Light rig a total steal in decades gone by
The 1950 Albion Chieftain
TALK about a historical bargain, this Chieftain comes with a price that would have spendthrifts grinning. Shame about inflation. When it first arrived in Brisbane from the Albion Motors’ works in the UK, the milk and chocolate brown 4x2 Albion FT 38L was just a cab and chassis.
A deposit of 200 pounds (just $400 if we convert) secured its purchase for its then-new owner, Mr F Whyte of Amboola Siding, out on the southwestern line between Mitchell and Mungallala in western Queensland.
A tray body was added to the truck at the cost of 100 pounds ($200) and when ready for delivery it cost, after tax and fully insured with 205 litres of diesel on board, the then-considerable sum of a little under 2906 pounds. That’s a mere $5810.85. At the time the tax component was $366, comprehensive insurance $40.25 and third-party insurance just $2.70.
The 205 litres of diesel was an incredible 4 pounds 18 shillings and 10 pence. Just $9.90. The initial deposit was paid in late April 1951 and the truck was first registered in late May of the same year.
On delivery the truck was apparently taken to Mitchell at night to avoid road tax.
The Albion was used to primarily cart livestock at Amboola for the next 45 years until in 1999 it was moved to Oban homestead northwest of Dirranbandi.
It remained with its original owners until 2001 when it was purchased by Doug Clark, who brought it back to Southeast Queensland for restoration.
Interestingly nicknamed “Claude”, the FT 38L underwent a five-month restoration before being re-registered on “club” registration in September 2001.
It remains in Mr Clark’s hands.
It has a recorded tare of four tonnes two hundredweight and an aggregate of six tonnes.
The patterned clipboard hanging from the Albion’s radiator cap tells its story.
The tastefully restored, near-70-year-old Albion is often seen at heritage truck shows across Southeast Queensland.
HISTORY IN MOTION: The 1950 diesel-powered 4x2 six ton Albion FT 38L.
The tastefully restored rig is almost 70 years old and a regular on the heritage truck show scene.