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News of the Industry in Neutral Countries, However Sparse, is.of Peculiar Interest at the Moment. Particularly is this so of America, as so much that is American is Being Offered Here for Sale, New Swiss Factory.
A new Automobile and Flying Machine Co. recently commenced business in Bremgarten, .Switzerland. A complement of 1200 workmen have been engaged to commence operations.
The Peerless Motor Car Co., which, together with the General Vehicle Co., has recentlybeen acquired by the Peerless Truck and Motor Corporation, is preparing designs for a new two-ton
chassis. . .
A Pierce-Arrow Strike.
The Pierce-Arrow Motor Co. has recently re-opened its works after a lock-out lasting three weeks. The trouble commenced by a strike of the machine-shop hands. It was, of course, possible to keep the remainder at work for some time with the finished parts, but the company refused to disorganize its establishment, and declared a lock-out.
American Exports Still Soar.
The total value of automobile parts exported from the United States for January of this year exceeds by 84 per cent. that for the corresponding period of 1915, notwithstanding the high figure to which the latter amounted. In all, the exports totalled 21,721,340, of which no less -than 2711,837, or nearly one half, is made up of trucks alone. The corresponding figures for January, 1915, are 2932,055, and 2530;318 respectively. It is interesting to compare the number and value of the trucks exported. For January, 1915, there were 935, at an average value of nearly 1570 each. During the first month of the current year the number exported reached 1269, value 2560 each.
" In America Too !
In the course of an interesting editorial advocating the use of twospeed gears in connection with battery electric chassis, our interest:: ing American contemporary, "The Commercial Vehicle," includes the t following significant passage :— "When the load is light the draft is light, and an electric truck will be able to make its normal 35 to 45 miles per charge. But if the roads are hilly, if the pavements are rough or soft, not
nearly as much mileage cart be gotten out of the charge. It is a common occurrence every winter in our northern cities to have electrics an over town paralyzed -through exhausted batteries even before noontime."
Extraordinary Railr4oad Traffic.
The condition of the railways in the Statee, in regard to facilities for goods transport, is truly extraordinary. Thousands of freight cars are held up in dock unable to discharge on account of the block, Dutch Purchases.
Messrs. Spyker, of Trompenburg, Amsterdam, recently sold to the Dutch Government no fewer than 22 kitchen cars, six searchlight motors, two searchlight cars, 19 cars for following aviators, 12 transport trains, four magazine cars, three 1/-ton lorries, 22 Spyker-Saurer two-ton lorries, and four Spyker-Saurer 2/-ton lorries.
The American Tractor Building Co. subjects its products to a novel test. Two tractors are tested at a time, and have their steering gears set so that they run in a circular track for hours at a time without any attention. They are examined at intervals to .see that they are working successfully.
Dutch Motor Corps.'
Holland has now sanctioned the formation of motor corps which will be under the direct supervision of the army authorities. Headquarters are situated at Delft. The duties which will be carried out will consist mainly as follows:—Patrolling and guarding arsenals; transport of troops, guns, munition.s, forage; laying of telegraph cables and wires ; driving in the service of the Red Cross ambulances; the maiming of motor boats ; and the institution of a reserve transport service for troops with motor lothes, buses, etc. The corps will be grouped all over the country.
Electric-battery Vehicle Mileage.
The record for mileage for an electric-battery-propelled vehicle has been broken by the New Ward special 2750 truck which is fitted with Mr. Edison's latest batteries. This machine ran no fewer than 98 miles on one charge over the streets of New York with full load and the normal frequency of stops. The total time occupied was 16 hrs. 7 mins. and the actual running time 12 hrs. 21 mins. The average speed was 8.1 miles per hour, number of stops 35 and the current consumed _was equivalent to 1,64.5 ampere hours. This works out at 1.68 ampere hours per mile. The test was made under unfavourable conditions as regards weather, drizzling rain prevailing throughout. No repairs or adjustments were made. A Six-cylinder Truck.
A new American Commercial Vehicle Manufacturing concern is assembling a 2/ ton truck and incorporating a. six-cylinder engine as power unit. It is hoped to sell this chassis for 2500 in America. Requisitions have already been put through for no fewer than 100 of these machines.
Willys-Overland in Canada.
Willys-Overland, Ltd., has just been formed in Canada with al capital of six million dollars. The company has taken the premises until recently occupied by the Russell Motor Car Co. The Canadian company is to be entirely independent of the parent concern, but it will at the same time be enabled to take advantage of the advice and engineering skill of the American section Swiss Army Motorizes.
The balloonist section of the Swiss Army has now definitely given up the use of horses for the transport of their necessary material. Previously for each section' 8 to 10 horse vehicles were necessary, some with as many. as eight horses to pull along the loads of each car containing material, coals and water. This also aPpIies to the "gas " car. Now each company has two motor vehicles, each one drawing along the trailers containing the material, etc. After a severe test in the last manoeuvres in Switzerland, it was found that an average speed of about 10 miles could be relied upon. The load drawn per motor vehicle is about 2/ tons and hills of 1 in 8 are easily surmounted.
"Alter the War' Markets.
American merchants are afraid that steps now being taken by the French Government will interfere to a considerable extent with the sale of American trucks in that country after the war. Quite recently, 740 Paris buses were auctioned to private users, their places being taken by a number of new vehicles from the De Dion shops. American chassis which were purchased at the beginning of the war are being worn out in war work, and gradually replaced by those of French manufacture. By this means, it is expected that at the conclusion of the conflict, few other than French lorries will be in use. Furthermore, by selling secondhand French chassis, .the market for new American vehicles is being spoiled.