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Motor Car Replica - Ford 1896 Quadricycle, Vivian Expositions, Melbourne, circa 1963 Object Reg. No: ST 026696

This replica of Henry Ford's first car was built in 1963 by Tom Myers for the Ford Motor Company of Australia. Ford commissioned the Quadricycle replica to mark the centenary of Henry Ford's birth in 1863. Myers ran the engineering firm Vivian Expositions in Wellington Street, Clifton Hill, Melbourne but due to a tight production deadline, much of the construction of the replica was done by Trans Australia Airlines (TAA) at their engineering workshop. Ford Australia initially wanted a static vehicle but then proposed using a modern engine. Due to engineering problems involved with disguising a new engine, a replica of Ford's original two-cylinder, four horsepower, 750 c.c unit was built by TAA. Vivian Expositions specialised in sectioning mechanical items for display purposes including new model Ford car mock-ups and display vehicles. Most of the Museum's sectioned exhibits were prepared by Vivian Expositions over many years in the 1960s and 1970s. Tom Fraser, an apprentice at TAA, undertook much of the machining and fabrication of metal components for Tom Myers. Jim Cameron, Machine Shop Supervisor at TAA, prepared engineering drawings for the replica and his son, Peter Cameron, who worked at TAA in the carpenters shop, made all the woodwork. Final assembly of the quadricycle was undertaken in the garage at the home of Gordon Myers (Tom's father), in Spencer Street, Essendon. Gordon Myers was Aircraft Overall Superintendant at TAA and Tom had also worked there prior to establishing Vivian Expositions.

Ford Australia used the Quadricycle for promotional purposes which included road trips to Adelaide and Brisbane. Tom Myers and Peter Cameron drove the quadricycle on the first half of the anniversary run from Melbourne to Sydney, via the Hume, then Tom Fraser and Tom Myers drove the second leg from Sydney to Brisbane, via New England and Towoomba. In 1970, Ford donated the replica to the Museum and Myers drove it from Clifton Hill to the Museum in Swanston Street on 29 July 1970. In 1976, the quadricycle was flown to Singapore to be the centrepiece of celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary of Ford operations in Malyasia and Singapore, again driven by Myers who demonstrated the replica at Shah Alam Racing Circuit in November 1976. Ford borrowed the vehicle again in 1980 for the Melbourne Motor Show. In 2008, following a long period of storage at Scienceworks the replica was reactivated to mark the centenary of the Model T Ford and driven at Scienceworks as well as the Lake Goldsmith Rally in November 2008.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Ford Motor Co (Aust) Ltd, 1970
Discipline: Technology

More information

Tagged with: internal combustion engines, motor cars
Themes this item is part of: Engineering Collection, Transport Collection
Primary Classification: ROAD TRANSPORT
Secondary Classification: Motor Vehicles
Tertiary Classification: motor cars
Commissioned By: Ford Motor Company of Australia Ltd, Australia, 1963-1970
Place & Date Assembled: Mr Gordon Myers, Essendon, Victoria, Australia, 1963-1964

Assembled in the garage of Gordon Myers, Tom's father.
Maker: Vivian Expositions Co. Pty Ltd, Clifton Hill, Victoria, Australia, 1963-1964

Maker of Replica.
Maker: Mr Tom Myers - Vivian Expositions Co Pty Ltd, Clifton Hill, Victoria, Australia, 1963-1964
Maker of Components: Mr Tom Fraser - Trans-Australia Airlines (TAA), Essendon, Victoria, Australia, circa 1963

Tom Fraser, an apprentice at TAA, undertook much of the machining and fabrication of metal components for Tom Myers.
Maker of Components: Mr Peter Cameron - Trans-Australia Airlines (TAA) Carpenters' Shop, Essendon, Victoria, Australia, circa 1963

Peter Cameron, who worked at TAA in the carpenters shop, made all the woodwork for Tom Myers.


Laurie Tucker Posted on 13 Apr 2011 8:38 AM
A very similar car was displayed in the showroom of a local Ford dealership in the early 1970's. Most replica Quadricyles have much fancier upholstery, this one seems the same as the Auckland one; perhaps the two cars are related. The Auckland replica has vanished, but I clearly remember the plaque affixed to it, stating it had been built by apprentices.
maureen brealey Posted on 07 Sep 2011 5:46 PM
I worked for Vivian Expositions in the 1970s and I was the one who searced melbourne bike shops to obtain new tyres for the Quadricycle to this day I remember the size tyres requied for the Quaddie, Viv Expo was situation in Fitzroy Gore st

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