1 of the only 2 Half tracks that made it coming back from Argentina to Europe. This Halftrack M5 was built on the 19th of March 1943. And was bought by mr. Arie who is going to restore the very nice Halftrack.
A nice contribution written by Arie and his son:
My name is Arie de Snaijer, I am a retired Mechanical Engineer yet too young to sit back and do nothing, so have been looking out for a new challenge in my retired life. I have been a petrolhead most of my life and a car (re-)building project would fit very well with this challenge. With the help of Ivo Rigter (Sr and Jr) of BAIV I have been able to find a new project in restoring an International Harvester M5 Halftrack which came up for sale at the beginning of this year.
My aspiration is to do most of the restoration work myself in my own workshop, but I agreed with BAIV to do some major upfront activities on engine, gearbox and brakes in their workshop prior to transportation of the halftrack to my workshop in Oosthuizen, Noord Holland. To gain the necessary car and work exposure I wanted to be present in the BAIV workshop during the upfront activities and work along BAIV’s staff to get the jobs done. Although this is a pretty uncommon request to BAIV, they agreed to it and I spent a large proportion of the 3 weeks the jobs took in their workshop, getting hands-on with the halftrack which gave me a wealth of information and practical experience due BAIV staff’s openness in sharing tasks and experiences. They clearly enjoy their work and are very proud of the restorations on WO2 vehicles they are able to achieve in their well-equipped workshop.
Thanks to all BAIV staff for giving me this magnificent opportunity.
After the three weeks I was very excited to drive my halftrack for the first time, straight onto a semi-low loader for transportation to my workshop in Oosthuizen, where the further restoration (well …. dis-assembly for most part now!!!) is progressing at a somewhat “pensioner’s” pace for a few days in the week …. It should not start looking like a full time job again!!!
My goal is to get “The Chief” (which is the project name for now) in driveable and presentable shape by early 2019, in order to be able to drive it in Normandy during the 75 year D-day commemoration activities. Still a lot of work to be done before that time for which I will seek continued support from BAIV staff as and when required.
HISTORY M5-1563-ORD 12318 USA#4030306
This M5 was definitely in service for the British Allied troops liberating Europe!
After the war was over this vehicle was supposed to be scrapped in Belgium. Two British officers were made responsible for this job. Work was executed by local Belgium scrap dealer and supervised by both British Officers in the Summer of 1947. During the works both officers were invited by the Belgium Scrap dealer for a trip to Paris. Their wife’s were invited too. After their trip to Paris, which was fully paid by the Belgium scrap dealer, it looked like all vehicles were scrapped. However…… a few years later the British army found out not all vehicles were scrapped, since they popped up in Argentina. The Argentina Army used these halftracks for quite some time. They always have been maintained well. Eventually early 2000 they came up for sale.
Since then only 2 halftrack have been able to leave Argentina. The rest is currently held at the docks or still somewhere in Argentina under military supervision and not allowed to export out of Argentina.
So with respect to this example the formal UK owner was very lucky to get these halftrack out.
This makes it a very unique vehicle with ditto history.