Aktipete - The brand is Smith Rodley. Not a common machine. We had an RB10 in the Army, but I never got to play with it. God almighty, they are a nightmare of levers and pedals and brakes, and you look like a one-armed paper hanger in a willy-willy when you're operating them. The operator of the RB10 we had in 'Nam was a little blackfella .. from Condobolin, I seem to recall - Micky Wighton was his name - but he was a black 'un ..
He had the hang of the RB10 .. but I never wanted to learn to drive it. I was happy with dozers, scrapers, loaders, graders and forklifts .. I could get into enough trouble with them ..
Bills Machinery in Perth currently has a couple of 3 cyl Ruston engines, and I swear they've come out of an old shovel or dragline. The trouble with all of Bills stuff, he buys crap at auctions for bugger all .. gives it a Dulux overhaul .. then puts it on eBay for a million dollars. He'll start getting a heap of negative feedback soon, when all the buyers realise they've been had ..
Thats the one, anyhow if you get over here one day there are two of them at the Steam Club in Scoresby. I usnderstand Lake Goldsmith have been given another monster steam shovel, this one mounted on railway bogies.
Those rail mounted steam shovels with the turntable-mounted boom are the grandaddy of 'em all, and they date from the 1840's when they needed to do big projects, such as cuttings for the railways that were going in everywhere. I'd presume they were an extension of the big cranes that were produced to recover train wrecks.
It never ceases to amaze me what they achieved by way of massive earthmoving output in those days.
The old fellas also woke up to the steam shovel potential in dam-building and mining, and they would run a rail line up to the face, with a parallel line beside it, and run rail trucks up the line, just the right distance from the shovel, for loading.
The HCEA site has a lot of pics of these old shovels in operation. This is where Marion, P&H, Bucyrus, Ruston, etc, made all their money, building these monsters in the era where the shovel and a dray, was your only other alternative. When you see a pic of a steam shovel loading drays, you know it's old .. although, when Canberra was built, in the late 1920's, steam shovels and drays were still being used in the earthmoving.
The steam shovels were still around after WW2, but big diesels produced from the mid 1930's, set the tone for their demise.