Monday, August 8, 2022

Monday Mystery, wooden gears

This old mechanism could be a mix of commercially made wooden gears and various other bits arranged into some sort of specific device. Some of the gears do have some text printed on them, "Branch, Tor. Co." but nothing definitive. My guess might be some sort of homemade machine for some aspect of weaving, but any guesses?
 The gears are made of soft white wood with little grain structure, possibly basswood or poplar? I wouldn't expect it would be the best material for gears.

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Bristol Lister, 1954

Brian Lister started the Lister car company in 1954, building a sports car with a tubular ladder chassis and installing a MG powertrain. The picture above shows the factory team with the second iteration, using a Bristol 2 litre engine, allowing them to compete in a different class. In the drivers seat, is Archie Scott Brown, who finished in second place in the sports car support race at the 1954 British Grand Prix. Nice... uhmm... Dagmars.

A further move to Jaguar engines from the retiring D type racers allowed Listers to continue their winning ways for another five years.

Sidecar Sunday

In 1958, for reasons not stated, multi-time World Champion Sidecar champion Eric Oliver raced this standard Norton Dominator outfit in the Isle of Man Sidecar TT. he finished 10th against purpose built outfits. The passenger was identified as Mrs. Pat Wise.
My first thoughts were, "What was wrong with her? Was she crazy or just stupid? Didn't she know his history?"
A bit of searching found her to be a motorcycle racer in her own right so maybe just did it for a lark? That's her below in 1962, endurance racing an Ariel Arrow with Olga Kevelos. In the middle is Mr. Les Wise.

Saturday, August 6, 2022

Cockshutt 70 tractor

James Cockshutt started the Brantford Plow company in 1877. The venture was successful and in 1882 the organization was incorporated as the Cockshutt Plow company. By the 1920s it was a leader in ground tillage equipment and needed to get into the tractor business. A venture with Allis Chalmers was unsatisfactory and they turned to Oliver-Hart Parr, selling their 6 cylinder 18-44 model but moving to this streamline styled model 70 in 1937 when it became available. They were sold either in Oliver green or Cockshutt red and cream and were quite popular sellers.


Friday, August 5, 2022

Know your 1922 motorcycle engines...


Proprietary engine (From top left):

 277cc two-stroke MAG, 1,098cc IOE MAG,  349cc ohv Bradshaw, 688cc sv Coventry Victor,

 998cc sleeve valve Barr & Stroud,  346cc IOE MAG, two-stroke Villiers, 1090cc sv Precision; 

696cc ohv Blackburne, 499cc sleeve valve Barr & Stroud, 349cc two-stroke Broler, 976cc sv JAP.

1,078cc ohv wc Anzani, 346cc sv JAP, 1,090cc ohv wc Blackburne, 249cc sv Blackburne.

Atlas wrench


A neat antique 1888 patent wrench.  Marked Atlas, apparently it is a Copeland patent that was updated later in 1910 by Thomas Ryan.    Measures about 11" long. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Gordon Tools, Sheffield

Sheffield   Gordon Tools      England

Once again a British tool company that the beginnings and much of the history has been lost, Grace's Guide shows ads from the 50s on, but the company seems to have been around in the 30s if not earlier.  The end at least is documented.

 From the Sheffield forum;   Gordon Tools was purchased by the Walter Lawrence Group in the early eighties. They bought it for three basic reasons - the forge, the marketing and a Taiwanese importing operation. It did fit nicely into their portfolio as they already owned Wilkinson pliers and Sheffield Steel Products (car tools like pry bars, axle stands. etc.). SSP was located near the M1 at Tinsley and there was room to expand, so the two Walter Lawrence guys involved in the running of Gordons decided to close down the operation on Rockingham Street and move Gordon Tools to Tinsley. 

Monday, August 1, 2022

Turner By-Van

After WW2, the Turner company of Wolverhampton decided that what the ordinary merchant wanted was a light delivery van, probably as light and narrow as a motorcycle. This thing, basically a big metal box on two wheels, was the result. Taking a page from the  Phänomen playbook, the engine was mounted on the steering head and drove the front wheel. Understandably, people stayed away from it but the three wheel Tri Van was better accepted. Full story here.