From Our Berlin Correspondent.
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An attempt is being made in Berlin to establish a company for transporting packages, limited in size and weight, by electric-driven vans. The projectors reckon on transporting more cheaply than by petrol vehicles.
Peter Union Success.
The net profits obtained by the Central European Rubber Company, Louis Peter, Frankfort-on-the-Main, on last year's trading, amounted to 1:77,00o, which enables the directors to declare a dividend of 22 per cent. against 16 for the preceding twelvemonth. January 22nd has been fixed for the general meeting, which ought to be a very pleasant gathering under the circumstances.
Duerkopp's 17 Per Cent.
The directors of the Bielefelder NIaschinenfabrik vorm a s Duerkopp are able to pay 17 per cent. for the past trading year, after due allowance for reserves, depreciation, etc. Net profits amount to £26,252 (525,039 marks) against £47407 (948,137 marks) in 1907, when the dividend was 25 per cent. A couple of Diierkopp lorries and trailers took part in the recent trials for the War Office subsidy, and the company is seeking English agents.
New "Mixed" Train for the German Army Transport Service.
The Prussian Army Transport Service has placed an order with the miller Road-Train Company for a new train consisting of a tractor and seven trailers, equal to transporting a load of 70 tons at the rate of 5-to miles an hour, Each trailer is to have electromotors fed lw currents generated by a dynamo direct coupled to two 9oh.p. petrol motors. Herr Muller was formerly employed as engineer in the service of Siemens and Schuckert, who supplied a " mixed '' train to the Transport Service some three years ago.
An Electric Fire-escape for Hamburg.
Amongst the mechanically-propelled vehicles recently acquired by the Hamburg Fire Brigade is the electric-driven escape illustrated herewith. The chassis is a Mercedes-electric (Vienna-Neustadt) with Lohner-Porsche moiors built in the front wheels and equal to propelling
the ponderous vehicle, which turns the scale at nearly 94 cwt., at the rate of 22 miles an hour over level roads. A lever on the switch-board gives reverses for the three lowest of the five speeds, the circuit being interrupted at every change of speed. Besides an electric brake, there are two mechanical brakes, operated by hand and foot respectively, and taking effect independently on braking rings in the rear wheels. Application of the pedal brake automatically switches off current. The elements are stowed away in four troughs under the chassis, and weigh 17-18 cwt. One charge suffices for a run of some 38 miles with the switch over the third speed, which is about 12 miles an hour.
A headlight is attached to each side c the dashboard, fed, of course, from th battery. Both front and back wheel have solid rubber tires.
The revolving ladder, which is con structed on a different principle fron that supplied to the Berlin Corporatiol for its all-motor station in the Schiin lankestrasse, emanates from the Vere inigte Feuerwehrgerate Fabriken (United Fire-Brigade Plant Works), whose headquarters are in Ulm. It is Alagirus patent.
Commercial Motors in Russia.
According to an official report from Moscow, no fewer than 147 industrial vehicles were imported in 1907 against 17 in the preceding year. Nearly all came from Germany, France's Russian trade being mainly in cars and accessories, a statement holding good for Odessa as well. It appears that both German and French houses are now dealing on a cash basis, which has cleared out a few unsound firms that were working on credit.