Plus a few other things. One of the things I did while I was without net service was dig up all the ancient magazines I’ve got and scanned some of the articles about strange automotive things that I’ve never been able to find much more about.
First up, is the car Hiram Maxim (yes, that Hiram Maxim) built, which is unique in that features a flip top box and sadly, no machine guns.
Next is the Perkin Paris which had fenders that turned into a bridge. Why anybody would want such a thing is beyond me.
Lots of people hate SUVs because they’re big, ugly, and use too much gas. Well, just be glad that Ford’s concept (in 1911) of what a car in 1961 would look like never came to pass. :eek:
Preston Tucker wasn’t the only fellow in 1948 trying to capitalize on the post-war demand for cars, only Henry J. Kaiser managed to have any success. The other folks, did manage to build a car or two. However, I can’t see anyone falling in love with this car, this one, or this one.
Back in the early days of automobiles, people were looking at all kinds of different engines and possibilities for alternative fuel. This engine supposedly got better fuel economy running on acetylene than gas engines of the era, and (at least at that time) acetylene was cheaper than gas. I’m tempted to try and find the patents for that engine and see if it could be made to work.
Look! It’s a VW Beetle on steroids! :eek: Actually, the car predates by a year or so. As does this lookalike and this one. Interestingly enough, the last two are both German cars, while the first one is American.
And did you know that before he built computers, Steve Jobs was into cars? Well, who else would call their car an Apple?
I don’t know when the trend started, but shortly after the VW Beetle showed up after WW II, people began ripping them apart and replacing the body with a fiberglas one. One of the niftiest looking ones, I think, was the Ascort from the folks down under, who for reasons known only to themselves, tried to give us the Zeta as well. (IIRC, it had a washing machine motor.)
Lest you think I’ve only got automotive things, I point you to this rather unusual motorcycle tire. It’s a solid tire that had the center carved out and replaced with balls, to help the rider improve his cornering. Can’t imagine it’d be fun to ride on anything but a dirt track.
The next time your eco-friendly cow-irker goes on and how about how cutting edge their hybrid is show them the Briggs and Stratton hybrid car which was built in the 1980s. (I wish I could find the article on the hybrid truck which dates from the teens or 20s.)
Here’s an engine which supposedly ran off it’s own CO[sub]2[/sub]. How it could possibly work, I’ve no idea. (According to the article the exhaust from the primary cylinders would be sent to larger secondary cylinders where it would be consumed.)
An interesting variant on the rotary engine is this crankless engine. It had fewer moving parts, so I wonder why it never caught on.
Now, this engine sounds like a diesel engine, but had some undefined difference that the neither the article nor the crappy photo makes clear.
Given the latest fashions for drivers at the turn of the 1900s it’s a wonder the automobile ever caught on at all.
We’ve all heard the tale of the 100 MPG, but that’s nothing compared to this engine which supposedly got 300 MPG.
While this guy appears to be romantically involved with his gas pedal, it actually is a pretty good idea. When you pulled your foot off the gas pedal the brakes like would flash. Someone else came up the idea at about the same time (and I wish I could find the article) where the harder you pressed on the brakes, the brighter your tail lights would get.
We’ve all had to struggle with flat tires in the past, well the folks who built the Gladiator car had an idea to help with that. They put an air pump in the wheel hub. All you had to do was hook the tire iron up to and pump till your arms fell off.
Back before he was building cars, Preston Tucker learned everything he knew from famed Indy race car designer Harry A. Miller. One of Miller’s cars was called the Golden Submarine. It was supposed to be the ultimate high performance and safety. The car above it, is an Auburn speedster which was built a number of years later and looks very similar, IMHO.
The government is requiring all cars to have tire pressure monitoring systems, and many companies are looking at something other than pneumatic tires. Perhaps they should try this idea.
One of the dumbest ideas I’ve seen is this one for a brake pedal that was wired up to the driver’s eye brows. You blink, and it slams on the brakes. Does anyone see a problem here? Can you imagine what would happen if the driver had a sneezing fit?
I don’t have anything for this one other than it’s a blow up clutch, and I’m sure we all think of the same thing when we read “blow up.”
How many of you have invented an alternative fuel over breakfast? Well, this young girl did and we’ve never heard any more about it.
Everybody laughed when we saw Wayne driving an AMC Pacer in *Wayne’s World, however, did you know that AMC actually considered trying to make the Pacer hip? Yeah, it doesn’t work for me either, and I like Pacers.
Well, it’s upside down, but this is an article about a license plate that would snitch on you if you broke the speed limit. Glad that idea didn’t catch on.
If showing your irritating cow-irker the hybrid from the 80s doesn’t shut them up, then show them this British built car from the 1950s which got 100 MPG, of course it only seats one.
That’s all for now, I’ve got to toddle off to bed, but I’ll be back with a steam powered air plane, motorcycle, and camper, not to mention a truck which used its mud flaps as brakes, a motorcycle modeled after a tractor and tons of other things.