WHEELS OF INDUSTRY.
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The wheel of wealth will be slowed by all difficulties of transport at whatever points arising, as a carriage is by the roughness of the roads over which it runs."—John Beattie Crosier.
Papers Wanted by the institute of Transport.
In the July "Journal,".. the Council of the Institute invites original papers on subjects set forth in the Attachedlist. The following are suggested as typical subjects for papers or contributions. to be submitted during the session 1,92°1911 :
1.—Electrification of main line railways.
2. The carrying capacity of rolling stock in relation to economical working.
3. An appropriate system of-fares on
passenger-carrying vehicles. 4.—Road design and construction in relation to power-propelled ye. hides.
5.—Tramways rolling stock.
6.—The collection, conveyance, and distribution of geodsinismall bulk in urban and rural centres.
7.—The provision de transport facilities for the cWelopment of rural districts.
8.—The utility of canals and inland waterways and their place in a coordinated transport system for this country.
9.—The best modern methods by, which existing canals can be made commercially useful. 10.=-The equipment of docks and handling of goods.
11.—The influence of the cost of transhipment on the cost of transit. Papers or contributions, or offers of -papers or contributions, should be forwarded to the hon. secretary onor liefoie September 30th next.
Motorized Machinery in Kenya.
A representative of The Commerc;al. Motor had the pleasure of a brief chat the other day with Mr. A. A. Baillie, some time a member of the Legislative Council of British East Africa, and one of the most successful agriculturists in Kenya—as B.E.A. has just . been' rechristened.
Mr. Baillie's success, as a farmer—he and his brother have large farming interests outside Nairobi—has'Iseen built up on old-time methods, in" which the bullock cart has played so prominent a part; but he says the. " new men" are nearly all keen on introducing motorized machinery in opening upthe country, and he has no doubt that theirefforts and enterprise will be suitably rewarded. Personally, he inclines the' belief that mechanical traction in Kenya has come to stay, and he sees a great future for it in regard more particularly to ploughing.
A Goodrich Publication.
We•have received from the B. F. Goodrich Co., Ltd., a copy of the second edition of " Commercial Vehicles of Great Britain." It will doubtless be remembered by many of our readers that the first edition of this manual was. received with great enthusiasm, and forms a valuable work of. reference for all interested in the commercial vehicle.
The present edition, which has been thoroughly revised and brought up to date, is an excellent production. In addition to the carefully-prepared particular's of all the heavy yebicles—petrol, steam, and . electric—made in this C6 country, • two interesting articles are included. Mr, S. V. Norton, the manager of the lorry tyre sales department of the Goodrich Co., has written a most instructive article on the subject of a standard system. for recording the operating costs of commercial vehicles, which should be very helpful to those in charge of transport undertakings. In another article by the same writer, the question of lengthening the life of the motor vehicle is gone into from various points of view. The bad effects of overloading are dealt with very thoroughly, and adso the question of overspeeding' the vehicle, the article being illustrated profusely by means of instructive sketches. Towards the end of the book 15 helpful suggestions are given., for the fitting and detaching of solid van tyres, which are well worthy of study.
Various other excellent features are included in the manual, and the B. F. Goodrich Co., Ltd , are to be congratulated on a production which fills a much. felt want. in the. corradicial-ve'dcle world.
Next Year's "Royal."
The Etta annual show of the Royal Agricultural Society of England will be held at Derby from Tuesday, June 28th, to Saturday, July 2nd5 1921. Copies of the implement regulations will be ready for issue after January 1st, 1921.
Openings in the Argentine.
Dr. Julius Klein' United States commercial attaché at Buenos Aires, who recently arrived in New York, says there is a big market in Argentina for motor vehicles, sales of which have risen from less than 1,000 a few years ago to more
than 11,000 last year. The. Ford Co. has erected an assembly plant at Buenos Aires, and is doinvia thriving business. Agents for French tractor manufacturers are conducting an intensive selling campaign.
An important public function will takof place at Kirkby-in-Ashfield, near Nottingham, early in September, when the experimental station which is 'being erected in consequence of the recommendations of the wartime "Committee on the Production of Oil from Indigenous Sources" will be declared open. Lead'ing representative's of the most important scientific and technical bodies in this country will be present. During 1918 and 1919 we devoted space to thesreporta issued by the committee above referred to, -which, inter alia, dealt with the better utilization of coal and the provision a domestic and industrial feel.
The final report of the committee above referred to reconimencled the establishment of an experimental station, and in order to put this recommendation • into practical operation the Midland Coal Products, Ltd., was formed, the neces sary money—£100,000—being provided
privately. Full details in connection with the organization are contained, in
an advance copy of a pamphlet which we have received. This statement has been prepared for distribution on the occasion of the formal opening of the station.
The Havre-Paris Petrol Pipe Line.
It is stated in Paris thatsthe Ministry of Public Works has now officially adopted the proposal providing for the construction of a pipe. line from Havre to Paris, to ensure the capital of a supply of crude petroleum which will go far towards making up for the present coal shortage. Last January the Gompaigne Francaise de Transport des Mazouts et Petroles,. represented by M. Maximo Purland., made an application for the concession -for constructing and exploiting pipe, lines for crude petroleum and for petrol between Havre and Paris but in June of this year they provisionally withdrew their request as far as a pipe for petrol was concerned.
The announcement recently in the Journal Ofileiel, recognizing the public utility of such a line, approves the convention passed between the Ministry of Public Works and ' the Ccimpagnie Francaise de Transport des Mazouts et Petroles or the concession, construction, and working of a pipe line. In the eon vention entered into between the Ministry of Public Works and the company in question it is laid down that the company during the period of the concession shall only carry out "the following operations:— The transport of petroleum, and all liquid combustibles by pipe line and also by crkrts, barges or lorries; the obtaining of all concessions relating to methods of transport; the construction of all conduits and pipes, the construction of all, works, lines, and factories, the purchase of all buildings and building rights necessary for such transport.
The conyention also provides that, supposing tlfe State is ready to authorize the construction of a'pipe for the transport of petrol over the same route, new constructions conlerning such transport should be considered as extensions of existing installations, and the concessions should be granted to the Compagnie Francaise de Transport des Mazouts et Potroles. The conditions under which. the contract is to be 'carried out lay down that the line shall run through Or near to' 13elbec; Vvetot, Parentin, Rouen, and Pontoise, and may follow national, departmental, and rural roads along this route. The concessionnaires are bound to. arrange for a minimum transport of 2,400 tons of crude petroleum per day, from the port of Havre to a point in the neighbourhood of Paris. A certain number of reservoirs representing a minimum total capacity of 60,000 tons must be constructed at either end of the line.
'Very strict time limits are laid down. Plans for the canalization must be submitted not later than two months after tlfe• granting of the concession, and the construction must be begun within a fortnight after the plans have been approved, and continued without interruption, so that the whole scheme may be completed within a year. The State reserves the right to substiute itself for the doncessionnaires in case of repurchase or failure to carry Ira the conditions, or at the expiry of the concession, which will terminate in 50 years from January 1st following the year when the system began working.
British Lorries Wanted in India.
According to advices received from H.M. Trade Commissioner at Calcutta the Government of India Departments of Posts and Telegraphs have experienced considerable difficulty in olataining motor vehicles of British manufacture. So far as motorcars are ooncerned, this difficulty has not been felt acutely, as the American cars in use have given satisfaction, but in the case of motor lorries the position has 'been entirely different. The Indian Government appears to have had considerable trouble -with the American lorries, as it is stated that experience goes to prove that a lorry manufactured in the United Kingdom lasts four times as long as a lorry manufactured in America.
At the close of the current year lorries will be required for the Kashmir Service. The immediate requirements are in the neighbourhood of slit 3-4 ton lorries, and nine 1 ton lorries, and it is suggested that British manufacturers who are in a position to quote for these machines should get into immediate touch with the Director-General of Posts and Telegraphs, Council House Street, Calcutta. Manufacturers followiiii this inquiry should communicate their action to the Department of Overseas Trade, 35, Old Queen, Street, London, S. W.
Tractors and Cotton Growing.
Front various parts of South Africa come reports of increased attention being given to the cultivation of cotton, and we observe that a Writer in the Empire Reviegasays that, instead of tens of acres" we now see hundreds of acres under cotton" in various parts of the Union. Tractors and steam ploughs, he says, are busy tearing up the soft black soil in many places. . . In the northern Transvaal, near Leydsdorp, some army officers have started a'-company, and are .ploughing, up a large stretch of rich cotton land, and aAjoining this venture Mr. Bright, representing a wealthy cotton syndicate, Ras two Crawley oil tractor§ at work. Five thousand acres put tto cotton seems a large proposition, but "once the tractor proves its use it will become quite a common undertaking.
Improving the Great North Road. •
Active steps are being taken, by the Nottinghamshire authorities to effect a. much-needed improvement which users of the Great North Road will regard as being long overdue. In place of the present tineubstantial structure, -a new bridge is to be placed over' the River Trent at Musicham, near Newark, and, in the consideration of the estimate of Cost, it has been found that £10,000 may be saved by -Utilizing ,reinforced concrete in place of .stone, the relative coat of :a stone bridge to that of the equally suitable material being £50,000 against' £40,000. The Count), Committee responsible for the work had'helcl to the idea -that the most desirable type of structure, both from the point of view of appearance and durability, cepa a. stone bridge, it being desirable that•the work should be proceeded withas rapidly as possible, the present bridge net being considered safe for heavy traffic. But the Ministry of Transport, in a spirit of welcome practical economy, has interposed its veto, holding the
opinion that a bridge of reinforced concrete will he entirely satisfactory alike in relation. to strength, durability and appearance. They, therefore, declined to give the Council half the cost of a stone bridge and, sumo:ageing to the in-' evitable, the committee has accepted the Ministry's ruling, with the result that existing inconveniences at this important point in a. main artery of traffic stand in a fair way of being before long removed.
The King and Motor Transport.
Following the intimation by His Majesty the King of his • pleasure to become Patron of the Commercial Motor Users' Asaooiation, the National -Council has completed arrangements for the issue of badges, both for members and their vehicles., in which the crown is embodied as an integral part of the design. 41Slem bership of the association also centers aesociateship of the, Royal Automobile Club, and inquiries concerning new or additional badges should be addressed to the general secretary, Mr. F. G. Bristow, 50, Pall Mall, London, S.W. I.
Police Constable's Invention.
A Wigan. police constable is credited with an invention which he has patented to warn the driver of a motor vehicle when the rear light is going oat, and its claimed that he has solved the rear light difficulty. The device so works that in the case oft the petrol-driven tars, when the rear lamp goes out the engine-stops, and a light appears near the 'driver to signify that-it is the rear light and not engine trouble. The inception is also said to be a protection against ear thieves.
Motor Fire Escapes.
The petrol motor fire-engine has resulted in the•gradual disappearance of hand manipulated fire:escapes from the various . streetfire-stations in Liverpool. The hand appliances were constantly being damaged by persons turning the winding handle causing it to overbalance, and When a few dwk ago representations were made to . the City Council that 'they should. be restored to some of the old stations, it was pointed out that:this:was quite unnecessary, as the present motor fire-engines carry an escape equal in length to the old bandpropelled ones.
The Scottish-Motor Traction Co., Ltd., of Glasgow, Edinburgh, and Dundee, have been appointed sole distributers of the Wallace lorries for Scotland.
British Sparking Plugs for Canada.
An' opening exists for the sale of spark ing plugs in Western . Canada. H.M. Trade Commissioner for Winnipeg states that competent authorities estimate that the number ei motor vehicles in use in Western Canada will approximate 200,000 ;hv the close of the current year, so that dm Voluine of trade in sparking plugs and other automobile accessories must be very considerable..
There are several -reliable, agents 'Western Canada. who are desirous of securing the agency for a sparking plug
of British an ufae tura: The Commissioner has forwarded to the Department of Overseas Trade, .35, Old Queen Street, London, SW., catalogues and Klee lists of sparking plugs manufactured by a New York concern, whose product finds a sale in Canada. The price list shows the prices at which the wholesale trader purchases the plugs. and also the prices at which the plugs are retailed in Western Canada. Sparking plugs entering the Dominion are dutiable under No. 453 of the Canadian Customs Tariff, which is as follows :—British preferential tariff, 15 per cent. ; intermediate, 25 per cent. ; general. 27i per cent. It is Nsuggested that United Kingdom manufacturers interested should communicate. with H.M. Trade Commissioner, at 610, Electric Railway Chambers, Winaipeg, furnishing him with copies of their catalogues, price lists, etc., and giving some indications as to time required for delivery.
A Useful Compendium.
We have received from Brown Bros., Ltd., a copy of the miniature edition of their latest motor and tool catalogue. This will be found a most useful book of reference by both the trade and the user. It comprises some 540 odd pages, in whichiwill be found, almost every :type -of spare and sundry required on or for motor vehicles.
Copies can be obtained from the company's head offices, Brown's Buildings, Great Eastern Street, London, .RC. 2.
A Traders and Manufacturers Exhibition is being held in the extensive grounds (covering about 18 acresrof the White City, Anlaby Road, Hull, ler two weeks commencing Monday, August lfith. A special section is being devoted, to the display of-agricultural implements.
At a meeting of the -East Riding County Council the clerk reported that as a result of negotiations with the Bridlington Corporation provisions had been inserted in the Bridlington Corporation Bill making it necessary for the corporation to obtain the consent of the East Riding County Council to the running of omnibuses over any main road outside the borough of Bridlington, and it was also arranged that the model clauses suggested by the Minister of Transport, with reference to payments to road authorities towards the cost of the maintenance of road i over which the omnibuses would run and for contributions towards the cost to be incurred in adapting, altering, re-surfacing, and strengthening any roads or bridges in order to make them sufficient to carry the omnibus traffic, should be inserted in the Bill.
As these .clauses appeared to give the County Council all necessary protection, it was decided, with the approval of the chairman of the council, to withdraw the. petition of the County Council against the Bill.
The German Daimler Co.
According to a, recent issue of the FrankfUrter Zeitunv, the Daimler Motor Co., of Stuttgart, is calling an extraordinary general meeting on August 12th. A further 32 million shares are to be issued, and the original capital of the company will, therefore be mcreased to 100 million. Until lately it was thought that the administration would avoid a new issue of shares. It was not until last February that the original capital was raised from 32 to 64 million, and in March 4 million marks preferential shares were issued. This time the administration intended taking up money which would bear a fixed interest. The intention was to take up a large snortgage on the Berlin works.
American money was also offered to the Daimler Co., but apparently the typical American convertible bonds with the right of conversion into shares did not suit the company. It is passible that in view of the extraordinary need of capital from which the German motor works are suffering, a natural consequence of the enormous wages and prices of raw material, that these plans
may still be taken up. Nothing is known as yet concerning the conditions of issue of the new shares. The last, 32 million were offered to the old shareholders at 110 per cent, The quotation a few days ago was 225i per cent.
A Tax on Chars-a-Bancs.
The Highways Committee of the Lancashire County Council reports that its attention has been drawn to the present heavy traffic on main and rural roads, which places a serious burden upon the county and rural ratepayers, and the committee recommends the County Council to lay this matter before Parliament with a view to a tax being levied upon chars-a-bancs, and that the revenue so derived be expended to relieve the heavy cost of road upkeep.
Middlesex Bus Schemes.
Reporting on the Middlesex County °tuned Bill, which sought sanction to run motor omnibuses, and which was rejected by the Select Committee, the Parliamentary Committee of the Middlesex County Council states that it would certainly appear from what transpired in the committee room that the Select Committee favoured private enterprise, and it may not be unreasonable to conclude that the decision of the Select Committee was very largely based upon grounds that private enterprise and not municipal, was the more satisfactory way of providMg for public convenience.
The committee, of which Mr. Neville Chamberlain, Mk, is the chairman, set up by the Minister of Transport to-consider the question of inland waterways, have decided to direct their investigations in the first instance, to the river systems of the Thames, Severn, Trent, and Humber, and -the ports that they serve.
The committee have held six meetings, and have now adjourned until the autumn. In the meantime, certain investigations are being made on their behalf by Sir Alexander Gibb, G.B.F., C.B., Director-General of Civil Engineering, Ministry of Transport, and it is hoped that a report thereon will be available for the consideration of the committee after their recess.
Lorries in Norway.
The report on the commerce and industry of NorWay down to the end of the year 1919 gives the following figures for the commercial vehicle in the country. Number of lorries and delivery vans and combined passenger and goods -cars registered as follows:— During the war the American exporters strengthened their hold on the market. Imports of all classes of motor vehicles increased very largely owing to the improved purchasing power of the people, and in 1917 and 1918 motor lorries were taken into use to a? much greater extent than formerly, and a number of motor ploughs and tractors were also imported.
Liverpool Traffic Statistics.
The following comparative statistics are the latest available of the Liverpool Corporation tramway and motor omnibus services for the fortnight ending July 17th a-a Motor Omnibuses.
Motor Transport and Nyasaland.
Recently at the annual meeting in London of the Shire Highlands Railway, Nyasaland, Nyasaland, the chairman incidentally. observed that Northeastern Rhodesia, was going ahead, "and as the bulk of the -trade of that, country will pass over your railwiby means of motor transport. from Fort, Jameson to Limbs, growing traffic from those districts may be expected."
Moroccan ROad Services.
According to recent advices from 11.1erocco direct communication between Tangier and Tetuan was finally established on July let, when the Campania Espanola de Colonizacion, the concession0 sires for the service, despatched the first motor vehicle over their newly constructed track. Thus the double pos.sing of the Straits of Gibraltar via Algeciras and Gouts, a roundabout route which has been necessary since 1913, is at last obviated. A daily road servie.e will be maintained for the present by four-seater motorcars, the single journey costing 50 pesetas Spanish, but it is hoped to replace these by twelve-seater motorbuses and reduce the fare to 25 pesetas.
It was necessary to build 'several wooden bridges in the making of the track, which Mlle through some 30 miles of wild, open country. The-surmounting of the difficulties involved within eight months of the inception of the work leads to the hope that before tong a properly levelled and macadamized road will con-. nect the two towns.
A Closed Road.
One-'of the three outlets which connects Birkenhead with Wallasey, known locally as the "Halfpenny Bridge" (now the Penny Bridge), has now been closed to all vehicular traffic, and drivers will now have to take either of the two alternative routes (1) across the dock road boulders, with the possibility of a holdup at the bridges, to en-able steamers to pass through, or (2) along the Leasowe Road through 13kIston and Moreton. The reason for the closing of the "Halfpenny Bridge" is that the Mersey Pocks and Harbour Board engineer has reported that it is unsafe for wheeled traffic. Probably action will be taken by the local authorities concerned.
The Bus of the Future.
Mr. Green, the general manager of the Fifth Avenue Coach Co., of New York, ha-s views on the bus of the future, which ore of interest. In a paper recently read. before the Society of Automobile Engineers he made. the following remarks :— "It iS difficult to sa,y what the future type of bus will be. Clearly, different cities have different re quirements. In all probability, any large operating company will require at least two distinct types, the double deck for large loads and the single deck for smaller loads, faster operation, express' service, etc.
" Assuming good roads, wide thoroughfares, and reasonable free,: dom from overhead structures, the 50 to 60 passenger, very low hung, double-deck vehicle, capable of handling a trailer, seems to have great possibilities.' This clam of vehicle jointly, operated with the single-deck, one man controlled, prienmatic-tyred bus appears to me as being a logical scheme, especially where peek loads must be handled largely without surface car or subway aid. The development of either. type presents innpense, bug not insurmountable, difficultie-i"
Municipal v. Private Enterprise.
The new motor omnibus service instituted by the Crosville Motor Co., 'between Wallasey and West Kirby, has caused -$01110 comment in the district owing to the fact that the Wallasey Corporation sought to include in their Bill running powers to outside districts, but they had to. withdraw the clause, otherwise the measure which is now on the point of receiving the Royal Assent would have been opposed, and delay would have ensued. The Corporation is theis compelled to keep the motorlauses„ within the borough boundary.
Night Garaging to Save Time.
Lorry and char-a-balks traffiel•from Liverpool to Walla,:ey and Birkenhead is so seriously delayed every day by the congestion of, the ferry services that many owners, instead of having to line up their vehicles in the traffic queues during the busy morning hours, have their vehicles transported the night previous and garaged on the Cheshire side. This is a very desirable proceeding, but the chief difficulty is to get adequate garaging facilities on the other side. The suggestion has been made that a plot of find near the Seacombe ferry should be used for a garage and motor workshops, where vehicles from Liverpool could be put up for the night and attended to. Besides the spot being very central, every vehicle coming from or going to the ferry would have to pass the garage, which would bean excellent terminus for motor coach traffic.
-The Goodyea.r Tyre Co. claimito conslime about 10 Per cent of the world's production of crude rubber.
Shareholders Visit Austins.
On July 26th last the directors of the Austin Motor Co., Ltd., invited about 250 of the largest shareholders, -and a few friends, to visit the Austin works at Longbridgo to signalize the completion of' the reconstruction of the works, and the attainment of the schedule of output which had been laid down in November last.
After the tour round ilia works, Sir Herbert Austin, K.B.E., made a apeech to the visitors in which he dealt very fully with the position of the company s undertaking, and which mat with-enthusiastic apvroval. In one passage he stated his opinion that the result of the new Transport Bill, and increasing railway fares and rates, would, without doubt, bring in a boom in the demand for motor vehicles.
Parcels by Tram.
The Liverpool Corporation, unlike many other municipalities, does not trade in ithe conveyance of small parcels by electric tramcar. A report, however, has been prepared on the subject by the late general manager, Mr. W. C. Math-11s, a.nd copies ,of it. have been sent to each member of the tramways committee, which will discuss the matter at an early meeting.
Municipal Bus Competition.
Several 3nunicipalities in the north, who are running motor omnibuses, have received complaints from the owners of passenger carrying yehkles, owing to the severe competitive effects..
At, the meeting of the Birkenhead Town Council, the Town Clerk read letters from Mr. Alfred Harding (whose servace was recently described in The Commercial Motor) and the manager, of She Oxton Carriage Service, protesting against the action of the Corporation, whose motorbuses were in competition with people who had tri„.get their living in this direction.
"if this sort, of lilting continues," wrote Mr. Harding, "I mightas well close down my business!'
The Oxton Carriage Co. stated that the Fronton motorbus service was a serious loss to the company, and no good to the Corporation, who were making Prenton a present of tbe service out of the rates. Brenton had refused incorporation, • and did not deserve a motorbus service, and the Corporation would be better employed trying to make a success of the gas and coke and
other undertakings. (Laughter.)
The complaints were referred to the Tramways Committee.
Fuel in South Africa.
The Seuth African Motor Traders' Association has decided to circulate a petition which will be forwarded to the Prime Minister asking for the Government control of prices to he removed in connection with the petrol shortage.
The attitude of the Johannesburg distributing houses towards the petition is that they will welcome anything that will tend to increase the supply. The distributors are working in harmony, and the supplies on the way are likely to relieve the tension in the course of a few weeks. It is pointed out that companies are compelled to regulate the distribution in accordance with the stocks on hand and the supplies on the water. Augmented shipments may be expected to leave New York in August.
The Johannesburg correspondent of the Cape Times says that the object of the promoters is to -have the Government control of prices, that at present exit, removed in the hope that thereby a larger quantity from the sources of supply will find its way into the South African markets. It is not contended in the setting out of the petition that any rediteion in Reims will be effected. On, the contrary',‘ it appears to be understood that the removal of a fixed price, even if it secures an increased importation, will only do so by coming into line with Synth Africa centres, where higher prices ar eheing obtained.
,A New Word.
" Truckportation " is a new term which is being employed it America for freight haulage by pneumatically equipped motor lorries. Although it is improbeble that this term will ever come intomeneral use in this country, there is littledorebt that, before long, the type of haulage which it denotes will do eo.
The Goodyear Tyre and Rubber Co. have established at their branch at Philadelphia, five long-distance motor lorry routes, in order to give' speedy and TErllar deliveries of products to their 8ervice stations, The success of this edrvice has given rise to a proposal to melte the newly developed " truckportation " lines act as feeders to the Tail wav express-service countries near Philadelphia, where poor roads will not allow lorries to make deliveries.
By this method, it is stated, one-day 010 " express delivery ,service will he aseired ie every county in Pennsylvania. • Approximately 500,000 lb. of merchandise is transported each month on the " truckportatiun " lines from the Goodyear Philadelphia branch, this heing more than 70 per cent, of all the distribution from that branch. The longest route -is 340 miles, and it passes through nine cities between Philadelphia and Reading. One-day' trips of from 110 to 165 miles are weekly to various , other cities.
The proposed seniice into Northern Pennsylvania will cover 420 miles in four days. This is to be the most ambitious "truaportation " effort ever made, with the exception of the Goodyear Co. 's allthe-year-round Akron to Boston service, and the trans-continental record of 13 days, 5" hours, for the 3,451 miles be tween Los Angeles and New York. •
New I.H.C. Factory.
The International Harvester Co. has purchased a 140-acre factory eite at Fort Wayne, Ind., and will shortly begin the erection of the first unit of a large plant to be utilized for the production of motor lorries. The site is the largest of .all the I.H.C. 'factory locations. Fort Wayne was chosen by the company after 28 locations had been investigated. In a statement concerning the new plant, Mr. Cyrus H. McCormie, June., works manager, said :—
" The buildings of the new plant will embody the improvements of every important moderna,utemobile and motor truck plant in the United States. The comPal1), Plans frankly to take advantage 'of other people's experience in flatuilding for manuladture on a large scale and to combine this with its own experience covering many years.. Health and comfort. of the workers and ease, efficiency and perfection of work will be the major ends involved."
solid band 'tyre users will be interested to learn that the ShrewsburyChalliner Tyre Co., %Ltd., are opening offices iv Nottingham--at. Clamber ChainThurland Street, 'Where Mr. R. Hunt, will he in charge. It will 'late remembered that this progressive concern is also represented in Nottingham by stocking and fitting agents—Messrs. Challands Ross and Co.. Canal Street.
Rugby U.D.O. Is considering the purchase of a meter ambulance.
Goole U.D.C. is to apply for sanction to borrow £1,800 for the purchase of motor lorries.
East Riding County Council has purchased two Foden steam wagons, one for £1,200 and another for 887.
A motor ambulance has been presented by the British Red Cross Society (Waterloo) to the Bootle Borough Hospital.
Having ordered six electric vehicles, the, Hammersmith Borough Council is preparing plans for a garage which is estimated to cost £1,000.
A fleet of eight moterhuses is to ba substituted for the present horsetramcers at Morecambe. The cost to the corporation is put at £46,000.
Leeds Corporation Waterworks Committee has a scheme for fixing water troughs in or near main streets, especially for-the supply of water to' steam lorries.
• The scheme for providing a service of Motorbuses at Lincoln has been agreed to by the corporation, who require a loan Of £2:7,000 for cerrying out the proposal.
The Metropolitan Asylums Board has been asked to accept the offers of (1) the Central Aircraft Co. to supply 14 ambulance bodies at £3,48910s., and (2) W. and G. du Oros, Ltd., to supply three 10 passenger bus bodies at £825.
Owing to the face that the original contractors cannot, through causes beyond their control, carry hut their contract to deliver to time a vacuum gully wagon to the Lambeth Borough Council, that authority has decided to cancel the contract, and to accept the offer of Straker-Squire, Ltd., to supply a vehicle for £1,450.,
Women Motor Drivers.
There are still a few women drivers of commercial and other cars in Liverpool, and ex-Service men. who have the misfortune to be unemployed-are demanding that the drivers' lieeneee should not be renewed in order that they may base the Opportunity of getting a job. Frequently one sees women drivers of light vans, and -whilst being fully sympathetic with the demands of the ex-soldiers fm a job, elementary justice demands that women should have the right to drive if they want to. The real question is: "Why de employers give them a job?"
Physically Unfit Drivers.
The Main Roads Committee of the Lancashire County Council alludes to a case in which a motorcyclist. was charged with furious driving. He was stone deaf and could not hear the evidence, and the magistrates said he was mot a fit person to be granted a licence Owing to his deafness, considering him to be a danger to himself and to the public.
The committee states that it has called the attention of the Transport :Ministry to Atie..(eaSe, suggesting 'that, if possible, regulations should be eiede to prevent the issue of driving licences to persons who are not physically fit. The reetric. tion of licences to physically fit men only might materially lessen the number a road traffic accidents,
A £250,000 SCHEME.
Methods of Dealing with Traffic Con. gestion at a Merseyside Ferry.
A£250,000 scheme for the improvement of one of the River Mersey crose-river ferries, that of Seacombe, is at present under consideration, and in his interim report. Mr. T. R. Wilton, the consulting engineer, proposes a new bridge for vehicular traffic, together with northward and southward extensions of the stage to double its present length. The cost of the stage extension is put at £86,000; the floating roadway at £108, 000; and the new passenger beidge and extended ferry buildings at £47,000.
The report falls wider three beach ; (1) The improvements required fr goads (vehicular) traffic; (2) improvements needed for passenger traffic; (3) the general methods of carrying out these improvements without interference with the working of traffic, their respective costs, the time when each separate part should he commenced, and the time when its completion may be expected.
The improvements tfor dealing with vehicular traffic are considered under two heads: (a) the stage accommodation itself, and (b) methodsof handling goods traffic to and from the stage.
With regard to (a.) the actual stage accommodation necessary for giving two luggage berths would enable a complete cargo of vehicles to be annesheilled on the stage ready for loading up, can be met by a stage length of 320 ft. and the present width of 80 ft. The loads which must be provided for on the main structure are, in Mr. Wilton's opinion, those which may be reasonably expected in the next 50 years, both total loads of vehicles and axle weights being taken into account. He recommends that the goods stage should be of such strength that it could carry vehicles of a total weight of 30 tons, where the overall length is 35 ft., and the maximum load on one Dade is 20 tons, and vehicles of a total weight of 20 tens where the overall length is 20 ft.
The handling of goods traffic to and from the stage may be either by a bridge or lifts or by a combination of these two methods. The selvantage of a bridge is that it provides for the continuotis movement of traffic,and requires no power to work it. It has a disadvantage at low tides owing to mechanically propelled vehicles and horsed vehicles hav ing to climb a slope. This is not a matter of serieue moment to mechanical vehicles, provided the elope is reasonable, .bat unless the slope is very slight it is a considerable disadvantage to horsed vehicles. The lifts have in their favour the fact that, whatever the state of the tide, horsed vehicles require no extra horse to get them to the street level, but they have the serious disadvantage that they do not allow of continuous steady movements of traffic, and power is required for their working.
It.' is recommended, in these circumstances, that a three-track bridge should be provided with two up tracks and one down track, so that slow vehicles may be-kept to one track when going from the boat uphill; the two trucks would thus clear a boat load of mixed feet and slow vehicles in about five minutes. The up track has the advantage that in ease of a breakdown of a vehicle on any track all the up traffic could be concentrated on one track, and only a minor delay would take place in. stead of a complete stoppage of traffic. It would he possible to retain the present hydraulic lifts for a. time to deal with horaed*vehieles where the load is too great to he taken.. up a bridge by an ordinary team, but the general trend of traffic is towards the adoption of mechanically propelled vehicles, and the gradual replacement of horsed vehicles and, to deal with those vehicles where the home is unloaded, it would prove cheaper for extra chain horses to be used instead of retaining the lifts.
Commenting on the urgency of the impaiovernerets of the goods stage, Mr. Wilton concludes that the present oode stage, eanstructed for the vehicle weights from the standpoint of the time of its construction, which was about 40 years ago, cannot long reinein suitable for the increasing weights of vehicles, and even now shows signs of over-stressing in about 20 different places.
"With the increase that ma' reason*ably beeanticipated in the near future' a stronger construction appears eibsolately necessary," said Mr. Wilton, 'end I, therefore, consider that the existing stage should, -under the scheme of improvements, be used as an extended passenger etage,. for the weight of pee • sengers does' not increase, and a new stage designed for the' vehicle weights which may. be anticipated in the next 50 years should be constructed to take the place of the existing goods stage,"
THE AMERICAN INDUSTRY.
Output Restriction Due to Supply Exceeding Demand.
IT appears front a report recently re
ceived from an American aouroe•that fears are felt that the United States automobile industryhas grown too feet, and consequently a restriction in output will eventually &come necessary. This must entail financial loss as well as a greet labour disturbance, until the market conditions are again adjusted to stability,andCompensatory effects have set in.
Already there are reports as to the cancellation of orders and curtailment of production by makers of the more expensive types of car. As an indication of the growth of the industry, it is stated_ by the National Automobile Chamber of "Commerce that the capital involved is now 1,800 million dollars as against 400 Million dollars 'Eve years ago. • One result of this phenomenal growth has been that the market has , been denuded of supplies of certain materials used in themanufacture of motor vehicles. For example, one half the production of plate glass and three-quarters of the rubber produced are for this industry, while practically the whole of the longer staple cotton goes into tyre production. The steel for passenger cars alone amounts to two million tons a year.
Labour statistics show that the average wage for motor works employees is 31.40 Oilers per week as against 27.87 dollars as the general average. This applies to the State of New York and inditates the nature of the inducement to withdraw workers from other industries into the growing automobile industry. With an industry of these dimensions (some 30 times the size of the United Kingdom industry) the effects of a depression in trade can be imagined, and this is the cause of the fears already expressed.
Gasworks Should be made to Supple . ment Existing Supplies. •
ACAMPAIGN to stimulate the home production of motor hiel has been inaugurated in Scotland. Following upon a meeting in Edinburgh, a meeting of motorists was held recently in the clubhouse of the Royal Scottish Automobile Club, Glasgow.
Mr. Henry E. Gordon, of Aikenhead,
vice-chairman of the club, presided. He said that the purpose of the meeting was to bring home to the people of Great Britain the importance of the home production of motor feel, a subject in which nearly every individual citizen was interested.. The abnormally high price of motor spirit would continue so -long as the supply was short of the demand. An important direction in which relief could be found was in the production of benzole, and one of the aims of the present agitation was to induce corporations and other gas producing concerns to increase the present production of benzoic,. which the existing plant was able to do.
Captain R. H. l'ilontgontery, secretary of the joint fuels committee of various motoring organizations, said the oil position. was one of the greatest problems that faced the country. Ships Were being built and others were being adapted to use oil fuel There was a possibility that the United States would put an embargo on the export of oil, and the disturbed conditions in the East rendered uncertain the securing of adequate supplies from Russia, Persia, Mesopotamia, or Roumania.
The main sources of home-produced fuel were benzole from the dietillation of coal, and alcohol, either from coal gas, in the same Way as benzole was obtained, or from, vegetable sources. We must not continue to burn our coal in its raw state.
• By treating 'coal scientifically we could get 70 per cent. elefficieney_ instead of 12 percent, as at present:
Under the et:less of war the gee under
takings of the country produced from 10,000,000 to 12,000,C00 gallons of benzole, and Made, a good thing financially outeol,.. 'rhere was no reason why they should not be able to turn out from 70,000,000 to '80,000,000 gallon's.. Therewas no reason why Scotland, front the coal at present being carbonized, should not produce in the gasworks very nearly the whole fuel that. was required.
Sir Robert Graham said that as much, if not more, beneole could be produced by the gasworks as was done during the war.
He moved a resolution calling uponthe
Government, in their present Gas Bill, to require gas producing. concerns to strip completely the benzoic, from-their pees, and to remove restrictions at present hampering the tnanufacture of commercial alcohol for motor fuel: Mr. H. M. Napier seconded, end the motion was unanimously adopted. On the motion of Mr. Robert J. Smith,
C.A. Secretary, and Treasurer of the Royal Scottish Automobile Club, Sir Andrew Pettigrew, Mr. H. E. Gordon, Mr. John Adam, Mr. Samuel McFarlane, and Mr. Alan E. Clapperton. LL.D., were appiointed a committee.. Mr. Smith stated that u dietilleg had reported that the Chancellor of the Exchequer had given an assurance that the restrictions would be so relaxed in the near future as to enable distillers to produce industrial alcohol, but at what price had not yet been determined.