The Cellar

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xoxoxoBruce 07-26-2015 08:11 AM
On that 4 wheel drive pickup...
You're off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So... get on your way!”

Reminds me of my Uncles. One was routed home from a WW II South Pacific stint in the Seabees, via Alaska. He was mighty impressed, and when he heard they opened the Alcan Highway to the public in 1948, he talked his brother into going.

They took a new Ford pickup, bent pipe into loops about a foot higher than the cab, covered the loops with corrugated aluminum and wrapped it with heavy canvas to close the front and back. That kept most of the weather out but not the dust. Built a platform across the top of the bed sides for sleeping, and stowed gear underneath. At that time you could only buy a six foot step side bed, plus they had a 55 gallon drum up against the cab for gas, so it couldn't have been very comfy.

From MA to Alaska via the Alcan was a bit over 5,000 miles, that's five oil changes. When the Alcan was built under wartime pressure, they chose the easiest/fastest route to build. From then till the first time I drove it in I think '71, the trip was shortened by about 1,000 miles, 400 on the Alcan alone. But it still cost me a windshield every damn time.

Now it's mostly paved but in the 40s and 50s they'd come home in mid-November and head back by the first of March, while the road was frozen. As soon as it thawed the heavy truck traffic made the road as rough and muddy as a WW I battlefield.

My buddy made the run from California to Anchorage on a chopper Harley. He had to keep replacing disc brake pads because the dust would clog them up till it was constantly wearing the rotor. :eek:

One Uncle got married and stopped going in '55. The other took 35mm slides which documented the tremendous changes in Alaska from '49 through the mid 80s, but most were lost in a house fire.

Gravdigr 07-26-2015 02:48 PM


Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce (Post 934552)
From MA to Alaska via the Alcan was a bit over 5,000 miles, that's five oil changes.

Wait, what?

xoxoxoBruce 07-26-2015 03:34 PM

Yes sir, 1,000 miles was normal up until the early 50s, then higher compression(less blowby) and better motor oils pushed it to 3,000. I called ford because my '65 Mustang manual said I could push it more than 3,000. I got some engineer on the phone(you use to be able to do that if you had the time and somebody else was paying the bill), and his words were, "If you're not adventurous enough to get your money's worth, it's your problem." Set me back, because I can still remember his exact words.

Speaking of calling Detroit, I called Henry Ford II, person to person and they told me he was out of the office :rolleyes:, but they connected me to Lee Iacocca instead. Another time I called Chevy engineering to get the specs on a camshaft. The guy who answered said everybody was at lunch :rolleyes:, and he was a janitor, but he looked up the specs and they turned out to be spot on. :haha:

Gravdigr 07-27-2015 03:43 PM

A "Rims" two-fer:

Gravdigr 07-27-2015 03:53 PM

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Three-fer, then:

Attachment 52754

xoxoxoBruce 07-27-2015 04:11 PM

Hmmm... A guy I know with a junkyard auto recycling yard in Lancaster County. Over the years he had accumulated a huge pile of wheels. When we had a nasty snowstorm(feets of it) that took days to open secondary roads, he torched the pile. The fire department called to see what was up, although they couldn't get there anyway, he told them not to worry. When the fire was over he Just scooped up $17,000 worth of rims and tire belt steel. Fire is useful. :rolleyes:

xoxoxoBruce 07-27-2015 10:04 PM

:From Jalopnic.

On February 15, 1959, Jacques Seguela and J.C. Baudot are crossing the Atacama desert in Chili [sic] with their 2CV. They left on October 9th 1958 Perpignan (in France) for a trip around the world, from which they had completed then more then a quarter: 25.000 kms. though Africa and South-America.

The 2CV drives brave across the “washboard” shaped surface of the plain, untill suddenly there’s a horrible crunching and rattling from the engine! They stop, look and diagnose the extent of the disaster: not one single drop of oil left, the cap of the oilcarter has gone off through the enormous shocks. This is the end of the 2CV and also that of the explorers because all their reserve has gone; all oil supply has been used earlier.

Both exhausted man shall have to wait for the unlikely help of an even unlikely truck to pass by. For them it’s the end of their journey around the world, exact in the middle of a plain of 3000 kms., where there are golddiggers graves now and then, full of crumbly rocks that form alarming shaped on the horizon.

But, suddenly, as if fallen from the sky, a big indian appears. He comes closer and observes in silence the desperate gesticulation of both young men. Then he gets a number of bananas from his bag, peels them and tucks them into the oilcarter one by one. With this original lubrication the 2CV starts again without any alarming sounds. And after that it drives 300 kms. without any difficulty.

Seguela and Baudot finish their trip around the world: the first worldtour of a French car: 100.000 kms.
:haha: :smack: :lol2: :tinfoil: :haha: :lol2: :haha: :lol2: :facepalm:

glatt 07-28-2015 07:48 AM


Originally Posted by Gravdigr (Post 934697)
Three-fer, then:

Looks like a flooded factory yard where new cars got swept tightly together by floodwaters and then somehow ignited. Those three cars on the upper left are identical to many of the burned cars and still have their protective vinyl sheets on them.

glatt 07-28-2015 08:06 AM


Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce (Post 934726)
:From Jalopnic.

Amazing. Bananas are slippery little suckers. I wonder what the SAE viscosity numbers work out to?

xoxoxoBruce 07-28-2015 10:06 PM

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Penning to was half inventor, credited by some with the word Motorcycle, and balloon tires, he won patents for Stirling engines, ignition systems, wood planers, and some type of pulleys. But the other half of him was the PT Barnum school of promoter, earning him a reputation as a fraud.


Pennington working in conjunction with Lawson attempted to design a car bearing his own name. Although payments were taken for orders of this design, apparently none were ever delivered. Journalists speculated that the car was a failure in design, and The Horseless Age remarked sarcastically that: "...the Pennington car, which is not a car, since it does not carry, but has to be carried..." was partly responsible for bad press about the automobile in general and Lawson's motor syndicate in England at the time

xoxoxoBruce 07-30-2015 12:34 PM

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When big ideas outstripped tire technology...

xoxoxoBruce 07-31-2015 11:45 AM

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Oh great, one more thing to worry about, lightning. :rolleyes:

xoxoxoBruce 07-31-2015 05:11 PM

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Found this on the web, and if surprised me.
I worked with Charlie Kowchak at Boeing, saw this bike in his basement, and my fishing partner did his machine work.
Charlie's XLCH also beat Guy Leaming, my buddy's boss at Salem County HD, for the national title.
♫ It's a small world after all, It's a small world after all,... ♫ :smack:

xoxoxoBruce 08-01-2015 09:13 PM

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xoxoxoBruce 08-02-2015 09:54 AM

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This was news to me.

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