Archive for the ‘Ramblings’ Category

TME Christmas Eve quote of the day

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

Browsing the Shelby American World Registry reveals the following quote about 427cid Shelby Cobra s/n CSX3260: “For the first six months of its life, 3260 was driven to work on a daily basis by [the owner’s] wife, Glenna. [His] comment, “This was somewhat exciting for her,” seems somewhat understated, especially since a 427 Hi-rise engine by Holman-Moody was installed shortly after the car’s acquisition. This powerplant, which was dynoed at 505hp using a single 850 cfm Holley, allowed 3260 to post an 11.94 e.t. @ 122mph…using stock exhaust/induction systems with Dunlop race tires…”

Behind the Scenes of Lelouch’s Rendezvous

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

Mercedes w116 450SEL 6.9 with camera rig

French film director Claude Lelouch’s nine-minute film Rendezvous is a legend among car enthusiasts. The legend has it that one very early morning in August of 1976, he affixed a then new gyroscopically stabilized 8mm camera to the front of his Ferrari 275 and tore through Paris at high speed without stopping, running several red lights in the process. He was reportedly arrested when it was first publicly shown, and rumours were rampant about who had been driving (including the possibility of Formula 1 drivers). (more…)

Why We Love Old Cars: The Sense of Touch

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

This is another excerpt from the paper, talking about the experiential aspects of cars discussed previously. In particular, it covers the aspects of cars relating to the sense of touch.

Touch is another highly important sense that provides a pronounced differentiation between old and new cars. At the core of this difference is the fact that new cars are extremely plastic-intensive, whereas most classic cars predate the widespread use of plastic in industrial applications. Therefore, there is a certain “honesty” of materials present in old cars—the feel of a wood-rimmed steering wheel, (more…)

Why We Love Cars: Visual Aspects

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

This is another excerpt from the paper, talking about the experiential aspects of cars discussed last week. In particular, it covers the visual aspects of cars.

Since human beings get the majority of their sensory input through sight, the importance of a car’s appearance is self-evident. Enthusiasts value a wide variety of characteristics, which makes it extremely difficult to systematically describe or analyze the aspects of various cars that make them attractive. (more…)

Why Lancias Cost so Much New: Incredible Engineering

Friday, May 1st, 2009

Lancias built before Fiat took ownership of the company are obscure cars with a small but rabid following. When new, they were surprisingly expensive when viewed at face value, however the deeper one looks, the more impressive the cars are. Everywhere there are beautifully engineered details that repeatedly beg the question “how did the accountants ever let them build the cars so well?” This little gizmo is a great example of that. What is it you ask? Well, it goes in the top of the radiator of a Lancia Flaminia and is an actuator for the thermostatically controlled radiator blinds.


Factory Porsche 904 Crash Test!

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Sadly this photo did not scan so well, but I happened upon this image credited to the Porsche factory as their first ever crash test in 1966. Apparently they dropped a 904 from a crane to approximate a 50kph impact. This is not a situation in which to say “those were the days”. It might be more appropriate to say “times have changed” instead.