by Nathan Pharaoh on 2 September, 2016
In the last six months we have been working on the body and interior of the Daimler – involving a lot of dismantling, a lot of close inspection and a whole range of decision-making.
The Royal Daimler is a coach built vehicle – the chassis, engine and running gear were built by Daimler, while the body, interior and final fit out was carried out by the coachbuilders Hooper and Co.
Just as much painstaking detail has gone into dismantling the Hooper-built component, as has gone into the original build. As we have peeled away the layers, we have gained a detailed understanding of the construction method and materials used to create this vehicle, as well as insight into the demands faced by Hooper and Co. to make vehicles fit for a Royal tour.
Nathan Pharaoh and Ian Stewart removing the rear landaulette “hood” for full examination, documentation of its construction and decisions on treatment.
Some of the components are in really good condition, others in really quite poor condition. This is partly due to the materials used and their inherent durability, but it has also been affected by the life history of the vehicle. Faced with such extremes in condition, we have had to really balance our options for retaining original materials (the preferred course of action) and replacing components that are badly deteriorated, with a view to creating a coherent whole in the end. Quite challenging at times! At each decision point we carefully weigh up significance, condition, functionality and the availability of the skills to do the work.
We have been making great progress and will be sharing before and after treatment information on the:
Dash panels Armrests Seats Carpets Wiring Interior lights Handles Switches Window motors Doors
by Catrina Vignando on 12 September, 2013
Treasures of Canberra by Betty Churcher and Lucy Quinn
The Royal Daimler has been classified as a Canberra treasure in a new book by Betty Churcher, ex Director of the National Gallery of Australia, and artist Lucy Quinn.
The book I am referring to is called Treasures of Canberra and has been produced to commemorate the Centenary of Canberra. Last night I was at an inspiring talk by Betty and Lucy where they spoke about their new book and the many treasures that it features. Continue reading
by Monica Lindemann on 16 August, 2013
News today that William, Kate and George might be heading to Australia to next year. news link
Did you know that the Royal Daimler in the Museum’s collection was originally painted in the little prince’s great grandfather, King George’s, colours? The Daimler was purchased and prepared for His Majesty’s 1949 Royal Tour, but King George never made that journey. The car was then prepared for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s 1954 Royal Tour , and painted over in Her royal colours. All this historic detail is visible on the car.
Help us restore the 1948 Royal Daimler and make it fit for a king, a queen, or prince again! Visit www.nma.gov.au/support_us to make a donation.
by Monica Lindemann on 19 April, 2013
Below you can see four additional petrol caps are used to illustrate the type of effect you would get from each treatment. Continue reading
by Laura Breen on 6 December, 2012
Last week, we were able to complete another small piece of the Daimler history puzzle… Continue reading
by Laura Breen on 17 July, 2012
In researching our Daimler’s lengthy past, I was not the least bit surprised to discover that the car’s ceremonial duties did not cease with the completion of Queen Elizabeth’s royal tour in 1954. After all, in the aftermath of the royal visit, what else could be done with such a cumbersome and imposing motor car?
by Heidi Bock on 31 May, 2012
As I have just joined the Museum, I have been exploring and discovering the interesting facts about the 1954 Royal Tour and this majestic Daimler.
In 2004, we held an exhibition called Royal Romance that examined Australia’s passionate response to Queen Elizabeth II’s first visit in 1954, and whether the nation has fallen out of love since.
It is incredible to see the effort that went into the 1954 Royal Tour.
||pounds approximately in total contributed by the federal government
||miles registered by the cars of Royal Visit Car Company
by Laura Breen on 3 May, 2012
It wasn’t until February 1954 that the newly-crowned Queen Elizabeth eventually stepped onto Australian soil. Although by now almost six years old, the four Daimlers languishing in storage were recalled for duty. Perhaps we can assume that the huge cost of acquiring them in the first place offset the need to impress the Queen with more fashionable vehicles?
by Laura Breen on 12 April, 2012
After news of the cancellation of the 1949 royal tour reached Australia, the Chifley government was now faced with the unenviable prospect of redirecting the final stages of planning for the tour – street displays, infrastructure, souvenir production and transport. A huge budget had been allocated to the celebrations, most of which had already been spent, to the dismay of many.
by Laura Breen on 29 March, 2012
This photograph of the Australian government’s completed order of Daimler cars, possibly taken by a proud factory employee in November 1948, is rendered all the more poignant in light of what happened next.