AIDS FOR THE SPORTING MOTORIST
THE LOUDEST MOTOR HORN.
MANY are the occasions on which the driver of a fast sports car has to step on the brake pedal good and hard through a massive and slow moving lorry, doing a steady ” twenty ” on the crown of the road, refusing to pull over. This state of affairs can sometimes be considerably improved by the use of a really penetrating horn.
We recently had a demonstration of what is claimed to be the loudest motor horn in the world—the Cicca Tenor. This horn, which is wind operated by an electric motor, has been used extensively in racing for the purpose of pit signalling.
Other niodels are the Cicca Tenor No. 9 Musical horn, which is fitted with four trumpets, and was used on Lilian Harvey’s Mercedes to play the tune of the theme song in the film ” Chemin du Paradis,” and the Tetophone which is an ordinary bulb horn playing the tune of the” Westminster Chimes.”
Cicca motor horns are handled by C. & H. Accessories, 82, Mortimer Street, Regent Street, W.I., where demonstrations are given.
THE VALUE OF A FLEXIBLE STEERING WHEEL.
NOT so very long ago, a driver involved in a crash was nearly always injured, often fatally, by the spokes of the steering wheel. Nowadays, however, this danger has been largely eliminated. For example, when H. C. Hamilton struck the parapet at 100 m.p.h. at Brook lands on Whit-Monday, his whole weight was thrown violently against the steering wheel. Luckily the car was fitted with an Ashby ” Brooklands ” wheel, which proved sufficiently flexible to withstand the strain without breaking. We have recently had the opportunity of making a lengthy test of one of these wheels, fitted in this particular case to a “type 40″ Bugatti, and after several months of hard driving, both on main roads and very rough lanes, we have nothing but praise to record for its many excellent qualities. Road shocks and ” kick ” are completely absorbed, and on a long fast run from London to Liver pool, we were very impressed with the
comfortable handling of the thin-rimmed wheel.
From the point of view of appearance, the ” Brooklands ” steering wheel is a definite improvement, and it is interesting to note that the makers, Frank Ashby & Sons, Ltd., Stirchley, Birmingham. can supply a comprehensive price-list of wheels made specially for practically every make of car. Other attractive accessories marketed by this concern are the well known ” Brooklands ” radiator and head-lamp stone-guards, hub-caps, brake shields, and mudguard grilleS.
A NEW PENETRATING OIL.
F the greatest value in freeing rusted nuts and eliminating body squeaks, the new Castrol Penetrating Oil, recently introduced by C. C. Wakefield & Co., Ltd., should prove a useful addition to the equipment of every keen ownerdriver’s workshop. We have tried the oil for ourselves as a means of lubricating spring-leaves, with very satisfactory results.
In addition, the same concern has introduced a very uoeful oil-can, which squirts the oil under pressure into difficult recesses. The price of the oil is 3s. 3d. per pint tin, while the oil-can costs 4s. 6d.
STOP THAT LEAK
ONE is very apt to lose sight of the fact that many accessories and tools, while being made for one especial purpose, can often be adapted to other requirements. One of the most useful of these is the ” Jubilee” hoseclip, manufactured by L. Robinson & Co., London Chambers, Gillingham. As will be seen from the accompanying illustration, the clip is strongly made, and has the advantage of being all one piece. Apart from its normal use for tightening water hose joints, the ” Jubilee” clip can be put to such uses as securing leather sleeves round universal joints, and holding asbestos string in place round a leaky exhaust union. Much time and trouble can be Saved by carrying a few spare clips in the tool-box.
OWNERS of sports cars who take a pride in the appearance of their vehicle, will appreciate the new ” Everfiex ” stoneguard which has been put on the market by Hellewell & Co. Close-up mudguards are apt to get scratched by passengers entering the back
of the car, and there is always the danger of stones being thrown up by the front wheels and damaging carefully polished paint-work. The ” E-verflex ” stoneguards are made of rubber, of various colours to match the car, and are good value at 15s. 6d. per pair,
THR.OUGH the courtesy of Messrs. Tapley & Co. of Totton, Southampton, we have been able to carry out a prolonged test of the Tapley Performance Meter, which as its name implies supplies all kinds of information about the efficiency or otherwise of one’s car. A full explanation of its working was given in MOTOR SPORT Of January, 1930, so that only brief particulars need be given here.
The instrument embodies a magnetised pendulum which swings in an oil-tight case in accordance with the angle at which the case is tilted, and it is also influenced by changes of speed when carried on a running vehicle. The pendulum attracts an iron armature and this motion is conveyed by a rack and pinion mechanism to a movable scale visible through a window in the face of the meter. The scale is calibrated to give the gradient and also the acceleration in pounds per ton.
Performance Meters are usually mounted on the dash, but the one lent us was fitted with a clamp which allowed ready transference from one vehicle to another. The only adjustment required was to set the scale at zero on level ground. The first measurement we made was that of various main road gradients and it was most interesting to find how many stretches which look as though they were uphill or down are actually the reverse of what one had imagined. To take a read
ing of gradient, the car must be kept uniform speed.
We then tried the various tests, gested in ” Intelligent Motoring ” the various other booklets supplied. first is the tractive resistance of the that is, the frictional and other resistances which the engine has to overcome to drive the car on the level. This has to be carried out at about 15 m.p.h. with the clutch out, a reading of 35 lbs. per ton being satisfactory, while a much higher figure shows that the brakes or bearings are binding.
At speeds above about 30 miles an hour wind resistance comes into prominence and by comparing the retardation, .say at 15 and 80 m.p.h., the importance of frontal area and streamlining is seen very strikingly.
The acceleration of a sports car is one of its most important features, and this is simply read off at various speeds with the throttle at its best position. Readings of 150, 100 and 50 lbs. /ton at 30, 50 and 70 m.p.h. confirmed our opinion that the second hand car we were trying was not very lively. A retardation figure of 820 lbs. on the other hand showed that the brakes still retained their full efficiency. One of the hest features of the meter is the ease with which a car’s maximum speed can be determined. ‘i’his is shown by the acceleration figure dropping to 0. Matters can be speeded up considerably by making this test down-hill, as the at a sugand The car,
instrument is only influenced by the acceleration of the car, but for obvious reasons it is wise to make the brake test before using full throttle down-hill. Various other interesting tests, such as the maximum gradient the car is able
to climb and the brake horse power developed are set out in the instruction books which the makers are glad to send to anyone interested. The instrument is most interesting to use and the use of it will undoubtedly lead to a fuller appreciation of a car’s good and bad points.