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1-25th scale White Road Boss fully converted to R/H drive and a 3 X 4 Allison Low Loader(Scratcbuilt trailer)

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Here’s a model of a truck that I used to drive.


I managed to get a start at Brambles Heavy Haulage yard at Hendra, Qld, back in 1978 and worked there for just on 5 years.

Managed to see most of Australia while getting paid to do the sightseeing too, mostly it was a very enjoyable job, occasionally it was a very hard and dirty job, but the hours were long, the pay was good and I was away from home for weeks at a time.


I quit the road and started to do the A.T.C. ( Around Town Clown ) and the missus reckoned I needed something to do, so she bought a box of bits and threw it at me and said she wanted to see the Brambles truck come out of that lot.

This model started life as a left hand drive long bonnet yankee version of a Road Boss.

Seeing as the Prime Mover was made in Australia, then it had to have a lot of conversions, to make it as per what was used on Australian roads and meet all of Australian Vehicle rules and regulations, which are quite different to the states.

This is the second attempt at making it, tried to make it from memory for the first one, but that was a failure, eventually saw the original truck unloading around Brisbane.

It was then owned by another driver who had bought it from Brambles and was still doing work for Brambles.
Took heaps of photos and lots of measurements and had to do drawings to scale to make it, there were quite a few conversions to the model along the way.
It required the steering to be changed to Right Hand along with the steering box and the dash had to be converted to R/H drive as well.

Different shorter wheelbase than what came in the box of goodies and lots and lots of other bits had to be changed/moved to get it to look correct as per Aust regs.

The motor started life as a Cummins, but with a bit of modifying, was eventually turned into a CAT 3306 as per the original truck.

The low loader was scratchbuilt from drawings I had done and the third axle on the drive, was just a Tag axle you slipped on and it gave you extra weight allowances on the drive group.
The load on the Low Loader is a Transformer that was made in Brisbane and had to be delivered to Adelaide Sth Aust, boy, was it a tad on the lumpy side if you get me drift.

The concrete bridge beam is another load that was done on site at Gladstone Qld, the flying fox that had been assembled on site to lift the bridge beams, was about 20ft short for the last bridge span. All these beams had to be transported about 30 kms around the other side of the river. As the crow flies, about 300 yards from the pick up point, very costly mistake that one, with the flying fox being too short.

First photo is of the actual truck when I picked up the brand new Low Loader, then a series of photos showing the two loads mentioned above. All these photos are taken on the old 35mm film, all this was way before digital JPEG's stuff.


This model was made about 1985 and virtually NO aftermarket bits were available AT ALL back then, so if you needed a bit, then you bloody well made it.

Not like today, where you jump on the web, pay your money and about a few days later, Voila, the bit turns up in the mail.

Oh, it even looks like you can now claim that the model is SCRATCHBUILT, once you add this minor detail you just bought, 'sheesh', what's happened to the pride that some modellers used to have, eh.



































Here's the drawing I had to make for the 3 X 4 Low Loader, this would have been all done back in about 1985. the model took about 12 months of night time and weekend work, be blowed if I can remember how many hours it took to make.






Here's the photo showing the transformer that went from Brisbane to Adelaide.

Bit of a story with this load, that's if anybody is interested.






Here's a photo showing just one of the concrete bridge beams, that had to be carried over to the other side of the Calliope River at Gladstone, Qld.






Here's a shot of where the concrete beams had to be unloaded, just 300 yards away from where they were loaded, but it was a 2hr drive just to cover that 30 Klm's.











Edited by radish1us
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Mate, impressive stuff and the build looks like it was a labour of love. 

Yes, scratchbuilding has changed, in some ways for the better. But this is old school and all the better for it.

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What a great job of research, planning, design

and scratch building to achieve a stunning result, especially the rhd conversion ! Some meaty loads you carried in those days.


I'm more than impressed ! And I'd be interested in the story of the transformer, when the spirit moves you.


Errr....pic #7......is that you or your oppo apparently peeing on the wheel.......??  :o}



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Yep, you nailed it, had to put a bit of humour into the model, eh.

Every time you stopped to check the tyres the body said 'leak time', so what better place when you have a busy highway just over your shoulder.


Took that model to Ballarat, Victoria not long after I finished it, placed it on the table on the Saturday morning and it took until about 2.00pm Sunday till a lady spotted it. She let out a holler and then everybody who happened to be in the room, descended onto that particular model. Some even complained to the organizers of the Model Show, for allowing such a thing to be displayed.

Spoil sports everywhere, eh.

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Hope that this is allowed, so here goes --------------------


Snuck into town one afternoon, with-out letting the office know where I was.

Didn't work though, only been home for about an hour and the phone rings, the missus was already clued up and to say, I'm not here, she answers the phone and immediately states, — I’m not here, this conversation went back and forth for a few exchanges of - I'm not here.

John Gerber was the main office ‘johnny’ and he was far too cunning to take this $hite from an amateur, like me missus.

Eventually she just handed me the phone, I was told to be at the Acacia Ridge Long Distance depot at Peterkin St, Acacia Ridge, at such and such a time in the morning, for a load to South Australia, hmm, no time off for the wicked, eh.

Some times I used to think that Brambles had a hot line, straight from the Gailes weigh bridge, as this had happened a few times, they always knew, when I was at home and shouldn't be there.

Next morning I arrive at the depot at the due time, Greg Jones is there with his blue coloured Ford "Looselybuilt", two L/L are already loaded with transformers. Greg's told to take one and the other is mine.

The transformer Greg has onboard the float that he’s under, is about half the size of the thing that’s sitting on my Allison 3 x 4 float, I had dragged a few transformers around the countryside by now to know, what these things were capable of weighing. So Greg's would have to be 18 to 20 ton, the one I had to drag was, in my eyes, about 35 - 40 ton, I could see real bad things eventuating, dragging this thing into Sth Aust. The scalies over there did not muck around at all, if they got you for being overloaded on an overload permit, then it was straight to jail, do not pass go to get your 200 bucks either, just watch your fingers as the door slammed shut.

The only way you were able to be released, was that the fine had to be paid in FULL, AND only then ------ was it ‘on your bike, sonny’.

Protestations were met with deaf ears, was told, - " JUST DO IT ", so Greg heads out the gate and I have to follow, they had even supplied a pilot for me, don't know why, as it didn't need one, suppose he must of been there for moral support, eh.

First thing in the way was that pesky hill called Cunningham's Gap, no fancy gear changes with this lot onboard, the first bit of the climb, I stopped and slipped it into 3rd deep, that way I could pluck first deep, if it was needed. Good choice of gearing, so decided to use the same on the second uphill rush.

In the meantime the pilot and Jonesy had done the dash to up top of the hill and were patiently waiting for me to appear on the scene, it was going to be one hell of a long wait for them, until I got up there.

The steepest part of Cunningham's Gap, was that very last left turn way up top, there were a few other steep pinches on that climb, but not like that last bit was.

The motor had done a bit of dropping of the revs as I went up that hill, so decided to grab that last cog in the box, where I could do it safely, just before that left turn up top, there used to be a waterfall on the left side of the road, the road actually flattened out a bit near this waterfall, perfect spot to grab that elusive cog, you could get it easy.
If you didn't,  then the only cogs that would be of any use to you, would be them ones that went in reverse.

Jonesy and the pilot heard the motor do the double shuffle, then all went quite, I did not want the right hand engine mount to break if I poured on the coal too hard, so just let the motor take up the road speed after the gear change. This loss of noise had the pilot and Jonesy worried, they thought I had missed the cog and they came running down around the corner expecting me to be either locked up backwards into the bank on the left hand side, or disappearing backwards over the edge on the right hand side of the road. They both stopped running real quick ,when they saw me coming at them,  very slowly though.

Waited about 15 mins up top of the hill before that motor had cooled down enough to continue on, that bloody Pyrometer ( exhaust Gas Temperature ) was a tad on the high side after doing that climb.

Get to the border of Sth Aust and NSW on a Saturday afternoon, stop at the pub that used to be there, into the bar and find out NO permits are there for us to pick up. Ring Brisbane and somebody had forgotten to apply for the permits, so would have to cool our heels until a couple of permits could delivered, they would appear from a bus that used to do the Adelaide Broken Hill run, this bus will not be appearing until Tuesday morning.

Greg Jones was like sponge when it came to beer, he enjoyed those few days of enforced hard drinking, me I could take it or leave it, so a quite time was had by all waiting for these permits.
Tuesday morning rolls around and the bus duly arrived with these bits of paper, along with a word of advise, that the scalies were spotted at such and such a place. Did not know if they were heading east or west, so, the game now heats up.

Greg is sent ahead as the scout, with all that booze in him, I reckoned they would just lock him up when they smelt him, without even spotting me at all.

So, a pub crawl down the highway, as we get to each pub, into it to find out if the scalies have ventured as far as this place. Good excuse for Greg to 'top -up' at each of these establishments. We keep going and keep stopping to find out any information about the scalies, when eventually we get to one fly spot on the map, Yunta, yep, the scalies had been here and now they were heading back to Adelaide.

Just the news we were after, so of once again, could not have been any more than five clicks out of Yunta and low and behold, two bloody cars full of these grubs appear over the crest, they both stop in a cloud of dust, all out waving their hands in the air. Greg’s got no choice at all, so he just pulls over and stops, me on the other hand, when they jumped out they were behind me. Now I need to get a bloody big gap between Greg and myself, just so that NO visual eye contact can be made, between these two vastly different sized bits of gear. So I Just creep ahead at a slow pace moving in and around all these white post at the top of this rise and when I couldn't see Jonesy in the mirror,  that's when I stopped.

In the meantime a very fat and overweight scalie is running, trying to catch up with me, I reckon he might have lost a couple of pounds of booze by the time I did stop. He is not amused at all with this little stunt I just pulled, he is threatening me with all sorts of recriminations.
Eventually he calmed down, maybe it was he was out of breath, anyway he orders that I hand over log book and permits, OK, do that and he takes a walk down the back, oh Chri$t, I'm gone now. Those little wheels down the back end normally had a good bulge, so at a glance, you could see, just how heavy this load was.

He walks back up front and tells me off once again for not stopping, informs me that my name will now be in the system forever for this little effort.

——————— EH, ——————————— NO TICKET for all the extra weight I got on board, I don’t believe this, so, as he walks of into the sunset, I jump out of the cab to have a look at these 'give away' tyres.
I do not believe what I'm seeing, the outside tyres are as round as the day they were made, W.T.F. is going on here, stick my nose over in between the two tyres and the inside one is deformed all out of shape, what had happened is that the inside right hand side tyres, had stopped on the ridge of gravel, that gets pushed up any time a car goes of the edge of the tar. With the inside tyres sitting on this ridge, the outside tyres had NO pressure on them at all, ——— well ‘bugger me’, ———— just dodged that bullet, eh.

Head on at a steady pace and arrive in Adelaide early the next morning, I'm under strict instructions, that I must make a phone call when I get to the Golden Fleece servo at the corner of the Barrier and Sturt highways, get there and Jonesy does the bolt, as he knows where he's going, me, into this servo and make the phone call, it's to Brambles yard in Adelaide.
This call did not go to the front desk , but direct to the managers desk. I tell him who I am and the first thing he asks, -  " are you parked out front of the servo " , — " yep ", —— " quick move it around the back of the servo, so that it can't be seen from the road, oh, and stay put till I get out there ".

I'm getting paid by the hour, so no skin off my nose if I have to ‘park me butt in a stationary chair’, could of got used to that real quick, eh.

About half an hour later this bloke walks in and glances around, spots me and makes a beeline to me, he is the depot Manager and he informs me that the weighbridge is open down the road at Elizabeth, these dudes had been opening early in the morning then closing down in the afternoon, been doing this for a couple of days now and hopefully today will be no different.
The manager has a Brumbles two way in the car, Brambles seemed to have paid for the very same radio wavelength all over Aust, even different division could be using the same radio wavelength, so I go back to the truck and wait for the word GO from this bloke. Each time he would drive up north passed the weighbridge and do a "U" turn and then go south, he would report over the radio as to what was happening, all these rude noises were stopping me falling to sleep as the day wore on. Eventually in the late afternoon, he says 'start it up' and he would be my guide into Adelaide to the drop of point.

Get going and the weighbridge is all locked up tight, so down into Adelaide and we do some twists and turns, me, I'm lost about now, so just keep following this car in front. Do a right turn into what looks like a wide ally, it's got this big tin fence down the end of the alley, me I'm thinking that this bloke has led me down a dead end street, when all of  a sudden, this big tin fence starts to open up, I'm told to just drive straight into this yard, do that and then this big fence is shutting once again.

Turns out that this is the back door, to this place where the Electricity Commission of South Australia store the transformers, so it didn't take long at all to get this one heavy chunk of the Low Loader.

This is  the only photo that I got of that transformer, parked up in that yard at Adelaide, Sth Aust.

This is the very same load, that I put on that 1/25th scale model of the Road Boss and Allison 3 x 4 low loader.

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Great story and an outstanding model.    I think models that you have an attachment to are the best ones and will bring back a memory every time you look at it.



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Well, I'm somewhat lost for words!  That is a most awesome truck model!

As a Queenslander myself, I am thoroughly familiar with Brambles trucks plying our highways.

Chances are I've crossed that Calliope River bridge more than a few times too.

Your work is very inspiring to me.  I'm presently building a Revell Kenworth W900 and an AMT Peterbilt 952.

I've been a born-again modeller since the early 90's but have not built a truck kit since I was about 13 years old (circa mid-70's).

I'm really enjoying my return to truck modelling - although much less ambitious than your beautiful Road Boss!

Thanks for the inspiration! :clap2::clap2::clap2:

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I "liked" this build earlier this week but didn't have time to comment. It's a fantastic build and I can see how that trailer took a while, what with all the detail you put on it. Excellent work. The load looks heavy even in scale 🙂 


@kapam It would be nice to have your truck builds as a WIP on the forum, we need more of them! 

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"It would be nice to have your truck builds as a WIP on the forum, we need more of them! " ---------


Given up on building model trucks from kits and highly modifying them, now into scratchbuilding only, sorry about that. 🙂

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1 hour ago, radish1us said:

"It would be nice to have your truck builds as a WIP on the forum, we need more of them! " ---------


Given up on building model trucks from kits and highly modifying them, now into scratchbuilding only, sorry about that. 🙂

Nothing to be sorry about I'd say. 


By the way I asked Mr. "Kapam" if he could show the truck builds he mentioned in the "Work In Progress" section, but now that you mentioned your scratch building efforts, I for one would be very interested to see how you went about that so that would be interesting to follow as well. Next time you start a project, maybe you could share the proceedings with us.

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JeroenS, if you want to see an SBS of one of my builds, then click onto the link below, there are numerous pictures of the parts that go into the model ---------------- 



Edited by radish1us
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Thanks! I'm that guy that doesn't have Facebook so I could only see a few pics but it's truly amazing. I'm moving house next year and I'll have way more modelling space and to celebrate that fact I have the 1/16 Peterbilt 359 coming in. For me it's better to use a kit as a starting point 😉 ... But I will be converting it and adding detail, on my own level of course 🙂 Builds such as yours are very inspiring. 

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