Manufactured by Peter Formiatti (born 1900 in Italy) Wanneroo Road, Tuart Hill and later Bassendean, Western Australia
here is a Modern Van the name is Modern manufactured in Perth w.a.in 1958 Brian Noble (noblesgarage) a member has totally restored the van inside and out The original owner of Modern was an immigrant from Italy yugoslavia was assisted to buy the land by the goverment on the main rd from perth to wanneroo the address being Wanneroo rd tuart hill approximately 5 kilometres from central perth it was established in the early fiftys and the land was sold for several million dollars in 1997 approx 1 acre when the owner retired Modern was closed down the business was a successful venture for 40 years and the land made an excellent retirement fund
Will Editorial note: Information posted on the forum subsequently about Modern caravans (see below) has indicated that Noblesgarage's Modern is quite a bit newer than 1958, the date provided by Willyn. The van is most probably late 60's, and possibly 1968 rather than 1958. Don Ricardo
Post by Don Ricardo on Jan 19, 2008 20:44:49 GMT 10
Information provided by Mark T, transferred from a duplicate thread for Modern caravans: "Modern" Caravans were a Perth based caravan manufacturer who traded for many years at the corner of Royal Street & Wanneroo roads Tuart Hill WA.
Here's some pics of what I believe to be one of the earliest versions of a "Modern Caravan"......why , because of its crude construction ....rough pop rivetting of ali panels, and "old" design, ie, no rear window, little front window, old round shape.
Its located in WA's sou'west and, because of its local historical significance, belongs in a WA vintage caravan museum.
Just found some more pics on Trove. Hopefully this will happen more and more for everybody as old articles and photos are archived
So here are two photos of Moderns taken on the 8th of October, 1956. It looks like these photos were also taken at the showgrounds.
Another very large van up front, with some regular-sized vans in the background. I do wonder how many of the large vans were really sold. I suspect they were more of a flagship model with only one or two made per year. Of course I have no facts with which to back up this supposition
A different angle showing the regular-sized vans. I can't make out the lettering of two signs on the left, but the one on the right is interesting.
FOR THE HANDYMAN
So Modern were like the ikea of WA caravans!? Was this a common practice at the time? I wonder if these pre-cut panels came with badges already attached. Could this explain some of the design/quality discrepancies which occasionally crop up? ... Hmmm ...
Gday Dusty, Selling vans as kits, or empty shells / rolling chassis' to fit out to your own design or just the plans in order to do the whole job yourself was indeed "common practice" in the 50s' and 60s'......a lot more carpenters, cabinet makers and tradesman oriented types around in those days! regards jenno
Post by Don Ricardo on Jan 21, 2013 22:10:30 GMT 10
Thanks for posting some more photos of Modern caravans. By all appearances, they were going great guns in the mid-50's and doing some interesting things style-wise. As far as I know, they are the only commercial scale Aussie builder who produced van using louvre windows, although they were relatively common in the US.
Looking at the pics, it is interesting to note the different style windows. Bosse & Eunson style windows (with the rounded corners) on the large van, 90 degree cornered wooden windows on the smaller van in the middle, and are they metal/aluminium framed windows on the dark coloured van?
I would also be interested to know what material the "rippled/corrugated" style cladding on the lower half of the Modern vans of the mid-50's were made from. They look almost as if they are made from tin or aluminium, and if the vans were built in the early to mid-60's I would say that's what it is. However, the mid-50's would be extremely early for that type of material (as opposed to flat sheet aluminium that some manufacturers were using by that time).
Yes, Jennison you're right. And I think the handymen of that era had many talents which unfortunately aren't so common anymore. When I think of the older gents in my own family, they turned out some beautiful pieces of craftsmanship while they were here, things that will last many decades.
I posted the last photo before I saw your comment, Don. They were already advertising as the aluminium specialists in 1958. So those panels could well have been aluminium (?) I don't really know much more than what I have posted, but if Mr Modern (I don't even know the manufacturer's name!) came from Yugoslavia as the first posts says, maybe he brought the technology with him or was importing the corrugated panels? I am clutching at straws a little I would have to look more into what Yugoslavians caravans of the same vintage are like (!) And now I have a teeny headache just thinking about a plunge down THAT rabbit hole..
Hi Jasonb92, do you have a picture of the Modern Sticker or plaque on the van, as this could give us a rough idea. Im thinking late 60s due to the bullnose bit above the front window but it could be earlier.
Hi Jasonb92 Here's a picture of my Modern, its 1973 so it has a big bullnose. And before I get yelled at for putting it on the Vintage Caravan Forum and not The Classic Caravan Forum, I'm only doing to to show the differences.
But in my picture you can see my Modern Sticker on the front. Red with a shiny silver backing. This was a later style sticker. Hope this helps