When we loved rockets

November 23, 2015


The 1956 Oldsmobile Golden Rocket made its debut
at the 1956 General Motors Motorama before it
appeared at other car shows across the country for
many years.

In the 50s, automakers looked to the future by
adding references to the rocket and fighter planes.
Production cars had hood ornaments that looked like
rockets, jets, or gun sights. How things change.

The Golden Rocket was a fiberglass bodied car with
built in bumpers painted gold, styled to look
like a rocket. The interior was blue and gold
leather. It was powered by a 234 cubic inch Rocket
V-8. It was also one of the first vehicles with a
tilt steering wheel.

To get in, the roof panel raised which raised the
bucket seat 3 inches and turned it so when the door
was opened it was easy to enter. Buttons on the
steering column allowed it tilt for easier driver
access and a comfortable driving experience.


The Rocket V-8 produced 275 horsepower and the
car only weighed about 2,500 pounds. Another
feature was that the speedometer was mounted in the
center of the steering wheel. This little two
seater was considered very futuristic and
spectators marveled at the engineering and design.

The current fate of the car is unknown to us, but
if it wasn’t preserved it’s a shame.
Comments are always welcome.

Amazing things

October 22, 2015

It has often been said that necessity is the
mother of invention. As long as there is a need,
somebody will be toiling on a solution. And in some
instances it is amazing.

Ever heard of the ogo? This group has mixed
electronics, battery technology, and an innovative
intuitive hands free control system to introduce
the latest in wheelchair technology.

The following really opened our eyes. The 2nd
edition of 7 Things you never knew existed is a
mix of technology that you may not know about. The
last one is something else.

We like a Coca-Cola once in a while and although
it isn’t really amazing, this video shows 5 Crazy
Facts about Coca-Cola.

Then there is the automotive industry who is no
stranger to technology. If you haven’t seen it,
here are the TOP 4 cars changing the world now.

Then we’ll close with the Future Green Technology
Top Picks 2015. After a short commercial that you
can opt out of after a few seconds, this video
begins with the Aire Mask. This device converts
breathing into renewable electrical power. Sort of
a charge your phone while you nap thing.

We can hardly wait to what comes next.
Comments are always welcome.

New kid on the block?

October 21, 2015

Axiel engines have been around since 1911 when the
Macomber Rotary Engine Company of Los Angeles
marketed one of the first axial internal-combustion
engines. It was a 7-cylinder, air-cooled engine with
variable compression ratios.

Fast forward to 1993 in New Zealand where Duke
Engines created several different engine and put
one in a car in 1999. The third generation of this
engine is a five-cylinder, 4-stroke internal
combustion engine.

The engine doesn’t sound bad either. So now we
can have an engine that weighs less, makes as much
or more power as what we have now, and can run on
different fuels. Not being much of a believer in
electric vehicles, this could be a game changer.

We could still have our tire shredding power with
less weight and still burn gas. There are fewer
moving parts which equates to longer life. Heck,
it could even save money at repair time.

Even though the engine has 5-cylinders it only
uses 3 spark plugs, and that would save money.
Better gas mileage would mean savings at the pump,
and with a decent set of pipes, the smiles per mile
would definitely be worth it.

We thank the friend who shared the link that
started this post. There are times when those who
think outside the box come up with some really neat
Comments are always welcome.

The first what?

October 18, 2015

Did you ever give much thought to who built the
first Batmobile? Yeah, I haven’t either. Many
assume George Barris built the first one for the
Batman TV show.

Word is this Batmobile was built by a man with no
customizing experience in his garage using a fairly
new customizing material called fiberglass, in
1963. The car even received a Detective Comics
license in 1966 that officially made it a

Batman first appeared in May of 1939 in Detective
Comics #27 but the Batmobile didn’t appear until 2
years later in Batman #5 and didn’t appear on the
cover of the comic book until Batman #20.

There have been different interpretations of the
car as different artists put pen to paper and in
the 1960s George Barris was commissioned to built
a Batmobile for the upcoming TV series.

When the Batman movies came out the car changed
again as cars do. After all a 2015 Ford hardly
resembles a 1939 Ford other than it has 4 wheels.

We Americans like to be entertained and Batman
has been doing so since the first kid bought the
first Batman comic in 1939.
Comments are always welcome.

A day of wonders

September 30, 2015

Most days we wake up and if our name isn’t in the
obituaries we go about our business. Then when work
is done, dinner is done, and we sit on the back
porch with our favorite beverage pondering the day.
Other days while in the process of getting through
the daily grind we come across something that we
find amazing.

Today was a rare day on the east coast of Iowa as
we came across two amazing things, the first man
made and the other through Mother Nature from God.
We’ll share them with you so that you might be
amazed also.

We saw short video about concrete. We know, grey,
boring, and pot holes come to mind, but this is
different. This concrete can absorb 800 gallons of
water a minute! No more overflowing gutters or
flooded low spots. Why isn’t this in the news?

No more flash flooding or flooded intersections
would be an improvement in our city by the river.
The second amazing thing a friend shared with us
about a fly geyser in Nevada.

To see that much water in the middle of a desert
and the colorful formations caused by geyser we
will no longer think only of ‘Old Faithful’ when
we hear the term geyser.

A solution to city flooding during heavy rains and
something that soothes the work weary soul. We’ve
had a great day and hope yours was as well.
Comments are always welcome.

Events, technology, and a song

August 21, 2015

Better late than never here are some events,
videos, and distractions. This time of year events
are plentiful so we’ll mention some that caught our
eye and go from there.

Friday, August 21 and Saturday, August 22 is the
World Fuel Altered Nationals held at the Eddyville

Tonight, Friday, August 21 is the Jefferson Street
Cruise/ Toys For Tots Night in Burlington, Iowa.

Saturday, August 22 is the River-2-River Car Show
& Swap Meet at the Lowe’s parking lot in Galesburg,
Illinois. Call 309-337-1967 for more information.

Sunday, August 23 is Mopars on the Mississippi at
the Dubuque County Fairgrounds in Dubuque, Iowa. It
is open to all makes. For more information call

If you don’t hate America and don’t want the
terrorists to win you should watch this short video
about modifying your truck.

From 2012 is this video we can’t get enough of.
Nature at its best.

Is NASA going to lead the way for electric
vehicles? Their new prototype is getting attention.

While we’re talking technology, have you heard VW
is going to start selling 3-wheeled fold-able
Segway like scooters?


Rumor is they will go on sale in 2016 and to learn
more go to Car and Driver for the story.

Our song to share comes from Norway’s Got Talent
2014 and her rendition of “What a Difference a Day
Make’. This 8 year old did a great job.

So enjoy the weekend and keep the shiny side up.
Comments are always welcome.

Air under the tires

August 16, 2015

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to wheelies
lately. Also called wheelstands by some and a huge
rush to those of us who pulled them. Wheelies can
be done on bicycles, motorcycles, cars, race cars,
and pulling tractors, and any vehicle with enough

Some believe the first wheelie was done in 1890 by
bicyclist Daniel J. Canary. The longest wheelie on
record is 145 miles rode by Doug “The Wheelie King”
Domokos. It had even been said that wheelies played
a part in World War II. The first photograph of a
car wheelie dates back to 1936. The photo below is
titled “American Legion in Cleveland”.


Tractor wheelies were a bit different. Here is an
old traction engine (steam) tractor that pulls a
wheelie near the end of this short video.

And here is a little newer model, a John Deere B.

A vehicle called the Little Red Wagon really put
wheelies on the map.

This video will show a variety of wheelstanders we
remember well.

For the record, this whole idea got stuck in head
after a friend asked me if I was going to build
another Model A that could do wheelies. When I
built the one he referred to I was young and
indestructible and 40+ years later I am not. There
may be another Hemi-powered A in my future but it
won’t pop wheelies.
Comments are always welcome.


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