Graham Lusty Trailers
Who we are

The name ‘Lusty’ is famous in Australia for being associated with trailer manufacturing. Over the years different companies had been purchased and sold by both Graham Lusty and his brother John Lusty.

Graham Lusty Trailers celebrates its 10th birthday in 2019.  The story behind Graham and his company isn’t well known.  It’s time to pull up a seat and take a ride through history to see where it all started. Enjoy.

Graham Lusty Trailers
Our Story

1950’s

Nyah West, VIC

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The Graham Lusty legend begins, like so many others, in Australia’s outback. In the small town of Nyah West, near the Murray River, Graham’s spirit of adventure and love of machinery were born. In his early teens, Graham’s father – a fitter and turner by training – first taught Graham to weld, and when he finished school he took an apprenticeship with farm machinery specialist HA Nolan.

Graham’s first custom made tipper.

1971

Aged 29, Graham Lusty built his first tipper – based on a German designed tipper.

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1978

Graham and Joy’s first shed with their house next door.

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Graham and his father established a farm machinery business. The company was very successful and remained in operation until 1978, when Graham’s father retired and Graham formed G. & J. Lusty with his wife Joy.

The Swan Hill Facility.

1985

The tipper business took off slowly at first, with Graham and his team building just eight or nine per year in the early ‘70s. Then, with the help of the Rural Finance Commission, the company moved to Swan Hill and built a large shed with cranes to assist in production. They were now able to build more tippers, and specialised in a tip-over-axle design. By 1985, G & J Lusty was producing trailers only, and growing at a rapid rate.

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1985

The Lusty Allison brochure.

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At this time, a key challenge faced by the business was the seasonal fluctuation of the trailer industry. Graham looked north to Brisbane as an attractive market with considerable potential, and discovered that Allison Low Loaders was for sale. “If we were taking tippers north, we could take low loaders south,” Graham reasoned. Out of this, his next business venture, Lusty Allison, was born. While G & J Lusty continued to employ 75 staff, Lusty Allison had a staff of 45 people, making two low loaders per week.

Paul Keating (Prime Minister 1990)

1990

In the early 1990s, Keating’s “recession that Australia had to have” hit. And it hit the Lusty companies – and indeed the entire transport industry – hard. “The Gulf War started, fuel became very dear and almost overnight the transport industry stopped buying. We were getting about a third of the work we used to,” Graham said. This was a very difficult time for him, and it still pains Graham when he remembers losing the business.

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1997

Early days at Lusty EMS.

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Graham and his wife moved to Brisbane, where his love of building trailers could not be held at bay for long. Graham subcontracted to EMS, a global player in equipment and machinery sales. The work began to flow steadily, until he was able to employ a staff of six or seven to assist in building tippers. EMS’s management saw the potential of Graham’s tippers so together they formed Lusty EMS, in which Graham was a 50 percent partner.

Graham enjoying his retirement in his 200sx Rally Car

2004

In 2004, Graham and his partners sold Lusty EMS to Maxitrans. Graham continued to work for Maxitrans for another year, before deciding it was time to retire.

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2009

The first Graham Lusty Trailer.

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Graham, with his great energy and love of a challenge, did not take well to retirement. Within five years, he was thoroughly sick of the quiet life, so it was not too difficult for former colleagues to coax the now 67-year-old to return to his former profession. In 2009 Graham established Graham Lusty Trailers based in Carole Park.

GLT’s new facility at 174 Stradbroke Street, Heathwood, Brisbane.

2012

In 3 short years, Graham Lusty Trailers moved from their first premises to a new larger facility to meet the growing production demand. The Heathwood facility opened and the staff numbers were doubled. The product range also increased to include side tippers, flat top belly tankers and tankers.

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2017

GLT’s second facility at 130 Sandstone Place, Parkinson, Brisbane.

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As the demand continued to grow for GLT, the Heathwood facility was pushed to its production limits. A second facility was needed to support the final fit out of the new trailers and pick up location for all new trailers. 130 Sandstone Place in Parkinson, Brisbane was opened in May and is the current HQ for GLT.

GLT’s concept for a purpose built production facility.

The Future

The next major step for GLT will be merging the two current facilities back into a single location. The GLT product range is currently being expanded to move away from reliance on the grain sector. The engineering team are working on some exciting new concept trailers which will be released throughout 2019 and 2020.

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