Friday, 6 December 2019

Canada Truck

Pictured is the 1958 CANADA TRACTOR TRUCK, which was a joint effort of Leyland Motors (Canada) Ltd. and the Canadian Car & Foundry Company Ltd. (Fort Williams plant). It was designed/built in the mid-1950s and was unveiled on July 1, 1958, using a Leyland 680 Diesel engine, an International Harvester Comfo-Vision cab, a Spicer 5-speed (low/high range) axle, and a custom-built chassis. It was designed to compete with other semi-trucks of the day. However after its debut, not much is known on what happened or if any sales did occur. It later disappeared from history and was later re-discovered a few years ago in an Edmonton-based trucking company lot parked out back, and it was determined it was unique enough it deserved preservation. The truck was acquired by the Reynolds-Alberta Museum, and their Head of Restoration, Darren Wiberg, is personally working on this one-of-a-kind truck, which is believed to be the only actual truck in existence, after finding a serial number of 1008-01 on the vehicle, and extensive searching online to find no other trucks made.

Many of the parts are one-off, so Darren and his small team have to duplicate what is left on the truck or scour the internet to find parts in faraway places, for example, he had to order an engine kit from a company in India, and other parts from a different company in the United Kingdom. The truck came to the museum in rough shape, but with Darren’s skills, it will be back in running shape in no time! He plans on having it done in the next year or so, depending on if he needs more parts shipped from overseas companies, which take a while and cost a lot of money. Darren mentioned they did find a black and white photo of the truck and it was painted in red & white colours, so the final product will be painted the same with a large CANADA badge on the front grille. I was lucky to go into the restoration shop at the museum on my visit in mid-June and get up close and personal with the truck. A unique piece of Canadian history!





- Jason Paul Sailer

6 comments:

  1. That is amazing. Looking forward to hear more about this project.

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  2. Replies
    1. Yes they do wonders with the limited money they get each year.

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  3. I did a history write up for group in regards to Tree Farmer log skidders made at the same plant a bit later. Mention was made of these Canada trucks in some papers we gleaned and while not stated outright, what we saw would *suggest* more than one was made. One operator was said to have bough several dozen for their fleet, for example.

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