National Motor Museum, Adelaide

National Motor Museum, Adelaide


We made it to Adelaide and one of my first stops was to the National Motor Museum. It’s actually located about an hour’s drive north east of town in a town called Birdwood.

Holden, General Motor’s Australian division, has spent a lot of money here, and it can be seen in the many Holden exhibits. The museum houses a few hundred cars and motorcycles, and most of them were made specifically for the Australian market.
Oz Italian

The only Italian Exotics I found in the whole museum was this RHD Miura and Daytona. Both are currently owned by a “Dr. J Priedkains.” I don’t think the curators would have approved of me looking for serial numbers!

There were some interesting displays of vehicles used to travel the outback of Australia. These trucks and the men who drove them had a level of endurance and self reliance beyond the norm. Without repair shops and a parts supply, these trucks were kept running with ingenutiy and whatever was available. This truck was used to deliver goods to people north of Adelaide who otherwise wouldn’t get supplies like tools, clothes, and dishes. One interesting modification on this truck is the log dangling behind the right rear wheel. Harry Monsoor would release the rope holding the log from inside the truck if he needed to stop the truck from rolling back down a steep incline he had just climbed!
kruse truck

The one truck I came this far to see was this 1936 Leyland Badger. Tom Kruse was the Birdsville Postman from the late 30s until the mid 50s, and delivered everything from people to supplies all along the Birdsville Track north east of Adelaide. His exploits were made famous in documentary “The Back of Beyond,” shot in the 50s that won worldwide critical acclaim. I picked up a biography about Tom in Canberra called the “Mailman of the Birdsville Track,” which culimnated with the restoration of this mail truck.  After the restoration, Tom Kruse took the Badger on one last mail run up the Birdville track at the age of 85! After the momentous trip in 2002, Tom donated
the truck to the museum for this display. Here was a story I identified with!

cuttle bone

Thanks to everyone who responded about what this thing was I’ve been finding on the beaches in Australia. I now know it’s a Cuttle bone. The only hard remains of a Cuttle Fish, it helps the invertabrate with boyancy. Now that people have told me, I remember seeing this “bone” hanging in bird cages used for parakeets to gnaw on and sharpen their beaks.

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