a vintage petrol bowser! I used to work in Sydney’s North Shore, and one day driving back from work; I took an accidental wrong turn. I am fortunate I did, because sitting on the back of a Ute was this bowser. I had seen these classic Gilbarco’s in photos but never in real life.
I took a guess and knocked on the door of a house, first time lucky it turned out I’d chosen correctly. After a brief chat about whom I was and what I wanted, we agreed on a price with delivery included. The owner was a retired marine mechanic who’d salvaged it from the service station he had previously worked at (this explains why it was so rusty).
I paid a little more than I had hoped to but it’s not very often you come across something like this.
The first step involved stripping the pump down to its bare minimum. With the help of penetrating lubricant to loosen the old bolts, the internal pumps were then removed and the rusty panels taken off for some much needed ‘TLC’. The tool responsible for the chrome finish on the stainless trims is an electric drill with a buffing pad and lots of metal polishing compound. The rust was cut out and revamped with ‘repair sections’, the panels were then smoothed with body filler, followed by two coats of primer, two coats of paint and one coat of clear
With the help of my dad who is a retired graphic designer and the internet we managed to recreate the correct period “Shell” insignia. The design and measurements were then sent to ‘BodyMold’ to be printed on vinyl stickers. It’s now become a central part of my garage and will continue to be for many years to come.