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Category Archives: video

The Keating Wheel Company – Forty Years on Two Wheels

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Brian Keating is just up the road a piece and across the Connecticut River in New Hampshire. He has been: restoring, reviving, conserving, collecting and buying and selling vintage motorcycles for forty years. Lucent Productions has put together an excellent documentary covering Keating’s life’s work that many of you will be able to identify with. Listen along as he tells the story from the very start, of his passion for the two-wheeled machine.

Even though his work is with motorcycles and not cars, Keating does put into focus why so many of us in the trade along with private enthusiasts do what we do. Antique motorcycle collectors have always valued the unrestored original, and he also talks about the allure of those untouched machines. Spend the nine minutes it takes to watch this video, you will enjoy it. You can visit with the The Keating Wheel Company here.

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Posted in Motorcycle photos, video | Tagged , , , , , |

The Goodwood 72nd Members’ Meeting and the Grover-Williams Trophy Race

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At the Goodwood circuit in Southern England, Lord March launched the latest event to be run on the famed racing track, the Members’ Meeting, which was held on the weekend of March 29th and the 30th, 2014. The racing action is open only to members of the Goodwood Road Racing Club and their guests. The event continues on from the 71 club meetings held earlier at Goodwood in the fifties and sixties for members of the British Automobile Racing Club. A full slate of twelve races was presented covering many vintage categories.

The photos shown here are of the Grover-Williams Trophy Race that was staged to celebrate the 90th anniversary of one of the most successful racing cars of all time, the Bugatti Type 35. The race is named in honor of William Charles Frederick Grover-Williams who was very successful behind the wheel of his British Racing Green Type 35. Photographer-filmmaker Stefan Marjoram was there to record the action and today we are featuring his photographs covering this race.

At the Goodwood 72nd Members’ Meeting  you can learn more about this new event. Be sure to view the exciting video below they have produced which will fill you in on all the action during this race along with the results. A visit with Stefan Marjoram will reward you with more of his fine work.

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Posted in Pre-War Contemporary Photos, video | Tagged , , , , , |

The Amazing Edmond Rumpler Designed Tropfenwagen

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  • 1921 Rumpler Tropfenwagen at the German Museum of Urban Transport

Edmond Rumpler, a brilliant Austrian aircraft designer, introduced his unprecedented Tropfenwagen at the 1921 Berlin Auto Show. The teardrop-shaped body (tropfen translates to drop), with its curved glass greenhouse, produced a very low drag coefficient of only .28, which is on par with the aerodynamic cars of today. In addition to the shape of the body, the minimal horizontal fenders and the belly pan helped to achieve this figure.

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  • Left and center: Rear views of the 1921 Rumpler Tropfenwagen. Right: 1923 Rumpler Tropfenwagen on exhibit at the German Museum of Technology

It appears that between 80 to 100 Rumpler Tropfenwagen’s were built in the four years that they were in production. Only two examples are known to have survived and both can be seen above: the German Museum of Urban Transport car built in 1921 has the earlier shorter style of passenger compartment; the 1923 German Museum of Technology Sedan features a longer cabin with the rear top-section of it used for storage.

The cars seated four or five passengers in the center of the body resulting in a very comfortable ride. A convertible version was also produced and can be seen in a line drawing below. That version with four passengers aboard weighed in at 3,000 lb. with the sedan at 3470 lb., both were capable of speeds above fifty mph.

The interesting video above shows a period film of a Rumpler Tropfenwagen being driven in several different scenes, possibly on the streets of London. Two things to note while watching it are: The fitted luggage and its compartment, and the trafficators Rumpler fitted for use as turn signals.

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  • Chassis and drivetrain -”Automotive Industries” October 27, 1921

The car utlized a W6 Siemens & Halske-built, 157 ci. (2,580 cc) 36 hp. overhead valve engine. Three banks of paired cylinders were used, all working on a common crankshaft. Note one of the unique three connecting-rods units at number four in the image above.

The engine, clutch, three-speed transmission, and the final-drive were all together in a unit power plant. The rear swing-axles were suspended and located by angled cantilever leaf springs, while the beam front axle was suspended by a pair of parallel leaf springs of the same type.

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  • Illustrations and a line-drawing -”Motor Age” November 10, 1921

The novel design of the car and the potential for a light-weight and excellent handling racing car attracted Benz chief engineer, Hans Nibel. The resulting Benz Tropfenwagen racer seen at the bottom used a Rumpler chassis with a 121.5 ci. – 80 hp. (1,991 cc) dohc straight-six. The cars that were built handled extremely well but were uncompetitive and were dropped after three years. The basic design was used later by Auto Union for its racing cars, VW and Porsche. Many other streamliners can be seen here on The Old Motor.

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  • Construction details – “Automotive Industries” October 27, 1921

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Posted in Auto photos 1885 - 1920, Pre-War Contemporary Photos, video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , |