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History The All-Aluminum Multicar!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ryan, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 17,536

    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

  2. G V Gordon
    Joined: Oct 29, 2002
    Posts: 5,422

    G V Gordon
    from Enid OK

    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.

  3. JeffreyJames
    Joined: Jun 13, 2007
    Posts: 16,588

    from SUGAR CITY

    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.
  4. racer756
    Joined: May 24, 2006
    Posts: 1,320


    Lots of great Ideas in the 1950's...
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  5. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,512

    from Ohio

    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 ;))
  6. hotroded
    Joined: Oct 9, 2007
    Posts: 1,586


    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
  7. 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?).
  8. 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...

  9. I Drag
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 884

    I Drag

    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.
  10. Shifty Shifterton
    Joined: Oct 1, 2006
    Posts: 4,966

    Shifty Shifterton

    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.
  11. last.brunneng
    Joined: Mar 3, 2008
    Posts: 27


  12. rixrex
    Joined: Jun 25, 2006
    Posts: 1,434


    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...
  13. Kettleman
    Joined: Mar 28, 2006
    Posts: 149


    Neat idea. Where can I get one?:D
  14. Like the AMT 3 in 1 kits. Cool.
  15. Murocmaru
    Joined: Apr 5, 2006
    Posts: 281

    from Van Nuys

    How many car(s) would you have to register that as I wonder?
  16. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 12,405


    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.
  17. Pscott
    Joined: Jul 10, 2008
    Posts: 242


    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:confused:
    Hey, weren't we supposed to have flying cars by now?
  18. autobilly
    Joined: May 23, 2007
    Posts: 3,081


    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.
  19. Concrete B
    Joined: May 12, 2007
    Posts: 228

    Concrete B

    Anodized aluminum body...NEAT!
  20. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 1,993

    Alliance Vendor

    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
  21. Royalshifter
    Joined: May 29, 2005
    Posts: 15,254

    from California

    That is very cool, I wish it was that easy.......I have been told some stories where the Hot Rodders from a bit back in time were changing out their Ford bodies from coupe to roadster and so forth.
  22. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,628

    Tech Editor

    If designed right, it shouldnt be that hard to swich them.

    ( although... a lot of people dont know how to put on a spare anymore...)

    What would be even cooler, would be to have a couple of Bodystyles ( Wagon, Truck, Roadster, etc ), and a couple of Chassis ranging from Mild to Wild.
    So you could match exactly what you need or are in the mood for...
  23. Zerk
    Joined: May 26, 2005
    Posts: 1,419


    Neat article, thanks for featuring it. I love seeing this kind of speculative design, and in 1958 it must have excited a fair bit of interest.

    The powertrain and double floor are thought-provoking features. Isolating the suspension, driveshaft and exhaust system might have beneficial effects on their service life. Configuring a V8 like the one in that car wouldn't be impossible, especially if you mounted it backwards in the chassis. If that was done, I'd rather see the radiator mounted in the cowl, like some old Euro makes, so it could be protected from front impact and could double as the heater core.

    Interchangeable bodies could be a smarter way to deal with a family outgrowing a car, a car severely damaged by collision, or just a car nobody wants, like a beat four door sedan with good running gear. Hell, people could trade bodies according to their needs. Aftermarket companies could get into car production by paying the OEMs for the license to build bodies with their mountings and form factor, then buying new chassis from the factory. Once the chassis has passed all safety and other standards, you get a free hand to design a body that looks like anything from a Bentley Continental to a Waldorf Nomad.
  24. Fun to look at these ideas, I sure used to read all that I could find, this concept must have had Alcoa sponsorship. Most well designed vehicles have a clear purpose and a defined area where they want to excel, to have the best chance for success. Most multi purpose vehicles, items, tools, etc. are not optimal in any function - as in compromised performance.
    Still good to dream a bit, who knows what the future will bring.
  25. rottenrod
    Joined: Jan 7, 2008
    Posts: 159


    problem is the suspension. you either have a station wagon the rides stiff as hell because its supposed to be sporty, which the wife would hate. or you have a sports car that rides like a land yacht. they need a way to tune the suspension to what body your using. that and the engine, but i don't think anybody here would mind having a really fast wagon
  26. GreaseRat3
    Joined: Dec 15, 2008
    Posts: 8


    it's a good concept even if it never did entirely take off. gotta love the 50's, atleast they were trying to improve on their designs.
  27. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,628

    Tech Editor

    That shouldn't be a big problem anymore.

    There are high end Sportscars now that have like 5 different suspension settings.

    Something similar could be used for this.

    Some kind of system that "reads" which body is on it, and changes the Shock settings to match it.

    And you could have a base setting for the springs, with helper springs that go with the various bodies to beef up the spring rates when its needed...
  28. Broman
    Joined: Jan 31, 2002
    Posts: 1,471

    from The Island

    Actually - I read an article this summer that re-visited this type of a concept for the upcoming electric cars of the future. The concept was so crazy that I thought only a German Engineer could have designed it - looks like I was off...and LATE....

    The article showed that electric motors and requisite batteries/capacitor cells
    could all be built on a nearly flat plane which would allow owners to purchase more than one body arrangement for a motorized chassis base. This way a family man could have his sedan and then on the weekends a minivan. The cost would be significantly low enough to justify it based one the fact that the bodies could be a fraction of the cost of the chassis (a large fraction I imagine).

    Sometimes you think something is such a new concept then you see that someone was probably a hundred years ahead of you/us.

    Joined: Dec 16, 2008
    Posts: 2,504


    I saw a show on TV (years ago now) and I think it was TLC RIDES. Rod Millen was trying this very feat with a 32 Ford. He wanted a roadster and a 3 or 5 window that shared a common chassis and power plant. The body would lift off and attach with a series of simple fasteners. I dunno if he ever accomplished this task but he was in the R/D stages when the show aired.

    What an idea. Having your cake and eating it too.
  30. jms
    Joined: Aug 13, 2006
    Posts: 87

    from Chicago IL

    It seems like it would be less of a hassle to just invent a convertible station wagon.

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