Tuesday, October 24, 2017
A CENTURY YOUNG… Local resident, Scott Nind and his father, Jack have helped to restore a 1913 TH Schneider that has been in their family for over 100 years. Photos: David Lee.

The staff car; a real family affair

David Lee August 23, 2017

NOT many people can say that they own a car that has been in the family for over 100 years, but the Nind family can. Having just finished restoring their 1913 TH Schneider, Jack and Scott came to realise the incredible history of the car before they had found it in a paddock at Scott’s grandfather’s house. While it was a little worse for wear at the time, this particular car was the first vehicle to cross the original Robinvale Bridge when it was officially opened, was in the Sahara Desert Race and survived and was even transformed into a ute at one point during its life.

Scott said, “The car was originally owned by my dad’s grandfather. It’s certainly nothing like you see today.

“My grandfather turned it into a ute and worked on a vineyard until is was put in a paddock and left to rot. They used to call them the ‘staff car,’ or a mobster car.

“It was pretty much nothing when we got it over 20 years ago.

“There is not a thing that hasn’t been done to restore it. The timberwork and body work is all new. We rebuilt the engine…in fact the chassis is really the only thing that is original.

“We decided to restore it because of the sentimental value of it being in the family for so long.

“Don Onley in Swan Hill has helped to do most of the work and Mark Healey has also lent a hand.

“This car has been in the family for almost five generations now.

“We’re actually trying to get Joan Rettke, who lives on the east coast of Australia to come down and ride in it now that it is complete. This 90 year old woman was one of the last people to ride in it.”