Ford Motor Factory
No.3 BSD (RAAF)
- Brisbane City
31 Schneider Road, Eagle Farm 4009
The Ford Motor Company of Australia, a subsidiary company of Ford Canada, established a motor vehicle assembly plant at Eagle Farm in 1926. The site had ready access to road, railway, and shipping facilities on the river. The factory played an important manufacturing role during WWII constructing a range of products and parts for the military forces of both Australia and the United States.
The Ford Motor Company played a significant role in the industrial contribution made by Brisbane factories during the World War II. The Brisbane Assembling Works, as its name implies, was built for the assembly of car bodies and imported engines (sent from Britain and Canada).
The factory was utilised for the production of various vehicle parts for Ford vehicles used by the US and Australian military forces. In addition its valuable production capabilities could be turned to other tasks such. The factory layout, with no internal wall partions, gave a continuous large open space for the manufacture and assembly of equipment and vehicles. The factory’s location also allowed manufactured items to be easily transported to the various military assembly works. In particular the Ford factory manufactured long range fuel tanks for United States aircraft.
In January 1942, part of the Ford Factory site was taken over by Number (No.) 3 Stores Depot (RAAF) for the purpose of construction additional stores (warehouses) and offices for this unit.
The Australian Army operated landing craft in New Guinea, and because of a pressing need for craft, designed its own variants. Initial versions of the Australian Landing Craft Vehicle (ALCV) were built on the Brisbane river by Army and Ford Motor Company personnel. These were quite small craft with the load capacity of no more than 5 tons. Steel used in the production of the Australian Army landing craft was initially fabricated at the Ford factory and assembled at Pinkenba. However, by the end of 1942 a larger version, the ALCVII, was being assembled. The landing craft were powered by Ford V8 Mercury petrol engines. An even larger Australian Landing Craft Mechanized (ALCM), with a 15 ton capacity was developed and manufactured by Ford. The manufacture of a more useful 40 ton landing craft, the four-engined ALCV III also began in 1943.
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