Here’s episode two of the story of the renovation of an International K5 from 1946 by the team from NTI, to raise funds in aid of Motor Neurone Disease (MND). The process of renovating this truck is more than just a simple fundraising exercise, it’s a way of combining the sheer pleasure many of us in the trucking industry get from seeing some the old reliable trucks from before our time brought back to life.
Seeing them in the flesh and working gives us a real understanding of the trucking life back in the 1940s and 1950s, when many of the legends and traditions of trucking in Australia were born. You can look at this truck and imagine completing tasks such as loading it as high as possible with produce, tying and tarping the load down and then getting it to stay on during the bumpy trip to the customer.
The cabins always seem so cramped and the visibility totally inadequate. The driver was jammed into the seat and had to bend down to see out of the driver’s door window, while fighting with a long and awkward gearstick in the left hand.
It’s not just simple nostalgia, it is about our story, where our industry’s culture came from, where some of the unshakeable foundations of the trucking industry’s inner strength come from.
We have to understand we are not just another industry, and the rest of society needs to see that too. We don’t see chippies trying to build houses with tools from the 1940s on their weekends. How many bookkeepers spend their Saturdays filling out figures in large, bound ledgers with a fountain pen?
The process looks like a lot of fun for all involved. Here is NTI CEO, Tony Clark, taking a spin in the truck, around the backyard:
The most important thing is to get involved, enjoy the nostalgia and – at the same time – raise money and awareness of MND.