Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2006.
Ted Scarfe’s interest in trucks began when he was a boy and went to his uncle’s for school holidays. His uncle was working on a log truck which was a 194 model Ford with a side valve V8 petrol motor. When it left the workshop the V8 was “singing or so it seemed to a young boy.
In Ted’s early teens he used to go and help on a logging truck in the Wattagan mountains. Eventually Ted went to Victoria at 18 to get his truck licence. While down there he carted logs out of the local mill in east Gippsland and carted sawn timber to Eden and Bega driving a Leyland Comet 75.
He returned to Newcastle and for a while worked for Challenge Transport driving a Guy 4-cyclinder, 5 diesel motor with a 4-speed gear box. He then met up with a mate who was driving interstate (they are still friends 47 years later) who told Ted he was leaving his job, did he want to do it. That was the beginning of a lifetime of interstate driving for Ted. Over the years he drove an AEC Mandator with a 11.3 litre diesel motor which did 43mph (approx 70kph) to his last acquisition, a CHR Mack Select which of course could do 100kph with speed limiter.
Ted remembers when the trucks were so slow and under-powered the only way you could pick up a bit of pace was to float off the hills on the Old Hume Highway. Many of these are by-passed by the new Hume Highway. There were four ferries to use up the Pacific Highway; these are just memories now. Ted is retired now but occasionally “give a mate a hand” or does some research for the Road Transport Hall of Fame.
Ted has driven from Newcastle to Perth, Melbourne to Darwin and has many stories to tell, all of which would take too much room for this nomination. He drove for many companies and also did his own work which he enjoyed. He has driven with friends such as Ken Archer – when there were over 1500 miles of dirt road across the Nullarbor, Billy Williams, Leo Baker (dec), John Wright (dec) and Max Williams. The old saying: “Once a truckie always a truckie” is very true in Ted’s case.