Gas Engine Magazine

Avance Tractor Up-date

By Staff

65 Farview Street, Glenroy, Victoria 3046 Australia

A story by Ben Boren of the Booker News appeared in September,
1989 GEM on page 22. It was the story of the unveiling of Mr. Dan
Sell’s rare Avance tractor. The story states that there is one
survivor of this model in Australia.

Recently, I attended a Rally at Katamatite, in northern
Victoria, where an Avance, owned by Ian McPherson of Yarrawonga was
on display. Unhappily, due to a recently cracked head on the
engine, Ian was unable to run the tractor. Ian’s dad had bought
the tractor new and it remained in the family. It has been fully

Last weekend, March 17, while traveling in company with three
friends, I attended a Rally at Allansford, in western Victoria, and
the matter of the Avance report arose. One of the occupants of the
car was Neil McDonald, author of A.H. McDonald, Industrial Pioneer;
also Richard Peachey, a former A.H. McDonald apprentice; and Bert
Surplice, engineer, engine collector and a man with a vast store of

The A.H. McDonald Company was the importer of Avance, from 1926
to 1931. Approximately 200 units were handled, the earlier ones
having that trouble with the breaking crankshafts. All of these
early units were modified with a kit sent out from Sweden, which
was an insert behind the engine which carried an extra crankshaft
bearing. Later models came out of the factory with the extra
bearing already fitted.

So we began counting the Avance tractors, that we could
remember, and in very short order came up with seven known examples
in our small corner of the country, that is, 6 in Victoria, and one
in Temora in southern New South Wales. Three units are in well
established rural museums, and four in private hands. I cannot
comment on the state of restoration of the tractors, except the
Yarrawonga one viewed at Katamatite, but I have resolved to chase
up all the addresses I have and record all relevant information,
numbers, owners, state of restoration, etc.

  • Published on Jun 1, 1990
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