Saturday, August 13, 2011

Heilmann front end for the carriage of the Grand Duke Alexis (steampunk treasure? A Grand Duke and the outrageous carriage, burning man ought to get one of these)

Forequarters 4 electric wheels JJ HEILMANN to convert the carriages, Manufacturer of electric locomotive (1897-1900), Le Havre. 

A similar vehicle in Paris in 1894

Update May 2017:

the Grand Duke Alexei is the uncle of Tsar Nicholas, This photo was taken in Paris after he was sacked as the Admiral of the Fleet in charge of the Russian Navy after its sinking by the Japanese at the battle of Tsushima 1905. 

The Russians lost 7 out of 8 battleships. This was the first decisive sea battle fought by steel warships, a dying echo of a past era when ships of the line surrendered on the high seas after this the most important sea battle since Trafalgar.

The Grand Duke died in Paris after a life of “slow ships and fast women” in the arms of his mistress the French dancer La Balletta in 1908 a fact recorded in the Australian and not the European Press.

This photograph is of interest in that it is the first known electric car with the Grand Duke, far side rear, in the back.

Single electric headlight to the front, candle carriage lights and traction engine steering, drawing a London made standard Barker Landau.

some photos from the 1910 Salon de l'automobile in the Paris Grand Palace

found in where some photographer went car to car and took photos of the engines of the cars also

1901-1909 full page illustrations from Le Petit Journal, supplement illustre

strange but true, nanny cat walks the baby stroller, and pnuematic postal delivery vehicle unearthed after 100 years beneath London

I think I found these on

1904 air filled tires were barely more than balloons, so traction aiding, tire covering hides were innovated and tested

found while browsing through the Automotor Journal on Google books

1937 Monaco Grand Prix photos are how great race photos should be taken

Unamerican chevy's... the Canadian Beaumont and Brazilian Opala SS

The GM cars in Canada were sold as Acadians and later the name Acadian was dropped... and the models were the Invader, Canso, Beaumont, and SD396 

he Beaumont started out as a popular feature series on the Acadian from 1962 thru to 1965. The Beaumont Series could be added to any of the Acadian Models in those years. The Acadian from 1962 to 1965 was based on the contemporary Chevrolet Chevy II (Nova), before becoming a stand alone marque in 1966 based on the [Chevrolet Chevelle]]. From 1966 to 1969 a Beaumont was based on the Chevrolet Chevelle body with minor styling revisions, including different taillights and a Pontiac-style split grille. The interiors typically used the dash panel from the (U.S.) Pontiac Tempest/LeMans/GTO series. Beaumonts were sold at Pontiac-Buick Dealers primarily for the Canadian Market but have been documented to have been sold in countries outside of North America.

In 1963, the Acadian was offered in 8 models with 4 series. The Series was the standard Invader, Canso, Beaumont or Beaumont Sport Deluxe. The "Beaumont" again offered similar trim, identification and luxury as the 1962 model did. The "Beaumont Sport Deluxe" added deluxe identification and a substantial amount of luxury items. Upgraded upholstery and trim in 6 possible colours, extra cushion padding in bucket seats and rear seats, deluxe door handles, glove box light, chrome-plated heat control and instrument panel knobs. With a powerglide automatic transmission a between-the-seat console and transmission shift lever was standard on the Beaumont Sport Deluxe.

In 1964 and 1965, the Beaumont continuing to gain popularity was now available in 4 series on the Acadian. "Beaumont Standard", "Beaumont Deluxe Standard", "Beaumont Custom" and "Beaumont Sport Deluxe". Each one of these series had additional luxuries and identification.

From 1966, the Acadian name was dropped and Beaumont became a standalone marque, still sold by Pontiac-Buick dealers. The cars sported a new emblem, based on Pontiac's arrowhead motif with two red maple leaves added. They featured the same powerplants as the Chevrolet Chevelle, including the OHV inline six-cylinder engine, and a variety of small- and big-block V8s. The V8 engine choices included small-block 283, 307, 327, and later 350 cubic-inch versions, while the Mark IV big-block could be ordered in its 396 cubic inch displacement. 3- and 4-speed manual transmissions were available, as were the 2-speed Powerglide and 3-speed Turbo-Hydramatic automatics.

The SD (Sport Deluxe) models were equivalent to the Chevrolet Chevelle Super Sport trim level, and featured bucket seats and center console, as well as SD body striping and trim. The SD396 models are the most desirable Beaumonts today. Few were built, however, and most succumbed to the harsh Canadian winter climate, which makes them significantly more rare than equivalent Chevelles and desirable to some collectors. The SD series was available in both 2-door hardtop and convertible body styles. In addition to the SD series, the Beaumont line included base, Custom and Deluxe lines. A convertible was available in the base Beaumont series, a model never offered in the Chevelle line. Other body styles were identical to what was offered on the Chevelle for the given year, including a very rare four-door hardtop offered from 1966 - 1969.

found on which does a real good job of posting a gallery and information about musclecars.

Found on Cars and Chicks tumblr

the "Pedrail" system by Diplock in 1904, pages 90-94 and 113-117 of the Automotor Journal

a glimpse of Gordon Bennett trophy racing in 1904

Coincidentally just posted about the 1904 Gordon Bennett Napier racecar at

and also filled us in on the background of the GB Cup Race: James Gordon Bennett, the wealthy owner of the New York Herald newspaper in 1900 organized a race between teams, each representing their national automobile club. This for several years was the most important race of the year. The race was driven on public roads in the country of the previous winner. In 1902 the Gordon Bennett Trophy won by a British Napier. Auto Racing was not allowed on public roads in Great Britain, and the 1903 race was held in Ireland. Napier’s cars were painted green for this race, the national color of Ireland, in honor of the host country. Napier was as a result the first car that was painted in what we now refer to as “British Racing Green”.

found on

Belgium's part in the car world

Due to early industrialisation, and location at the very heart of the European Union, it provides easy access to all major European sales markets. The country also boasts an excellent infrastructure and logistics network and a well developed network of suppliers and service providers.

Belgium set out on the adventerous path of automobile production at a very early stage. In 1894, Vincke, the first car to be sold in Belgium was designed in a workshop in Malines, where railway carriages were upholstered.

1900-1914 The Golden Age
Several companies brought out cars and motorcycles of excellent quality at competitive prices. These cars made a hit abroad and three-fourths of the cars designed and manufactured in Belgium therefore were channelised towards export.

The major makes, of which models can be admired in the museum are Minerva, the most well-known Belgian make founded by Sylvain de Jong, F.N., which also specialised in motorcycles, Imperia and Miesse.

The HEMI name comes from the dome-shaped ceiling atop each cylinder inside some engines, since it was introduced by obscure Belgian car maker Pipe in 1905.

The shock of the Great War
In 1914, Belgium ranked first on the international automobile construction scene. But the War gets the better of this rapid development. Curiously, the determining factor was not the looting of factories but the end of "free trade" and the emergence of protectionist tendencies adopted by various countries after the War.

Minerva remained a major make. for a couple of different model year examples of Minervas

F.N., Excelsior and Imperia started making more elaborate cars which met with success on the market. Pipe decided to specialise exclusively in lorries.

The thirties: the decline
In most countries, the beginning of the thirties was marked by significant technological advancements. Free wheels, front-wheel drives and steel bodies appeared. But the Belgian industry, hard hit by the economic crisis, found itself short of resources needed to compete with these advancements.

The period from 1930 to 1940 witnessed a gradual transition of an entirely domestic industry into an assembly sector where foreign cars were built. Efforts on the research and development side were absent and production activity alone remained.

Not being able to renew its models, Imperia acquired a licence for an excellent ultra-modern German car with front-wheel drive, the Adler. Its name could therefore figure on beautiful cars until 1940.

F.N. gave up automobile construction in 1935 but continued to successfully produce excellent motorcycles and utility vehicles. In the field of utility vehicles, Belgium had a bit of a margin and continued to make excellent lorries and buses such as Brossel, Miesse and F.N. and Minerva jeeps for some years, up until the post-war period.

Memories of the Belgian automobile
After World War II, the few remaining Belgian car makers could not face the competition from abroad. The Belgian automobile construction left behind but memories of its glorious days.

ADK (automobile)
ALP (automobile)
Antoine (automobile)
Astra (1930 automobile)
Compagnie Nationale Excelsior
De Wandre
Imperia (car)
Minerva (automobile)
Pipe (car)

I found a new website that solves car identification mysteries,

this was the mystery car, and I knew it was in 1910, and in Paris

So after registering (this is such bullshit... you have to confirm about 4 ways that you aren't a spam computer) you can quick and easy put up a photo and ask for help. It was less than 12 hours before they took my simple creampuff problem car, and told me where the photo was taken, posted 2 more photos of the car show it was a part of, and told me the make, model, and coachbuilder that made this crazy windshield design. Gotta appreciate people that know their business.
I think their registration is nonsense bullshit, but they got the info and are happy to help. Gotta respect that

The info on this auto is that it was at the 1910 Salon de l'automobile, and it's a 80CV Pipe with a body by Kellner. Kellner is most famous for the Bugatti Royale coachwork

Pipre (or maybe Pieper) was a belgian carmaker from the early 20th century,
In 1907, over 300 cars of the types 28, 50 and 80 CV were sold. Because of this, Pipe became one of the largest Belgian car manufacturers, they were not only sold in Belgium they were exported to many different countries.
During the first world war, the factory was partly destroyed.