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History We ALL Love a DARE! PIX of TRULY Extinct Makes?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jimi'shemi291, Sep 12, 2009.

  1. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
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    jimi'shemi291
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    Another source shows the Lanpher made in Carthage, Missouri, from 1909 to 1912 -- ocnsiderably fewer years than the first source. This must be a RARE bird!
     
  2. squid
    Joined: Aug 27, 2007
    Posts: 79

    squid
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    I was thumbing through a book about local history when I came across the Lanpher info. Appears to be built in my hometown but cant find pics or any other info ...........
     
  3. SUNROOFCORD
    Joined: Oct 22, 2005
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    SUNROOFCORD
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    <center> 1942 DeSoto Cyclone

    This rendering for a futuristic streamliner has all the qualities of an Alex Tremulis exersize, and may have been an intended companion to the Tremulis-designed 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt showcars. In honor of this speculation, Area "EX" has designated this car "Cyclone."

    Tremulis later became chief stylist at Tucker. Note the Tucker-like prow dividing the bumper/grille combination. Headlamp doors and front fenders bear a strong resemblence to those used on the production 1942 DeSoto.

    </center> [​IMG]
     
  4. SUNROOFCORD
    Joined: Oct 22, 2005
    Posts: 2,144

    SUNROOFCORD
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  5. SUNROOFCORD
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    SUNROOFCORD
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  6. davesville
    Joined: Dec 13, 2006
    Posts: 364

    davesville
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    :Dwhat a fantastic thread jimi.its great to see the interest in rare and obsolete manufacturers in the day when you could get a few dollars together and build your dream.this is so similar to what many hambers are doing right now.so maybe thats where the connection is.i am hoping that through this thread more information can be added to little known manufacturers .maybe with a little bit of help a long forgotten builder of cars can be added to the wikipedia list.after all its american automobile history that should be preserved................happy new year to all:D:D:D:D:D:D:D
     
  7. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
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    [​IMG]
    1911 Lippard Express
    Lippard_Stewart, Buffalo, NY
    1908-1914

    The Lippard-Stewart Company of Buffalo, New York was known for for their well-built express wagons and delivery vans. Their lightweight 3/4 to 2 1/2 ton worm-drive chassis and 4-cylinder Continental engines provided an excellent basis for the line of professional vehicles they introduced in 1912. Their famous delivery vans, light express wagons (pick-ups) depot hacks and undertakers car all shared Lippard-Stewart's unusual coal-scuttle bonnet and radiator behind the engine layout which was visually indentical to the more famous French-built Renault.
    In 1913, Lippard-Stewart offered all kinds of professional cars from very basic economy casket wagons to top of the line carved-sided funeral cars. The Renault-style coal scuttle continued on the chepaer models, while a more conventional radiator-in-front-of-engine chassis appeared on the expensive models.

    LIPPARD-STEWART (US) 1911-1919 Lippard-Stewart Motor Car Company, Buffalo, New York
    Early models of this make were of 1500-pound capacity and were vans with French-type sloping hoods with radiators aft of the four-cylinder engines. Later versions ranged in capacity from ¾ -ton to 2-tons, each with a different wheelbase. These used four-cylinder Continental engines, three-speed gearboxes and worm-drive. Lippard-Stewart also produced a funeral car in the late teens.
     
  8. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
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    [​IMG]
    1909 Dewitt High Wheeler,
    The DeWitt High Wheel Auto Buggy was manufactured at 901 West Main Street, Manchester Indiana. Virgil and Mary DeWitt built the factory and thereafter completed the first automobile in 1909. The buggies were precise copies of those manufactured in Auburn by the Kiblinger Company. In April 1910, a fire started on the second story and ultimately gutted the building. Seven completed or nearly completed autos were destroyed. The factory was not replaced because high wheel buggies had been replaced by automobiles with air pressure tires. The only known original DeWitt buggy was discovered in Ottawa, Illinois. By 1985, twelve reproductions had been assembled by a new DeWitt Motor Co.; one of the reproductions was donated to the North Manchester Historical Society.
     
  9. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
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    Newark's Mora Motor Car Co. - 1905
    By John Zornow
    [​IMG]<QC />

    [​IMG]
    1908 Mora Touring

    As early as October 1905, a group of public-spirited Newark businessmen, all members of the Newark Board of Trade, had made contact with Mr. Samuel Hancock Mora in Rochester.
    Mora was looking for a building, and even more importantly, a community to support his venture, that of building motor cars. One of members of the Board of Trade , Thomas W. Martin, had a building for rent, the former Reed Manufacturing Co. plant on the east end of Seigrist Street. The Reed Company, manufacturers of tin ware and enamelware, had vacated the wooden building in 1903 to move just west into their huge brick plant that still stands today as a warehouse owned by Graybill Enterprises.
    In Rochester, S.H. Mora had left the employ of the Eastman Kodak Co. after nearly 13 years, having risen to head of sales. (Mora apparently left Kodak in good graces, because George Eastman would later own several Mora automobiles.)
    Mora and William H. (Billy) Birdsall were working on the automobile project, with their headquarters being the Livingston Building in downtown Rochester. Birdsall was no stranger to the fledgling motorcar business. In 1902 he designed the Buckmobile as venture of the Syracuse Automobile Co. and soon after was the mechanical mind behind the Regas automobile, built in Rochester and financed by Thomas Byron Dunn, who had made his fortune in the candy business. Dunns Sen-Sen mints were in every child's pocket, as well as the pockets of men trying to hide their smoking habits. Billy Birdsall had designed a nice little four-cylinder car for T.B. Dunn, who eventually lost interest in the motorcar business. We must assume that Birdsall and Mora got acquainted in Rochester.
    S.H. Mora Comes to Newark- The Mora Motor Car Company was incorporated in Newark in March of 1906. By July, a crew of 35 men were building 4-5 cars a week, and S.H. Mora was selling more than that amount. A backlog developed and it was clear that the old wooden frame building would not work. That building is long gone and the site is a now parking lot for I.E.C. Electronics Research and conversations with old timers indicate that a foundry jointly owned by the Bloomer Bros. Co. and H.R. Inman, was used to make engine castings for the cars. This building is now the Spinco Corp.
    Stockholders in the newly formed company were S.H. Mora, William N. Freeman of Eastman Kodak, William H. Birdsall, and George S. Whitney of Akron, Ohio, possibly related to Mora, who had originally lived in Cleveland, Ohio.
    The vehicles made in the Seigrist Street plant in 1906 and 1907 were a roadster and touring car, with wheelbases of 98 and 103. The single offering in the engine department was a four cylinder 28 h.p. watercooled version. These cars sold for $2000 to $2500. To put this into prospective, the average worker made 5 to 10 cents an hour for a 6 day week, and clearly could not afford to buy any car at all. The automobile was a plaything for the wealthy, and according to many observers, it would stay that way. In and near Detroit, many new makes of motor cars were introduced in 1906, including Aerocar, Jewell, Thomas Detroit, Mason, Hewitt. Oldsmobile was number one in sales for the year with 6,550 sold.
    The lack of a middle class in Newark, New York in 1907 drew a clearly defined line as to who would be driving an automobile. Newark was a very progressive village, and had many industries and businesses. There were several automobile owners in the village and several auto dealers, including the H.R. Drake Buick-Reo sales agency, later Scofield Garage, now Americas Furniture, 226 East Union St. The auto soon became a status symbol, and driving clubs were formed.
    S.H. Mora's business prospered and he continued to live in Rochester but commuted to Newark on the new Rochester Syracuse & Eastern electric trolley. He also stayed many evenings at the Gardenier Hotel, corner of East Avenue and East Union Street. It is not known where Billy Birdsall lived but records show that Mora purchased a building lot on the Bailey tract, south-east corner of East Maple Avenue and East Avenue. The house that stands on that lot now is owned by the Paul Salisbury family.
    [​IMG] The Browniekar - A small but colorful part of the Mora story is the Browniekar. A child's car or cycle car. Equipped with a one cylinder 3.5 horsepower engine, it would go 10 miles an hour, enough for any child.

    Advertising indicated that The boy or girl who drives a Browniekar will obtain, by practical experience, a knowledge of things mechanical, construction, carberation, ignition and operation of gas engines that he or she would not be liable to obtain from books. Its most comfortably arranged and sufficiently racy to thrill the hearts of all juvenile auto aspirants. At a price of $150, or $175 for custom colors, it was clearly a toy for the children of the wealthy. Initially, the little car was made by a division of Mora called the Child's Automobile Co., later changed to the Omar Motor Car Co. a clever touch, Omar being an anagram of Mora. One very lucky owner was vaudeville and MGM child star Buster Keaton, who drove a Browniekar at the age of 13. Keaton's family was far from poor, and lived in an Italian Villa in Los Angeles. Historians differ on Mora's choice of Browniekar for the name. Some feel that it was named after cartoon character Buster Brown, but the most plausible answer indicates that Mora simply latched on to the notoriety of George Eastman's Brownie camera, which would define amateur photography for 70 years. Actually, the Brownie Camera was named after the Brownies, little folk cartoon characters of the time, and the sort of Poke-mon of that time period. The small car was manufactured for a couple of years, and today only a couple are known to exist. A 1908 Browniekar is on display at the Newark-Arcadia Museum, 120 High Street, as part of the year long transportation exhibit: Wings, Wheels, and Water- On The Way to Grandmothers House.
    A re-organization and a new plant -
    The successes of 1906 brought hope for the future, and plans for a new building. Mora went to the community for help in the form of a stock issue in the amount of $750,000. Newark men who were major investors were given board seats. They included Thomas W. Martin, former President of the Reed Company, and Newark businessmen Charles Crothers, Frank Garlock, and Abram Garlock. In 1905, T.W. Martin had built the house at 509 East Avenue, later owned by R.A.S. Bloomer, Dr. James Palmeri, and now owned by Dr. Fred Zugibe. The Martin children had a Browniekar and ran it up and down East Avenue, which was a dirt road.
    Thanks to the success of the stock offering, a new plant was under construction on Hoffman Street. It was an impressive two story structure, with plenty of room to expand, and was located on a railroad siding. (The Northern Central Railroad) There were no car transport trucks then, nor were there roads capable of handling such trucks. By early 1908, the company moved to the new Hoffman Street factory with over 200 men working 24 hours a day, six days a week producing hundreds of cars in a assembly line style set-up. One strange feature was that finished cars would be end up on the second floor. Research also reveals that there was no foundry included at the new plant, which included a test house and office building. The plant is now the factory for the Hallagan Manufacturing Company, a producer of high-end upholstered furniture.
    Collectors of antique automobile literature will notice that early Mora advertisements list several addresses on Mora Place. This was an early attempt to track advertising results by identifying which magazine or newspaper the client had read. (For many years, Newark's Jackson & Perkins Co. listed several addresses on a fictitious Rose Lane in the same manner.)
    The year 1908 was an important time in the automotive industry. Several new makes were introduced, and many failed. William Crapo Durant, producing Cadillacs and later adding Buick, Oldsmobile and Oakland, formed General Motors Company. The Model T Ford was introduced as a 1909 model. Cadillac won recognition for its interchangeability of parts. 63,500 passenger cars were built and 1,500 trucks and buses. Most importantly, the first rural mile of concrete highway in the United States was laid down near Detroit.
    With a new Mora factory in operation, Billy Birdsall designed a six-cylinder, all ball bearing engine. The chassis was lengthened to 115 to accommodate the new six. Prices for Mora vehicles were $3,500 for the racy-type, and $3,600 for the five passenger tourer. At considerable expense, Birdsall set upon developing a 60 horsepower four cylinder engine that introduced in 1909.
    Ever the salesman, S.H. Mora joined every automobile association that could help his business, including the groups that were promoting better roads. By 1910 Mora advertised that their car would compare with any other automobile built costing even $4000, and they were prepared to prove it. A 1910 Mora car was driven 9000 miles over all kinds of roads with out opening the hood. This was heralded at a Worlds Record Sealed Bonnet Tour the bonnet being the term for hood.
    This achievement was highly touted by the company at auto shows, and advertised as the Worlds record Sealed Bonnet Hero.
    Troubles Ahead - Quality problems, a cash crunch, wet spring weather, and anxious creditors spelled trouble for Mora. Birdsall was not a salesman, or a numbers man, and Mora was not an engineer. What was needed was someone to tie it all together. That did not happen. As early as September of 1909, the failure of the entire production of piston rings caused Mora to curtail deliveries of cars. There was no way that a car would be shipped unless perfect. Suppliers were not happy. In a letter to parts supplier, the Rome-Turney Radiator Company, in Rome, New York, S.H. Mora personally asked for their patience and understanding. But, it was the small companies that could not afford to wait for payment. As a result, on July 16, 1910, the company was forced into receivership. The plant continued to operate under court supervision until November 1910, when the Frank Toomey Co. of Philadelphia, bought the building and contents for $65,000. S.H. Mora and Billy Birdsall were gone.
    The Frank Toomey Co. of Philadelphia was involved in the machine business there and apparently had the means to purchase the Mora works at a bargain price. They produced Mora cars for about a year using parts on hand as well as from the normal suppliers. A copyof Who's Who in Autos published in 1913, and owned by Karl S. Kabeloc of Rochester, lists all automobile owners and dealers in the surrounding 7 county area. Included were all owners of Moras. One car listed was a Toomey. Did the new company plan to market a vehicle in their own name? Nonetheless, by August 1911, it was announced in the Arcadian Weekly Gazette that Frank Toomey and Co., owners of the Mora factory, have decided to discontinue business and offer the entire plant, including stock and machinery for sale at public auction. Newark's second chance to keep their automobile factory was gone.
    The Board of Trade Steps in Again- Arthur N. Christy, a C.W. Stuart executive and secretary of the Board of Trade, reported at a meeting in February of 1912, that a furniture company of Syracuse had been interested in the plant, but the Toomey company had refused the offer. Other prospects were a steam engine company, and a machinery company. The furniture company, The Canastota Couch Co. of Canastota, New York, near Syracuse, in business since 1900, was waiting very patiently in the wings. The former Mora plant was perfect for them and needed nothing, except a kiln to dry frame wood. On April 19, 1913, it was announced, that a deal had been struck with Simon E. Hallagan, and Freedus E. Thompson, owners of the Canastota Couch Co. to purchase the Hoffman St. plant and move their entire operation to Newark. Today, the Hallagan Manufacturing Company operates on Hoffman Street, in the same plant, under the management of the fourth generation of the Hallagan family. Once again the Newark Board of Trade had put a deal together. This time it was to last for many, many years and has provided goods jobs in Newark for generations. In charge of negotiations back in 1913 were Newark businessmen L.G. Mattison, George W. Muth, and Peter R. Sleight.
    What happened with the Mora? Were the seeds of failure already in place, when S.H. Mora and Billy Birdsall misjudged the market and how fast the popularity of the automobile would grow with the common man? As with modern technology, such as VCRs, DVD players, the PC, and digital cameras, the sooner that you get the product refined, and in the hands of the masses, the more successful it will be. George Eastman had the formula in 1900 with the Brownie Camera, Henry Ford got it right in 1909 with the Model T. Had Mora produced a car that was affordable for the working man, thinks might have turned out differently.
    Mora and Birdsall head for Cleveland. Undaunted by their failure in Newark, S.H. Mora and Billy Birdsall established the Mora Power Wagon in Cleveland, Ohio, where S.H. had originally come from. That truck line lasted until 1914, and also became a part of Americas great transportation history. Samuel Hancock Mora died by his own hand on March 7, 1918, and is buried next to his mother, Grace Marie Mora at Riverside Cemetery in Rochester. Three new vehicles were introduced in 1918. They were the Cleveland, the DuPont, and the Briggs & Stratton Flyer, and they all failed, while Ford sold 435,898 cars, almost all black, and well under $1000 each. The automobile, which Americans had grown to love, had become as much a part of their lives as eating, sleeping, education, and working. It is now an urgent necessity, rather than a luxury.
     
  10. BAILEIGH INC
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    BAILEIGH INC
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  11. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
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    [​IMG]
    1942 DeSoto Cyclone concept by Alex Tremulis


    SunRoof, GREAT! That's the rendering I saw and couldn't find again. Yes! I have a feeling it was conceived as a sort of complement to the '41 Thunderbolt. I like it much better than the Chrysler, and I WISH a full-size version could have been produced, as it would be a joy to walk around 360 in a museum!

    I AGREE, a lot of Tremulis touches HERE certainly didn't "go to waste," resurfacing a few years later in actual Tucker Torpedoes! ONE thing I hadn't paid much attention to earlier is the "bubble" top up front. This had only been attempted previously with a Briggs-built '39 Plymouth sedan (presumably just a show car). But there is a WORLD of difference between '39 Plymouth lines and those of this '41 DeSoto Cyclone, isn't there?!?!?!

    Again, you are RIGHT about the Thunderbolt lines strongly influencing post-WWII cars, especially in the '48-'52 time frame. Some people might say THAT is, in fact, unfortunate! But it is the reality that WAS. We'll never know what many, many models MIGHT have looked like had not the general "bathtub" scheme won out. Ones that come to mind are Nash, Packard, Lincoln/Merc, Hudson and the unfortunate shoebox Ford and Kaiser/Frazer, among others.

    As far as the Cyclone, however, it seems to me, stylists were still checking out Alex's work DECADES later. I mean just look at the '71 Riviera and late-'60s/early '70s Pontiacs, in particular the Grand Am.

    I am GLAD the Tucker at least got built but SAD that the Cyclone did not. But, at LEAST we have Tremulis' sketch !!!
     
  12. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

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    [​IMG]
    1942 DeSoto

    Thanks again, SunRoof. Since our thread IS about the rare, unusual and super-rare (occasionally EXTINCT!), the '42 DeSoto surely fits the bill. With a war-shortened production run, seems to me the model didn't have quite as much market and design impact as it might have, IMO.

    These '40s-era ad illustrations ALWAYS make cars seem long and lower than the production models. And with K.T. Keller at Chrysler's helm, the finished '42 DeSotos didn't quite look this snappy! But the hideaway headlights DID work, and this touch really lends a cleaner appearance up front, doesn't it? The '46 to '48 DeSotos could have benefited, but this exercise, unfortunately, didn't survive the war! That may well have been a production shortcut to help speed warmed-over DeSotos through the assembly lines. Despite the "imposing" proportions of the grilles, these models certainly made a fashion statement for DeSoto that would EVOLVE, all the way through 1955.

    On a personal note, my own favorite DeSoto series was '55/'56. BUT, that's followed closely by the '42-'48 series, especially the coupes. I feel the SIDE VIEW is where these models excel, whereas the rear is a tad nondescript and could bear visual definition, and the aforementioned grille (sans hideaways) is undeniably heavy. With some further refinement, I feel the DeSotos might have held their own stylistically with immediate post-war Packards -- albeit in a lower price range.
     
  13. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

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    DavesVille of Victoria, AUS, wrote: :Dwhat a fantastic thread jimi.its great to see the interest in rare and obsolete manufacturers in the day when you could get a few dollars together and build your dream.this is so similar to what many hambers are doing right now.so maybe thats where the connection is.i am hoping that through this thread more information can be added to little known manufacturers .maybe with a little bit of help a long forgotten builder of cars can be added to the wikipedia list.after all its american automobile history that should be preserved................happy new year to all:D:D:D:D:D:D:D


    Jimi: Many thanks, Dave, for your obviously heartfelt sentiments!!! I certainly cannot take much credit for this worthwhile and enjoyable thread, though!!! A few months ago, I ran across an old thread that had sort of petered out, and I posed a similar question, anew, that's all. The theme has evolved into the search for and discussion of NOT ONLY extinct car makes but the rare and ultra-rare, as well. (We tried to change the header, in fact, without success. But, we all simply adapted!)

    It's been gratifying -- but also AMAZING -- to see the level of interest this ongoing discussion has generated. Presently, we have 70 pages with 1,400 posts and nearly 40,000 views. WOW, I couldn't have imagined this when I posted the first question!

    I can't name every HAMBer who's lent input, but of late the academics/car-nut regulars driving the effort have included (in no particular order) the likes of HJManiac, SWI66, SunRoofCord, VintageRide & AlsAncle. HUGE thanks, guys! This has been a good group, which has managed to keep the thread informative, stimulating, relaxed AND interesting. They accomplished it by blending hotrod, antique and classic-car passion with academia (hey, necessary) and humor. I feel we've sought facts and informed opinion -- generally avoiding "lecture" style and always openly welcoming input from any interested party. No mean feat!

    Dave, as you and others have said, we ALL hope this thread keeps going! Given Wiki's mega-list of defunct car makes and HJManiac's Mother of All Car Lists list (LOL), seems we should keep right on steamin', electrifyin' and a motorin' -- right into the NEW YEAR! Thanks again, everybody!
     
  14. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
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    Just out of curiosity, is this the largest thread on the HAMB?
    Don't know how to search otherwise to tell what is larger, and I've said before, I'm having way too much fun with this.
    Every time I have a few minutes, I'm so busy reading everyone else's posts, I don't have time to post a little research myself...............keep it up guys!

    Just a thought, maybe this thread deserves its own category on the home page?
     
  15. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
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    Went to the Ford Museum, and the Chrysler museum a few months ago, got to see 2 of the 1963 chrysler Turbine Cars.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upNGDkz7cS4

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUf42Nv5GZY

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zeyvAq55AE

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1g3QvkpMqc0

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKumqcKuv1g

    Chrysler Turbine Cars were automobiles powered by gas turbine engines that the Chrysler Corporation assembled in a small plant in Detroit, Michigan, USA in 1963, for use in the only consumer test of gas turbine-powered cars. It was the high point of Chrysler's decades-long project to build a practical turbine-powered car.
    Engine

    The fourth-generation Chrysler turbine engine ran at up to 60,000 rpm and could use diesel fuel, unleaded gasoline, kerosene, JP-4 jet fuel, and even vegetable oil. The engine would run on virtually anything and the president of Mexico tested this theory by running one of the first cars — successfully — on tequila. Air/fuel adjustments were required to switch from one to another, and the only evidence of what fuel was being used was the odor of the exhaust.
    The engine<SUP id=cite_ref-0 class=reference>[1]</SUP> had a fifth as many moving parts as a piston unit (60 rather than 300). The turbine was spinning on simple sleeve bearings for vibration-free running. Its simplicity offered the potential for long life, and because no combustion contaminants enter engine oil, no oil changes were considered necessary. The 1963 Turbine's engine generated 130 brake horsepower (97 kW) and an instant 425 pound-feet (576 N·m) of torque at stall speed, making it good for 0-60 mph in 12 seconds at an ambient temperature of 85 °F (29 °C) — it would sprint quicker if the air was cooler and denser.
    The absence of a distributor and points, the solitary start-up spark plug and the lack of coolant eased maintenance, while the exhaust did not contain carbon monoxide (CO), unburned carbon, or raw hydrocarbons. Nevertheless, the turbine generated nitrogen oxides (NO) and the challenge of limiting them helped to kill the program.
    Its power turbine was connected, without a torque converter, through a gear reduction unit to an otherwise ordinary TorqueFlite automatic transmission. The flow of the combustion gases between the gas generator and free power turbine provided the same functionality as a torque converter but without using a conventional liquid medium. Twin rotating recuperators transferred exhaust heat to the inlet air, greatly improving fuel economy. Varying stator blades prevented excessive top end speeds, and provided engine braking on deceleration. Throttle lag, high fuel consumption — 17 miles per US gallon (14 L/100 km; 20 mpg<SUB><SMALL>-imp</SMALL></SUB>) — and exhaust gas temperatures at idle plagued early models. Chrysler was able to remedy or mitigate most of these drawbacks and deficiencies. The Turbine Car also featured a fully stainless steel exhaust system, the exits of which were flat in cross section. This was intended to spread the exhaust gases thinly and thus cool them further, so that the vehicle could stand in traffic without risking damage to following traffic. The combustor, or burner, was somewhat primitive by the standards of modern turbojet engines. A single reverse-flow canister featuring a more-or-less standard spark plug for ignition was employed. Had the engine been further developed, annular combustion chambers along with a second power turbine might have improved power and economy even more.
    The turbine car had some operational drawbacks. The car sounded like a giant vacuum cleaner, which was not satisfying to consumers who were more comfortable with the sound of a large American V8. High altitudes also caused problems for the combined starter-generator. Failing to follow the correct start-up procedure would cause the engine to stall; some consumers thought they could "warm" the engine up similar to the way they did with a gasoline engine. They would press the accelerator pedal to the floor before the engine had reached proper temperature. Instead of warming the engine, the excess fuel slowed the turbine down and resulted in the opposite of the desired effect. Doing this, however, did not do any permanent damage to the engine. In fact, it was possible to apply full throttle immediately after starting the engine without much fear of excessive wear. The engines were remarkably durable considering how fragile turbine engines are when compared to internal combustion piston engines. However, troubles were remarkably few for such a bold experiment. More than 1.1 million test miles were accumulated by the 50 cars given to the public, and operational downtime stood at only 4%.
    Design

    The bodies and interiors were crafted by Ghia in Italy. As each body was finished and shipped to Detroit, Chrysler employees installed gas turbine engines, transmissions, and electrical components to prepare the cars for use by the 203 motorists - 20 of them women - who were chosen to test them.
    The Turbine Car was a two-door hardtop coupe with four individual bucket seats, power steering, power brakes and power windows. Its most prominent design features were two large horizontal taillights and nozzles (back-up lights) mounted inside a very heavy chrome sculptured bumper. Up front, the single headlamps were mounted in chrome nacelles with a turbine styling theme, creating a striking appearance. This theme was carried through to the center console and the hubcaps. Even the tires were specially made with small turbine vanes molded into the white sidewalls. It was finished in reddish-brown "Frostfire Metallic" paint, later renamed "Turbine Bronze" and made available on production automobiles. The roof was covered in black vinyl, and the interior featured bronze-colored "English calfskin" leather upholstery with plush-cut pile bronze-colored carpet.
    The dashboard was lighted with electroluminescent panels in the gauge pods and on a call-out strip across the dash. This system did not use bulbs; instead, an inverter and transformer raised the battery voltage to over 100 volts AC and passed that high voltage through special plastic layers, causing the gauges to glow with a blue-green light.
    The car itself was designed in the Chrysler studios under the direction of Elwood Engel, who had worked for the Ford Motor Company before his move to Chrysler. The designer credited with the actual look of the car was Charles Mashigan, who designed a two-seat show car called the Typhoon<SUP id=cite_ref-1 class=reference>[2]</SUP>, which was displayed at the 1964 World's Fair in New York City. Engel used many older Ford styling themes. The rear taillight/bumper assembly was copied directly (with revisions) from a 1958 Ford styling study called the "La Galaxie". He used none of the themes associated with his 1964 Imperial. As Engel incorporated many of the design themes in the Turbine Car, that were used in the new-for 1961 Thunderbird, many enthusiasts call this car the "Englebird."
    Suspension did not follow Chrysler's ubiquitous torsion bar system, but rather featured contemporary designs using independent front suspension with a coil spring at each wheel. Rear suspension consisted of leaf springs and direct-acting shock absorbers.
    Legacy

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Chrysler Turbine Car at the 1999 Antique Automobile Club of America show in Hershey, PA


    A total of 55 turbine cars were produced. When Chrysler had finished the user program and other public displays of the cars, 46 of them were destroyed. The story at the time that this was done to avoid an import tariff was incorrect. The destruction of the cars was merely keeping in line with the automobile industry's practice of not selling non-production or prototype cars to the public. This same issue arose later with the General Motors EV-1.
    Of the remaining nine cars, six had the engines de-activated and then they were donated to museums around the country. Chrysler retained three operational turbine cars for historical reasons, two of the three are now owned by the "WPC Museum". All of the turbine cars owned by the "WPC Museum" are in running condition at the archives of the museum. The last turbine car that is functional, owned by the Museum of Transportation in St. Louis, was photographed for Mopar Action magazine, and appears at car shows around the United States from time to time.
    Only two Chrysler Turbine Cars are in the hands of private collectors: One was purchased by private automobile collector Frank Kleptz of Terre Haute, Indiana and is functional. Kleptz's Turbine Car was originally donated to the former Harrah museum in Nevada. The second one is owned by comedian and television host Jay Leno, who purchased one of the three Chrysler Turbine Cars which had been originally retained by Chrysler. <SUP id=cite_ref-2 class=reference>[3]</SUP>
    Chrysler's turbine engine program did not die completely. A new coupe body would appear, re-engineered and rebadged, as the 1966 Dodge Charger. Chrysler went on to develop a sixth generation gas-turbine engine which did meet nitrogen oxide regulations, and installed it in a 1966 Dodge Coronet, though it was never shown. A smaller, lighter seventh generation engine was produced in the early 1970s, when company received a grant from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for further development, and a special bodied turbine Chrysler LeBaron was built in 1977 as a prelude to a production run. By then the company was in dire financial straits and needed U.S. government loan guarantees to avoid bankruptcy. A condition of that deal was that gas-turbine mass production be abandoned because it was "too risky" thus giving roots to many conspiracy theories.
     
  16. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    Hi, SWI66, and Happy New Year! I do remember seeing HUGE threads on the HAMB, many times bigger than this one. So, the answer is: absolutely not. (Try "The Mother of All PhotoShop Threads," just for ONE! LOL Great thread, too!)

    And, no, I don't think anybody needs to make a special effort to put this on the main page, as somebody seems to post here one or more times a day, so it appears often enough to draw more viewers/commentators that keep fueling the search for the extinct, rare and defunct (of special interest).

    Has anybody else noticed that there's hardly ever a severe disagreement or head-butting in this dialogue? If people aren't sure, they seem to get TOGETHER and search for the data to answer the issue at hand. VERY beneficial attitude -- and rare for Homo Sapiens. I've seen some encounters on other threads (disagreements about paint, huh?) wherein I was just glad the guys didn't live in the same town!

    No, this thread has been about a bunch of guys, figuartively, sitting down (in cyberspace instead of a pub) and kicking around a common interest: U.S. automobiles and automobilia. It's ALL interconnected. And, yes indeedy! It's a FUN theme!!!

    ScooterMcRad and I were gabbing earlier this year, and the question came up (hypothetical, and I paraphrase): WHEN IT COMES TO CARS, CAN A GUY EVER KNOW IT ALL? Doubtful. I opined that it's similar to FISHING: When you THINK you know all there is to know, your mind is closed and you'll never get better -- just cheated yourself. I believe a closed mind is the worst sort of trap to fall into, but people make the mistake all the time.

    Basically, isn't that why we all joined the HAMB? As VintageRide or AlsAncle said: You learn SOMETHING new every day! HOORAY FOR THE HAMB !!!
     
  17. This is the largest thread that I know of on the HAMB.

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=236178

    Almost i million views and nearly 9000 postings!!!
     
  18. alsancle
    Joined: Nov 30, 2005
    Posts: 1,559

    alsancle
    Member

  19. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    Yeah, and you don't need to permanently place THAT one on the main page, either. It has it's OWN legs & steam!
     
  20. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    Hey, gang! I was thinking about a possible add to our meanderings in search of the rare and unusual. Heretofore, it has been about complete cars. It occurred to me that there have been a BUNCH of manufacturer hoped-for "innovations" (often dismissively dubbed "gimmicks" by consumers), some of which WORKED and got popularized, while OTHERS were quickly swept under the rug.

    The QUESTION first: Should I introduce this in THIS thread, OR should I start a new thread???

    HERE are some examples that come to mind (and I'm sure LOTS of you can think of more, many LAUGHABLE!):

    -- Lighted hood ornaments
    -- rear-wheel "sanders"
    -- Highway Hi-Fi
    -- Nash (et.al) Bed-in-a-Car
    -- free-wheeling
    -- chain-drive
    -- bubble-top cars (a la '54 Merc Sun Valley;
    pre-sunroof popularity, apparently)
    -- retractibles
    -- manifold heaters (including a version you
    could cook food on!)
    -- center-hub automatic shifter
    -- "Crash Compartment" (Tucker only AND goofy)
    -- the Jeepster which, in gussy dress, looked like
    a rolling picnic site
    -- COLORED sidewall overlays (huh?)

    Well, you get the idea!!! What do you say? Here, or a new thread?
     
  21. SUNROOFCORD
    Joined: Oct 22, 2005
    Posts: 2,144

    SUNROOFCORD
    Member

    This THREAD is just plain ADDICTING.

    As far as what you are asking in the above post, I'm all for including it here but what ever the majority would like is fine by me.

    Here's one I had completely forgotten about until I came across a 1982 Special Interest Autos with it on the cover earlier today.

    1931 Mercer

    [SIZE=-1]Mercer introduced a striking tan and blue convertible coupe at the 1931 New York National Automobile Show. The flaws expected of a prototype didn't appear in this model. With coachwork by Merrimac Body Company, the Mercer was comfortable, powerful and well designed. It seemed Mercer's new president, Harry Wahl, would see his dreams fulfilled. But the economic crisis threatened the stability of the newly reorganized Mercer Company. There wasn't enough capital available to tool the factory up for production and operating at a loss would have proved imprudent. Wahl had no prototype to exhibit at the 1932 Auto Show. Out of desperation, he displayed watercolor renderings of projected styles. But the depression obscured his classic automobile's potential.

    [/SIZE]
    [​IMG]
    [SIZE=-1]

    [/SIZE]
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  22. SUNROOFCORD
    Joined: Oct 22, 2005
    Posts: 2,144

    SUNROOFCORD
    Member

    I finally found a little bit on the Weymann bodied L29 Cord Coupe. This may be the one that was once owned by the "King Of Morroco". I Can't remember if it was this car or the Sakhnoffsly L29 Cord Coupe. It was definitly one of the two.

    [​IMG]1930 Cord

    The Weymann Body Company in France came up with a novel idea - instead of building auto bodies of steel or aluminum, using cloth to cover a specially constructed wood frame. The heart of the design was the unique frame, which consisted of wooden beams connected by metal plates. Since no two pieces of wood ever touched, the body never squeaked or rattled. Weymann opened a factory in Indianapolis, but the cloth bodies which were popular in Europe never caught on in the American market.

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2011
  23. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    SunRoof, those last two posts were VERY enjoyable. Gosh, I honestly thought Mercer had faded away long before that! What a great bit of knowledge this is!

    And -- yeah -- it IS addictive, isn't it??? The more ya know, the more you wanna know. And when you see similarly minded people who need fact, you are drawn to share! Jeesh.

    But, heck, cars beat drugs for addiction! HAPPY NEW YEAR to your, too!
     
  24. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    HJ, the last time I read about the '63 Chrysler turbines was in '73 and not in this kind of detail. NOW that you've givien us more, I feel the project turned out unfortunately, almost tragically, given the potential. But that's what you get with too much government interference. If they only had more time to develop an add-on system to meet emission needs . . .

    But, built in Italy or Tibet, it still looks like a T-Bird to me!!! LOL
     
  25. jimi'shemi291
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 9,499

    jimi'shemi291
    Member

    OOPS! I should have said, SWI, it still looks like a T-Bird to me!!! LOL Happy New Year!
     
  26. alsancle
    Joined: Nov 30, 2005
    Posts: 1,559

    alsancle
    Member

    I searched around the web to dig up the story of the last Mercer. It was found boarded up in a garage somewhere. No luck though, maybe one of you guys has it? Very nice looking car imho. Too bad they only built one.
     
  27. alsancle
    Joined: Nov 30, 2005
    Posts: 1,559

    alsancle
    Member

    My third most favorite Cord behind the speedster and Sakhnoffsly L29. I realize that the fabric bodies were light weight but given the choice I would go with aluminum.
     

    Attached Files:

  28. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
    Member

    The 63 Turbine car was always a favorite of mine.
    I have several modern diecast, as well as one of the original dealer promos they gave away. The History Channel has a great DVD out there on the car and its story(yeah, I got a copy) and of course, there are hours of video on the internet, and on e-bay there is a compilation DVD for most of them, including a lot of rare footage I had not found before.

    But my favorite is the movie "The Lively Set", a 1664 remake of the Tony Curtis movie "Johnny Dark". The Lively set is all about cars and especially the Turbine car. Hard to find nowadays, but Asphault's Classics has copies for sale.
     
  29. swi66
    Joined: Jun 8, 2009
    Posts: 13,235

    swi66
    Member

    New Thread!

    Could be a different searchable thread........
     

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