Tour of the Largest Private Collection of Military Vehicles Answered
Through the MIT Club of Northern California, Christy and I got the chance to tour the Military Vehicle Technology Foundation's collection in Portola Valley. Seeing 100 tanks from different time periods lined up and seemingly ready to roll was pretty amazing.
I've always had a thing for half-track vehicles, and was especially pleased to see a half-track motorcycle (SdKfz 2 Kleines Kettenkrad). In all honesty, this is probably one of the most impractical vehicles ever created, but it just looks so cool.
My other favorites to see in-person were a SCUD missile launcher (SS-1b Scud A) and an M48A5 AVLB (armored vehicle-launched bridge).
They also have a large shop where they repair, rebuild, and often re-engineer parts to restore the various tanks. While I was there, they were in the middle of repairing a World War II-era German tank found in a river.
The collection is the hobby of Jacques Littlefield, whose father, Edmund Littlefield, amassed a $1.7 billion fortune by running the family construction and mining company, Utah International, and merging it with GE (more here at Forbes).
The Instructables forums aren't exactly the best place to few 57 pictures, so here's my Flickr set, and here's the Flickr set of the person who organized the tour.