developed by Land Rover, there was also a Short Wheelbase Light Wrecker which appears to have been designed and built by RAEME. We have a number of photos of these units, however it is not known if they were used in any numbers, or if only the two units were trailled.
We have confirmed 5 wreckers from the ARN Ledgers and Photographs. in 2011 documents appeared confirming at least 8 Long Wheel Base Wreckers. Eyewitness accounts note at least 6 in one place prior to Auction. 176-309 is now a LRPV, but was originally a wrecker and one other LRPV appears to have been a wrecker as well. Looking at the 176 Registration numbers it could be that a reasonable size batch of series 2a's were all built at the same time.
Technically, these vehicles were anything but simple! The truck cabbed vehicle had provision for a radio which was fitted in the rear tub, but by virtue of a bespoke canopy, was accessable from inside the cab. An Antenna (ATU) was fitted on the guard, and in particular, the large hydraulic boom in the tub. On the LHS of the tub there was a cutout in the tub to carry a jerry can of fuel or water. On teh Right hand side, a locker for storage of equipment. The spare tyre was in fact removed from the bonnet, and the holder removed and covered. THe spare was actually fitted in the tub of the vehicle.
The winch was a hydraulic type that fed through the lifting boom, but it could be utilised as a winch front or rear through a series of pulleys on the corners of the vehicle. A large work light was fitted at the rear of the tub for night time work. An anchor that could be fitted to the front or rear of the vehicle were also carried to help in recoverying stuck or damaged vehicles, and a towing A frame was also a standard fittament.
The short wheelbase light wreckers that appear to have been built by RAEME are interesting units. Whilst they were built on Command Recon vehicles, they have some fittings from the Series 2a General Service such as the protective tail light cups THe Truck cab canopy is unique as it was never used on the 88 inch vehicles apart from the light wrecker. Over all, these were a fairly simple affair with fixed towing points and limited recovery capability.
Have a look at these other pages for more information.
A series 3 wrecker also appears to have been built. It is not known if this was a rebuilt Series 2 unit or a freshly built unit. You can see information on that vehicle here.