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Page 5



The Oberon Military and Steam Show

The Oberon Show is normally a horse type event, but due to the horse flu in N.S.W.'s there is really no movement of horses allowed -- this meant that there was no show this year. The Show committee contacted Matt McMahon in mid December and asked him if he could organize something along military and or car display. With only 8 weeks he set to work and put together this years event. And did he achieve his goal? My bloody oath he did.

I traveled from Kilmore in Victoria with a mate, John Clifford an ex Navy Fleet Air Arm Armourer, up to Oberon on the Friday 15th, leaving my place at 7 am and having a good drive to Oberon just past Bathurst, arriving about 6pm. We booked into the motel and then proceeded down to the Show grounds.

We were mainly looking for Matt McMahon who had brought his units in from about 25 kls away driven in under their own power on the roads

I have been accused of copying photos from a web site. I do not copy anyone's photos. These photos were given to me on a CD and I was not informed of any copyright restrictions. But I have removed them as the owner who I have never been in contact with or viewed their website is not happy.

All through this project you will see credit to people who have given me photos . It simply means a small bit of text under the photo, no big deal, why anyone would consider I would be bothered stealing their photos I have no idea. But there are some blank spaces now, sorry about that.

If you look down the page you will see some photos of the Matilda doing a turn and notice the credit to "Al", under them!!

As I believe everyone should be able to see all the information I have copied the Guest Book entry here with my comments in blue


Hi Col,

I have just been made aware that several of my photos from the heritage vehicle rally at Oberon earlier this year appear on your website and while I appreciate that you have obviously been in touch with the organisers of the event I have never granted you permission to use any of my photos and you are there for in breach of copyright laws. The least preferred option (for both of us I'm sure) is that you remove the photos from your site. THIS I DID IMMEDIATELY However, as Matthew is a good friend of mine I am more than happy to promote his event. So, if you would like to continue to use my photos please credit each of them to me This is normal practice that I do and something I would be happy to comply with and provide a link to my website NO way!  This is not a requirement with copyright and I alone have the right to decide who I link my site to. (where I assume you got the photos in the first place.) INCORRECT!!  They were forwarded to me on a CD with many other photos. I note that you ask people to seek your permission before using any of your material in your own copyright notice. Correct! You would do well to apply the same standards to yourself. This is the bit that got up my nose. I do in every case ask for copyright, I have 12 CD's of emails where I ask for and obtain Copyright. In this case as I have received many photos from Matt over the years I assumed it was ok. On that point, I was incorrect and so removed the photos immediately. In future please ask my permission before using my clearly copyrighted images. That situation will never arise again I can assure you. And the images were not clearly copyrighted.


Tracey Johns

Tony driving the David Brown

The Lanz D 25 hp ready to go

Kelly C C of the Mitilda has a  rest on the way into Oberon, its a slow trip in a Mitilda

The Matilda and two of the Bren's heading towards the main road, about 17kls away

Not far now to the main road

Still going strong

Great Tank Country

Matt's Centurion was on display.

The Bren's and Mitilda in position next to the Centurion

Two of Matt's Bren's 308 and 2118

Matt's third Bren this was not a runner when I last visited, but it sure is now.

Matt's Matilda

I should point out that there were another lot of Matt's tractors and implements on display as well as Matt's Father's entries

There were two jeeps there on the Friday but a heap more arrived Saturday morning

L to R: Roly Davey the owner of the Chev post hole digger below. Then Andy McFarlane owner of the movie camera car below and my mate John Clifford (JayCee)

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Very nice unit and the owner was in full German uniform

The two left hand side bikes are Zundapp KS 75's the bottom one is a BMW R75    The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.   

Top again the BMW and the bottom one is a BSA side valve 500 cc with girder forks

Matt sent down these photos of the Matilda giving the kids a ride and doing a smart neutral turn


The photos were taken by Al,  who also supplied the ones later of the Fairlane leading the convoy home

Steam Traction Engines  The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

These were a joy to watch and listen to with beautiful steam whistles. One competed in the tractor pull and just kept going, I doubt anything would stop them.

It was also great to see them driving around the circuit and notice that a young girl about 10 years old with a boy about seven were driving it (with owners sitting behinds them)

A couple of beautiful scale models, every piece built by hand to scale

A Very nice Bulldog Tractor - Note the steering shaft laying on the ground, also used to crank the motor

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This shot in no way shows the detail and quality of this rig

The truck has been restored to 1st class quality with a special wooden tray floor. You can see two matching wooden planks for the tractor to sit on

The tractor is held in place by gold color chains. - The quality of the tractor is as good as the truck

I did not get to speak with the owner, but can see that its a unit I doubt the tractor ever comes off the tray.

A really beautiful display and again shows the amount of time and detail and cost that these people will spend on their projects.

But what a rewarding pass time!  The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

The two photos above were also taken by Al and kindly passed on by Matt at the Corowa meeting a few weeks later

A very nice T model Ford bakers cart, it ran like clockwork and more or less sounded like a clock.

Very nice 1934 Ford V8

These photos were taken with two different camera's, notice the different color shades

The top photo is the correct color

Cleanest car at the show, this  FB Holden and this car has not been restored, its in original condition

The paint color is special, it was used on cars exported to Sth. Africa

 and when that ceased the left over paint was used on about 600 vehicles sold here in Australia

So this is a unique car in more ways than one.

                                             A couple of nice Austin 40's                                                                                         A really top class restoration                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   


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The pictures do not do this Ute justice. The body lifts up either side about 2 feet. I also think it does the same front and rear. It is a maze of hydraulics and electronics. They said it can cover just about an terrain

In these photo's the left hand side is up on a 2 ft embankment and in the first photo the body is level The last shot is of course on the flat

1909 Stanley Steamer

The finish on this old unit was fantastic. The story I was told that there were two units in the steam setup, I did not ask if it was two chambers or what, but in a high speed test on an American beach it exceeded 100 mph, when the driver switched off as he did not think the car would survive. But it was still accelerating when he switched off! And they were only using one ? Chamber? Boiler? whatever. But its a car that has never been extended to its maximum.  


The Grand Parade

A first prize winner - an immaculate Austin

Note the spiked wheels on the tractor

Fantastic Farmall restoration

This appears to be  a big brother to the tractor on the Ford Truck They look identical except for size

There was so much here to see, I missed talking to a lot of owners.

I took photos and a full video, more than I have ever taken in one day before.

The Stanley running like a singer sewing machine - very quiet.

Matt's Group following his Centurion

Matt's Bren's moving past

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Matt's Matilda

Darren driving the Centurion

This was the only road damage I saw and this was because Darren, Matt's brother, who was driving had to stop for young girl in a car. When he moved off he had to hit the left stick and it chopped the road. but nothing to worry about. Other than that there was no damage as Darren took a left stick and then a slow long right one to do a right turn and I was amazed, that the road surface was not damaged.

Darren gives her a bit of stick as he does the turn

Heading the Parade in the Main Street and sounding great, you cannot mistake the squeak of a Centurion Tracks

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The German group

The front motor cycle with the trailer attached is a R75 BMW as is the second one. The third one is a Zundapp, all are 750CC horizontal opposed twins

A German Volkswagen type 82 Kubelwagen

This unit was issued to Waffen SS ,2nd SS Panzer

Matt's Mitilda

"Sooty" and the other steam engines were a bit slower

The Zandapp 750 complete with trailer and full uniform

The Stanley Steamer was very elegant

There were about a dozen Jeeps in the parade

It was indeed quite a long line up.

The Rod looked great

Then it was back into the Show Grounds

The Miss Oberon show girls



I was in the convoy sitting just behind the Centurion that was going at a very nice speed, showing 40 klm on my Speedo. I was taking some video shots out the drivers side, my still camera having run out of batteries, when I noticed some smoke coming out of the transmission vents. I blew a pretty long blast on my horn and the guy doing the Crew Commanders job, looked back and I pointed to the smoke. It had by this time increased and Darren pulled the Cent off the road as soon as possible. Then a great amount of smoke came out of the drivers hatch, turret cupola and the engine compartment. When we lifted the transmission covers and raised the radiators to assist the cooling down (She had hit 240 deg.) (The engine cutouts were still connected but had not stopped the motor) A guy said that there was a V belt showing, and I replied "Not down there" to which he replied "Yes I can see it." I knew at once that the fan belts had broken. Travis the turret and open the engine bay and sure enough they were all broken. As she cooled down, Matt went home for a couple of sets of belts. They were replaced and the Cent was home about 9 pm.  Matt later told me a heat shield had come off and that was what hit the fan belts. One belt had ended up under the clutch and jammed there , and this was where all the smoke came from. At this point I ran out of Video Film.

The Centurion was leading the convoy on the way home and we were sitting tucked in behind it. This was also one of Al's photo taken from the turret of the Cent, just before the smoke appeared

Heading the convoy home                                                                    Smoke coming from the Centurion                                                    Pulling off the road when safe

The Matilda heading off past the stopped Centurion                                              Looking for the cause of the smoke

Sorry about the quality of these five shots but they are taken from the Video

The reason the Centurion Stopped on the way home

Part of the convoy on the way out to Matt's farm to camp overnight.

The 4WD towing a farm implement home lost it when crossing the cattle grid holding up some of the convoy.

Due to speeds the convoy ended up in about 5 sections

Centurion and the German group and the Jeeps were going well at about 40 klicks

The Matilda and some tractors were doing about 10 klicks, some other units were mixed up between all these

The dirt road was very dusty making everyone spread out as it obscured vision. This shot gives a view of the rolling country side.

The tanks used the paddocks and only came back onto the road for the gateways At this point I also ran out of digital camera batteries having used three sets that day

Repairing the broken fan belts -  Taken on the return from Matt's farm on our way back to the Motel

We were lucky to be able to pull the Cent off the road when the belts broke

These photos were taken on a cheap second camera that John had, as  his main camera also ran out of batteries as well.

Here are a couple that Matt sent to me last night

Engine running - all finished

Moving off at 8.17 PM

Wonder if the big spot was used once they got off the main road?

Unfortunately my left knee, which was in a bad way, started to play up and my right one started to go out in sympathy so it off home. We missed the Bar-B-Cue at Matt's and the camp over and next day which was a big disappointment but all day on my crook knee was a bit much for it.


Visit to Temora Aviation Museum

On the way home

John, as an ex Fleet Air Arm guy, was interested in seeing some planes at this Airport Museum

And as it was between Cowra and Wagga and only forty klicks off our way we went over

It was well worth seeing every thing looking brand new but in fact it was just well looked after

There was a big main hanger with 8 fully restored planes, and I mean fully restored, like brand new.

Unfortunately the light set up was very subdued to protect the planes I imagine, but useless for taking photos even with the flash.

But we then went up to view the workshop with excellent light.

There was not a speck of dust in this workshop

In fact the whole setup inside and out was immaculate

Below are a couple of displayed photos, which came out much better than I expected

Then off to Albury where we took the new bypass by mistake and missed Albury completely



Called in on Tim Vibert on the way back, but managed to miss him. So took a few shots of his Centurions.

All were under tarps and as Tim was not there we took photos of them as they were

This collection I believe Tim will keep as they are all historical  units

169122  ARV

169071  Dozer


115542  Bridge Layer

169113  ARV

Hong Kong Centurion full restored Mk 3 - only Mk 3 in Australia

169071 Dozer front view

169113 ARV front view

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