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moralfibre 5th October 2013 08:52

Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
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Come 21st century and the environmentally conservative folk are moving towards hybrid vehicles. The Prius, when launched in the US had special sanctions for driving on carpool lanes with just one occupant. It was indeed a car to buy for some folks who treated it as an automotive innovation. Was the concept of an electric car really a 21st century thing? Not really, they have been in development right since 1888.

When pictures of a VW Beetle with a jet engine made rounds of the internet, enthusiasts believed that it was quite a unique thing that had never been done before. Again, not really, it was done way back in the early 20th century. Be it, having twin fuel tanks to twin spark plugs. Whether it was converting a motorcycle to a people carrier or inventing the smallest mode of transport. Thought of converting your car to an amphicar or designing a vehicle that flies, sails as well as moves on the road. It has all been done.

What prompted this thread? I received an email some weeks ago with a compilation of such innovations and inventions as well as uniquely redesigned cars. Pictures showing alternate modes of transport or attempts to reinvent the wheel. Some of them were plain whacky mod jobs of the time. I thought it was pretty cool and deserves its own thread here on team-bhp.

All pictures sourced from: http://avaxnews.net/

Sit back and enjoy:

Model Gay McGregor shows off the latest 1956 model Bond Minicar three-wheeler, at its London preview.

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An Adler Diplomat car, built in Germany in 1936, with its carburetor that uses wood instead of petrol, fitted during World War II.

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Joan Blondell (1909–1979) the friendly comedienne is riding on an American railway truck, during the filming of her latest film, “Other Men's Women”, directed by William Wellman for Warner Brothers.

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Captain Malin with an amphibian Riley car going down the Severn. He is taking a convoy of these cars for a London to Cape Town venture. The car is mounted on a portable balloon apparatus and driven by its own power through small paddles on the rear wheels.

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The new Amphicar, which can be driven on land or water, is used as a fishing boat by its owner at the start of the salmon fishing season on the River Tay, Scotland. The “aqua” car is German built, fitted with a Triumph Herald engine and can reach speeds of 7.5 knots in water.

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A fruit importer's lorry at Covent Garden, London , with its driver's cabin in the shape of an apple.

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A man and a woman riding in an “Auto Red Bug”, America 's latest electric 2-seater runabout, in a London street. Driven by a 16 volt battery, it is capable of 12 mph.

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A car of totally new design, the automodul, driven by its designer J. P. Ponthieu, at the opening of the first Racing Car and Cycle show in Paris.

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Baker Mr. Sillitoe has constructed a delivery van with the driver's cab and the van in the shape of loaves of bread.

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A motor car at Brooklands race track which has been fitted with a propeller for extra speed.

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Customers buying snacks at the bar of a bus.

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Prototype for a car-about-town, La Quasar, designed by Quasar Kahn. The car allows easy access from all four sides and can reach speeds of 95kph.

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Navy recruits riding in car and trailer at the HMS Royal Arthur training centre formerly Butlin's holiday camp, Skegness.

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Clive Talbot Of Chiswick, London , in his car built with the body of a boat.

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A caterpillar driven ferry with a 24 horsepower engine takes holidaymakers from the mainland at Bigbury in Devon to Burgh Island, a quarter of a mile away.

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Dr. Manfred Curry standing beside his invention, the Curry-Landskiff, a man-powered vehicle which can reach speed of up to 35 miles per hour.

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A one-man anti-gas ambulance and resuscitator, designed and made for use by the Home Guard.

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Georges Monneret arrives on Dover beach after successfully crossing the Channel on his Douglas Vespa motorbike balanced on a pair of floats.

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Students at Brooklyn High School in New York learn to handle the controls of a car and experience simulated traffic conditions flashed onto a screen by means of projected film, using the Aetna Drivotrainer.

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The James Samson Handyman electric cart offered for sale at £86.00 complete.

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moralfibre 5th October 2013 09:05

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
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The Dynasphere, an electrically-driven wheel, invented by Mr. J. A. Purves of Taunton and his son. It had 2.5 horse power and once attained a speed of 25 mph.

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A man examining his electric car.

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A back view of an English invention capable of being used as a car, boat and plane. Showing are a tail fin, rudder and propeller. It also has two wings which can fold back and another propeller at the front.


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An old car is used to harvest a field at Sprowston, Norfolk .

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A Fulgar show-model car made by French car manufacturers, Simca. Designed for the year 2000 it is intended to be atomically powered, guided by radar and using only two wheels balanced by gyroscopes when driven at over 150 kph

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Gas-driven taxis in a street in Birmingham . The gas bags on the roofs of the taxis last about 15 to 20 miles without a refill.

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Mr. Graham's novel three-wheel car designed to look like an armoured car, being used to take himself and his bride on honeymoon after their wedding.

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“Haywire”, one of the snowcats used by Dr. Fuch's and his Commonwealth explorers on their journey across the Antarctic continent, arrives at Tilbury from New Zealand, via Antwerp.

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Holidaymakers riding the “train” at Butlin's Holiday Camp, Skegness, Lincolnshire .

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Lord Brabazon, the pioneer British aviator, demonstrates the hover scooter at Long Ditton in Surrey . The machine has been developed by American engineer Charles Rhoades, and combines the hovercraft with a scooter powered by a 250cc twin cylinder 2-stroke motorcycle engine.

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With chains fitted properly on the wheels, the driver is just about ready to race his midget car on the ice at Lily Pond, New Hampshire, USA.

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A miniature truck carrying a party of children in open carriages next to a London and North Eastern railway steam engine on a platform at Ilford railway station, Essex.

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A motor iceboat invented by Dr. Thadeus D. Smith of Wisconsin reaches seventy miles an hour during its test on a frozen lake.

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Salesman Mike Dreschler has his motorised roller skates refuelled at a petrol station near Hartford , Connecticut . He has a single horsepower air-cooled engine strapped to his back and holds a clutch, accelerator and engine cut-off switch in his hand.

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Swiss engineer M. Gerder at Arles , France on his way to Spain in his “Motorwheel”, a motorcycle with a wheel which runs on a rail placed inside a solid rubber tyre.

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The newly built one horsepower Rytecraft lorry, believed to be the smallest motor lorry in the world, on the North Circular Road with other traffic.

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moralfibre 5th October 2013 09:19

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
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A man cycling a “One-Man Car Cycle” in a street in the West End of London .

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A new “People's Car”, with an entirely plastic body, designed to seat three adults and two children and marketed as the cheapest car on the road.

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The Peugeot motor-boat car, on a river bank. The front end is shaped like the bow of a boat, the middle part like a car and it has wheels.

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The Regal four-seater coupe, produced by the Reliant Engineering Co., Tamworth, Staffordshire, on show at the Cycle and Motor Cycle Show at Wasrl's Court in London.

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The back view of a Renault 4 CV car, parked in the centre of Copenhagen with a large key fitted to the boot giving passers-by the impression of a life-size clockwork car.

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A man with his small, runaround cycle.

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A Blackpool single decker tram.

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A stunt car being rolled.


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A submarine motor car, which can travel both on land and underwater and is equipped with a 4 hp engine and steel fins on both sides.

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Arthur Parkes, a television engineer from Dudley in Worcestershire, is the proud holder of the first mobile television licence to be issued in Britain . Mr. Parkes has confounded the British Broadcasting Corporation by proving that aircraft are capable of receiving television transmissions.


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Three tricycles make car for two. Dr. J. B. Hanson and wife demonstrate their car.

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Queen Mary (1867–1953) with Princess Mary, the Princess Royal (1897–1965) being driven across rough ground in a tracked car by Army officers.

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A trackless train leaving King George V Dock for London ..

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Travelling to the Derby by chauffeur driven car.


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The “Urbania”, the world's smallest working car, invented by Marquis Piero Bargagli of Poggio Adorno to solve the problem of limited parking space. The engine is situated in the centre of the chassis and the seats rotate on a circular rail, enabling the passengers to descend from any side.


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A vehicle invented by George McLaughlin which was designed to travel on ice and snow.


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Two Victorian ladies out for a drive with their chauffeur.

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The new Volkswagen travelling along the tracks of the Long Island railroad.
This versatile vehicle has two sets of wheels, tyres for the road and iron wheels that fit directly onto the tracks.

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moralfibre 5th October 2013 09:28

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) (http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/announ...m-section.html) to Vintage and classic car section.

nik0502 6th October 2013 07:05

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Awesome thread !!!!!

You got great set of pictures there. Thanks for the thread and pictures.

nIk

wanderernomad 6th October 2013 11:45

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Excellent set of pictures. Some of these ideas are actually being thought of again. I wonder if they would have been followed through in those times, maybe we would have had a different automotive world today. They designed an atomic powered car for the year 2000, when even now in 2013 we cannot get even Hydrogen to drive a car safely. Gas Taxis, lolz. Are they not the forerunners of the CNG cars today? And ofcourse the concept of amphibs. It has been around for generations and yet we do not see some of the real world amphibs for practical uses. Great thread with lot of knowledge.

roy_libran 6th October 2013 12:08

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Excellent Thread. Thanks!
Is it appropriate to add Segway and Solowheel to this list?
Links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segway_PT
http://www.segway.com/

The Solowheel website doesn't seem to be working.

There are a few more similar innovations like the RYNO Micro-cycle etc.

Rehaan 7th October 2013 19:47

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
That's a great set of pictures!

Here's another related thread focusing on the unique (and some forgotten) technologies of the past : LINK.

cya
R

LoneWolf9 7th October 2013 23:07

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Thanks a ton for sharing this. Iam really fascinated by the Amphicar.

It would be great to add some of our desi innovation to this as well.

sai_ace 8th October 2013 15:43

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
what stunning photographs!!

DKG 8th October 2013 20:38

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
My goodness !! What an outstanding collection of pictures and each so deeply fascinating. Thanks a ton for sharing. What a treasure.

AlphaLamb 9th October 2013 00:29

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
A very fascinating post, Moralfibre.

I am intriguied by the one-wheeled inventions (the Dynasphere and Motorwheel), examples of such devices keep coming up now and then but yet to see a commercially viable unit.

Goes to show that mankind has been trying to perfect certain technologies for quite some time but it yet to master them (also the vehicle for the year 2000)

Rehaan 9th October 2013 01:35

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AlphaLamb (Post 3260587)
I am intriguied by the one-wheeled inventions (the Dynasphere and Motorwheel), examples of such devices keep coming up now and then but yet to see a commercially viable unit.

It doesn't look easy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKwL8Zbu08Y

cya
R

KPS 9th October 2013 07:54

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
Thanks Moralfibre for sharing. One can imagine the passion the inventor would have put into such projects.

Of late we read about Chinese inventors building helicopters from locally available parts etc. Continuous innovation and invention is a must for doing things better.

Cheers

KPS

Edmund 9th October 2013 09:19

Re: Automotive innovations and some unique modes of transport from the past
 
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While researching for a school project I came across a rather fascinating form of mixed terrain mobility!

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"The Peaveys' machine had two pairs of cylinders with an articulation between the pairs to effect steering. At least two prototype vehicles were constructed: one was steam powered the other used a gasoline engine.

The prototypes worked well on hard packed snow but failed in soft powder because the flanges had nothing to grip into. The machine was designed to haul logs, but its length and rigid construction meant that it had difficulty with the uneven winter roads for which it was intended.

Peavey's invention could not compete with the Lombard Steam Log Hauler built by Alvin Lombard and it was not produced commercially."

Source: wikipedia


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