Land Rover restoration by TAFE NSW students to celebrate 100 years of NRMA.
The next generation of auto technicians training at TAFE NSW Ultimo are taking a trip back to Australia’s past to restore a 1958 Land Rover.
The vehicle was among the first Series 1 Land Rovers used by NRMA Roadside Patrols during that decade and once restored, it will play a part in the company’s centenary celebration in 2020.
TAFE NSW exclusively trains NRMA MotorServe automotive apprentice Technicians at the modern, three-storey Auto-Cell, where automotive students have access to world-class learning facilities.
This project was an opportunity for students, enrolled in Certificate III Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology, to develop skills they would not normally acquire whilst working on a modern vehicle.
TAFE NSW Automotive Team Leader Christopher Greentree said that the vehicle’s history and very old technology has the students excited and engaged with the project.
“While the students will use their skills to complete a full mechanical restoration, including brakes, steering, suspension and electrical, preserving the original exterior and interior was preferable from a conservation point-of-view, and would be aligned with current trends in vehicle preservation.
“There is a once-only chance to retain the original paintwork which presents a more visually interesting and unique record of the Land Rover’s working life. “Vehicles in what is sometimes termed ‘barn-find’ condition can be worth more than fully restored cars.
“This is project is an example of how TAFE NSW can offer customised training and solutions to companies and organisations with unique requirements.”
The Land Rover spent a number of years sitting in a paddock in Western Sydney. It still sports the faded sign writing and remains in the condition it was in when last used by NRMA patrolman, Milton Loder. His son Shane donated it to the NRMA in 2014.
NRMA General Manager Roadside Operations Melanie Kansil said this iconic and historic vehicle would play a role in the company’s centerary celebration in 2020.
“NRMA patrol vehicles have become an iconic part of Australia’s driving history since 1920,” Ms Kansil said.
“When brilliantly restored by the TAFE NSW students this 1958 Land Rover will certainly bring back memories for our staff and members. Series 1 Land Rovers themselves are fairly unique, but this one has a nice local connection and is quite a rare find.
“We are so grateful to the family who donated this special vehicle and the students who have worked so hard on it. I hope they have the same sense of pride about this vehicle as we do.”