Over to New Zealand again.
Neil Passfield contacted me in reference to 169049. This tank was brought from Tim Vibert by a lady in New Zealand as a surprise for her husband. I have seen a couple of pictures of it over there and one which is shown below where it was driven through a house as a stunt.
Neil served on 169049 and when the centurions were put up for sale all the Brass serial number id plates were removed by crews. They said that the tank hangers looked like they had been invaded by fire flies. There were torches and lights flashing everywhere, in the night! When Neil made his approach, the plates had been removed, but he managed the rebuild plates. I do have one of the MK V but have not seen any others so they are still pretty rare.
The base overhaul plate. This is the first I have seen of one of these, no doubt there are others around but I have not been able to locate any!
Neil's Mod plate to Mk V/1 Plus three Base Overhauls. I cannot read the March 1969 item under the second base overhaul. The second plate is mine, showing Mod to Mk V and Mk 5/1
Both Plates on Display
Holding ground at the Armoured School Parade Ground
She has now been transferred to the Australian War Memorial at Canberra.
I believe that she will be restored externally and put on an outside display .
Again we will have a Centurion on display at the A.W.M
This centurion served in Vietnam and was hit by an RPG on the hull beside the drivers compartment.
The marks are still there from the splash but cannot be seen in the picture
From these photos it appears that it will be a top restoration.
I hope it will have all the gear as in Vietnam
Photos below were kindly provided by Bruce Cameron
Stripped and sandblasted and covered with a black anti rust treatment
Repainted and the tracks being reinstalled
Adjusting the tracks. Yeah that does bring back memories, a cow of a job
The gravel square where 169056 will stand. Hopefully any rust stains will be absorbed into the gravel and not as a lasting stain on concrete.
I believe 169005 is now up for sale and the 1st Armoured Regiment Association is going to raise the money to purchase her.
This was the first tank I drove when I started out on this project and it did leave a special place in my memory. It was a nice tank and ran well, and was fully equipped.
It served in Vietnam, and it was in this tank that Tpr James Kerr was killed, when it detonated a mine. The tank returned to Australia where a replacement hull was fitted.
I took these photos five years ago when I drove 169005
169093 has now also been located
I knew the owner but did not know the location, but located the tank in the Ballarat area of the Western district of Victoria. I will be going up there next week hopefully to see 169093 and take some photos of the tank.
Well a week later and I am at Ballarat to see 169093. I have at this point of time torn a ligament in my left knee, and am not walking all that well. before I left Val said, "No climbing on tanks!' To which I replied,
"You have to be joking I can hardly walk!" Anyway arrived at the home of 169093 now owned by Frank and Chris Nicholls. The first item to strike me was their shed. What a bloody big shed! I would guess about 100 ft wide by about300 ft long with a roof heights about30 ft, complete with flood lights everywhere It would be like daylight when lit up.
And there was 169093 a very straight tank all dents have been removed and some guards have been remade
I would have to say its the most well presented Centurion I have seen, the only thing missing are the two .30 cal and the .50cal
Even down to the barrel end dust cover
The tools are all in place
They have plenty of liner box's
Hand radio with antenna
.30 flex mount with extension -- note recovered Cupola lid
The rear IR cage with IR light and ration packs, tarp and bedrolls
Not a good photo but it does give some idea of the size of the shed
Inside the operators side
All the box's are used and liner are all in place
Operators seat mounted in position, these are in most cases removed from the tanks I have seen. Nice to see everything is in its place note seat is also recovered
One of the ready sliding bins in place as well, again normally removed to allow more room for access
Radio setup, both radio's and power supply and all connecting leads
Nice to see all the little bits like headphones and mic's in place
Crew Commander seat in the lower position
Again all odds and ends in place
Yeah they found me a ladder and I did get onboard and into the operators area. At this point I am wondering how the hell I will get out.
No worries said Chris, stand on the gun frame and he depressed the gun and up I went like a lift, no worries.
Chris Nicholls Frank Nicholls
Again I have met another two great guys that could not he do enough to help me out. The work they have done on the Cent and their other vehicles is really quite unbelievable.
Everything works even the stab on the gun, not bad considering they had to work it all out themselves. As I want to get this page on the web tonight as I am off on a trip to Queensland, I will stop it here but there is still more to come on their other vehicles.
I will list here the tanks I have located
169000 Converted to a Drilling Rig now in the Congo
169001 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169002 Sent to the Pucka Range still complete externally
169003 Bilston Mining drilling Rig now in Qld
169004 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169005 Peter Jarratts on his property, at Smalltown, NSW
169006 On display Puckapunyal outside Museum
169007 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169008 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169009 In N.Z. At Wanaka Transport and Toy Museum
169010 Royal Military Collage Now in private hands
169011 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169012 Vietnam Vets display at Palmerston N.T.
169013 Andrew Cheshire Wangaratta
169014 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169015 Wrecked at Gerogery 1of 3
169016 Vietnam Vets Museum Phillip Island Victoria.
169017 Gate guard at Palmerston N.T. (Hull and Turret only)
169018 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169019 Wrecked at Sydney 1 of 7
169020 On Display at Calder Park Thunder Dome
169021 At Hall when entering Canberra on the Barton Hwy. Owner Ivan Krusiac
169022 N Wolfe W.A.
169023 Vince Ryan NSW In shed. SOLD TO Lamotte
169024 Wrecked at Gerogery 2 of 3
169025 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169026 Colin Brown Rhylstone NSW
169027 Kremors Model Aircraft Display at Wentworth NSW
169028 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169029 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169030 School of Military Engineering Moorbank NSW
169031 Gate Guard at Puckapunyal main entrance “Bewildered
169032 Instructor tank inside Museum Puckapunyal.
169033 Wilson Drilling
169034 Inside Puckapunyal Museum still wearing full side plates
169035 In private hands Ron Schneider S/W Horsham.
169036 Wrecked at Sydney 2 of 7
169037 Dorrigo Steam Train Museum NSW C/S 32A SGT Len Allen Balmoral
169038 Owned by private owner. Robert Parker Seymour
169039 Jonathan Lahy-Neary N.Z
169040 Stuart Buchanan Flowerdale
169041 C Squadron Hanger Palmerston N.T. (Restored)
169042 Owner Don McInnis Kingston S.A. Motor seized.
169043 In private hands. Owner Bruce Holt at Cower NSW
169044 Echuca – Moama R.S.L.
169045 Richard Clarke Macclesfield S.A.
169046 Wrecked at Sydney 4 of 7
169047 Vince Ryan NSW Inside Shed Sold to Pucka
169048 Destroyed as a hard target at gunnery range Puckapunyal
169049 Sold to New Zealand (Went to the chap for his birthday) C/S 21 LT Barry Sullivan Binh Ba
169050 Range Target Singleton Gunnery Range NSW
169051 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169052 John Langley W.A one of two
169053 Named Castlemaine In tank Museum Puckapunyal Being restored by 1st Armd. Regt.
169054 Wrecked At Sydney 5 of 7
169055 Private hands owner Ian Puls near Horsham. Has had the incorrect number since sold by Army, 196055, The painter must have had a drink at lunch time. Ian was not aware of the mistake.
169056 Holding Ground at Puckapunyal Parade Ground (one of two)
169058 Private owner Gold Coast (Named Cat Young Circus Co)
169059 Vince Ryan NSW No Turret (Wrecking)
169060 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169061 Vince Ryan NSW In Shed Sold to Pucka
169062 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169063 Private hands at Cape Schanck Victoria (Top condition still running)
169064 Destroyed as a hard target at gunnery range Puckapunyal C/S 22B Cpl. Barry Bennier Binh Ba
160065 Cherlot Drilling
169067 Bob Watson Cowra
169068 Range Target Puckapunyal
169069 In Private hands at Moligul Vic. Excellent condition Owners name Parker C/s 32 Lt Mick Butler - Driver Rusty Dyson - Loader Allen Jones Gunner Bob Gould 2 Troop C Sqn Balmoral
169070 Vince Ryan NSW In shed Sold to Pucka
169071 Vince Ryan NSW In shed Dozer Blade
169072 Holding Ground at Puckapunyal Parade Ground (two of two)
169073 Holding Ground 8/13 VMR Museum Bandiana.
169074 Vince Ryan NSW No Turret (Wrecking)
169075 Glenn Griffen Gold Coast Now sold to John Schuttoffel Qld
160076 Wrecked At Sydney 6 of 7
169077 Rod Visser Pearcedale. Runner.
169079 Dozer Tank in hanger in Museum Puckapunyal
169080 On display inside Museum Puckapunyal, no numbers but display plate on turret gives Serial No. 169080 This is the original.
169080 On display at 4 Base Workshops Bandiana. This is the rebuild
169081 Used 1 day as a Range target and rescued to the Armoured Gunnery Wing, Puckapunyal
169082 Wrecked at Gerogery 3 of 3
169083 Vince Ryan NSW Behind Shed Tarped Sold to Pucka
169084 Puckapunyal Range Target
169086 Vince Ryan NSW In Shed scrapped to Sydney
169088 Grollo Bros at Mansfield Vic.
169089 Gabe Zulian Jindabyne
169090 RSL Yarrawonga
169091 John Langley W.A. Scrapped at Sydney 7 of 7 Replaced by 169133
169092 Museum Cowra
169093 Nicholls Ballarat Beats Walking
169094 On private property just past Echuca
169095 R.S.L. Bendigo BULLWINKLE
169096 Bruce Cheshire Wangaratta C/S 21C Cpl Geoff Bennett Binh Ba (The Jinks)
169097 Vince Ryan NSW Behind Shed Tarped. Scrapped to Sydney
169098 Robert Emmins Werribee
169099 On display at Caribbean Gardens in Melbourne C/S 32B Cpl Shorty Britton 2 Troop C Sqn Balmoral
169100 Ian Holm Nth Gold Coast. Ian owns two cents
169101 RAEME. Recovery Training Wing Bandiana
169102 PRIVATE OWNER Peter Bailey Gunandah Nth NSW
169103 Becks Museum Nth Qld. Mareeba Near Cairns
169105 Vince Ryan Inside Shed
169106 Dozer Sgt’s Mess Armoured School
169107 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169108 This Cent is in storage at the Canberra Australian War Memorial.
169109 Brad Baker Qld “The Bitch”.
169110 This Cent is also at the war Memorial but on display. C/S22 Lt David Ritchie 2 Troop C Sqn Binh Ba
169111 ARV Melbourne Tank Museum Hallam
169112 ARV with crane on rear at Museum Puckapunyal
169113 ARV At Vince Ryan's property . Being kept by Tim Vibert
169114 ARV Vince Ryan Inside Shed
169115 On display at Caribbean Gardens Melbourne
169116 Army Museum Western Australia Ex SME NSW Static display Ex School of Military Engineering Sydney
169117 In private hands Jeff Morgan Qld. “Blood Sweat and Tears” C/S 3A
169118 Bare Hull still held by Tim Vibert
169119 Range Target Puckapunyal
169120 Tongala memorial
169122 ARV Tim Viberts Yard Wangaratta
169124 Marsden Park near Sydney at a Paint Ball Yard Named “Heartbreaker”
169125 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169126 1/15 Royal New South Wales Lancers Museum
169127 Vince Ryan NSW Inside Shed Kept by Tim Plus mono wheeled trailer 115405
169129 Private hands at Oberon NSW Owner Matt McMahon
169130 Wrecked at Sydney 3 of 7
169131 The second Tank owned by Ian Holm Nth Gold Coast
169132 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169133 169091 John Langley W.A.
169134 Inside Army Museum Bandiana
169135 In yard at 4 Base Workshops Bandiana
169137 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
169138 In U.S.A. Owned by Melody Movie Company
115541 ARV Bridge layer at Puckapunyal Museum
115542 ARV Bridge layer - Tim Vibert's yard Wangaratta
115543 ARV Bridge layer outside Museum Bandiana
115544 ARV Bridge layer at Puckapunyal Museum out the back in storage
Bridge in yard on display with vehicle on board
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