ANTIQUE tractor connoisseur Len Schilg has been awarded life membership of the Henty and District Antique Farm Machinery Club.
A long term Henty Machinery Field Days (HMFD) volunteer and previous chairman of the Henty Machine of the Year Award, Mr Schilg helped form the club in the 1970s after he came across some vintage tractors being dismantled.
“I told the chap to stop as I was trying to create a collection of old machinery,’’ he said.
“I bought my observations back to the HMFD Co-operative meeting and suggested we look into forming an antique machinery club within the HMFD committee.’’
Once the Henty and District Antique Farm Machinery Club was formed, Mr Schilg contributed a Lanz Bulldog tractor to the initial display in 1977.
“The crowds at Henty love the Bulldog, the noise it makes and the puff of smoke making o-rings in the sky,” he said.
“Many of the kids have never seen those tractors before.”
Mr Schilg said his first tractor, a 1937 John Deere, was part of his collection, along with a rare May Brothers wheat stripper, dating from 1898.
“The first tractor Dad bought was second hand in 1948 – it was a 1937 Lanz Bulldog imported from Germany before the war,” he said.
“It came out on steel wheels as you couldn’t buy rubber tyres after the war.’’