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The first RFW ....... looks suspicious to me

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4 years 5 months ago - 4 years 5 months ago #206792 by Rattail 1927
It looks like someone else’s truck, looks like a KM Bedford cab without the top bar , I shouldn’t say looks like one it is , I’ve never seen a Bedford 8x4 , and it’s the first one, I wonder how many were made before they used the glass cabs , the date I got this article was dated October 1969 .
Last edit: 4 years 5 months ago by Rattail 1927.

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4 years 5 months ago #206795 by Morris
Yes, Robert (Bob) F. Whitehead started RFW by modifying trucks for extra capacity and/or ability. Possibly to increase the market for his Permatrac suspension/drive. I did not know him at that time. He went on to purpose-build trucks to do whatever job the customer wanted.

I have my shoulder to the wheel,
my nose to the grindstone,
I've put my best foot forward,
I've put my back into it,
I'm gritting my teeth,

Now I find I can't do any work in this position!

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4 years 5 months ago #206800 by hayseed
rattail 1927, There's heaps of info on RFW Trucks here on this Forum..

www.google.com/search?q=rfw+hcvc+site:ww...RAN&biw=1920&bih=969

Also Forum member Jumbo worked at RFW for quite a while & his their unofficial Historian..

"Be who you are and say what you feel...
Because those that matter...
don't mind...
And those that mind....
don't matter." -

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4 years 5 months ago - 4 years 5 months ago #206808 by Rattail 1927
I thought someone would be interested, especially with that 8x4 twin steer and that’s the first truck to roll off the assembly line and the fact that there’s a Bedford KM cab without the top bumper on it which actually looks good.
I’m not a fan personally of the boxy RFW cabs , they should have stuck with the Bedford cabs , lol but I guess they done the job!
Last edit: 4 years 5 months ago by Rattail 1927.

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4 years 5 months ago #206811 by lantana jack

Rattail 1927 wrote: I put it on because that’s the first truck to roll off the assembly line and the fact that there’s a Bedford KM cab without the top bumper on it which actually looks good I’m not a fan personally of the boxy cabs , but I guess they done a job!


...and its still got the trade plate on it..:) Perhaps the first load for the first truck...

.


“The improver of natural knowledge absolutely refuses to acknowledge authority, as such. For him, skepticism is the highest of duties; blind faith the one unpardonable sin.” Thomas Huxley

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4 years 5 months ago #206827 by JOHN.K.
Think its the first bought by the sandpit.....anyhoo ,in those days it was common to stick another axle under your truck in the back yard....old man had a AEC,and he got a bus front and used it .....didnt need any brakes either ......most twin steers didnt have brakes on the second axle.......Used to be alot of home made twin steer,single drives about ,Commers especially ,and some ACCOs.......you could get factory twin steer /single drive Leyands and Albions......RFW s front was load sharing with a six rod setup ,like the back...You could even stick an axle in the middle ,tyres used to strip off in a week......Nanny state now,until the Chinese take over.
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4 years 5 months ago #206829 by wee-allis
Used to drive an RFW for Channel 9. It was twin steer and single drive for it's early life, but after several overweight fines they added a tag axle on the rear. It was built on a space frame type chassis on airbag. Power was by screamer, with Alison box. It was supposed to have limited slip diff, but I never saw sign of it.
The cab had the front of a Custom Coach bus body blended to a Pantech.

Also drove an RFW coach. 903 and Fuller 5 speed.. It was on coil suspension. To aid traction when light, the tag axle, which was on airbag could be dumped by a knob on the dash. To stop the tag axle brakes locking up when the air was dumped, the cunning old bugger used the air bags as brake resevours for the tag brakes. Less load, less tag axle brakes.
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4 years 4 months ago - 4 years 4 months ago #207068 by Jumbo
The first 8 RFW built has KM Beddy cabs that came off Bedford chassis being converted to buses

The Channel 9 RFW #176 chassis is at The Oaks near Camden for sale
It was built with a True Trak diff centre

RFW # 116 - 4x2
Last edit: 4 years 4 months ago by IHScout.
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4 years 4 months ago - 4 years 4 months ago #207069 by Dave_64
Just looking at the shape of the front of that cab, as well as the grille, looks bit more like a bit of F model Mack grafted into it, moreso than the early bedstead cabs??
Any specs known about that particular jigger?
Last edit: 4 years 4 months ago by Dave_64.

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4 years 4 months ago - 4 years 4 months ago #207070 by wee-allis
Thanks Jumbo, often wondered what happened to the old girl. Over the years, I drove it between Capital cities up and down the coast and to Adelaide often. We used to do the cricket and the Grand Prix in those days.
My longest single trip was from Brisbane to Port Douglass to shoot a documentary on the Mirage Resort, to be shown in Japan only. Left Brisbane Saturday morning and got to Rockhampton that night. Big storm and the highway was cut. West through Dingo and Emerald then up the dirt to Charters Towers for Sunday night.. Road still cut at Townsville, so up the dirt through Milla Milla and Milanda to Cairns for Monday night then into Port on Tuesday morning.

Left it there until Saturday morning then headed south. Road still blocked at Townsville so west to Richmond for the night. Next day Winton, then into Brisbane Monday night, Drop the truck off and fly home. We were gentlemen truckers in those days.

John, as I said in my earlier post, it had the front panel of a Custom Coach bus body, don't remember whether it was 6v92 or 8v92. Alison transmission and as Jumbo said, "True Trak" diff centre. It was a shit of a thing to get in and out of, as the door was set so far back. You had to get in and slide the seat about a foot and a half forward to reach the wheel, and the reverse to get back out. No idea what they want for it now, but it was valued at $2,000,000 when I drove it, because of all the Tech gear it was fitted out with.

On the trip above, the Jakes failed as I was about to come down the range. Stop at the top, let everything cool down, Alison in bottom cog and lower the old thing over the edge. Sparing the brakes, Alison changes up and picks up speed, brakes start smoking reeal bad. Managed to get it to the bottom and pulled it off the edge of the road and dragged the front axles in the dirt to stop. When I got out, the old legs went to jelly. Ended up sitting in the dirt, leaning on the front wheel. Closest thing I ever came to dying in a truck.

As a side note, there is the rear chassis and drive train from a 903 powered RFW coach lying in a yard here in Moruya.
Last edit: 4 years 4 months ago by wee-allis.
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