Saturday, October 29, 2016

French Pacer Ad.

No idea how successful this campaign was.

White Rose Gasoline, Canadian Oil Company Limited

The brand name was part of the American National Refining Company (Enarco) but the company was billed as all-Canadian. White Rose was purchased by Shell Oil in 1961

Friday, October 28, 2016

Best Mfg and Holt Mfg Traction engines

1898 Steam traction engine built by Best Mfg. of San Leandro California.

1906 40 hp Holt engine. built in Stockton Cal. The companies were fierce competitors in the traction engine business but things ground to a halt in the depression of 1920-21. By this time Holt was specializing in tracked vehicles. In 1925 they merged, becoming the Caterpillar Co. 
According to Wikipedia, Caterpillar was the 229th largest company in the world in 2010.

Thursday, October 27, 2016


July 1950. The 20,000 ton Cunard liner Franconia goes aground off the Île d'Orléans shortly after leaving Quebec City on its way to Liverpool. The ship was repaired and resumed service in September of that year. She was retired in 1956.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Bultaco Model 8Metralla

A very sweet 200 cc Metralla bathing in the golden glow of ... a yellow awning. Seen at the Barber Vintage Festival. One of about 5000 built.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Fighting Communism with art

I wasn't aware Canada was so openly and commercially anticommunist in the 50s. I guess the licensed manufacturers of the Sabre jet had vested interests, Here they commissioned the famed photographer Karsh for an arty "bad guys in raincoats" photo to get the message across..

Ferguson Tractor

Surplus to needs and for sale along the road.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Aerial photography, 1924

Lt Col D J Goodspeed, The Armed Forces of Canada 1867-1967, Queens Printer Ottawa 1967
The crew of the Vickers Viking takes a moment to pose for the camera. In 1924 the Canadian Air Force photographed and surveyed water routes in northern Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

The Lagonda Programme, 1938

Friday, October 21, 2016

Racing yacht Dixie II, 1906

Around the turn of the last century the internal combustion engine was making big and affordable power (compared to the alternatives) and people were using this new development to break speed records on land and in water. When Ed Schroeder, commodore of the Motor Boat Club of America was looking for a new engine for his racing yacht in 1906 he went to engine builder H. M. Crane, who although used to building engine of less than 50 hp, came up with this advanced design in a 90 degree V8 format. The engine was a pushrod 3 valve ( two exhaust valves) configuration with hemispherical combustion chambers. With its 2477 cu in displacement it produced 200 hp at 900 rpm while weighing less than 10 lb per hp. Mr Crane went on to join the Wright-Martin Aircraft Company, developing the Hispano Suiza V8 from 150 hp to 300 during WW1.
The boat this motor was fitted to was the mahogany sheathed Dixie II which went on to record speeds of over 37 mph and in the next two years won virtually every race she entered. Contrasting with the revolutionary engine, the hull was a refinement of existing form, with a length of 39 feet and a waterline beam of only 4 feet 8 inches. Boats of this configuration were known to capsize to due to engine torque.

Hood ornament

1919 Schneider Cup Sopwith entrant

Powered by a 450 hp Cosmos Jupiter radial providing a top speed of 170mph. The pilot was Harry Hawker, a name that might seem familiar to some.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


How could anyone not love a Morgan...?

Our 1919 Schneider Cup entrant

Foiled by heavy fog conditions, the 1919 Schneider Cup race held at Bournemouth was a bust. Four aircraft made it to the starting line, three gave up after a lap including the Supermarine Sea Lion 1 above. The remaining plane, the Italian entry, was determined to have missed one marker buoy and so was disqualified. 
 The pilot of the Sea Lion, Basil D. Hobbs, was a Canadian who had flown seaplanes during the war during which time he sank two German submarines and also shot down a Zeppelin. In the latter event, after downing the Zeppelin, he had been attacked by German fighters which damaged the aircraft enough that he had to land in the sea. He then taxied across the channel to get back to England. 
After the war he returned to Canada and took part in various flight-related ventures in the newly formed Canadian Air Force including being part of the first trans-Canadian flight and later being an integral part of the aerial photographic and surveying program. 
  Seems like quite a guy, how come I never heard of him before?

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Jaguar XK-SS

Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, Jaguar, Jaguar Cars, 1990
In 1957 Jaguar produced this very exciting new car, basically a roadgoing D-type. It appears that the plan was to use up stocks of surplus parts as the D type racer was not selling. Unfortunately a fire destroyed the jigs after only sixteen were built.

Norton Frame

The famous "Featherbed" frame.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Canadian Pacific's Empress of India

Bill McKee & Georgeen Klassen, Trail of Iron, Glen-Alberta Institute 1983
The Empress of India was built at Barrow-in-Furness England and made her maiden voyage in the spring of 1891. She served in the Hong Kong- Shanghai- Nagasaki- Kobe- Yokohama- Vancouver route for the CPR until she was sold in 1914- being converted to a hospital ship for Indian troops. She was retired in 1918 and scrapped the following year.

Cushman Truckster

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Sidecar Sunday

Brilliner Streetcar

The Brilliner was Brill's competitor to the PCC (Presidents' Conference Car) and looked somewhat like them. When compared to the worldwide success of the PCC it was not successful, only 40 were sold. The last ones built were delivered to the Philadelphia Suburban Transportation company in September 1941. They worked till 1981.

Moto Guzzi V700 engine, exploded view

 Time to get started on this project.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Capitalist Propaganda from the McCarthy era

Matador Wrench

Another two dollar wrench found at a swap meet, Matador is a German brand and a supplier to Mercedes Benz.  The product line is still available but apparently at least some of the tools are now made in Taiwan. The text on the bottom image reads Super Chrom and in smaller text possibly "Forrion" though I'm not certain of that. Anyways, a good large wrench currently living in the toolbox of the tractor.