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Old 12-30-2008, 08:48 AM   #1
Ryan
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Default The All-Aluminum Multicar!

I found this last week and have been dreaming about it ever since. It's an idea proposed in the the January, 1958 issue of Mechanix Illustrated. Once car, multiple bodies... Brilliant. I'll let the original author (Chuck Smith) tell the story:
...

To read the rest of this blog entry from The Jalopy Journal, click here.
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Old 12-30-2008, 08:55 AM   #2
G V Gordon
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Ryan, that would be the model T.

Unbolt the trunk and bolt on a pick-up bed. lol

I used to pour over Mechanics Illustrated, Popular Mechanics, etc. when I was a kid. There were some very forward thinkers.

I'm still waiting on my personal jet pack.

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Old 12-30-2008, 09:10 AM   #3
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

This could be done with a Sport coupe but on a much smaller scale. Roadster one day, Coupe the next. Not exactly the same thing but the thought is provoking which is why I think you posted it this morning. I like the idea of an aluminum body and engine no matter what you wrap that up in. Not sure I would have bought one though.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:41 AM   #4
racer756
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Lots of great Ideas in the 1950's...
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

This was actually thought of years before this article by Duesenberg- to have what they called a winter body and a summer body. While the winter body was a sedan the summer body was more of an open touring car sedan.

I think this is very doable if you have more than one body (i.e. coupe and roadster) or even if you have more than one chassis and engine combo for your body. The possibilities are endless! (now if only the funds were )
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

actually when we went to the gm heritage tour last year there was a concept car that was battery powered that they could mount different bodys to it with a couple of mounting places you could change the bodyfrom car to pick up and such
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:09 AM   #7
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

It really pushes the concept of a convertible to the extreme. Cool article!

And to top it off, it should be able to connect it to the house as a cogeneration system and provide...
1) electricity to home and grid
2) heating to the home hot water system
3) heat for cooking (anyone read "Manifold Destiny?).
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:10 AM   #8
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

I would love to see this happen. My real concern is how safe would it actually be? I know with today technology it should be super safe. but looking at those pins and sliding locks from the original design, just make me wonder what would happen in a pretty bad wreck. Say a 50 mph head on? would the body just rip off the chassis and flying? or would it all stay intact? Just my thoughts, I have had too many wrecks that were not my fault at all, and Safety has become areal issue in my life. I just had a lumbar fusion done because of a wreck in 2007. The bastard hit me head on, and was drunk to boot at 10:15 in the morning during the week. I truly love the guys thinking though, Safety is my concern. It was probably too the demise of this idea as well.

Keep em coming Ryan...

Will
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:32 AM   #9
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

I've seen manufacturers propose this idea as well, yet it's never really come out. Why sell one multi-car when they can sell 2 (or more) dedicated cars?

My brother and I have pondered this ever since we were swapping bodies on our slot cars. I totally dig it.
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:32 AM   #10
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Interesting how back then they embraced it with futuristic aluminum and today we've revisited it with electric & fuel cell concepts that are flat platforms with wheels.

As long as kids grow up playing with toy cars that have flat chassis and removeable/interchangeable bodies, there will be concepts evoking the same feature. Everyone wants to drive their toys.

IMO it doesn't work in reality, look at how many late model jeep TJ/YJs have had the hardtop off once or twice in a decade. That's most em in the snowbelt.
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:50 AM   #11
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Kind of like the Skateboard concept. http://www.autobloggreen.com/2007/02...ar-on-youtube/

Neat stuff.
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:23 AM   #12
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Heeey..thats my idea, well twenty years later. I envisioned an all purpose common wheelbased tube chassis car ready to run. Have sliding body mounts that could move around on the tubes and be pinned in place..Drop down whatever body you had ready to go at the time...
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:27 AM   #13
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Neat idea. Where can I get one?
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:32 AM   #14
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Like the AMT 3 in 1 kits. Cool.
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Old 12-30-2008, 12:04 PM   #15
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

How many car(s) would you have to register that as I wonder?
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Old 12-30-2008, 12:36 PM   #16
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

The article says it has a 3 piece, cast aluminum frame. Cast aluminum? I'd hate to hit anything with that.

My favorite part of the article was the introduction of the word "oftener". Seems like it caught on about as well as the car did.
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Old 12-30-2008, 01:04 PM   #17
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Only 17% of my neighborhood can cram even one car into their garage. Imagine having to store a bunch of extra bodies and the chassis to put them on. I guess this idea was meant for those with Jay Leno-sized car warehouses
Hey, weren't we supposed to have flying cars by now?
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Old 12-30-2008, 03:31 PM   #18
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Seems that they didn't take into account the various drive line, chassis and suspension differences required by each different example given. After all s&c geometry, spring rate, ride height, steering ratio, gear ratio, engine tune etc. is what differentiates the suitability of each car for it's intended purpose, not just body style.
Interesting to note that GM has been developing an integrated chassis/drive line designed for interchangeable bodies, although not for a quick change in the garage.
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Old 12-30-2008, 03:37 PM   #19
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Anodized aluminum body...NEAT!
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Old 12-30-2008, 04:32 PM   #20
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Default Re: The All-Aluminum Multicar!

That's a really cool concept! That's what tucker wanted with his carioca too! And if I don't remember wrong Vince Gardner wanted to make a kit car out of his Vega too that you easily could swap body parts on....none of these cars went into production, but has anyone seen any cars actually produced that you could easliy swap bodies on like this?

Here is the carioca


And here is the Vega
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