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|Strickland Bren Tractors|
|In the period just after 1945, there was a major shortage of agricultural tractors in Australia. The Victorian Government looked into the possibility of converting a number of surplus Machine Gun tracked carriers to temporary tractors to fill the gap before purpose-designed tractors became available.
Engineer Jack Strickland of Albert Park came up with a number of modifications to LP2 and 2A Carriers to adapt them for use on the farm.
First, they were lightened, with most of the armoured superstructure being cut off. The driving position was moved from the front to the right rear with lever steering, and the engine was fitted with a vaporiser to adapt it to run on power kerosene. The drive sprocket was swapped for a smaller one to lower the gearing, which also necessitated widening the track so the driving sprocket didn't foul the brake drums.
A swinging drawbar for the implement was fabricated for the rear.
The Carriers were purchased from disposals for fifty pounds and sold to farmers, delivered within Victoria for 275 pounds. 150 were modified over a six year period to 1952.
|One of two Strickland Carriers owned by Jon Belfield and kept at his Melbourne Tank Museum in Narre Warren.|
|John's other Strickland Carrier, a LP2A 1449 seen at Corowa for the 2005 rally.||The driving position showing the stick steering. The right-hand lever could be locked as a hand brake.|
|The engine showing the fuel vaporiser. This carrier was once owned by the founder's grandson, Matthew Strickland.||Matt fitted this engine to the carrier. It had been sitting for some 40 years after the original motor had been used in a speedboat.|
|LP2A version owned by Bert Barker in 1972|
|AAnother Strickland Bren Tractor seen in the same area back in the early 70s. This one was still active at the time.||Note the cleats fitted for extra traction.|
|This example was photographed in the early 1970s in Trentham.|