Book Reviews, March 1967, March 1967

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” Doble Steam Cars,” by J. N. Walton. 203 pp. 8-3/4 in. x 5-5/8 in. (Light Steam Power, Kirk Michael, Isle of Man, 37s. 6d.)

Although steam cars have been dead for many years historical interest in them is considerable, while there are even die-hards amongst the Light Steam Power fraternity who still build external-combustion-engined vehicles. So this book about Doble steam cars, which were regarded as the Rolls-Royce of their class, and which also covers Doble ‘buses, lorries and railcars, will be welcomed by the specialists in this field. It has a Preface by Abner Doble himself and gives very complete and interesting coverage of all the Doble productions, from those of the First World War days, through the Doble-Detroit and Models D, and F, to the Doble steam ‘buses, Henschel-Doble and Sentinel-Doble triple-expansion designs. Copiously illustrated with pictures of contemporary and restored Dobles, and many diagrams, and containing quotes from Company reports, catalogues and instruction books, this book will be fascinating in the extreme to steam-car enthusiasts. There is considerable detail about the later Doble engines and steam engine valve gear in general, so that this work stands as the only comprehensive description of Abner Doble’s productions and also contains much useful information, free from the cloud of myth and exaggeration, for future development. The story of the silent power of Doble steam cars is certainly well told in this book.—W. B.

***

Patrick Mennem has written a soft-cover book for those about to take the driving test and who wish to drive well after they have done so. A bit superficial, it contains some useful information for wives and girl-friends; the latter should appreciate the remark in Chapter 5 that ” … remember that the steering wheel, and nowhere else, is the home for your hands when driving.” Published by Newnes, ” Pass Your Test—and Drive Well ” costs 3s. 6d.