Sunday, July 12, 2020

Aurora, France

 A recent machine needs a modern seat.

A two-seater saddle is required everywhere.

3 wheel fun

Identified as a Cooper JAP by Classic Bike in their  Feb-Mar 1981 issue and piloted by Ernie Woods and Arnold White. I wish I had a side view of the thing!

Sidecar Sunday

Classic Bike 1987

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Chicago Pneumatic Compressor

Chicago Pneumatic, not to be confused with Chicago Electric tools from Harbour Freight... 
Chicago Pneumatic is still in business making air tools, but this beauty seems to be discontinued...

Nimbus experimental rotary valve engine

The Nimbus motorcycle was pretty unique in itself,  following their own path for design. Previous post. Their concept for a new modern engine design in the fifties continued the original thinking.
Rotary valve four stroke engines have been tried multiple times, the issue seems to be the heat that accumulates in the parts. The resulting distortion of the valve results in poor sealing, galling and possible seizures. This experimental Nimbus concept seems to address many of the issues, the valve is alternately cooled by the incoming charge and heated by the exhaust and the spring loaded bearing mount should allow for any distortion of the valve. The floating valve ports further lessened the problems of heat distortion.
But it also appears that this spring loaded valve forms the top of the combustion chamber and would the force of combustion not force the valve upwards each time? Perhaps the drawing is not correct or maybe that's the reason this engine never went into production.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Kingcobra on skis

Larry Milberry, 60 Years, CanAv books, 1984

During 1941 and '42, the US did some R&D tests in Canada involving fitting skis to fighter planes. Several configurations were tried on the Kingcobra, it tended to run in a broad curve due to engine torque.  Experiments with runner length on the skis cured most of the taxiing and takeoff maneuverability issues but upon landing, the right ski tended to dig in. Eventually the idea was given up as being impractical. 

National Museum of the USAF

Suzuki Rotary special

 And that's "Special"!

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Early tracked vehicles

Fowler traction engine, tracks both ends. date unknown.

Built by Charles Stratton of Moscow, Pennsylvania, 1893

Western Implement and Motor Co. Creeping Grip tractor. 1913

Bullock Lombard artillery tractor WW1.  Lombard was out of Waterville Maine, Bullock appears to have been out of Davenport Iowa.  I'm not sure of the connection. 
Lombard had registered a patent on the track system in 1901. The machines were all steam powered, the first gasoline version was built in 1908.

1969 Mercury Cougar

100,000 units were built in 1969. 

Antique spoked wheel

By the casting numbers on the hub, this was a production wheel.  Ten 1/2" diameter spokes riveted to a simple steel band with a lap joint. The spokes are about 1/2 inch diameter, secured with good square nuts. We suspect they came from some farm implement, and will do duty on a cart for a 8 hp Gilson stationary motor.  After about a hundred years they're still round enough...

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Plymouth Barracuda

A nice '64-'66 Barracuda seen in my travels in eastern Ontario.  I don't know enough about them to know exactly which year this one is but it's nice to see this survivor.  About 125,000 were built over the 3 year period. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Bultaco SherpaT 350

This model 125 Sherpa T came to me many years ago with a bad crankshaft, rusty and neglected. I wanted another Sherpa T of that vintage, as I think they are one of the most beautiful motorcycles ever made.  A shabby, arrogant and malevolent 250 SherpaT in Grabber Blue (bottom) was my first Bultaco and was the bike that started the addiction, 
Once the motor was removed for repair, it seemed wrong not to clean up the frame and seat and...and... eventually with a new rod and powder coated frame and much work and many parts, it was all ready to go. It's another one that doesn't get ridden enough. Production numbers are not known apparently, but this one is 772.

The original model 92, waiting for it's next victim.

Ironsides Agitator Thresher, section view

Monday, July 6, 2020

David Cook's Fruit Basket

Monday Mystery, a powered sieve?

Here is an interesting device. The images are of a very nicely made model about a foot long. By the quality and detail it could be a patent model or possibly a salesman's model? 
But what is it a model of? By the pulleys, it looks like it is powered by flat belts and the troughs (tubs) with perforated bottoms point to a production sieving device of some sort? Or a washing machine? Any ideas welcomed!

Update; More images. 
This time with the inner tubs in the raised position. It appears the belts power the rotating mechanisms which also have hand cranks on the offside. The owner tells me the model is actually a foot and a half long, solid brass, beautifully built.  He also mentions that he had suggestions 30 years ago that it might be a model of part of a metal-plating process machine but do the plated bits just get dumped out onto a tray each time? And also would the tubs, being metal,  not get plated themselves? 

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Haying season

Haying season again, tractor is fine and so is the shabby Oliver rake of indeterminate age. I like the idea of the 20 year old son working on a 68 year old tractor...

However, the ancient automotive radial tire on the baler was coming apart by the minute. Bets were taken but it is still functional at the end of day.  It's a Goodrich Firehawk in a strange size I've never seen, 27x6.5x14. 

Sidecar Sunday

Classic Bike 1981

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Mosquito field assembly

Almost like a plastic model kit. The complete fuselage is lowered onto the wings and the assembly will be bolted together. The engines are yet to be fitted.

Know your depth gauges...

Tools and their uses, Prepared by the US Navy (Bureau of Naval Personnel)

Friday, July 3, 2020

Spanish Princesses

Here's the Spanish streetbike collection, the Ossa 175 Sport was bought in the early eighties when I despaired of ever finding a Metralla. This bike was the last of 12 he had imported in the sixties. I had fun riding it around for awhile, but it's been sitting and deteriorating for far too long.

The man who had owned and raced the Metralla suddenly passed away in 1975, it had been stored in a basement ever since but the widow wanted to do a Thelma and Louise-type trip in the American Southwest. She told me this bike was going to pay for it. We reached a deal by phone,  I went to her house after she returned, we sat outside on the porch in the dark and told stories while we drank a bottle of wine. A good proper transaction. It mostly sits in my dining room but will fire up with a couple of kicks..

The Impala appeared a short time later at a swap meet in New York State. i figured I should give it a home with other Spanish bikes, and now I had 3 of a kind. It is just as it was when I bought it- neglected- and will probably be the project after the other Metralla projects are out of the basement.  

Meanwhile, it's nice to pull them out and admire them occasionally...