MVFMS have several restoration projects under way at present. John Neal, our club secretary, has taken on a big project restoring a Hanomag crawler, Model Z25. It is believed to have been built in 1918 & approximately 800 were built. It is considered to be one of only a few left in the world. They were developed by the Germans to circumnavigate the arms embargo & develop tracked vehicle technology by building crawlers instead of tanks. Approximately six were bought into New Zealand at the end of World War 1 by the Public Works Dept as part of Germany’s war restitution.
Our next restoration project will be the former Blenheim Borough Council McLaren steam roller named “Kate”. Kate is a very good example of this model steam roller which was imported into New Zealand & then shipped to Blenheim in 1934. It was the last of the steam powered rollers & was in service until the late 1960’s preparing Blenheim roads for sealing. Kate has been powered by a petrol engine driving a hydraulic pump & motor but the club have most of the parts to return it to steam & with the skilful Jeff Rowberry heading the restoration project the rest of the parts will be manufactured using existing parts from other machines as templates.
The horse drawn Cuthbert Harvester is one of the oldest machines at MVFMS. It was imported by Mr.H Redwood of Waimea Plain, Nelson in 1855 & then shipped to his son’s property in Blenheim before being sold to Mr.G Rutland of Jackson’s Rd,Blenheim in 1866. Here it was used on his farm until 1869 when it was shipped to his Pelorus Valley property where it was in use until 1891.
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