Saturday, January 08, 2022

this music video from 1998 movie Dil Se was shot on top of a steam locomotive, with passengers still inside, as the movie producers couldn't get permits to take the train out of service long enough to film this

The camera crew hid under the straw mats you see, and performers were harnessed with ropes, while the main actor performed without any safety harness.

probably best to not give your mother in law the airborne sidecar ride... she will likely be staying with you over the holidays, and will have a lot of time to plot revenge

imagine this at the Goodwood Festival of Speed! The Unorfordox. Says so right on the beltline.

"Unorfordox Ford Cosworth Jack Levy" is the cation on the photo

cafe remake of a Triumph Speed Triple

Milan is trying to adapt to a future with less cars, and more bicycles - Milan has approved a £200 million plan to create a new 750km network of bike paths linking 80% of the city to bike paths, & achieve a 20% modal shift to biking by 2035.

The Biciplan Cambio promoted by the Metropolitan City of Milan is launching in Feb 2022. The ambitious project aims to create cycle paths that will connect Milan with the other 132 municipalities by 2035.

One of the challenges that Milan is called to face, in order to make urban mobility ever more sustainable, is less cars taking up space parking (not me, I just report the news)

"In the city the car is used only 8% of the time, while the remaining 92% remains stationary" explains the architect of the urban landscape Valerio Montieri who has been dealing with these issues for years. A use that does not seem to be "convenient" and that causes a consumption of one of the limited resources of the city: space. “Parked vehicles take away space for pedestrians and bicycles” says transport engineer Alfredo Drufuca who explains how there are alternatives. “

Once completed, the cycle paths will pass at most one kilometer away from all this. A 250 million euro project which, explains Beatrice Uguccioni, the councilor responsible for mobility, “will bridge the gap we have with respect to the most virtuous European metropolitan areas”: Berlin, Paris, Munich, Toulouse are the models. It starts in February, with the opening of the construction site for the first section of Line 6, from Milan to the Idroscalo. By the summer of 2022 the sea of the Milanese will be reachable by pedaling.

I used to bike a lot, about 50-75 miles a week, so I post about cyclist stuff that I find interesting, and here's a map that shows how steep roads are - really helpful for cyclists that are judging their routes by the hills

 this example is of a town in New Zealand

and if you want all the math, graphs, and stuff about cycling, also applicable to low powered vehicles like Model Ts, VW Microvans, etc see

racing videos are pretty exciting when the camera is in the car that passes everything in front of them, and the video seems more realistic if you adjust the speed to 1.25x


Roger Penske driving a GTO at Goodwood following Jack Sears in an E-Type

The word "miraculous" scarcely describes the survival of a Santa Maria, California police officer who wrapped his Ford Police Interceptor around a tree (ow! is in the pronunciation of arOWWWWnd) thanks Kim!

the officer's Police Chief calls this the "worst accident he's seen in 35 years."

Keep in mind though, that police behaving stupidly (driving too damn fast for conditions, obviously) results in a disproportional response that clearly shows poor judgment. " officer chasing a burglary suspect" =/= "rape in-progress". 

In either case, now the citizens are on the hook for the cost of a replacement vehicle, cost of accident response, and the officer's medical expenses.... AND the initial goal of the officer responding to the call STILL wasn't accomplished.

cops have radios, so they do not need to chase at stupid high speeds. They also have helicopters... and can use them, instead of driving cars among innocent citizens, and stupid high speeds that risk innocent people, and kids, lives in order to catch a burglar.  Just because another cop requests help doesn't mean a responding cop should potentially kill themselves trying to help him by driving recklessly. It costs way more to replace two cops and a cruiser than one cop.

Pretend for a minute the tree was a human being, a kid, somebody's mother, sister, daughter, and I'm pretty sure the outcome would have been different. 

That's why many cities do not do high speed chases anymore because police are here to protect and make sure everything gets resolved without harming innocent people.

Actions should be judged, not parameters. 

 The cop should face the same exact scrutiny after a mistake that any working stiff civilian would face- and also deal with the same tickets/charges/expenses. Or do you think cops should be held to a lower standard than average civilians?

The fact of the matter is that he endangered the public--by accident or not doesn't matter. His job is to NOT endanger the public. 

 I've been in a hurry in the rain and I've never done that to my car

from factory stock to lightweight street racer, there's a lot to be done to increase power and replace factory stock heavy parts with light weight stuff... in every system, and in every place possible... and these are very interesting to me

I have not had the chance, or possible situations that could occur, that would allow me to drive Corvettes, but I did have a part time job helping to restore 1969 Corvettes, and when I was a teen, I had an obsession with Vettes, because of their shape. I even subscriber to Corvette Fever magazine. Plus, I simply dig upgraded stock cars (like the Optima Challenge competitors)

So, when I came across this story, I wanted to learn what the owner did to this '68 to shed 500 pounds. 

He was a Pontiac mechanic, who went to the races and met and got to know GM's racing community like Bill Mitchell Vice President of Design, as well as Jerry Palmer – head of Chevy III design studio, and Dick Henderson, caretaker of GM concept cars.

Steel bumpers were removed, as were the steel bumper extensions and parking brake assembly. The heavy core support and radiator were removed and an L-88 aluminum radiator was mounted lower, for optimal airflow.

He deleted the windshield wiper system’s metal door, linkage, and vacuum actuator. The removable rear window and metal framework were replaced by a plexiglass piece, while the rear Astro ventilation ductwork was also removed, together with grilles, vacuum actuator, and door.

The headlights were inspired by the Lola Ford GT. The quad headlights sit behind plexiglass covers and are nested in 1963 Corvette headlight buckets. The turn signals came from a 1966 Pontiac GTO and the high beams were GE aircraft landing lights. GM did not offer sports mirrors at the time, so the original chrome one was removed and a pair of 1969 Mustang BOSS 302 mirrors were molded directly into the doors.

the interior was also simplified. It featured a radio and heater delete, and Richard fitted a factory radio block-off plate. The gauge cluster above it was simplified and the die-cast center console was replaced with a lightweight aluminum panel.

The veteran Pontiac technician used window switches that were 1969 Pontiac Station Wagon tailgate window switches. Those were recessed into the leather-padded part of the console. Aside from using a lot of aluminum, Richard also removed the factory sound deadening and carpet padding, after which he reinstalled the original carpeting directly over the fiberglass floor. The lightweight seats were sourced from Bruce Meyers, creator of Meyers Manx

The steering wheel came from a 1969 Pontiac Trans Am, which can be adjusted outwards and inwards by popping out the 1956 Corvette horn button and loosening a screw beneath it

The parts Richard used in order to assemble the 454 cubic-inch Big-Block V-8 are specially picked. The mighty 454 cubic-inch ZL-1 engine featured an all-aluminum block and heads with LS6 and LS7 internal parts, ZL-1 aluminum block, LS7 crankshaft, - LS-7 rods with 7/16” boronite bolts (LS-6 rods had 3/8” bolts), LS-6 pistons, 11.0-to-1 compression, aluminum heads (closed chamber to match the 11.0-to-1 LS-6 pistons), L-88 / ZL-1 / intake manifold with correct L-88 / ZL-1 carb from GM, L-88 / ZL-1 cowl induction with correct air cleaner and flame arrestor parts, LS-7 lightweight hollowed-out flywheel and clutch and harmonic balancer, ZL-1 aluminum water pump, 1967 L-88 road draft tube instead of pcv, cut and sleeved for rocker cover removal, GM transistor distributor curved to L-88 spec with MSD-6 box hidden inside dash, L-88 / ZL-1 red metallic core plug wires and cap, Crank, rods, pistons, flywheel and harmonic balancer professionally balanced, and more.

The engine also featured Kustom Headers, sourced from GM’s heavy-duty racing catalog, while the gearbox was a Muncie four-speed manual, with an M22 case, M20 wide gear ratios, and 3:70 axle ratio, for better street performance. The heavy diet, Richard implemented on the 1968 Corvette shaved significant weight and all of a sudden, the car sat too high. Richard fixed that by cutting two coils from each front spring and removing three leafs from the rear springs. He also installed Koni shock absorbers.

What struck me as an unexpected challenge, was that after losing 500 pounds, the owner then learned that he now needed to adapt the suspension, for it no longer was a heavy weight, and needed the right shocks for a lighter car. 

the pace car that wasn't, because the UAW refused to allow a foreign car pace the 1991 Indy 500. Even though it was a Dodge Stealth. How's that for plain old racism?


it's nearly ballet, with a gymnast's perfect landing

making art from a haphazard collection of gee gaws, and worn out things that get a longer 2nd life as art, than they did as originally intended and designed

guard rails on the Mighty Mac doing the good work of keeping morons from finding out how long it takes to reach the frigid waters of Lake Michigan, since 1957

The Mackinaw City Police Department says the crash occurred when Scott Bartholomew of Fenton was driving a vehicle northbound, lost control, crossed the center line and crashed into a southbound vehicle driven by Jeffrey McCague of Brighton around 10:40 a.m. on Friday, ruining everyone's weekend, and both of their vehicles

uh oh, that's going to leave a mark

Friday, January 07, 2022

the only American-built F1 car to win a Grand Prix.

the good old days

1953 Ferrari

Factory Competition 289 Shelby Cobra team car raced by Tom Payne, who famously showed up to the St. Jovite trophy races without time to spare and won the event in his suit and tie!

the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, is an official Annex of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum


I just watched the Tom Hanks, Jackie Gleason, Eva Marie Saint, Barry Corbin, Hector Elizondo movie Nothing In Common, and it had a stretch 1979 Jeep Wagoneer

Thursday, January 06, 2022

Goodyear announced it will donate the 27 ft 1910 lifeboat, of it's very first airship, the 1911 Akron D-1, to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

The company will donate the 27 ft 1910 lifeboat, which has been in Goodyear's storage since 1912, because it the only piece of the Akron that has been recovered after the airship crashed during a transatlantic crossing.

1957 Plymouth Savoy. All original. Only 30k original miles!

A flight attendant worked for United Airlines for 23 years under a false identity

a Brazilian figured out in 1998 how to assume the legal identity of a 5 year old that died in a car crash in 1979 in Washington state, and successfully applied for a US passport using the kid's name. Since then, Guedes has renewed his passport six times.

Using the role as a flight attendant allowed him to use the expedited "known crewmember" TSA lane and bypass most security checks.

The complaint said investigators and Transportation Security Administration agents observed the Brazilian using the known-crewmember line at Houston's George Bush Intercontinental Airport to access the secure area of the airport, which was part of the terminal that required a security check to enter.

A husband and wife who tried to confront a Seattle ring of catalytic converter thieves were met with gunfire instead. With the right make and model, a thief can make as much as $3,500 per stolen converter.

 Armed with only a garden hoe, Beth said her husband quickly retreated.

 However, what shocked them both was the thieves seemed unconcerned they'd been spotted or that they'd just fired a gun. 

 “They finished up," she said. "They kept going. They finished up and then left a couple of minutes later and then the police came just after that." 

 It can take only seconds for criminals to tear out a catalytic converter from the exhaust system. They contain precious metals which thieves trade for cash at scrap yards. 

Beth said the group her husband confronted had an armed lookout, a getaway driver and the man who actually cut the part out of her van. It will cost about $2,000 to replace the catalytic converter

Washington state lawmakers are set to convene next week at the state Capitol in Olympia for a new legislative session and one of the bills set to come up is a proposal to undercut the thriving marketplace for stolen catalytic converters by making it illegal to buy catalytic converters from anyone who walks into a shop and tries to sell the automotive part on the spot..

State Sen. Jeff Wilson introduced the bill, saying he is targeting unscrupulous scrap metal dealers by going right to the point of sale where the stolen parts are converted into cash.

a similar law that takes effect in Oregon next month.

My question, why haven't federal politicians made catalytic converters illegal for scrap dealers to buy already. After all, marijuana is still illegal, federally, and selling beer to anyone under 21 is illegal, so, why the hell isn't preventing scrap dealers from buying, and motivating thieves to steal, catalytic converters already accomplished? 

After being caught driving at 91 mph on the 60 mph A361 North Devon Link road in 2011, filmmaker and traffic legislation activist Martin Cassini presented his case at Barnstaple Magistrates Court in a series of rhymed couplets:

Before you today stands a man in the dock 
To whom this bleak chapter’s a terrible shock

Kind and aware on the road as a rule
 He tripped up that day and transgressed a rule.

The outlandish speed was but a short burst
 On a dual lane stretch to get up there first

To the top of the hill to avoid getting stuck
 Down the single lane stretch by a slow moving truck.

If you averaged my speed over hillock and dale
 You’d find it to be not at all yon the pale

The law’s quick to judge if you’re over the limit
 No praise if you’re under — one sided, innit?

The design of the road is dubious at most
 It’s the link for Pete’s sake from M5 to coast

Why only three lanes? There was good room for four
 The vision was lacking, the carriageway’s poor.

The limit is 60 for one lane downhill
 And 60 — the same — for two lanes uphill

Until this dark day my licence was clean 
Too late for considering what might have been.

They say that speed kills, but throughout these lands
Inappropriate speed kills, or speed in the wrong hands

I wasn’t lacking due care and attention 
Indeed I was using true care and attention

I was watching the road, not checking the speed
Could this be a safer, superior creed.

They fined him £175. “I wanted to challenge one-size-fits-all regulation that ignores the spirit of the law, and at the same time recognise that I had disobeyed the letter,” he told the Daily Mail. But “Now I’m taking greater pains to follow the letter of the law.”

A Royal Air Force pilot was disappointed that no aerial displays had been planned to mark the RAF’s semicentennial in April 1968. So he performed one himself

 He took off in an unauthorized Hawker Hunter from RAF Tangmere in Sussex and flew to London, where he circled the Houses of Parliament three times, dipped his wings over the RAF Memorial, and then found himself facing an unexpected landmark:

Until this very instant I’d had absolutely no idea that, of course, Tower Bridge would be there. It was easy enough to fly over it, but the idea of flying through the spans suddenly struck me. I had just ten seconds to grapple with the seductive proposition which few ground attack pilots of any nationality could have resisted. My brain started racing to reach a decision. Years of fast low-level strike flying made the decision simple.

He flew between the spans, becoming the first pilot to do so in a jet aircraft. He buzzed three more airfields before returning to his base, where he was promptly arrested. But rather than face a court-martial he was quietly invalided out of the RAF on medical grounds — the government didn’t want to bring any more attention to the stunt.

From now through Friday, February 19, KraftHeinz is accepting applications for would-be Peanutters (and it's also looking for new Wienermobile drivers, if you'd rather be in charge of a four-wheeled hot dog).

According to the job description, Peanutters will be responsible for driving the NUTmobile from city to city, creating peanut-related content for Twitter and Instagram, and acting as a "specialist and Spokesperson for Mr. Peanut, walking in the shoes of an American icon." The minimum qualifications for the job include a bachelor's degree, a valid driver's license, and the "desire and ability to spend the year on the road [...] staying in hotels or short-term corporate housing throughout the United States."

Wednesday, January 05, 2022

Looks to me like this will get the job done

such crisp focus!

some people won't understand this

SEGA sponsored the '93 European Grand Prix. It was the only F1 grand prix event to be held at Donnington Park

after a couple moments after the publicity photo, they handed him the real trophy

One man in Britain was worried that his new girlfriend might dump him if she found out he was in the process of building the biggest model railway in the country.

So, instead of telling her, he kept the massive structure hidden in the basement of a building he told his girlfriend he had rented to store wine in. 

 She came down to the cellar one day and said: 'Where's all the wine?' I told her the truth and she was like 'OK.' But she has an art degree so she appreciated the level of detail and work that went into it. We're now engaged." 

 According to George, he spent eight years building the 200-foot-long model, which recreates a 1.5-mile-long stretch of real train tracks located in West Yorkshire. The model recreates the look of the area as it existed in the '80s. 

 George spent over $330,000 to bring the model to life.

and when a guy has a warehouse full of wine, and a third of a million dollars to spend on a hobby, his girlfriend simply gets married to him. After all, she's got the run of the house, wine stock, and he's busy staying out of trouble with trains. 

rare Belgian pedal Vespa SWANN brand

Tuesday, January 04, 2022

The East side of Maui is home to a Bailey Bridge built by the Army Corps of Engineers, which led me down a rabbit hole of research and I discovered the Pu'unene Naval Air Station (1940-1947) which later became a dragstrip.

The Road to Hana runs approximately 52 miles from the beach town of Paia, over 59 bridges, and through 620 curves.

 One of the original steel and concrete bridges on the Hana Highway in Maui, Hawaii, damaged by erosion, has been paralleled by a Bailey bridge erected by the Army Corps of Engineers.   

In the mid-1950's, Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut purchased a war-surplus Bailey Bridge so vehicles could enter/exit the infield and paddock sections of the track while races were taking place. The bridge has been in continuous service since, and was relocated to new, raised pilings in spring, 2008. The track believes this may be the sole-remaining WWII-era Bailey Bridge in regular daily public service in the USA.

The Bailey bridge is a portable pre-fabricated truss bridge, designed for use by military engineering units to bridge up to 60 m (200 ft) gaps. It requires no special tools or heavy equipment for construction, the bridge elements are small enough to be carried in trucks, and the bridge is strong enough to carry tanks. It is considered a great example of military engineering.

Donald Bailey was a civil servant in the British War Office who tinkered with model bridges as a hobby. He presented one such model to his chiefs, who saw some merit in the design and had construction started at a slow rate.

The bridge was taken into service by the Corps of Royal Engineers and first used in Italy in 1943. A number of bridges were available by 1944 for D-Day, when production was ramped up. The US also licensed the design and started rapid construction for their own use. Bailey was later knighted for his invention, which continues to be widely produced and used today.

Navy use of the Pu'unene Naval Air Station began in 1940, When elements of Utility Squadron VJ-3 arrived to tow targets & operate target drones for the fleet. The Army Air Corps also established a small support base at the airfield in the same year.

After the Pu'unene Airport was closed, Maui racers began using the old runways for impromptu races. It was decided to use an old runway for drag races and time trials in May 1956; it remains in use as Maui Raceway Park as an automobile “drag strip” and park for such activities as go-kart racing and model airplane flying.

The base was commissioned as Naval Air Station Maui in 1942, but it was smaller than a larger air facility on the coast five miles to the northeast at Kahului, NAS Maui was renamed NAS Puunene when the larger NAS Kahului was opened in March 1943.

The Navy's facilities at the field were expanded, to support CASU 4 & VF-72.

Army forces eventually concentrated on Oahu, leaving the Navy as the primary user of the field.

By the end of the war, Puunene had a total complement of over 3,300 personnel & 271 aircraft.

A total of 106 squadrons & carrier air groups passed through during WW2.

Guinness World Records certified that Ffordd Pen Llech, in the Welsh seaside town of Harlech, has a gradient of 37.45%

1929 Duesenberg

1932 Ford DeLuxe Phaeton

Monday, January 03, 2022

Jeremy Renner collects firetrucks, about 30 of them

He didn’t spend the pandemic bingeing on Netflix , he spent nights bidding on fire trucks in online auctions, and he’s amassed quite a few. “I had 30 fire trucks a hundred feet from a hydrant,” he says. “Not because they’re there to firefight, but they all potentially could.” 

Renner collects fire trucks rather than muscle cars or McLarens.

Renner’s fire trucks put out fires, of course, but he also retrofitted one of his hook-and-ladders for a different purpose: a birthday-partymobile for kids, topped with a bounce house. “A compressor inside the fire truck, it blows up the thing,” Renner says excitedly. “On the side of the rig, Slurpee and snow-cone machines—all that stuff!”

His truck-rehabilitation project—which has grown to around 200 vehicles, each finding new life at his Nevada homestead—speaks to pragmatism and creativity. “It isn’t a horse ranch,” he says. “It’s more of a horsepower ranch.” Beyond fire engines, Renner is restoring and reimagining utility vans; an ambulance, which he is converting into a veterinary clinic; and a slew of city buses, which he has earmarked to become tiny homes and glamping accommodations.

Jeremy Renner said he's building a fire station at Lake Tahoe in a recent interview on "The Kelly Clarkson Show." Renner, who has a house near Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe, talked about his vision of fighting fires

"I'm actually building a station at the house in Tahoe because it is a hot zone for fires," Renner told Clarkson when she asked about him being a volunteer fire chief.

his collection of motorcycles: a replica Norton Commando (one of just 50 built); an electric-powered Zero; and two Triumphs, a Speed Triple and a new 1,200cc Thruxton. Then his cars: the Porsche 914 he’s been rebuilding for a decade; his 2012 Tesla, which he says is the first new car he’s ever bought; and a futuristic looking Acura NSX supercar, a gift from Acura (which does product placement in the Avengers films).

Renner’s newest acquisition is a giant tour bus, with bunk beds, a shower, and a full kitchen. It’s fun, but it’s also an investment. Never one to miss an angle, he plans to use it on set, instead of a trailer, and have the studio pay him rent. “So they pay me to have my own trailer that I like better,” he says, grinning at the deal. “Over a couple of years, it’ll get paid for, and then I’ll have this great thing my daughter and I can tool around in and see the country.”

The cheapest production car in history: The Briggs & Stratton Auto Red Bug

the most thorough article and gallery I've ever seen on this is at:

thank you Tom M for clanging my tip jar by mail!