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Mechanical Transport (B Vehicles) - Tractors


Throughout its life the RAF has used more motor vehicles then it has aircraft.  The term MT mean Mechanical Transport rather then Motor Transport as some of the earliest vehicles used were steam powered.  Much of the RAF's early MT equipment was taken over form the RFC and RNAS and much of this equipment continued to be used into the 1920s and even 1930s but in the 1920s it began to acquire its own equipment directly.

This list has been broken down into groups as shown above but does not claim to be exhaustive and further research is being undertaken.

W1 = Weight with vehicle equipment, but without load. W2 = Weight with vehicle equipment and load. L = Length. W = Width. H = Height. H(max) = Maximum Height. H(min) = Minimum Height. ST(max) - Maximum Shipping Tonnage. ST(min) = Minimum Shipping Tonnage, WB = Wheelbase.  GC = Ground Clearance

Units of measurements are those used at the time the vehicles were in service.

1 kilogram (kg) = 2.2 pounds (lbs)

112 lbs = 1 Hundredweight (cwt)

1 Ton = 20 cwt

25.4 millimetres (mm) = 1 inch (in)

12 inches = 1 foot (ft)

Designation

Notes

Shovel, Mechanical, Wheeled, Light, 4x2, Massey-Ferguson 35, Agricultural

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/

RAF Ref No (Chassis): - 16A/

Engine:

L:

W:

H:

WB:

Wt:

 

Shovel, Mechanical, Wheeled, Light, 4x2, Massey-Ferguson 35, Agricultural

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Case

 

Tractor, Clayton

 
 

A Clayton tractor towing a Handley Page 0/400 bomber of No. 207 Squadron at Ligescourt Aerodrome, 29 August 1918. 

© IWM (Q 12104)

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Light, 35,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Taskmaster

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/1855

Engine:  David Brown, petrol, 4-cyl, liquid cooled, 41 bhp @ 2,300 rpm

L: 9ft 11in

W: 5ft 7in

H: 5ft 3½in (with searchlight), 4ft 5½in (without searchlight)

WB: 6ft 2in

GC:  8in

Wt:  2 tons 0 cwt

Petrol-engined, wheeled tractor with conventional dry-plate clutch and four speed gearbox.  All vehicles have provision for the attachment of ballast weights to give an extra 1,895 lb deadweight per vehicle but only certain vehicles have been issued with the weights.  Maximum draw-bar pull (no weights): 3,700 lb.  The tractor is suitable for use with aircraft of up to 35,000 lb all-up weight.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Light, 35,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Taskmaster from front

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Light, 35,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Taskmaster from rear

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Light, 60,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Taskmaster Mk 1, 2 & 3

Mk 1 - RAF Ref No: - 16A/2045

Mk 2 - RAF Ref No: - 16A/2299

Mk 3 - RAF Ref No: - 16A/2465

Engine:  David Brown, diesel, 4-cyl, direct injection, liquid cooled, 36 bhp @ 2,000 rpm

L: 11ft 3in (Mk 1), 10ft 11in (Mk 2 & 3)

W: 5ft 9½in

H: 5ft 5in (with searchlight), 4ft 7in (without searchlight)

WB: 7ft 3in

GC:  9½in

Wt:  3 tons 6 cwt

Diesel-engined, wheeled tractor with dry twin plate clutch and torque converters.  Mk 1 and 2 tractors have a four speed gearbox; Mk 3 tractor has a six speed gearbox.  All vehicles have provision for the attachment of ballast weights to give an extra 1,896 lb deadweight per vehicle but only certain vehicles have been issued with the weights.  Maximum draw-bar pull (no weights): 5,600 lb.  The tractor is suitable for use with aircraft of up to 60,000 lb all-up weight.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Light, 60,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Taskmaster Mk 1, 2 & 3

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/1470

Engine:  David Brown, petrol, 4-cyl, ohv, liquid cooled, 41 bhp @ 2,100 rpm

L: 12ft 6in

W: 6ft 0in

H: 5ft 8in (with searchlight), 4ft 9½in (without searchlight)

WB: 7ft 1in

GC:  8in

Wt:  4 tons 0 cwt

Petrol-engined, wheeled tractor with torque converter and three speed gearbox.  Winch fitted.  Maximum draw-bar pull: 7,000 lb.  Maximum winch pull: 15,000 lb.  The tractor is suitable for use with aircraft of up to 100,000 lb all-up weight.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C from front

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C from rear

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C/1

RAF Ref No (with winch): - 16A/2266

RAF Ref No (without winch): - 16A/2171

Engine:  David Brown, petrol, 4-cyl, ohv, liquid cooled, 41 bhp @ 2,100 rpm

L: 12ft 4½in

W: 5ft 11in

H: 5ft 8in

WB: 6ft 11in

GC:  6½in

Wt:  4 tons 12 cwt

Tractor fitted a Brockhouse single stage torque converter and a twin dry plate clutch: six forward speeds and two reverse. gearbox.  Maximum draw-bar pull: 7,100 lb.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C/1 from front  Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C/1 from rear right

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, Type VIG/1C/1 from rear left

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Super Taskmaster

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2591

Engine:  David Brown, diesel, 4-cyl, 4-stroke, direct injection, liquid cooled, 42.5 bhp @ 2,200 rpm

L: 12ft 4½in

W: 5ft 11in

H: 5ft 8in

WB: 6ft 11in

GC:  6½in

Wt:  4 tons 12 cwt

Tractor fitted a Brockhouse torque converter and a twin dry plate clutch: six forward speeds and two reverse. gearbox.  The tractor is suitable for use with aircraft of up to 100,000 lb all-up weight.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Super Taskmaster from front

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft, Medium, 100,000 lb, 4x2, David Brown Super Taskmaster from rear

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, 4x2, Fordson, Type A

W1: 1-ton 12 cwt

L: 8ft 3in

W: 5ft 1½in

H(max): 4ft 4in

ST(max): 4-tons/24 cu ft

Hover over Link below for caption

© IWM (CH 674)

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Baggage Handling, 10-ton, 4x2, Reliance Cub HDA

RAF Ref No: - 16A/2692 (with cab)

RAF Ref No: - 16A/2711 (without cab)

Engine: Coventry Victor, air cooled horizontally opposed, 2-cyl, ohv, diesel, 20.5 bhp @ 2,250 rpm

L: 6ft 6in (with towing jaw), 6ft 0in (less towing jaw)

W: 3ft 4in

H: 6ft 4in (16A/2692), 4ft 6in (16A/2711)

GC: 3½in

Wt: 1 ton 4 cwt (16A/2692), 1 ton 3 cwt (16A/2711)

For towing trailed loads on baggage handling and storehouse duties. Diesel engined, four wheeled tractor with hydraulically operated clutch, three speed and reverse gearbox incorporating a reduction gearbox.  The tractors must not used on gradients exceeding 1 in 8and must not descend gradients exceeding 1 in 10 when towing trailed load of 20 tons or more.
 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Baggage Handling, 10-ton, 4x2, Reliance Cub HDA with cab

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Baggage Handling, 10-ton, 4x2, Reliance Cub HDA without cab

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Light, Type B, Straussler

 

Tractor, Semi-Trailer, MAN TGA

 

Tractor, Semi-Trailer, Seddon Atkinson 401

 

Tractor, Semi-Trailer, Seddon Atkinson Strato 380 

 

Tractor, Semi-Trailer, Seddon Atkinson tbd

 

Tractor, Semi-Trailer, Volvo FH12

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Agricultural, 4x2, David Brown

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2499

Engine: David Brown, Type AD4/40T, direct injection, vertical, 4-cyl, liquid cooled, diesel, 42.5 bhp @ 2,200 rpm

L: 9ft 10in

W: 5ft 4in

H: 6ft 6½in (including exhaust pipe), 5ft 6in (to top of steering wheel)

WB: 6ft 4-11/16in

GC:  1ft 4in

Wt: 1 ton 17 cwt

This tractor is used, in conjunction with various types of equipment, for the maintenance of airfields.
 

Tractor, Wheeled, Agricultural, 4x2, David Brown

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, with fork lift, Massey-Ferguson

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2699

Engine: Perkins, 3-cyl, 2.5 litre, diesel, model A3/152, 44.5 bhp @ 2,250 rpm

With fork attachments

L: 10ft 8in (lifting forks removed), 14ft 7in (with lifting forks)

W: 6ft 3in

H: 5ft 10in

Without fork attachments: 10ft 8in (

L: 9ft 8in

W: 6ft 0in

H: 4ft 7in

Wt: 2 tons 11 cwt

This tractor has a 2,000lb hydraulic fork-lift attachment for high loading and unloading and an automatic towing hitch for towing the Massey Ferguson 5 ton baggage trailer, 16A/2698,.  The automatic hitch allows coupling or uncoupling of the trailer and tractor, to be carried out from the drivers seat.
 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, with fork lift, Massey-Ferguson

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Aircraft Towing Power Servicing, Heavy, 20,000 lb, Sentinel Mk 1with or without winch

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2239

Engine: Rolls-Royce, B80, No 1, Mk 5N, petrol, 8-cyl in-line, ohv, liquid cooled, 160 bhp @3,750 rpm

L: 21ft 4in/6.50m

W: 8ft 0in/2.43m

H: 7ft 2½in/2.18m (windscreen folded down)

WB: 9ft 2in/

GC: 10in/250mm

Wt: 12 ton 6 cwt

The tractor is primarily designed for towing aircraft up to 200,000 lb all-up weight and the aircraft electrical services can be maintained from a generating set mounted on the tractor; provision is also made for telephonic communication between the tractor and the aircraft.  The tractor has fluid flywheel and pneumatically-operated self-change four speed main gearbox and power assisted steering.  Sanding device to assist adhesion.  Winch driven by PTO.  Two-line air pressure system for trailer braking.  Auxiliary gearbox for optional four wheel drive.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Aircraft Towing Power Servicing, Heavy, 20,000 lb, Sentinel Mk 1with or without winch from front

Tractor, Wheeled, Aircraft Towing Power Servicing, Heavy, 20,000 lb, Sentinel Mk 1with or without winch from rear

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Aircraft Towing, Heavy with winch, Douglas Tug Mentor Mk 3

L: 7.16m

W: 2.64m

H: 3.27m

WB: 3.66m

Tractor, Wheeled, Fork Lift, Rough Terrain, 4,000 lb, Light, Eager Beaver Mk 2

L: 5.46m (with forks at ground level)

W: 1.86m

H: 2.59m (with cab), 1.75m (air transportable)

WB: 2.54m
 

Tractor, Wheeled, Fork Lift, Rough Terrain, 4,000 lb, Light, Eager Beaver Mk 2

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Fork Lift, Rough Terrain, Explosive Handling, Ferguson 2203

L: 85.33m

W: 1.87m

H: 1.39m

WB: 1.9m

GC: 320mm

Commonly known as Rough Terrain Fork lift or 'Forky' and was used in bomb dumps.

Tractor, Wheeled, Fork Lift, Telescopic Handler, 4,000 lb, Rough Terrain

L: 4.30m + 1.10m (vehicle and forks)

W: 2.20m

H: 2.45m

Known as 'Giraffe'

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Fork Lift, Telescopic Handler, 4,000 lb, Rough Terrain

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Support, Multipurpose, Unimog 406-120

L: 4.10m

W: 2.00m

H: 2.68m (trailer coupling  - 880mm)

WB: 2.38m

GC: 440mm

These were used by Harrier units and could be fitted with a fork-lift attachment at the front.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Support, Multipurpose, Unimog 406-120

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Towing Medium, David Brown

L: 3.35m

W: 2.23m

H: 1.44m (with searchlight), 1.34m (without searchlight)

WB: 2.21m

GC: 200mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Towing, Light, Douglas Taskmaster, Diesel

L: 3.45m

W: 1.75m

H: 2.29m (with cab), 1.52m (without cab)

WB:1.83m

GC: 240mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Towing, Medium, Douglas Taskmaster, Diesel

L: 3.58m

W: 1.76m

H: 1.52m

WB: 2.05m

GC: 240mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Towing, Medium, Massey Ferguson

L: 3.94m

W: 2.44m (over mirrors)

H: 2.54m (to top of beacon and warning triangle)

WB: 3.45m

GC: 43mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Industrial, Aircraft Towing, Medium, with winch, Douglas Taskmaster

L: 3.61m

W: 1.75m

H: 2.29m (with cab)

WB: 2.08m

Track: 1.37m (front), 1.66 (rear)

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi Trailer, 10-ton, 4x2, coupling to BASU 1 and 3 (1963), AEC Mercury TGM4R

L: 5.00m

W: 2.44m

H:2.56m

WB: 4.73m

GC: 330mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi Trailer, 20-ton, 4x2, LHD, Seddon Atkinson

L: 5.16m

W: 2.48m

H: 2.89m

WB: 2.90m

GC: 240mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 6-ton, 3x2, Scammell MH6

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/1474

Engine: Scammell, petrol, 4-cyl, liquid cooled, 45 bhp @ 3,200 rpm

L: 14ft 6in (Tractor only), 24ft 0in (coupled to semi-trailer)

W: 6ft 2in (Tractor only), 7ft 2in (coupled to semi-trailer)

H: 6ft 6in

WB: 10ft 0in, 9ft 0in (coupling to trailer axle)

GC: 8½in

Wt: 1 ton 10 cwt (Tractor only)

Prime mover for the Scammell semi-trailer, 6 ton (16A/1475) and unsuitable for other towing duties.  The vehicle is a three wheeled, petrol engined, wheeled tractor fitted with an automatic coupling device.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 6-ton, 3x2, Scammell MH6

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 10-ton, 4x2, Bedford SAG

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2253

Engine: Bedford, petrol, 6-cyl, ohv, liquid cooled, 113 bhp @ 3,000 rpm

L: 13 ft 6¾in

W: 7ft 5-1/8in

H: 7ft 6in

WB: 7ft 2in

GC:  10in

Wt: 2 tons 7 cwt

Petrol-engined four wheeled tractor for the towing of semi-trailers fitted with a Scammell trailer coupling.  Four-speed gearbox and Eaton two-speed rear axle.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 10-ton, 4x2, Bedford SAG

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 10-ton, 6x4, Thorneycroft

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2610

RAF Ref No (Chassis): - 16A/2611

Engine: Thorneycroft, 6-cyl, liquid cooled, petrol engine, 170 bhp @ 2,200 rpm , 691 cu in (11.32 litres)

L: 21ft 7in

W: 8ft 0in

H: 9ft 6in

WB: 13ft 6in

GC:  12in

Wt:  9 tons 7 cwt

Petrol-engined six wheel tractor for towing semi-trailers in the FV2701 series.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 10-ton, 6x4, Thorneycroft

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, General Service, 30-ton, 6x6, Scammell

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2551

RAF Ref No (Chassis): - 16A/2477

Engine:  Rolls-Royce, 6-cyl, ohv, liquid cooled, compression ignition, 175 bhp @ 2,100 rpm.

L: 26ft 3½in

W: 9ft 4½in

H: 10 ft 9in

WB: 15ft 9in

GC: 1ft 2½in

Wt:  17 tons 2 cwt

Six wheel drive tractor with high loading chassis and all metal flat platform cargo/ballast body; all vehicles fitted with a 15 ton winch driven by a PTO  The tractor is for towing 30 ton full trailers.
 

Tractor, Wheeled, General Service, 30-ton, 6x6, Scammell

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, General Service, 10-ton, 4x2, Bedford SA8

RAF Ref No (Vehicle): - 16A/2618

Engine:  Leyland, 6-cyl, direct injection, diesel, liquid cooled, 105 bhp @ 2,400 rpm.

L: 13ft 9in

W: 7ft 7in

H: 7ft 6in

WB: 7ft 2in

GC:  9½in

Wt:  7 tons 9 cwt

Diesel-engined, four wheeled tractor for the towing of trailers fitted with a draw bar.

 

Tractor, Wheeled, General Service, 10-ton, 4x2, Bedford SA8

Crown Copyright©

Tractor, Wheeled, 5-ton, 4x4, AEC Matador

 
 

Tractor, Wheeled, 5-ton, 4x4, AEC Matador

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi Trailer, 4x2, Albion 463

 
 

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi Trailer, 4x2, Commer Q2

 
 

 

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi Trailer, 6-ton, 4x2, Automatic Coupling, Bedford TK, Diesel

L: 4.39m

W: 2.22m

H: 2.23m

WB: 2.44m

GC: 170mm

Tractor, Wheeled, Semi-Trailer, 16-ton, 4x2, Leyland Mastiff

L: 5.21m

W: 2.34m

H: 2.59m

WB: 2.90m

The Imperial War Museum images on this page are used under the authority and conditions of an IWM Non-Commercial Licence

This page was last updated on 24/05/17 using FrontPage 2003©

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