| September/October 1984

  • Old ad engrsaving
    Old ad engrsaving, from a booklet of the New South Wales Steam Preservation Co-Operative Society Ltd.
  • Boulton and Watt beam engine

  • Old ad engrsaving
  • Boulton and Watt beam engine

We learned a lot about steam in Australia this past spring, through the courtesy of a number of persons, some of whom we saw, others of whom we talked to by telephone.

Australia has many preserved steam traction engines; a number of active associations of collectors and restorers, and several notable museums. Any steam enthusiast visiting Australia can find plenty to see and do among followers of the hobby in addition to enjoying the wonders of this vast continental nation.

My wife Margaret and I made Sydney our headquarters for our Australian visit. Later we flew to New Zealand, where we also visited engine people.

Brian Burke, who is well known among steam collectors in both Australia and New Zealand, took me on a full-day trip to visit Australian owners of engines, plus the headquarters of the New South Wales Steam Preservation Co-Op Society Ltd. at Menangle Park.

Brian seeks aid in the U.S. in finding engine builders' records for dating these makes: Buffalo Pitts, Buffalo Springfield, and New Bird-sail. If you have such data, send it to him at 72 Roseberry Road, Killara 2071, New South Wales, Australia 02-4984483.

One of Australia's best known historians of engines, Brian estimates that with portable steam engines, and steam rollers, there are about 2,000 steam engines in Australia. 'Not all are going,' he comments. 'Some are in parks, or on farms, or grounded.' He is making a compilation, so if you are an Australian owner, get in touch with him.


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