Great Rattler Run, Oct 2016


The Vintage Adventurer...


Ocean-2-Ocean, USA and Oz


NEW: Great Rattler Run 2016

Vintage Adventurer Rod Wade has revealed his next adventure – the Great Rattler Run 2016, the followup to the 2015 Desert Rattler Run. This time Rod and his team will venture from the furthes...

The Paris Finish Line

Paris at last! The crews had to do it the hard way, nothing changes. Rod and Austen did 170k through the paddocks again and many villages.  The village people were out in force to welcome them throu...

Arrival in Reims

Today started with a jolt. If the cars were struggling or not, crews were not to drive direct to Reims via the freeway or we would be fined €100, which would be donated to charity! “We decided not...


Only 13 days to go before lift off!!

I’m into the night shift now and thinking through just what is needed for deep water and boggy river crossings. You know, the type where crocodiles lurk in wait! I don't want to be stuck in the water without any doors to keep the crocs out. So it is imperative that the Rattler does not stop in the creeks. If traction is lost, recovery has to be swift, yes really quick.

Tonight I fitted an 18mm threaded lifting eye to the centre of the front bumper of the Rattler and added cross bracing to take the load. This is the front towing position. If retrieval is necessary, with time being the killer, the strap will be ready for the grab and throw to the tow vehicle in under a minute. I have seen so many vehicles become bogged, with someone on their belly in the mud and slush trying to attach a tow strap.

The best thing to do is attach the tow strap to the vehicle before entering the water/bog and if traction is lost the driver can throw the strap to someone and they can connect it to a tow vehicle. Sometimes two or even three straps may be needed to be joined together so the tow vehicle can find solid ground. In that case the tow vehicle has already been prepared and the correct length of straps attached to the tow vehicle so only one quick connection is required. It is not a good look to see your vehicle slowly moving downstream whilst someone works out where or how to attach the lifeline tow strap!!!

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What a day!!!

I took the Fuso 4wd to Ray at The Tyre Professionals Nerang and the huge Michelin single tyres for the rear were fitted. Frank had the fronts put to the back and two new Michelins donated by BF Goodrich were fitted to the front.... but not without an issue.

One of the back wheel stud threads was burred and the impact gun wound some metal up into the threads when taking a nut off. This was going to be a huge job to fix because the rear axle would have to be removed, then the brake drum so the drum could go into a press and push the stud out….this was the left hand side and the threads are left hand too so there was no way I could find a left hand die nut to clean up the thread. I headed back to my workshop thinking all the way of just how I could fix the problem without spending a day in a dealer workshop.

Being an ex farm lad, over years many an issue like this had to be fixed on the farm and not in a dealer centre. So I applied ingenuity learnt from my farm days. In my own workshop I took out the Drenel and was able to clean off a couple of the burred starter threads. I then made a small cut in the nut thread and using some cutting compound I slowly but surely ended up with the nut all the way in, and with a few runs on and off and a clean off, all was good. The nut went on like it was made to.

What a victory! I saved a day at the dealer workshop and quite a few dollars for parts. The best part was saving time because I need every hour of every day to have all 4 vehicle ready for Day 1 of The Great Rattler Run.

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Wow! I didn't think anyone was reading my post about screen printing. Since last night I have been inundated with requests for T-shirts! Whilst I would love to have everyone in one of my shirts, it's just not possible at the moment. The shirts are printed both sides so need to be printed over two nights, and as you can imagine they take a bit of time ..... which I just don't have right now! Sorry to all those I have disappointed :-(

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