|This just in from Times Online
Andrew Ellson visited Beijing and saw China’s economic growth creating both opportunities and challenges for British business.
Dr Tim Moore, the chief executive of SGAI, a Cambridge-based technology consultancy says his company has to produce the parts for Hornby’s new digital Scalextric at four different sites in China to avoid the entire product being copied.
"Design and development costs are ten times cheaper in China than in the UK but you have to be very careful or you might find a counterfeit product out there before you know it," he says.
Saw an interesting website while surfing the Web that had a short article on making wheels for slot cars. The website promotes itself as A tinkerer's journal and look at life's debris. (Click on the image to enter the site and while you're at it check out MAKE: Technology on your Time)
|Picked this book up at Moe's in Berkeley last month. It was in their Rare Book Room! I had to go back and buy it when my wife wasn't around so she wouldn't freak at the price. She has this wonderful idea that all used books are $5 - $10 dollars. I would prefer not to change her view. It's Hardbound, 277 pages, appx 8 X 10 and was published in 1967.
When bouncing off the curbs actually meant something ...
|My friend Barry Boor over at TNF has graciously allowed me to share some pictures of his slot cars. Barry takes old kits and adds certain bits to match actual cars that appeared on various grids of the 50’s and 60’s.
2 - J. M. Fangio -- Mercedes Benz W.196
4 - S. Moss -- Mercedes Benz W.196
6 - K. Kling -- Mercedes Benz W.196
8 - H. Herrmann -- Mercedes Benz W.196
10 - P. Collins -- Owen Organization Maserati 250.F
12 - F. Gonzales -- Ferrari 555
14 - M. Hawthorn -- Ferrari 555
16 - A. de Portago -- Ferrari 555
18 _____________ -- Ferrari 555 (originally yellow - P. Frere, now red driven variously by N. Farina and M. Trintignant
20 - C. A. S. Brooks -- B.R.M P.25
22 - - R. Flockhart -- B.R.M P.25 (has been driven by Collins)
24 - S. Moss -- Private Maserati 250.F (has been driven by L. Macklin & M. Hawthorn)
26 - A. Ascari -- Lancia D.50
28 - L. Villoresi -- Lancia D.50
30 - E. Castellotti -- Lancia D.50
32 - J. Behra -- Maserati 250.F V.12
34 - L. Musso -- Maserati 250.F V.12
36 - R. Mieres -- Maserati 250.F (also driven by H. Schell)
38 - C. Menditeguy -- Maserati 250.F (also driven by J. M. Fangio, C. Perdisa & H. Schell)
40 - H. Schell -- Vanwall
42 - K. Wharton -- Vanwall (has also been driven by S. Moss)
44 - J. Fairman -- Connaught B-type (has also been driven by C.A.S Brooks & L. Leston)
46 - A. Scott-Brown -- Connaught B-type
48 - S. Lewis-Evans -- Connaught C-type (toothpaste tube)
50 - A. Pillette -- Gordini 32
52 - R. Manzon -- Gordini 16
54 - G. Pollet -- Gordini 16 (has also been driven by N. da Silva Ramos)
56 - E. Bayol -- Gordini 16 (has also been driven by M. Sparken & J. Behra)
58 - L. Rosier -- Private Ferrari 500/625
60 - M. Trintignant -- Bugatti
64 - R. Fischer -- Private Ferrari 500/625
66 - J. Swaters -- Equipe National Belge Ferrari 500/625
68 - R. Salvadori -- Gilby Engineering Maserati 250.F
70 - G. Scarlatti -- Private Ferrari 500/625
72 - M. Gregory -- Scuderia Centro Sud Maserati 250.F
|I had earlier mentioned a motor called a Romford Terrier and I found these illustrations that I thought might interest some. I assume the dimensions are in inches as the source was published before Britain went completely over to the dark side.
|Grand Prix History, the website was first published on the 23rd of February 1997. It originally revolved around my Hall of Fame where I attempted to list who I felt were the 10 greatest drivers of all time. It soon grew to include a constructor, a team manager, a designer and the person Froilan Gonzalez called the Sacred Monster of the motoring world; all told there are 26 members. There it has stood for the next 4+ years until 21 April when a new member will be crowned. During the four years I've been bombarded by Mansell and Hakkinen fans but still I would not be moved. Kudos to the first person who guesses the next inductee's name, who as you can see was a driver.
|Picked up this book a couple of months ago and will have more to say about it later but I just had to share this picture and the caption that was attached.
Author, centre, spends an evening with the famous novelist Elleston Trever, left, who developed this exciting circuit with two friends. The whole track lifts up on pulleys to enable the family Rolls to slide underneath.
|Tobacco advertising and automobile racing goes back a lot further than Marlboro. Cigarette cards came into use in 1879, the year in which several American tobacco manufacturers began putting small card stiffeners into the flimsy paper packs of cigarettes to protect the contents from damage. At first the tobacco companies were content merely to print their name and address and brand name on these little cards. It was a gradual change from a pictorial element in the advertisement to a full-blown picture which had no direct relevance to the product, but by 1885 the first purely pictorial cards were beginning to appear. (See Collector Cafe)
In the 30’s a company by the name of Ogden’s Cigarettes produced a set depicting famous races of the 1931 season. The following card is from that set. You can see more here … Motor Races 1931
SURGEON GENERAL’S WARNING: Smoking Causes Lung Cancer, Heart Disease, Emphysema, and May Complicate Pregnancy.
Al Penrose requested that I add the warning.
|A lot of people racing slot cars today who weren’t around in the 60's don't realize how big slot car racing was, especially in the United States. For a few short years, or a blink of an eye there were tracks everywhere. In the late 60's it seemed a hobby going over a cliff with people clamoring to get to the front only to be pushed off the edge as tracks were closing as new ones opened only to close themselves. During this period there were a number of books written, most forgettable at the time but now well sought out. For someone who grew up during that period these books bring back fond memories of heading out to the local track with my dad/uncle or with my brother riding our bikes while balancing a slot car box on the handle bars.
The book illustrated is by Bob Braverman & Bill Neumann. You can almost feel from the second image the sense of wonderment as we gazed upon the latest products. Imagine if you can a miniature race car that you can control yet not control. It's difficult for the present computer generation to understand how amazing it first felt to be able to control your own car free of any wires or strings. Of course you had a controller but it was connected to the track and not your car. Revel Raceway was typical of the new multi-track emporiums.
The pre-cut track came from a company called Kal Kar and the motors you see are of course the legendary Pittman 705 and 196B. Come to the Slot Car Convention in the US next year and you can still see cars being run with these motors.
|Greetings from the dark side of the moon. I so much love to hear myself talk (write) that I have decided to create my own blog thanks to Doug's warm invitation, not that I needed it. My name is Dennis David. When I'm not travelling or on the road in some god forsaken corner of the the United States I'm at home in Union City, CA which is in the "bluest" part of this big country. I don't have a permanent layout but I still like to play with cars or at least think about them. Hopefully I won't bore you to death with my blathering but so begins the journey ...
Oh and now for the shameless plug ... please visit my website and click on a few ads, Doug made me promise not to place any advertisments here. Grand Prix History