By Stuart Kavanagh
With all the caravans, RVs and motorhomes in town, many visiting the Mundi Mundi Bash, you could be forgiven for missing a true classic gem amongst them this week on the streets of Broken Hill.
Ian Yabsley and his wife have been in town for a while, along with their beautiful 1948 Flxible Clipper.
Flxible, an American manufacturer of motorcycle sidecars, funeral cars, ambulances, intercity coaches and transit buses began producing vehicles in 1913 and continued until 1996.
When the factory closed its doors forever their products quickly became collector’s items.
Reg Ansett attempted to begin manufacturing these vehicles in Australia during the 1950s and 60s, and he did manage to churn out 131 in total. His company named them Ansair.
When Mr Yabsley and his wife became aware of a Clipper manufactured in the original Ohio facility available in Oklahoma around 10 years ago – they pounced.
“We bought it in Oklahoma around 10 years ago, changed it to right hand drive, and repowered it. We kept the panels and the paint job the same, however, to keep it looking the same as when it rolled out of the factory 70 years ago.” Ian told us.
They have converted the bus to a motorhome to make their travels around Australia a little more comfortable.
“We’ve done a few long trips. We don’t like doing big laps, just little jaunts, six weeks at a time to different parts of Australia.”
If you wanted to catch a glimpse of this beauty, unfortunately you are out of luck. Ian’s wife had been in town doing some university research and they were “heading back East today [Friday]”.
Luckily enough Ian allowed us to take some snaps of the bus before they took off.