Neglected 1926 Aveling & Porter sold

Posted by Chris Graham on 16th February 2023

Peter Love reports on the sale of an interesting but long-neglected 1926 Aveling & Porter 6-ton M-type tractor.

1926 Aveling & Porter

1926 Aveling & Porter: Seen in 1980 at the Taylor Brothers sale are Nippy, 1910 Fowler K5 Old Guard and two BB1 engines. (Pic: Bob Moorman)

The auction house Reeman Dansie, of Colchester, does very well price-wise with what it sells, but it isn’t renowned for selling steam engines and classic cars, which were all part of a recent estate sale.

1926 Aveling & Porter

Sitting Bull, as it was called at the time, seen at the 1987 Stoneleigh sale where the engine sold for £15,600. (Pic: Bob Moorman)

However the auctioneer hit the jackpot at noon on November 11th, when the 1926 Aveling & Porter 6-ton M-type tractor (No. 11705, Reg: PPJ 7142) came under the hammer.

1926 Aveling & Porter

Seen at Witney on May 26th, 1991, is No. 11705 Nippy, looking very smart. (Pic: Bob Moorman)

Used in its working life by Dagnall’s of Chesham, in Buckinghamshire, the engine ended up at Wimbish, near Saffron Walden, in Essex, with the Taylor Brothers, who named it Nippy. 

1926 Aveling & Porter

With the battered sheet off Nippy, all is revealed. (Pic: Reeman Dansie)

The editor first saw the engine on a September Saturday way back in 1966, while visiting the premises for the annual steam ploughing event that was held here. 

1926 Aveling & Porter

The engine certainly looks rather unloved in 2022, compared to our 1991 picture. (Pic: Reeman Dansie)

Nippy was part of the 1980 Taylor Brothers sale; it had a three-quarter length canopy at the time and sold for £10,500. Not many years later, in 1987 at Stoneleigh and then with a short canopy, the engine sold for £15,600. It had a welded firebox and welded flange tubeplate made and fitted by the Bicknell brothers, at their workshop near Liphook. 

These 6-ton Aveling & Porter tractors aren’t very pretty, but they always do their work well! (Pic: Reeman Dansie)

Nippy was rallied into the 1990s, but has basically been parked-up since 2000. From the photographs, the boiler assembly looks to have a tired firebox and necked crown stays, but the tubeplate looks very good, from the smokebox side. It was said by the auctioneers that the injectors, pressure gauge and chimney are not currently with the engine. At present they were being sorted out, but hadn’t been found at the time of the sale.

The tubeplate looks very good indeed. (Pic: Reeman Dansie)

Essentially, the engine needs a full overhaul in the long term, so the selling price of £101,000 was excellent, particularly given that the commission rate was 12% which, with the added VAT, made a total of a whopping £115,544!

Showing the length of the connecting rods and the rest of the motion which is rather rusty. (Pic: Reeman Dansie)


Nippy gets on the move with the aid of a 1989 Ford 7810 Jubilee tractor. (Pic: Reeman Dansie)

This news item comes from a recent issue of Old Glory, and you can benefit from a money-saving subscription to this magazine simply by clicking HERE


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