Posts Tagged With: cars

1956 Chrysler Norseman – A Specter from the Wreck of the Andrea Doria….


More than two-hundred feet beneath the Atlantic Ocean and deep within the darkened hull of the 697-foot long Italian ocean liner Andrea Doria lays the debris of what was once an experimental dream car. The ship sank several hours after being struck by the Stockholm on the night of July 25th, 1956. As a result, the unique lines of the Ghia-built 1956 Chrysler Norseman were destined never to be seen by those who designed it, nor were the spectators of the coming auto shows going to have the opportunity to ooh and ahh at the stylish fastback. The few people who did were the craftsmen at Ghia in Turin, Italy and possibly the people who loaded the car aboard the ship as well as some of its crew, or maybe not. That would depend on whether the car was crated or placed on a pallet as was customary for Chrysler’s other Ghia-built show cars. No one is absolutely certain of the method employed. It was probably in cargo hold number two, but even that is an uncertainty. Photographs of the car are rare. Evidently no color ones were ever taken resulting in conflicting information about its color scheme. Was it silver or green? We will probably never know. The few black & whites taken of the Norseman were done at Ghia shortly before the car was sent to the loading dock. The negatives for the interior photos seemed to have been lost and original prints are extremely scarce. This car was almost completely lost to history. There are a few facts about this sunken show car that have survived over the last five-and-a-half decades, though. The origin of the Norseman was sometime during 1953 in a studio occupied by imaginative stylists such as Cliff Voss, William Brownlie, as well as others along with capable engineers and managers who were all under the legendary leadership of Virgil M. Exner. (Coincidentally, the Andrea Doria went into service that same year.) The car’s name was derived from Exner’s Norwegian heritage.
The team spent 50,000 man-hours and approximately $200,000 to design and build the Norseman. Ghia needed 15 months to construct the one-of-a-kind idea car. Arguably, the most unusual feature of the Norseman to emerge from Chrysler’s design studio was its cantilever roof. The Norseman is nearly unique in this regard since no production car and very few show cars have had this feature. Perhaps the concept would have been adopted for production if the car had not been lost. The lack of A-pillars gave an unobstructed view through the wraparound windshield; the idea had much appeal with Exner. According to his son, Virgil Jr., “He liked to provide good visibility in his cars.” There was more than good visibility involved in the design. Glassmaker, PPG, built the heat-treated structural windshield to make it more crash resistant. Furthermore, the roof was attached in tension to a ¼-inch rod located in place of where the A-pillar posts would normally be present. In theory, such a car in a rollover accident would be provided strong support; the retainers holding the roof and rods together were meant to shear thus releasing the roof from its tension state. Additionally, the roof had a couple of novelty features. One was a brushed aluminum insert and the other was a 12-square foot backlight that could be retracted forward into the roof via an electrical switch. This idea never went into production on any Chrysler product, but a somewhat similar idea – a backlight which retracted into the trunk – was used by Lincoln and Mercury. Fresh air intakes for the passenger compartment were located in the leading edge of the roof, too.

Clamshell-type, hidden headlights and a full-width concave grille in combination with a thin bumper located along the horizontal center line and capped at each end with pod-mounted parking lights dominated the front-end view. All of it was finished with a valance panel sweeping underneath the assembly. The front fenders, with their hidden headlights, resembled the nose of a shark.
The Norseman’s hood dipped sharply in front, leaving it beneath the frontal portion of the fender line. A light crease beginning at the top of the headlight doors gained prominence as it swept back to the rear of the car and actually formed a horizontal fin along the quarter panel. The fin on the driver’s side ended with the fuel-filler door. This set of fins – as did those atop the quarters – stopped several inches short of the rear of the car.
The wheel opening were quite dramatic as well; they were low-cut in both the front and rear and each were scalloped similarly to those of Buick’s limited-production 1954 Skylark.
Outside door handles were not employed. Instead, a push-button release not unlike those of the ‘40s Lincoln Continental was used.
The rear of the Norseman was no less sensational. Other than its retractable backlight, this show car also featured elliptical nacelles housing chrome-plated bumperettes each with small, round stacked taillights. (A somewhat similar arrangement appeared on the 1957 DeSoto line.) The fastback roof flowed back so far it formed the opening for the center bumper. In profile the Norseman looked something like a rocketship from a contemporary sci-fi movie.
Inside the Norseman were even more spectacular features. Its seating consisted of four power-assisted bucket-type seats covered in metallic light green leather with either contrasting gray or gray-green inserts. Each pair of seats was separated by a console with a glove box. Also incorporated into these consoles was a retractor for the buckle component of the seat belts; the other half of the reel-type seat belts retracted into the side of the front seats and probably the quarter trim panels in back. Interior lamps also appear to have been installed within the individual consoles. An experimental form of lighting was luminescent paint applied to the back side of the Norseman’s front seats. Instrumentation was suspended from the padded dash in pods and a small writing desk could be pulled out from underneath the passenger side glove box. Satin finish metal trim wrapped around from the door panels to the dash. While the outside and inside of the Norseman were flashy, the engine compartment may have or may not have been equally so. No photographs of it seem to exist to know if it was dressed up with chromed components though this was typical practice for Ghia. Regardless, the show car was reportedly fitted with a 235hp 331 Hemi instead of the high-performance version that was standard issue for the Chrysler 300-B. However, the car may have been refitted with the 340hp letter car engine if it had arrived at Chrysler.
The Norseman’s chassis was a modified 1955 Chrysler type with a suspension of torsion bars in front and leaf springs in back. This is not often reported in other stories about this car, but Virgil Exner, Jr. believes this is true. His belief seems to be supported by a news article about the car published in the August 10, 1956 issue of the New York Times which quoted unnamed engineers as saying the Norseman had an “advanced suspension” but gave no other details about it. Torsion bars were employed for the 1957 Chryslers so the presence of the setup on the show car seems logical. Other modifications included a wheelbase stretched from 126 to 129 inches and a full underpan to reduce air resistance underneath the car.
If the Norseman had arrived safely, Chrysler undoubtedly would have thoroughly tested the car at its engineering proving grounds near Chelsea, Michigan before showing it to the public to gauge their reactions to the radical design. Brief consideration was given to having Ghia build a second Norseman, but the time needed to do this would have meant the car would not be available for evaluation until late 1957 or early 1958. Assuming the car was insured for its full cost, the money certainly would have been available for the project. However, the natural fast pace of the auto industry at that time would have rendered a second Norseman as obsolete by the time it was ready to be tested and shown. Hence, the idea was rejected.
After 55 years under water, the Andrea Doria has deteriorated greatly. Its upper decks have collapsed over the years. Even if the Norseman had been so tightly secured as to stay in place even as the ship pitched over on its side and sank, it could not possibly have survived the years of exposure to the salt water of the Atlantic. Some reports claim the body was of aluminum. Virgil Exner, Jr. believes it was built of steel. Either way, the body would have corroded long ago. Chances are the car was crumpled as the ship flipped on its starboard side and struck the ocean floor. However, there are a few reports of divers spotting an unusual car within the ship. This, though, is rebutted by professional wreck diver and New Jersey resident, John Moyer, who has made over 100 dives to the Doria to recover artifacts from it. He has even taken some time to try to locate whatever remains of the Norseman, but never did. Unfortunately, there was little time to search. A diver is limited to 20-25 minutes to explore inside the dark and silt-filled hull of the ship. Complicating the matter of searching for the show car’s remnants is the tremendous amount of silt which can be stirred by the ocean currents at any given moment, rusted shards of metal which can tear a pressure suit, and the question as to where to look. The Andrea Doria’s manifest shows nine cars were placed in the ship’s garage, but whether or not that included the Norseman is not known. That means the garage as well as cargo hold two had to be searched. With the conditions within the ship Moyer could easily have swam past the debris of the show car and never known it. Even though the body of the car was not expected to have survived, parts such as the drivetrain and frame would be recognizable if they could be seen. Smaller cosmetic parts such as the unique wheel covers of the show car probably survived, too, as they are believed to have been chrome-plated brass.
c1 c2 c3 c4 c5
Categories: Strange News | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Gadget which turns all traffic lights green trialled in UK…..


The pioneering technology is being tested ahead of trials of driverless vehicles

North East Ambulance Service patient transport service vehicles are the first to be fitted with pioneering technology which links in-vehicle communication systems directly with Newcastle's Urban Traffic Management Control (UTMC) centre.

North East Ambulance Service patient transport service vehicles are the first to be fitted with pioneering technology which links in-vehicle communication systems directly with Newcastle’s Urban Traffic Management Control (UTMC) centre. Photo: Mike Urwin
Sarah Knapton

By Sarah Knapton, Science Editor

6:30AM BST 03 Apr 2015 – Telegraph (UK)

Comments61 Comments

A device which switches all red traffic lights to green has been launched in Newcastle to prevent cars from ever needing to stop.

The pioneering technology is being tested ahead of trials of driverless vehicles, which would be linked to traffic lights so that fully-automated convoys could pass quickly through urban areas.

The new gadget, which attaches to the windscreen like a Sat Nav, detects traffic lights from around 100 metres away and requests priority so that they switch to green as soon as the car arrives. It also tells drivers of the speed they should be driving to make sure they always hit a green light in the event of traffic.

Currently the ground-breaking system is being trialled by the North East Ambulance patient transport service, who are hoping it will improve safety, create a smoother ride for patients and cut fuel bills.

Although it is only being tested in a small area of Newcastle City Centre, developers from Newcastle University are planning to role it out across the city in coming years, and are hoping to fit goods lorries and taxis with the gadget to ease congestion and cut pollution.

Ambulance driver Tim Mortlock operating the new system in Newcastle (Mike Urwin)

And the Highways Agency is considering a scheme to allow driverless freight vehicles to travel the six miles between Nissan in Sunderland and Port of Tyne at night, using the new technology to pass quickly through a series of green lights.

For the first wave of the pilot, 20 traffic lights have been fitted with the Compass4D technology at key junctions in Newcastle City Centre and fourteen vehicles have been equipped with the priority technology.

Phil Blythe, Professor of Transport at Newcastle University said: “This is the first step towards driverless cars. If we can manage the traffic better and get cars talking to traffic lights and each other on the road, then that is a big step towards automation.

“One of the key things we are going to see over the next few years is platooning, particularly of freight, and when a platoon hits the traffic lights, it will go straight through, to avoid being split up.

“I am pretty certain that we will see driverless cars on the roads within the next decade. We have already got cars which have lane sensors to stop drifting, cruise control, assisted braking and cornering. So the car does a lot of the driving already.”

Ray King, manager of Urban Traffic Management Control centre based at Newcastle University, has been monitoring the new system from a series of CCTV cameras since it launched at the beginning of March.

“We’re trying to make sure that it is not making the traffic worse for other users. There would be no point doing this if it mean the roads were a nightmare for the cars that weren’t fitted with it. But so far it doesn’t seem to be causing any problems.

Ambulance driver Tim Mortlock operating the new system in Newcastle (Mike Urwin)

“It’s early days, but some ambulance drivers have said it has cut journey times by around 10 per cent.

“The NHS vehicles are transporting patients to hospital for treatment and they don’t want to be held up in traffic unnecessarily, delaying appointments for other patients and wasting taxpayer’s money.

“If we can speed up their journey, giving them priority at lights where appropriate, then it not only reduces fuel bills and delays but also improves patient care.”

Paul Liversidge, North East Ambulance Service Chief Operating Officer, added: “This new system has the potential to further improve how efficiently we run the service, ensuring we get to our patients on time and they get to their appointments on time and reducing our carbon footprint.”

Newcastle University is also trialling the technology in its electric cars which are fitted with eye trackers and a bio-belt to monitor driver behaviour when using the device, and make sure it is not a distraction.

There are also plans in the pipeline to allow older people to carry smart cards which would link up to the traffic light system and give them more time to cross the road at pedestrian crossings

Categories: Strange News | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Live in Michigan?…Best Buy, sell, trade forum


Guns to Archery, cars and trucks, moped, motorcycles, dirt bikes, snow mobiles, gun cabinets and much more…On Facebook.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/badasstrades/?fref=nf

Categories: Strange News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The year was 1955……


When I first started driving, who would have thought gas would someday cost 25 cents a gallon? Guess we’d be better off leaving the car in the garage.
gas

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How things have changed…. 1908…..New York. “Times Square” The old New York Times building, now encased in billboards, Hotel Astor and various theaters seen from Broadway.


story_061

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Old Photo…1906…”Railroad station, Magnolia, Massachusetts”


story_055

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Multimillion-dollar diamond heist in Brussels…$50 Million


BRUSSELS (AP) — Eight masked gunmen forced their way through the security fence at Brussels’ international airport, drove onto the tarmac and snatched some $50 million worth of diamonds from the hold of a Swiss-bound plane without firing a shot.
The gang responsible for one of the biggest diamond heists in recent years used two black vehicles with a flashing blue police lights in their daring raid late Monday, said Anja Bijnens, spokeswoman for the Brussels prosecutor’s office.
“They tried to pass themselves off as police officers,” Bijnens said Tuesday. The robbers, who wore outfits resembling dark police clothing, got away with 120 parcels, mostly containing diamonds but some also holding precious metals.
Police said they found a burnt-out minivan believed to be involved in the robbery near the airport later Monday night.
The heist was estimated at some $50 million in diamonds, said Caroline De Wolf of the Antwerp World Diamond Center. “What we are talking about is obviously a gigantic sum,” De Wolf said.
The robbers forced their way through a perimeter fence, at a place where two work sites obstructed a clear view, Bijnens said. There were no details about how the hole was opened but airport authorities said it must have taken more than simply blasting through it with a vehicle.
The robbers drove up to the Swiss passenger plane some 20 minutes before departure time, brandishing their machine guns. Then they methodically broke into the hold, which was accessed from outside, to choose their loot.
Passengers were unable to see the drama beneath them, said Bijnens.
The robbers finished their clinical operation with a high-speed departure through the same hole in the fence, completing the spectacular theft within barely five minutes, Bijnens said.
Airport spokesman Jan Van Der Cruijsse could not explain how the area could be so vulnerable to theft. “We abide by the most stringent rules,” he said.
The Swiss flight, bound for Zurich and operated by Helvetic Airways, was canceled.
A decade ago the port city of Antwerp, the world capital of diamond-cutting, was the scene of what was probably one of the biggest diamond heists in history, when robbers took precious stones, jewels, gold and securities from the high-security vaults at Antwerp’s Diamond Center, yielding loot that police in 2003 estimated to be worth about $100 million at the time.
Monday’s heist though was a fresh blow to the Antwerp industrial diamond center which prides itself on security and discretion.
“This is causing quite some unrest,” said De Wolf. “It was incredible how easy it all went. This is worrying in terms of competitiveness, since other diamond centers are ready to pounce and take over our position.”
Antwerp’s Diamond Center stands in the heart of the high-surveillance diamond district where police and hundreds of cameras work around the clock, and security has been beefed up further since the spectacular 2003 robbery. Shipments to the airport leave aboard armored trucks on an almost daily basis.
The shipment was not extraordinary, since on any given day, some $200 million in polished and rough stones go through the Antwerp diamond center.
Monday’s parcels contained rough and polished stones heading for Switzerland, where many of the 120 parcels were intended for different handlers.
The insurance for air transport — handled sometimes by airlines themselves or external insurance companies — is usually relatively cheap because it’s considered to be the safest way of transporting small high value items, logistics experts say.
Unlike a car or a truck, an airplane cannot be waylaid by robbers once it’s on its way, and it is considered to be very secure before the departure and after the plane’s arrival because the aircraft is always within the confines of an airport — which are normally highly secured.
Philip Baum, an aviation security consultant in Britain, said the robbery was worrying — not because the fence was breached, but because the response did not appear to have been immediate. That, he said, raised questions as to whether alarms were ringing in the right places.
“It does seem very worrying that someone can actually have the time to drive two vehicles onto the airport, effect the robbery, and drive out without being intercepted,” Baum said.

Categories: Strange News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Middle East’s first supercar to cost $3.4 Million…….


W-Motors-Lykan-Hypersport-1-jpg_194647
=============================================================================
Supercars are a common sight in some parts of the Middle East, but until now, that region of the world has gone without an exotic of its own. Enter the Lykan Hypersport, an ultra-exclusive ride from Dubai-based startup W Motors. The upcoming car is said to accelerate from 0-62 mph in 2.8 seconds and offer Lamborghini-rivaling style for $3.4 million, according to WardsAuto.

The Lykan Hypersport is the brainchild of Lebanese entrepreneur and designer Ralph Debbas, who began thinking up the supercar when he was an automotive design student. The wild, angular seven-figure exotic will be officially revealed to the public at the Qatar auto show, where W Motors will display a full-scale model made of carbon fiber and other lightweight materials, and built with help from specialty coachbuilder Magna Steyr Torino. The model currently lacks an interior and drivetrain, but will be powered by a midship flat-six engine from RUF, the company famous for custom Porsches. That engine is said to produce 750 hp and 738 lb-ft of torque, which could be enough to make the Lykan Hypersport’s claimed 242-mph top speed plausible. W Motors’ Performance estimates are based on computer simulations, as a running prototype has yet to be tested.

The headlights will feature diamond-encrusted LEDs, while the hood will be gold-plated – the perfect complement to the rest of the car’s lightweight construction.

Categories: Strange News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Railroad Tunnels….New Mexico…Jemez Mountains…


2-GilmanTunnels
============================================================================
A side road off the Jemez Mountain Trail offers rugged mountain scenery, world class fly fishing, rock climbing and the Gilman Tunnels. Cross the Jemez River at Cañones and go through the small town of Gilman following the picturesque Rio Guadalupe. You are at first surrounded by striking red mesas. Then along the Rio Guadalupe’s cascades you pass through some of the oldest rocks in the Jemez Mountains on the way to the Guadalupe Box and the Gilman Tunnels. The Jemez mountains are the remnant of a series of major volcanic eruptions that occurred about one million years ago.

The Gilman tunnels were originally blasted out of rock in the 1920s for a narrow-gauge logging railroad that used to haul timber out of the Jemez. There was a sawmill near Gillman but it came much later (around 1948). At some point they enlarged the tunnels so that logging trucks would fit. Perhaps this coincided with the building of the sawmill in Gillman. We found no record of when the railroad tracks were dismantled, but many tracks in the west were torn up during WWII). Railroading and logging artifacts can be found, even up towards Cuba.
Just past the tunnels the pavement ends. There are great views of the Guadalupita and Virgin mesas.

The canyon is a popular recreation area for camping, fishing, hunting, hiking, and rock climbing. It provides habitat for threatened and endangered species. The road parallels the Rio Guadalupe. The fast tumbling, boulder strewn canyon river is home to wild browns in the 10-14 inch range. There is a section designated as quality trout waters.

At Bernalillo, take exit 242 off I-25, go west on Highway 550. From San Ysidro, drive north on Highway 4. After the Jemez Valley School look for SR 485 to the left. After taking this left turn, follow the road through Gilman, continuing up the canyon through the tunnels. There are numerous turnouts for sightseeing and photography. Past the tunnels you are on dirt road, Forest Service Road 376. At Porter crossing (where you cross the Rio Guadalupe), you can continue on FR 376 to Fenton Lake and Jemez Springs, or turn left to Cuba (we hear this road is pretty rough in places).

http://backroadsnewmexico.blogspot.com/2007/10/gilman-tunnels-in-jemez-mountains.html

Categories: Strange News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Will Santa bring you this…All Aluminum Willys Coupe


Now we know what the retired sheetmetal guys from Boeing do.

Check this out… a hand-formed all-aluminum Willys Coupe!
It’s amazing what some people can do with an English rolling wheel,
sheet metal brake and a lot of skill and knowledge.
No, he is not going to paint it. Love the polished flames! (Look closely.)
This is Walt Austin’s aluminum Willys coupe at Jim Hume’s shop,
south of Bellingham, Washington.
You’ve got to wonder if any of our soda cans were lucky enough to be a part of this one-of-a-kind Willys coupe?
Willeys C

securedownload-2

securedownload-3

securedownload-4

securedownload-5

securedownload-6

securedownload-7

securedownload-8

securedownload-9

securedownload-10

Categories: Strange News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

mayanexplore.com

Riviera Maya Travel Guide

Cajun Food, Louisiana History, and a Little Lagniappe

Preservation of traditional River Road cuisine, Louisiana history & architecture, and the communities between Baton Rouge & NOLA

Jali Wanders

Wondering and Wandering

Southpaw Tracks

“If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.” ~Samuel Adams

Pacific Paratrooper

This WordPress.com site is Pacific War era information

what's the formula?

Nurturing awesomeness: from the parents of celebrities, heroes, trailblazers and leaders

Tarheel Red

A Voice of Conservatism Living in Carolina Blue

cancer killing recipe

Just another WordPress.com site

dreamshadow59

A great WordPress.com site

Mike's Look at Life

Photography, memoirs, random thoughts.

Belle Grove Plantation Bed and Breakfast

Birthplace of James Madison and Southern Plantation

Letters for Michael

Lessons on being gay, of love, life and lots of it

Sunny Sleevez

Sun Protection & Green Info

Backcountry Tranquility

A journal about my travels and related experiences :)

LEANNE COLE

Art and Practice

Lukas Chodorowicz

Travel, culture and lifestyle experienced on my adventures around the world. All photos taken by me. Instagram: @colorspark

BunnyandPorkBelly

life is always sweeter and yummier through a lens. bunnyandporkbelly [at] gmail [dot] com

%d bloggers like this: