Saturday, November 30, 2019

Unlikely survivor, Toyota Corolla All-trac

 Mechanically there's no surprise a Toyota of this vintage is still running, but rust got them all, well, nearly all of them.  This one just looks dowdy and resigned, waiting for another winter.
The All-tracs were sold from 1988-92 and I always thought the styling looked awkward, like it was designed in a communist country or something. They got an enthusiastic following though, people loved them.

Early Cyclists

thanks, Jon!

Mitsubishi T-2

This was a Japanese supersonic trainer first flown in 1971, and introduced in 1975. Ninety were built and they had all been retired by 2006. These planes are part of the Blue Impulse aerobatic team.

Dodge Vans 1977

Oh, my wasted youth! Love the graphic design, a style as unique to that period as Art Deco was to the twenties. 
And, in a weird and wonderful- and not quite unrelated subject... Dajiban

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Dustbins everywhere!

Mick Woolett, Racing Motorcycles, Hamlyn 1973
The start of the 350cc class at the 1957 Belgian Grand Prix. Just about the peak of dustbin fairings, which the FIM banned in 1958.
 Number 28, Keith Campbell was the winner on his Moto Guzzi. He went on to win the championship, Australia's first GP world champion. He was killed in an accident on a French course the next year,

Starrett Inside Micrometer

Tool porn. Another lovely tool- in the original box!
 At Cardon's in Perth Ontario.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Second glider-towing attempt

RK 7

RK 6 
The first attempt did not go unnoticed and in three weeks, the Raab-Katzenstein company of Kassel built the RK 7 glider (top) and using the RK 6 towplane above (a copy of an WW1 LVG biplane) on April 13 1927, the first successful towed flight took place. 
The test flights were successful enough that the Italians, Russians and Americans took note and the rig was actually sold to American interests.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Know your Ner-a-car controls...

First glider tow

Fokker patented the idea of an "airplane trailer" in 1912 but it was not till 15 years later that the idea was actually acted upon. In March of 1927 Gottlab Espenlaub, a German glider specialist attempted a launch using an E5 glider and a 35hp E12 as a towplane. Unfortunately the tailplane was torn off in the attempt (which aircraft is not clear) and the idea was abandoned. 
He went on to experiment with rocket-powered launches.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Hand drill knowledge

Not used much since the advent of cordless drills, but good news! apparently given to students at a local university Industrial Design department to use after hours. 

SR500 engine, disassembled

All that's missing is a gasket set and a tray of bolts and screws.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Jewelers Crucible

 Here is a really nice device found in the New Hampshire area of the USA. About 8 inches long, it's a cast iron jeweler's crucible, used to capture scraps and slivers of precious metal and turn them into a workable "nugget". Dating to the 1750s and probably made by a local blacksmith, it is as useful now as it was then. 
 A simple tool, perhaps not too valuable as an object but a great piece of history. 
Part of the George Short collection.

Sidecar Sunday

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Greenerd Arbour press

For details, we may as well go to the source, they'\re still being made.  This one is "surplus to needs" (as they say) and if you're in the Toronto area and need one, $150 to someone who has a truck to carry it away. 
Update: Sold!

X-acto Lock Gripliers

 Here's a handy well-made plier-like tool to act as "The third hand for small assemblies" as is molded in the handle. The trigger clamps the jaws at whatever compression is desired, the latch on the top locks the jaws in place. It could be a very handy device for electronics and model-making. They appear to be quite rare- never seemed to have caught on. This one seems to have suffered from hard use of the wirecutting feature.


Planes in formation, Typhoon Mk 1-B

56 Squadron, March 1943

Friday, November 22, 2019

Nail wheel

When I was a kid, every handyman had one of these, usually using the ubiquitous Gerber baby food jars...

Amusement park ride, Cisitalia put to work.

 Out of 170 Cisitalias produced, apparently 3 were convertibles, not near enough to go around but amusement park manufacturers were quick to make some for the rest of us. This one, of unknown manufacture, appears to have some liberties taken with Pininfarinas's styling.

thanks, Rolf!

Talk from ship to shore?

Are you kidding me? not in our lifetime! I suspect that "low price" was subjective...

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Combination wrench and spanner

I was looking for something else and happened upon this oddity in the B25B13/12 section- Spanners; Wrenches with adjustable jaws the jaws being slidable...
Once again, like the Newleva patent wrench, a seemingly clever and ultimately not really useful idea that as far as I know, never was put into production. US patent 644033A 

Application filed December 4, 1899. Serial No. 739,128, (No model.)

To whom it may concern:

Be it known that I, FREDERICK SHRADER, a citizen of the United States, residing at Bridgeport, county of Fairfield, State of Connecticut, have invented a new and useful Combined Spanner and Wrench, of which the following is a specification.

My invention has for its object to provide a combined spanner and sliding-jaw wrench which shall be neat and attractive in appearance, shall have in full the qualifications for service of both a Spanner and a wrench, and which shall be so simple and inexpensive to produce that it may be placed upon the market at an expense hardly perceptibly larger than the expense of either spanner or wrench alone. With these ends in view I have devised a simple and novel combined spanner and Wrench, the same being an improvement upon and a carrying forward of the principle disclosed in Letters Patent No. 532,238, granted to me May 11, 1897, which I will now describe, referring to the accompanying drawings, forming part of this specification, and using reference characters to designate the several parts.
 (The rest of the not-very-interesting blurb at the patent)

Cisitalia 202

Seen at the Auburn Cord Deueenberg Museum

 The Cisitalia 202 was designed by Battista "Pinin" Farina in 1945 and put the Pininfarina name on the map. At a time when most cars were a repeat of prewar vehicles, this car was a leap into the future. Its presentation at the 1947 Paris Auto Show was a great success and MoMA included the car as part of its "8 Automobiles" exhibition in 1951.
 Cisitalia as a manufacturer struggled along and only 170 were produced before the company quit in 1952.

Yamaha SRX600

A part of enjoying a motorcycle is just looking at it.  This is one that's easy on the eyes.  The SRX 600 seemed like a great simple bike when it was released in 1986, though the high price tag and kickstart-only probably hurt sales. The styling holds up well but when you can find one these days, they're still pricey. 

The Japanese market got a 400 cc version.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Old Postcards, The Lowry Building. St Paul. Minnesota

Designed by Kees and Colburn and built by Horace Lowry in 1911-12 as the Lowry Medical Arts Building. It was considered one of the loveliest buildings in downtown, built to fit in with the surrounding buildings like the Saint Paul Hotel across the street. 
It's been swallowed up by new construction in downtown St. Paul, renovated recently and converted to condominiums.

Google streetview

Stock Pusher

Stock pusher, the tag says- and who am I to argue?
For sale at Cardon's Tools in Perth Ontario

Grand Prix de Suisse, 1946

Poster by Noel Fontanet. More of his great work here
This was the first postwar motorcycle race held in Geneva, Switzerland, just a year after the end of the war.