News of the Week.
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"THE COMMERCIAL MOTOR" has been appointed the official organ of the Society of Motor Omnibus Engineers.
The French Automobile Club has been unsparing in its efforts to draw public attention to the commercial motor trials which are now in progress across the Channel.
Not only have these trials been boomed in the whole Press of the Continent, but a large number of wallposters are exhibited along and adjacent to the routes.
The account which we give in this issue will be concluded next week, and we trust that all who read it will appreciate the significance of the activity in France which forms so marked a contrast with the mediocrity of action by the A.C.G.B. and I.
Messrs. Budget, of Bristol, have obtained excellent results from their trials of a Lacre delivery van. The Lacre Motorcar Co., Ltd., is sending one of its i6h.p. vehicles all over Great Britain to demonstrate its usefulness to tradesmen and others.
Oat, 9-14 Nov. 17-29
The report of the Royal Commission on London Traffic compliments Mr. W. Rees Jeffreys on his valuable assistance willingly rendered.
The fact that railway companies are making an increased use of slag from blast furnaces as ballast for their tracks, owing to its freedom from dust, has an interesting bearing on the motor and road dust problem.
The Hon. Arthur Stanley, M.P., introduced a Bill in the House of Commons last week to provide, inter alict, for the establishment of a Highway Commission for England and Wales. It has a number of supporters.
The British Empire Motor Trades Alliance has received an enquiry for the names and addresses of British firms who .manufacture petrol-driven dynamo sets, British manufacturers who can supply these are requested to communicate with Mr. J. B. King, secretary, B.E.M.T.A., ii, Red Lion Square, W.C., without delay. " No. 25" will contain a section of great interest to Market Gardeners and Fruit Growers. It will be very widely circulated to members of these industries.
Five special sections have already been published in "THE COMMERCIAL MOTOR." These were--" Indian and Colonial" (March 23rd), "The Brewing Industry" (April 13th), "Laundry and Allied Trades" (May i ith), " Millers and Flour Dealers (June 8th), and " Motor Omnibuses" (July 6th).
It will be observed that both new and old advertisers support our journal, and this is the best test of its value to the motor industry. We deal only with utility vehicles to be used for profit on common roads.
No less than 1,300 houses in the borough of Islington, N. are unoccupied, and the medical officer of health attributes this to increased transit facilities which have enabled so many workers to live in the country.
Mr. Dugald Clerk, M.Inst.C.E., the well-known authority on gas and oil engines, has been elected President of the Institution of Junior Engineers.
Messrs. C. S. Rolls and Co., of Conduit Street, W., and Lillie Hall Works, Earl's Court, who are motor vehicle repairers to H.M. War Office and the Automobile Club, held the annual outing and beanfeast for their employees on Saturday, July 22nd. The trip was to the Isle of Wight and was greatly enjoyed.
Mr. J. J. Mann has been appointed superintendent of the cleansing department of the Leeds Corporation, in succession to the late Mr. George Darley. His address is Dock Street, Leeds, and the ramifications of his department are such as to require municipal motor wagons. When other departments of the Leeds Corporation are moving in matters affecting motor transport, it should not require much demonstration to prove how useful heavier vehicles are for the cartage of material and refuse. Upwards of forty local authorities now employ them for sanitary purposes. The London County Council tramways carried 164,818,56o passengers during the year ending March pst last, and made 14,081,397 car miles. An average of t1.7 passengers per car mile is the result.
The Regent Street Polytechnic motor classes are to be aided by a grant of 1.;500 from the London County Council. This sum is sufficient to cover the cost of purchasing a demonstration car with the necessary accessories.
The high diffusion velocity of gases fully supports recent experiments, which tend to prove that there is practically no loss of power in a petrol engine when the inlet valve opens only after 40 degrees of crank travel beyond the dead centre on the suction stroke. It is usual to open much earlier than this, and an error is often made in closing too early.
A Soames gear box which was exhibited lately had been used for over 7,001) miles. It had never once failed in any detail, and looked in perfect condition. The system is used by the Simms Manufacturing Co., Ltd., T. Coulthard and Co., Ltd., and the Highgate Implement Works. The gear can be put into any existing vehicle without altering any constructional detail. It can also be supplied for transmission by either a cm-clan shaft or a countershaft and side chains.
The " Lancet," in referring to the hygiene of the London streets in relation to motor traffic, regards it as probable that motors will remove the pathogenic factor of horsedrawn vehicles, but only, perhaps, to give place to a fresh element, active in producing headache, depression, and languor, which distressing symptoms arise from the imperfect combustion of volatile hydrocarbons. It proceeds to add that many of us will wish for the horse again if the methods of combustion are not improved in the direction indicated. We must point out to the " Lancet " that the objectionable fumes from motor vehicles are due to the presence of vegetable oils and other heavy bodies introduced into the mineral oils for the purpose of securing viscosity at high temperatures, coupled with excessive lubrication, both of which are capable of being remedied. Volatile hydrocarbons play no part in the production of the nauseating odours. " Tarmac " Limited has erected a new works at Denby, near Derby, where the slag road material from the Denby Iron Works' furnaces is treated.
Cologne possesses an Imperial post motor bus for the conveyance of postmen between the head post office and ethers in the district. The vehicle is electrically propelled and carries twenty passengers.
The Chertsey Rural District Council has passed a resolution to the effect that a proportion of the upkeep of roads should be contributed from the Imperial Exchequer, and that this should be payable out of an additional tax to be imposed on heavy motor traffic. It presumes that improved roads are a benefit to nobody but owners of such vehicles !
The German Grand Ducal Ministry of the Interior has granted the Heidelberger Strassen und Bergbahngesellschaft powers to run three motor omnibuses between HeidelbergSchlierbach and Heidelberg-Kirchheirn; these will be put on the route very shortly. A motor service has also been started in the Black Forest between the towns of Donauveschingen, Durrhein, and Schwenningen, and another service has also been started lately connecting up Todtnau and Freiburg.
The business of Fodens, Ltd., of F.Iworth Works, Sandbach, is developing apace. This company is receiving a large number of repeat orders at the present time from customers who have, as will have been gathered from our Millers' issue, obtained highly satisfactory results in practice. It will interest all users of Foden vehicles to know that the company will completely convert the old types of machines at most reasonable charges, so as to render them still more efficient under the recent Heavy Motor Car Order.
Two more motorcars have been ordered by the Leeds City Council, this addition making four in all for official purposes. The tramways and highways committees have a car each, but the two new ones will be hired to any committee at rates sufficient to cover expenses. Leeds also has two RvIcnield omnibuses on order, and will now establish its own motorcar department on a large scale. As the two new cars, which are of the Belsize make, are to be fitted with mh.p. engines, there is no question that it will be possible to convey large committees on rounds of inspection.
The London General Omnibus Company has maintained its distribution on the ordinary shares at last year's rate of eight per cent, per annum and has allocated 4-20,000 to the motor fund, raising that item to 4-40,000.
Lord Claude J. Hamilton, in presiding at the half-yearly general meeting of the Great Eastern Railway Company, stated that the company's motor omnibuses had proved such a success and such a convenience that the directors had decided to construct 14 more in their own shops.
Mr. W. Temple Franks, B.A., B.C.L., Assistant Librarian of the House of Commons, has been appointed secretary to the Railway Companies' Association in succession to Mr. Guy Granat, who vacated the position on his appointment as assistant manager of the Midland Railway Company.
Comments and criticisms upon the London Traffic Commission's report, which have been passed very freely in the Press during the last week, express astonishment at the apparently small measure of consideration which was given to the effects to be produced by the extended introduction of motor vehicles.
With reference to the interesting article on differential gears which is now running in our pages, it will be news to many of our readers to know that the first bevel differential was invented by Mr. Richard Roberts, a leading mechanical engineer of Manchester, in the year 18323. This device was fitted to the steam coach constructed in the year 1840 by Mr. F. Hill, of the Deptford Chemical Works. The proposal to place motor ambulances on the streets of London is still under consideration by the finance committee of the London County Council.
Leicester has recently reduced the price of gas for power purposes from 2s. to is. 6d. per cubic foot. This is still above the price at Widnes for lighting purposes.
Mention of the omnibus section of the French trials, and the connection with it of la Compagnie Generale des Omnibus de Paris, leads us to ask what the intentions of this company are. It enjoys the possession of an exclusive concession from the Municipal Council of Paris to run an omnibus service in that city for another five years, and we think it improbable that it will be in any hurry to abandon the present stock of horse-drawn omnibuses. It is not unlikely, in point of fact, that it is now making an experiment at the expense of the manufacturers, but we shall be in a better position to judge when we hear the nature of the report which M. Mauclair, the company's managing director, presents at the conclusion of the competition.