DOUG'S 'HEAVY METAL' GALLERY

 

T A N K SC A R R I E R SG U N SA R M O U R E D   C A R S

 

THE BIGGEST LITTLE MV FAN.
   (Ver 1)

 

It's normally "boys with their toys" or father and son teams with Military vehicle collecting. Not quite so with my family. Yes I followed heavily in my fathers footsteps. He has now passed on and I have been left to carry on the tradition. I have an 8 yo son who I would have thought revelled in these. His interest wears out rapidly and he goes and does his own thing. My wife has taken a keen interest and has learnt a great deal and what's more, she has enjoyed it.

The most interesting of the family is my 3 yo daughter. She started off sitting on my Welbikes when she was only 2 and used to help herself to slouch hats etc. I could not take the Jeep anywhere without her. She used to have me drive up through the very steep front yard, not on the drive but next to it. 4 wheel drive, low range was definately required for this. I'd turn around and go back down. She would say, go up again Dad. The hassles and protests I got when I put my foot down and put it away!!

I fitted a working 62 radio set to the Jeep and she would turn it on and tune it in and out. We made a uniform out of a set of old greens for her to wear to outings. At Club events she would have me put her on the BSA folding para's bicycle and I would have to push her around and she would steer.

At the Clubs christmas break up, she rode in a Saracen and loved it. We decided as a family that the Jeep would go and we would advertise for a Ferret or a Saracen. A Ferret came our way. We went down and the deal was struck. Whilst I did some repairs on site she was all over it, not overly impressed with the noise but ear muffs were not a problem.

I made a special back rest and harness for her seat in the Ferret. What impresses her more is in her words, "The Talkie" meaning the headset on Internal Communication (IC). She loves to push the trans button and scream to hear her own voice. When she gets annoyed with me she tells me, Dad, you go and fix the Ferret. Hang on, who's running this show? Isn't it the adults that normally send the children to do things to get some peace? No, my daughter sends me to work on the Ferret so she can get into mischief.

The first maiden display with the Ferret the whole family went because it's local. It was at Wandin, the Land Rover Owners Club field day. Once we arrived the crowd massed around the Ferret and once my daughter was lifted down she was running from person to person pushing each one in the legs and yelling at the top of her voice "GET AWAY FROM MY FERRET, DON'T TOUCH GET AWAY FROM MY FERRET". My wife calmed her down telling her it was alright people were allowed to look. No this toy was hers!! No one was going to go near it. Here is a 3 year old with some huge attitude and guts. She didn't care how big they were she was literally pushing big blokes back 2 feet. If only I had a video camera at the time. It was priceless. She did eventually calm down and people were allowed a closer look, but they were being watched closely. One false move and she was on them.

Recently I did a pre purchase inspection on a Ferret and trained Howard the new owner. It was decided that it would be prepared and serviced under my supervision at my house as that is where all my specialised equipment is. Pick up was of an evening, so the family dropped me off to meet John my truckie as we would be leaving at 4pm and heading straight to Wangarratta to collect Howards new toy. We informed our daughter what was happening and she replied, "You're getting another Ferret for me!" No, we are going to just look after it for a little while. We didn't get back and unloaded until about 2am. In the morning my daughter came out and said "Ahhh, your a good Dad, you bought me another Ferret, I love it Dad, Thankyou!" as she put put her arms around me and went and had a look. She couldn't wait to show her brother but he showed no interest.

So Howard came to work on his Ferret and the little girl was proud to show her new Ferret off to him. Servicing and repairs commenced and it was put on the road having passed it's inspection. We would be driving it to Howards the next morning and the little girl says, you can't take it, the wheels are broken, you have to fix the wheels, pointing to some small fine cracks in the tyres from age. She agreed that Howard could LOAN her Ferret. She did change her mind a bit as considering ours is a Mark 1 and Howards is a Mark 1/2, the extra turret made it darker inside and far more daunting so she didn't like the idea of getting into it. I think it has saved Howard a fight in removing her other Ferret.

No doubt we have a Military vehicle buff, in books she can tell the difference between a Ferret, a Jeep and a tank. I may not have a son that's going to follow my lead but I have a daughter who certainly is. I thought I started young at 7, she beat me hands down starting around 2and 1/2!!! Expect to see her driving my Ferret when I'm dead and burried!!

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My thanks yet again to Alex.

 

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