Yes, the road.

Yes, the road.
Eagle Nest, New Mexico. “People like to drive because driving is actually and symbolically an almost perfect mechanism for escape…there is probably no human being who does not have troubles, real or imagined, from which he at times feels the need to flee.” George R. Stewart.


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Brooklin, Maine, United States
We own a 1975 GMC Sierra Grande 15 in Maine and a 1986 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe 10 in West Texas. Also a pair of 1997 Volvo 850 wagons. Average age in the fleet is 28 years--we're recycling. I've published 3 novels: THE LAW OF DREAMS (2006), THE O'BRIENS (2012), and CARRY ME (2016). Also 2 short story collections: NIGHT DRIVING(1987) and TRAVELLING LIGHT (2013). More of my literary life is at I was a Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study for 2012-13. I'm an adjunct professor at Colorado College and in the MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte. In 2015-16 I was a Fellow at Harvard University's Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. The Autoliterate office is in Car Talk Plaza in Harvard Square, 2 floors above Dewey Cheatem & Howe. SUBSCRIBE TO THE AUTOLITERATE DAILY EMAIL by hitting the button to the right.

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Bantam Trailer, and Bantam Jeeps

From David Branch in far-West Texas:
"The scoop on the trailer:
"I believe this trailer is an ex-military unit. It had a lunette style set-up for a pintle hitch that has clearly been torched off and replaced with a Hammer-blow style hitch for a 2" ball.  It also has mounting holes for a handbrake (seems to be a military option, that would be nice to have!)

"The trailer was parked on flat tires under a disintegrated tarp here in town. It had a 1966 Miller welder bolted to the bed. It had a toolbox and a headache rack for leads and gas as well. A nice set-up. My guess is some enterprise got a supply of surplus trailers and fit them out as welding trailers. Note the paint job w. pin-striping! And fender steps, which are not original, but nicely done.
"I initially thought I'd get the welder running but all the used motor oil in the bed of the rig was not poor housekeeping, it was a thrown rod! I probably should have tried to source a motor for it but I traded the welder for a load of gravel and never looked back.
"The little bantam is useful as hell. It had great clearance, sits at a good height for working, is balanced such that a man can move it around unhitched, even loaded. She's rated at 1/4 ton but will hold a half yard of dirt or gravel (1,200 lbs) before hitting the blocks on the springs.
"It was designed to be towed behind the jeeps of the day M38-A1, or the older M-38. Though its history is concurrent with the development of the jeep itself. My somewhat unsubstantiated theory is that Bantam was given the trailer contract after losing the shootout for the jeep. By many accounts the bantam vehicle was superior to any others, its features being required of all participants in subsequent rounds. Either way, the trailer shares hub and bearing assemblies with the jeep as well as Kelsey-Hayes steel wheels. In a pinch you can pirate parts from the trailer for the jeep! Mine has 15" rims typical of early sixties jeeps. It has no data plate or vin.
"If this ain't enough blathering on for you, check out this page: for more info and photos on these things.
"I'm pretty glad I nabbed it."--DB

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