Thursday, October 31, 2013

a ding at Timaru, 1927

This accident was too old to be included in the book Danger Ahead: New Zealand Railway Accidents in the Modern Era.  The unresearched details: on 4 June 1927 the southbound (11.25 am) Express number 145 derailed just north of the Timaru station adjacent to the foot of Strathallan St. No-one was seriously injured but the entire crew were severely shaken. Engine Ab 719, driver Dick Stoke.

Illinois Terminal Railroad car 1576

Seen in September 1954 with "Buy war bonds" still on the side.  This interurban system lasted 1896 to 1962 but in the last 6 years it was freight only, operated as a diesel powered shortline.  It's clear this boxcab car wasn't used for passengers at any time. A pic of a similar unit now preserved in St Louis is here

Soviet train computer speaker

For those nostalgic about the good old days...

Surfers Paradise Indy Car Grand Prix FDC, Australia, 1993

International Harvester tractor advert, WW2

iPhone dominance

A book instead makes a good companion

'do you like my Halloween book theme?'

The treat please :-)

steam shunting crane, Ireland

Obviously an 0-6-0 tank locomotive.  Location and date not given.

Italian Postbus stamp, 1972

Timaru station yard and wharves, 1889

interurban doubledeck V set from Newcastle arrives at Hamilton, NSW


En route to Sydney.  Hamilton is basically a suburb of Newcastle.  For lots more, see the book Railway Electrification in Australia and New Zealand. (Geoff Churchman pic)

nice KiwiRail Scenic commercial

It's pleasing to see some money being spent on promotion.  This is totally filmed on the TranzAlpine route between Christchurch and Greymouth, but the other two journeys are also very good - see our books.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Buenos Aires, Argentina, passenger train produces a water spectacle

from a viral e-mail

traffic in Thames Street, Oamaru, circa 1940

At least one motorbike and quite a few 30s cars.

the Sunset Limited March


The cover for the sheet music, 1910  For the rest of it, see here.  The Sunset Limited train follows a long established route skirting the very south of the US between New Orleans and LA.  The present day Amtrak webpage

Australian heavy haulers stamps

An issue from 2008

electric narrow gauge industrial train of Sankt Egidien near Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany


No date.  There was a nickel smelter at Sankt Egidien in DDR days; narrow gauge trains were commonly used in mining because they enabled tighter curves than standard gauge.

'I like getting information from books'

Alger to Capetown Rally, 1956

Poster for the third rally, 9,500 miles or 15,200 km from Algiers to the Cape via the Sahara, Congo Belge, Rhodesia and finally South Africa - it looks like quite an adventure, particularly in those days.

phosphate freight cars at Redeyef, Tunisia, late 1900s

The station, the terminus of the 44 km railway from Métlaoui, was opened in 1907, and this postcard probably dates from not long after.  Redeyef's main revenue comes from the mining of phosphate, about 8 million tonnes a year and the world's 5th largest producer. Redeyef also sees a daily passenger train, popular with tourists because it traverse the scenic Gorges de Selja, info and pics here

Maxitear caravan


Vantastic - one of the several cool retro caravans featured on this webpage

1940 Chrysler Victoria sedan

Firestone tires advert, early 20th century

This is another transport word which has an interesting etymology. It comes from the French tirer, to pull, and originally referred to iron hoops or thick wires bound to carriage wheels and pulled onto the rim.  This is still the case with older railway wheels; basically the tire prevents the need to replace the whole wheel and axle set when worn spots develop - the old tire is removed by heating (steel expands when hot) and pulling it off.  The new tire is likewise heated by fire and pulled/hammered on.  However, tough monoblock wheels have become increasingly common.

Where the British developed the 'tyre' respelling from isn't clear, it first emerged in the 1900s but wasn't generally accepted until the late 1920s.

Car tires were typically made of solid rubber until the pneumatic tire became the norm.  The French word for a tire is pneu from pneumatique.

the Heinkel Tourist scooter

'our dream [is] a Heinkel Tourist'

The Heinkel Tourist was an upmarket motor scooter made by Heinkel Flugzeugwerke from 1953 to 1965. It was heavier, more comfortable, more stable and more expensive than a Vespa or a Lambretta. It was available with a speedometer, a steering lock, a clock, a luggage carrier, and a spare wheel. Marketing referred to it as "The Rolls-Royce of Scooters" in England and as "The Cadillac of Scooters" by a dealer in Massachusetts.  More than 100,000 were sold.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Monaco Grand Prix, 1929

This limited edition art print Monaco Grand Prix 1929 by Alfredo De la Maria shows race winner William Grover-Williams in his green Bugatti T35B and second placed Georges Bouriano in his yellow Bugatti T35C, followed by Rudolf Caracciola in his Mercedes-Benz SSK.

giant wave surfing off Nazaré lighthouse, Portugal

Yesterday's superstorm that hit Europe created some spectacular surfing opportunities, none more so than at Praia do Norte, Nazaré, Portugal. Webpage with the story and a 4:20 video (full screen mode recommended!)

tram near the Willis Street and Lambton Quay corner, Wellington, late 1900s


What has long been known as Stewart Dawson's corner.  The Grand Hotel in the background was one of the many buildings demolished and replaced in the 1980s.  For lots more, see the book Wellington: a Capital Century.

'I love discovering what's in antiquarian books'

Northern Pacific 'North Coast Limited' in Montana poster, 1920s

by Austrian artist Gustav W Krollmann

trams in Christiania, Norway, 1910s

Where?  Christiania was what Oslo was  called from 1877 to 1925.  The standard gauge tram system was completely electrified by 1900.  The Royal Palace is in the distance.

0-6-0 steam locomotive hauling wool in NSW, 1922


The precise location is not given but probably Sydney and near a wharf.  For details on this loco and others the book Locomotives of Australia by Leon Oberg is a good place to start.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Brill trolleybus, Canada, 1965

sightseeing paddle steamers on the Oder River, Breslau, Germany, 1900s

With the cathedral island in both scenes.

1928 Rolls Royce Phantom

In the Long Island Auto Museum

Jeffrey Smart transport art themes

'Bus terminus' (1973)
'Motor dump Pisa I' (1971)
'The traveller' (1973)
Jeffrey Smart (born 1921 in Adelaide, died last 20 June in Italy) was an Australian artist who moved to Italy in 1963.  He didn't just paint transport and urban subjects but is most noted for them.  Some of these pictures are now in the Art Gallery of NSW.

German post coach on hand powered ferry art, 1832

Produced for a Schlesien (Silesia) postal traffic exhibition in Breslau (today Wroclaw in Poland) in 1932.

breathe easy bus environment advertisement, India

"1 bus means 40 less autos spewing toxic fumes"

'all I need in bed is a good book'

1956 Riley Pathfinder advert

According to the UK inflation calculator £940 in 1956 is about £19,900 now and £471 PT (purchase tax?) is £10,000 (ouch!).

1931 Vickers-Supermarine Rolls Royce seaplane

website dedicated to the ill fated 'Wahine'

Seen in January 1968, nearly at the Inter-Island wharf in Wellington harbour at the finish of a daylight voyage from Lyttelton. (Warwick W.G. Pryce photo)
The book Strait Crossing: the ferries of Cook Strait through time contains plenty about the inter-island ferry Wahine which lasted from 1966 to 1968 but those who want more should check out this website.

1954 Ford adverts

Sunday, October 27, 2013

1953 Chevrolet bus chassis / GM motor advert, France

two stroke, no valves, high torque

Wellington Head

It is? Whether Pencarrow, Breaker Bay or Sinclair on the south coast, we ponder whether the artist of this, published in The Picturesque Atlas of Australasia from 1886, had even seen a photo let alone visited in person. Totally unsuitable for navigation purposes...

Fiat railcar in Vevi station, Greece

On a single track standard gauge line from Florina to Thessaloniki and Bitola in Macedonia.