Saturday, December 31, 2016

Coulda, Shoulda, Didna

It is a case of could have, should have but didn't and I've been kicking myself for 35 years. Oh well.
Back in 1981 I had the chance buy this 1947 Hudson and if I had..........

No it was not a funeral flower car!

It did have a strange "customized" pick-up body - purpose unknown.

I found this truck in the Annapolis Valley of Novas Scotia, where it probably now rests in peace.

As we leave an old year behind, let's enter a new one without regrets...

Happy New Year


Friday, December 30, 2016

Long haul ahead for long rig

Spotted on the waterfront today, this big Western Star has a long haul ahead.

Hauling a cable reel on nine axles to distribute the load.  

Triton Transport Ltd of Chilliwack, BC and Edmonton, AB got the job to carry cable made by Bridon  to the Jansen Mine, a potash development near Leroy, SK (east of Saskatoon and north of Regina).

See more on Triton's excellent web site:

The truck is well equipped with tire chains (slung just behind the fuel tank) and special flaps just below the door step-box, to equip it for winter driving. Hardly visible due to all the crane clutter in the background, is a very nice low profile light bar on the cab roof.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas from Truckfax

November 24, 1979. A White COE operated by Ray Merlin Trucking is about to set out for the United States with a load of Nova Scotia balsam fir Christmas trees.
The old auto rack trailer has been "customized" to carry the seasonal cargo.


Friday, December 23, 2016

Maritime-Ontario - back then - a round up

I have pretty much exhausted my Maritime-Ontario photo collection, so this is definitely the last installment -  - Part 7 of 5!
M-O had nearly every truck brand imaginable in its stable at one time or another, so here is a round up of those not previously shown, starting off with Ford. It was not until 1970 that Ford really entered the heavy truck  field, with the Louisville series, and then the LTL 9000 with the option of Cat of Cummins engines under a big fibreglass tilt hood aimed at long haul trucking.

 This basic LTL-900 and sleeper was heading out of Fredericton in the pre-bypass days of 1988.
MO # 570, reefer # 5570
Another basic Ford at the Dartmouth terminal.
MO # 524

There were also Fords with really big sleepers, styled somewhat after the KW Aerodyne.
Glenn Peddle O/O
MO # 678 and reefer trailer # 5678

Same style, different truck, this one on the mail haul.
MO # 571 trailer #3484

Ford also got into the streamliner race with the Aeromax L9000, which also had a set back front axle and a sleeper that may or may not fill up all the space behind the deflector. 
MO # 821, trailer # 3506

International made some sharp looking trucks, particularly the TransStar Eagle, with a wide cab and the unique stacked headlights. This un-numbered unit also has the big mid-rise sleeper that all brands eventually came up with. Trailer # 5560

I think the flat top sleepers were the sharpest however, and this one, with an old fashioned stake side trailer and tarp top, was particularly fine, thanks to the continuation of the stripes.
Dale Forsythe of Centreville, NB was the O/O.
MO # 655

One more Mack Superliner to round out the series. A plain jane mid-rise sleeper and simple colour scheme gives this un-numbered rig a very business-like look.
The bug deflector behind the golden bulldog says "Family Tradition".

A nice KW in the back frames this terrific looking rig. The full width cab, low rise  integral sleeper and tombstone rad made the best looking White ever made. Unfortunately this look was not for long. White and GMC were merged under Volvo ownership, and the diagonal bar (from Volvo) was the first outward sign. GMC was soon added to the badge, but this was still a White, at least in name.
Full width cabs and integral sleepers became the industry standard, but this was the first.
MO # 648 trailer # 5648

Postscript: As mentioned before, the colour fade on print film has resulted in very washed out photos in this last secvtion. Regretably most of my truck pix or on print film. However I will delve back into the slides for the next series. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Maritime-Ontario - back then - FLs and KWs

The big trucks of the day were Kenworths, with Freightliner pulling a close second, and of course Maritime-Ontario had a worthy selection of each.

Ready to hit the road with a dry van this KW conventional has the traditional small sleeper, with an added roof top deflector.
MO # 776, trailer # 3518

In 1976 Kenworth introduced the Aerodyne sleeper on its COEs, and conventionals for some hi-rise space.
Owner/Operator Tom, Badgley of Hartland, NB (the home of Day+Ross) conveniently left his access door open so that his name can be seen all these years later.
MO # 722, trailer 5722

This impressive KW COE, with double wide sleeper carries the usual plates for Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, PEI and Nova Scotia, and also Vermont, and another plate saying #1 Kenworth.
MO # 588, trailer 5588

A Freightliner COE, without any number displayed on the cab or trailer, is getting a tire check. He is plated for Newfoundland and eastern Canada, but not the US.

Loading fish on the Halifax waterfront, a Freightliner conventional is an all blue job.
The trailer is number 8017 - a departure from the usual "5" number series for reefers.
MO # 508 

With what appears to be a 42" sleeper this Freightliner also has an unusual paint job with red stripes, not to mention the Old English style lettering on the deflector.
The tarp top trailer must one of the last.
MO # 674 trailer 6674

  Kenworth introduced the T600 in 1986. Although owner operators may have been slow to take them up, the substantial fuel savings soon began to pay off, and all manufacturers came up with more streamlined models. This Anteater, coupled with an Aerodyne sleeper was a sign of things to come. It is licensed for Newfoundland, although the O.O was based in Colborne, ON.
MO # 597   


Saturday, December 17, 2016

Maritime-Ontario - back then - Peterbilt Special

No series would be complete without Peterbilts! With a lot of owner operators Peterbilts were the favourites, and Maritime-Ontario had lots of them.

Two views of this Pete, which looked very new at a July 1 show and shine in Sussex, NB in 1987.
It did not yet display a number. 

This Pete was hauling a non-reefer, tri-axle trailer, that was not numbered or marked Maritime-Ontario.
M-O # 630 

Not all driving was in pleasant weather. Fresh in off the road, this Pete must have had a hard run.
M-O # 658

Not the neatest Pete in the fleet, this one had the distinction of carrying a stick-on number 700 on a Canada Post contract. It may have started out for another company. Many North American Van Lines trucks had similar stripes.
M-O # 700

A different paint scheme, with some aerodynamics added looms out of the fog on the Halifax waterfront. The rear most trailer tire looks a bit iffy.
M-O # 694

Keeping company with the competition, a CP Express, KW Aerodyne, this Pete had a deeper blue as the basic colour.
M-O # 699

 Ready to roll, this Peterbilt does not display a M-O fleet number. 

Same paint scheme - different truck.
M-O # 645, paired with trailer #4468
Another shot of the same Pete. Don't be distracted by the Mack/Renault COE in the background used as a yard tugger.

Another series, with mid-rise sleeper looks ready for business.
The script on the hood proclaims "Kitten Power"
M-O # 766 

Old fashioned trailer looks well loaded and nicely tarped. This one with a back stripe added to the paint job. No M-O number displayed.

This Pete, with its Great Dane trailer was anything but new. Judging by its fleet number, it might have had eight to ten years under its belt, but was still in great shape in 1993, at a rest stop in Quebec. Definitely a classic.
M-O # 548, trailer # 4548 

End of this special  - but there is more M-O to come.


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Maritime-Ontario - back then - Part 4 of 4

Back by popular demand, here are still some more photos of Maritime-Ontario trucks from the 1980s.
I started this as a series of thee parts, but have revissed that and extended it to four.

(Regrettably all these are scanned from colour negatives, which have degraded and do not do justice to the original blue colour.)

Another Mack:
This long hood R model might have been the inspiration for Bud the Spud.
Typically the trailer was paired with the truck.
MO # 567 , trailer # 5567

Western Stars (post White) were also popular amongst M-O drivers.
There were very few short hood Western Stars so this was a rarity.
M0 # 573 

More typical was the longer hood, and in this case longer chassis with big mid-rise sleeper.
MO # 556

This one look similar, but has a different paint style.

MO # 620

One particular Western Star first caught my eye in  1987 and unbelievably I followed it until 2004:

It must have been fairly new when I first saw it in Glenholme in 1987.
MO # 583

Two year later some changes had been made. The stacks were moved back behind the sleeper and an illuminated letter "G" added to the grille.
With trailer # 5583

By 1990 there were still more changes. More lights, a more regular "G" and raised air cleaner intakes with chrome extensions.

Fast forward 11 years, and there is a different trailer, with its own illuminated "G". There's also a different bumper with some different lights, and deflectors on the sleeper trailing edge. Also heat shields on the stacks below the sleeper.

 By 2004 - and the truck is at least 17 years old - it is starting to show some age.
These are the last pictures I have of it, and I can still spot some changes, including the Mustang on the hood, just above the headlight. And yes despite the straight stacks it apparently does have a muffler, sort of.
MO # 583

End of the Series - No really - there will be another coming soon 


Saturday, December 10, 2016

Maritime-Ontario - back then - Part 3 of 4

Owner - Operators chose their own trucks to run with Maritime-Ontario Freight Lines Ltd, and so there was considerable variety on the road. All with the impressive blue and white paint scheme however.

Peterbilts were not that common in 1979, so this was a rarity.
M-O # 521

Peterbilt COEs were also relatively rare, especially ones with the double wide sleeper.
M-O # 479
(The truck in the background is not Maritime-Ontario, it is a Canadian Liquid Air Western Star.)

Kenworths were more common, but still considered a luxury vehicle. M-O had flat deck, tarp top and stake side trailers too, not just vans.
M-O # 507

Kenworth conventionals were highly prized, but
GMC Astros caught a lot more attention when they first came out.
M-O # 541

Freightliner came out with a more stylish grille but Kenworth stuck with tradition for its conventionals in the 1980s.

A short hood KW conventional takes an aggressive stance.
M-O # 586

Although a small player in the truck business, Western Star made some impressive rigs.  They were still using the Autocar cab, but had a hi-rise sleeper.
M-O # 569

Another Western Star, this one with a mid-rise sleeper, gives the company some free advertising when it parked at the motel on the old MicMac rotary in Dartmouth.
M-O #  546 

All the photos in the first three parts of this were taken with slide film, mostly Kodachrome 64 ASA, which has survived far better than colour negative film. It wasn't the greatest in low light, which is why some of these are a tad dark.
Unfortunately I stopped taking slides and switched to prints in the 1980s. I still have the negatives, but there has been significant colour loss.