Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Wheeled Airship

Streamline Cars Ltd was the company responsible for making the Burney car designed by Dennis Burney.
Sir Charles Dennistoun Burney rose to fame as an airship designer, best known for his work at Howden on the R100 for Vickers. With the ending of the airship programme he used some of his ideas to create a revolutionary car.
Starting in 1927, thirteen rear-engine cars were made at Maidenhead. Each was different, as they were intended as showcases for his patents rather than for serious production.
The cars incorporated such features as independent suspension, hydraulic brakes, a heater and all seating within the wheelbase. Ignition and other controls operated though flexible cables encased in copper tubing, which followed contemporary aircraft industry practice. The cars were rear engined with twin radiators. The first car used an Alvis front wheel drive chassis effectively turned back to front but adapted so the new front wheels steered. Later cars used Beverley straight 8, Lycoming and Armstrong Siddeley engines.
The streamlined bodywork is very long at just under 20 feet (6.1 m). The spare wheel was carried inside one of the rear doors which must have put an enormous strain on the hinges and door pillar. The equivalent space in the opposite door was occupied either by a second spare wheel or by a cocktail cabinet.
Source: Wiki (EN)

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