Tuesday, January 16, 2018

financing its municipal services from the pockets of unwary travelers.... aka the Selma Texas speedtrap of the early 70s


Selma’s speed trap collected an esti­mated $168,000 a year, or more than $800 for every man, woman, and child who lived there. That's 4 times more than even the state of Texas, as all the state taxes added up produced only $215 per Texan.

Despite their growing notoriety, Selma’s officials showed no signs of halting their lucrative operation. They even concealed the full extent of their activity by violating several Texas statutes, and, as Texas Monthly Magazine found, appearing prepared to wage a protracted legal battle to shield their municipal records from public scrutiny.

Located 16 miles outside San Antonio, along busy Interstate High­way 35, between Austin and San Antonio, next to Randolph AFB, Selma was perfectly situated for a speed trap, as the highway 1603 loop crosses the I 35 right on the town's south city limit

Northbound travelers approach it over the crest of a long hill, at the bottom of which, under the 1603 highway bridge, cops had a speed trap

Created in 1964 under a wild west law that allowed for a fly by night hanging judge roadside courtroom type of town, Selma was carefully created to sidestep laws requiring oversight by the county and the state capital. Yes, seriously. It was founded back in 1847 as a stagecoach stop, and they picked up some legal loophole info along the century since

It was incorporated as a “general law” town under a statutory provision that permits as few as twenty people to map out some proposed town boundaries, allege that at least 200 people reside within them and petition county au­thorities to call an election. If the re­sulting vote favors incorporation, the new community is free to elect a mayor and aldermen, establish municipal ser­vices including a police department, and, if it wishes, set up a roadside courtroom to dispense its own brand of justice.

29 people signed the original petition to create Selma in 1964, 1/4 of them were all related, and the mayor was one of them.

The proposed city limits never extended more than a thou­sand feet from the highway, were 2 miles long, and may not have had many people to begin with, but no proof was required when getting incorporated, and 4 months later, Selma claimed to have over 600, which happened to be the minimum needed to qualify for title 28. A couple years later the census found only 207 people in city limits

The cops issued 500 tickets a month, they were for $35 for 65 in a 55. The common complaint about the Selma cops to the state attorney general was that the police add on an extra ten miles to the alleged speed, because the Selma prosecutor woudn't prosecute drivers for going less than ten miles over the limit.

Failing to send a check for the speeding ticket, and then failing to appear in court, resulted in a 100 or 200 dollar "failure to appear" fine added on. Out of staters didn't get the optional court visit to appeal, they could pay up, or post a bond. The court was only open one day a month, on a Tuesday, 1 pm. If they weren't at the 1pm roll call, they forfeited the fine, if they were there, they'd have to wait outside all day, in Texas heat, or give up and pay at the handy window outside the court next to the line. If they did wait, they normally lost their case, and paid up anyway.

Then they ticketed the governor's wife.

The result was House Bill 550 of the 1973 Legislature, which prohibited towns of less than 5000 population from using radar on Inter­state highways.

No one testified against it except a Selma police­man who unearthed a 1935 decision of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals holding unconstitutional a legislative re­quirement that policemen in cities over 10,000 population wear uniforms and badges when making arrests. Selma interpreted this decision to mean that it was “beyond the authority of the legislature” to regulate small-town speed traps

Of course a list of other Texas towns includes Webster (pop. 3250), between Houston and Galveston in the NASA area. “A notorious one oyer the years,” according to a spokesman for the Ameri­can Automobile Association. There are frequent complaints that Webster’s speeding arrests tend to escalate into DWI charges. The town is currently under investigation by the U.S. Depart­ment of Justice for alleged harassment of an astronaut’s wife.

https://www.texasmonthly.com/articles/the-perfect-speed-trap/


Think anything changed or improved in 40 years? Nope. People and cops still suck.
So does Selma, rapidly growing from 788 in the 2000 census to 10000 residents now, it's moved it's enforcement a little...

Not only is speed monitored along the access road (45 mph – do not increase speed until you are actually *ON* IH35!), but they will cite you for failing to yield (on the southbound access road), failure to come to complete stop (at intersection near Gillman Honda), crossing the double white line (northbound access road), etc. I was told by my policeman friend in NB that Selma PD are very heavy handed when it comes to vehicle searches
https://www.speedtrap.org/texas/selma/

Similarly, Lumberton Texas has 75% of it's police officers on patrol to issue tickets on highways 69 and 96

Lumberton police issued 22 tickets per day last year, third-most in the region behind Beaumont and Port Arthur.

http://www.beaumontenterprise.com/news/article/SE-Texas-speed-traps-generate-millions-in-fines-6344000.php
http://www.trafficticketsa.com/selma-traffic-ticket-lawyer/


and Selma's speed trap is featured in the following

I'm just out of Austin bound for San Antone
With the radio blastin' and the bird dog on
 There's a speed trap up ahead in Selma Town
But no local yokel gonna shut me down



Guitar Town is the debut album from singer-songwriter Steve Earle, released on March 5, 1986. It topped the Billboard country album charts, and the title song reached #7 on the country singles charts. Earle was also nominated for two 1987 Grammy Awards, Best Male Country Vocalist and Best Country Song, for the title track.

Burt... this ought to be made into a door size poster

cool idea for garage lighting

Utica Drop Forge & Tool display cabinet



That's is some art right there. Seems like you could make a calendar of tool box porn, and sell out of them in no time!

https://www.garagejournal.com/forum/showpost.php?p=4237670&postcount=3080

Sweet Plomb tool box and collection

kids are never as conservative as their parents

It's snowmobile season... enjoy it while you can!

This is why it is important to fix potholes

here's an unusual, and cooler, variety of tool box. Photos weren't taken worth a damn, but they're all I got to share to show this interesting design

Simonsen cantilever... nice looking design!

some lucky guy scored this Blackhawk tool crib for free in trade for a job estimate

tool porn, Starrett level

What am I doing today? Oh nothing, just heading to the beach


Nice double image of the horse's head.

https://swarfs.tumblr.com/image/169737215089

9C1 Celebrities were actually ordered as police cars

the world's oldest active fire boat... still in service, and it was put in service 3 years before the Wright brothers flight.


Buffalo's fireboat, the Edward M. Cotter, was built and commissioned during an era when Buffalo's waterfront and port were booming, the Cotter has been an invaluable asset of fire protection for the numerous warehouses, grain elevators and other facilities that line Buffalo's shores. Many of these structures pose unique challenges for firefighters and would be difficult, if not impossible, to reach using conventional land equipment. With her pumping capacity equal to that of 11 firetrucks, her importance is immeasurable.

In addition to her extraordinary firefighting capabilities, the Cotter serves another critical role as the city's sole ice-breaking resource. By breaking up ice jams in the Buffalo River, the water and ice in its upstream tributaries can flow freely, helping to prevent flooding - not only in Buffalo, but in neighboring communities as well.

In 1978 USS Little Rock, a retired United States Naval guided missile cruiser on display at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park, began taking on water and listing. Edward M. Cotter and several Buffalo Fire Department fire engines pumped water out of Little Rock for five days keeping the ship afloat and level while repairs were made. Edward M. Cotter also assisted the disabled United States Coast Guard cutter Ojibwa during the winter of 1983. Ojibwa, while on Lake Erie, had lost her steering and was taking on water. Edward M. Cotter towed Ojibwa to her base in Buffalo and helped keep her afloat while repairs were made.

In 1996, the Edward M. Cotter was designated a National Historic Landmark.

She is known to be the first fireboat to cross an international border to fight a fire in another country and the only fireboat, at the time, to be totally consumed by fire.

Originally named William S. Grattan, she was built in 1900 by the Crescent Shipyard of Elizabeth Port, New Jersey. Due to age she was rebuilt in 1953 and renamed Firefighter upon her return to service. The following year she was renamed Edward M. Cotter. Her namesake, Edward Cotter, was a Buffalo firefighter and leader of the local firefighters union who had recently died.

http://www.boatnerd.com/pictures/fleet/cotter.htm
http://novan.info/fireboat.htm



using a ditch to unload the race cars

Monday, January 15, 2018

nice Mercedes bus! I don't think I can recall seeing a bus with a drivers side door before... great skylight windows!

5 dollar 1935 Craftsman box found at an estate sale

a vintage Huot drill index, I've never seen on that was a chest of drawers before

Autoweek magazine's 2018 Car Culture award winner, Kazunori Yamauchi is the CEO of Polyphony Digital, and his creation, “Gran Turismo,” is the most popular video game racing simulator series in the world


In junior high, he started making video games; at 14, inspired by heroes like George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, he founded his own movie production club. His love of that craft is obvious in the first moments of any “Gran Turismo” game. The cinematic intros feature real and virtual race footage from all eras, animated engine internals, moving assembly lines and smelting plants, all set to a rousing score.

Kaz, as he’s commonly known, started his career in 1992 at Sony’s small yet growing video game department, where he created “Motor Toon Grand Prix.” A cartoony, go-kart take on racing, it nevertheless contained the bones of the future series. In 1997, the first “Gran Turismo” was released for PlayStation. 10 million copies later, Sony suggested he start his own company; in 1998, Polyphony Digital was born.

“Gran Turismo 2” came out a year later, featuring 650 carefully rendered road and race cars and 27 tracks. But it wasn’t until 2007’s “Gran Turismo 5 Prologue” that things began to get interesting. With it came the Nissan GT Academy, a competition that turns gamers into real race car drivers.

After “GT5,” manufacturers were all in. Chevrolet gave Polyphony Digital early access to the C7 Stingray Corvette to digitize it, complete with camo body cladding. The covers were pulled off simultaneously in the game and at the Detroit auto show.



http://autoweek.com/article/autoweek-awards/kazunori-yamauchi-2018-autoweek-car-culture-award

Why have a 1979 G class Mercedes suspended in 44 tons of amber-colored solid resin? To get across the point that, just like dinosaurs in amber, the DNA is the same, and will be used to resurrect the beast




the same shape maintained strong sales for almost four decades. In its statement, Mercedes-Benz also claims the G-Wagon’s slanted position is an acknowledgement of its off-roading heritage and abilities.

“Our cult off-road vehicle has been continuously evolving for nearly 40 years—without losing its character or its core values,” Güthenke said.

“Its DNA is stronger than time and then any fashion trend. The cube expresses this to stunning effect and thus embodies the objective for advancing the G-Class.”

The casting process was a 90-day endeavor and is the largest installation of its type.

http://www.automobilemag.com/news/mercedes-benz-fossilizes-classic-g-class-promote-next-gen-ute

Martin Truex Jr. captured the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship

After a winless 2014 and 24th-place finish in the points

Truex took the team to victory lane and the 2015 championship race.

The next two seasons, Truex led the Cup Series with 12 wins and 43 top-10s in 72 starts.

That is one wonderful turn around of losing to a winning streak

http://autoweek.com/article/autoweek-awards/martin-truex-jr-2018-autoweek-driver-award

the Spitfire


The design looked like a winner, reinforced by the maiden flight of the prototype on March, 5, 1936, by test pilot Mutt Summers. ‘I don’t want anything touched,’ he declared once he had landed.

The English government, deeply concerned about the pace of Nazi rearmament, was delighted with the early trials and placed an initial order for 310 Spitfires.

By June 1937, the contract had run into severe difficulties. For all its technical expertise, Supermarine was a relatively small company without the facilities for mass production.

Much of the work therefore had to be farmed out to subcontractors, many of which had little experience in aero engineering. One firm put no fewer than 15,000 queries through to Supermarine in 18 months.

The delays over the delivery forced the resignation of the Air Secretary, Lord Swinton in early 1938.
His successor ordered the creation of a vast Spitfire factory at Castle Bromwich, Birmingham.

Warehouses, rolling mills, bus depots, car showrooms, a steamroller works, a strawberry basket factory and a stately home were all commandeered for this purpose.

However, gross mismanagement and a recalcitrant workforce resulted in zero planes completed in the next two years.  By June 1940, not a single plane had emerged

A secret inquiry found that there was ‘every evidence of slackness’ and ‘labour is in a very poor state’.

Fortunately, some of the shortfall in production was made up as Supermarine resolved its teething problems, so that by the outbreak of war at least ten RAF squadrons had been equipped with Spitfires.

Nevertheless, the early Castle Bromwich fiasco left a serious deficiency of the plane within Fighter Command on the eve of the Battle of Britain — just when it was needed most.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5269283/How-Spitfire-symbol-national-defiance.html

the Spitfire pilot from New Zealand, Al Deere, had a horrible summer of 1940

During the summer of 1940, in the process of destroying 17 German planes, he was shot down seven times, bailed out three times, collided with a Messerschmitt 109 and had one of his Spitfires blasted at 150 yards by a bomb. Another exploded just seconds after he had scrambled clear of the wreckage.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5269283/How-Spitfire-symbol-national-defiance.html

wow, this might be the most sexist, but real, advertisement I've seen. (Thanks Maurice!)


I'm posting this to illustrate the historic cultural norm in America, maybe lots of other places too, which used women as the punchline of so many car collision jokes, it would soon switch from women to Asians, and similarly the late 60s early 70s had a majority of jokes that focused on Polish people, and typified them as stupid.

I don't know where all that started, I'm no comedian, or comedy historian, maybe someone else knows where all that came from.

No doubt the human nature aspect of psychology is clearly that ego pushes up to find someone to bully, pick on, feel superior to, and that would explain racism, sexism, bullying, etc.

Lets face it, people suck. Most of them. Seems times may change, but very little about people's behavior does, and there you have the problems the media focuses on with Hollywood's sexist, and racist (anti-asian actor or white actor savior) still being prevalent 100 years after we invented powered airplanes, 50 years after getting into space, etc etc. We have rovers on Mars, but Hollywood hasn't evolved past the casting couch mentality.

So, history huh...? Even car history. 

the only oval piston dual con rod engine made, the Honda race bike NR 500 engine, 1979-83 (Thanks Steve!)


Race rules limited Honda to no more than four cylinders. But Honda engineers had calculated for the displacement the ideal engine would have eight cylinders and 32 valves.

When the FIM announced in 1968 that the 500 cc engine class was limited to four cylinders, that gave a significant advantage to teams utilizing two-stroke engines. Sochiro Honda made it clear that he was committed to the cleaner burning four-stroke engines.

Thinking outside the box, engineers designed a four cylinder engine with oval Pistons that allowed a total of 16 intake and 16 exhaust valves. It had two con-rods and eight valves per cylinder. It was a four stroke and was designed to overcome the monopoly by two-strokes in motorcycle racing.

This allowed the engine to reach 19,500 rpm, twice the speed of two strokes, and produce power comparable to 500GP two strokes

They quickly ran into issues. With two connecting rods connected to each other via the piston, at engine speeds over 10,000 rpm they would distort, causing wrist pin failure.


For a four-stroke engine to be as powerful as a two-stroke unit with the same piston count, it basically has to double its normal rpm. To achieve that, the team had to dramatically improve the intake efficiency and design a valve system with higher resistance to friction and heat buildup at high revolutions.

The biggest challenge were the oval piston rings.  They became not only a multiple iteration design exercise, but one of manufacturing capability. To attain their target, they needed tolerances higher than the equipment of the time could produce.

Hence, in April 1978, after a nearly 12 year hiatus, Honda announced publicly it would return to Grand Prix motorcycle racing, specifically utilizing a four-stroke



Honda was experimenting with cutting-edge technologies beyond the realm of conventional thinking. Not just the engine design, but also the body.

In addition to the highly exotic engine, the NR 500 also utilized a monocoque aluminum body, and inverted forks - a standard practice on most sport bikes today. Honda also used 16 inch wheels versus the more common 18 inch in order to reduce aero drag.

The complex four-stroke head added nearly 45 pounds to their bike versus the competition. That negatively impacted the bike's center of gravity and balance. The team got aggressive with materials. Iron was replaced with titanium. Aluminum was replaced with magnesium.

In this next video, there will be very little to appreciate, it's simply slow camera movement along the bike body, and the recorded engine sounds from a race track.



http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/model/Classic%20Racers/honda_nr_500_gp_racer_1979.htm

Ford made a brilliant decision on the story line of this Mustang commercial... having Steve McQueen's grand daughter drive the new Bullitt edition Mustang in race with a black Charger, for the last empty spot in a garage

Salute of the day! Peter Koenig, his police dog ’Judo', and their 1956 Nimbus! Thanks Kim!


Danish police officer Peter König was police dog handler from 1976 through 1988. He and his wife and had just bought a house in the suburbs, and couldn’t afford two cars. As a police dog handler he had to be available 24/7, so he bought a 1956 Nimbus outfit for transport. It was used for riding into the city year round.

His police dog ’Judo’ sat in the sidecar. During summer the dog would occasionally jump out at a red light, take a quick leak at a lamppost, and get back in the sidecar before the lights changed. In winter it was nice to have the sidecar when on icy roads, but still it was a cold ride in snow and sleet.

One nice summer evening they were on their way home from work, and saw a young guy with bloody hands. Calling in vain for him to stop, Peter König then shouted he’d send the dog for him, if he didn’t stop. The guy looked back, saw no dog, and continued.

Then he shouted another ”stop, or I’ll release the dog!”, and then ”get him!”. Out jumped Judo, the guy made it another eight inches or so, whereupon the dog had him by the arm in a flying tackling, never seen better on a soccer field.

Thus Peter Köning got the be the only police dog handler making an arrest from a motorcycle.

Later he lent the motorcycle to his brother, from whom it was stolen. By then Peter König had transferred to the traffic police section, covering all of Denmark. ”I believe I stopped every single Nimbus I saw”, he says. (to check if they were his stolen bike)

Pakistani custom trucks, the lo-tech version of Japan's 'dekotora trucks'.

The Maico Mobil, a fully faired motorcycles, that was effective for daily use (i.e. handled well even in crosswinds), and was intended for daily use.




Thanks Kim!

Sunday, January 14, 2018

the other Bullitt Mustang has come out of hiding. Last year a junkyard in Mexico was found to be hiding one, now, the one Steve McQueen tried to get back has finally been let out of the secret place it had been kept out of the world's sight


the surviving Bullitt car, the one McQueen had tried to buy back had been bought from the studio by
Frank Marranca, a police detective, who bought the car from the studio in 1971 with a letter from Ford certifying that the Mustang with VIN 8R02S125559 had been purchased by Solar Productions for the movie.

Marranca shipped the car to New Jersey, and along the way, the shift knob and the aftermarket wood steering wheel were stolen. When Marranca’s growing family needed a station wagon, he put the otherwise untouched car up for sale.

An ad on page 121 of the October 1974 issue of Road and Track magazine read: “1968 ‘Bullett’ [sic] MUSTANG driven by McQueen in the movie…Can be documented. Best offer.”

A man from Madison, New Jersey, saw the ad. He had always wanted a ’68 Mustang fastback, so he bought the Bullitt car for $6000

The third buyer, one Bob Kiernan, fell hard for his new car and when he got a company car, his wife drove the Mustang to her teaching job at a nearby school, yeah... that's right, the Steve McQueen legendary Mustang was a 3rd grade teachers daily driver, and could have been seen in a grade school teachers parking lot 5 days a week. Has me thinking that any one reading this that had Mrs Kiernan for a 3rd grade teacher were THIS CLOSE to getting to sit in this car if they had known, and asked nicely.


 In 1980, the car’s clutch went out, and with 65,000 miles on the clock, it was moved into the garage, for what turned out to be a long stay.

When Bob was relocated to Cincinnati in 1984, the car moved with him, and though the family moved again due to work, the Mustang remained behind at a friend’s place in Kentucky.

In 2001, the car was about to be fixed up for driving again with his son, but Bob was stricken with Parkinsons, and his son was getting married, and having a child born. So the car sat.


In 2008 the father son team tried to get the ball rolling on fixing the car, again, and once more, life went sideways, the was a 2nd child born, then a divorce, then the Parkinsons worsened.

In 2015 the ball finally got rolling in the right direction Marti was hired to authenticate, and then Ford was informed the owner would let it be back in the public eye, just in time for the 2018 newest of the Bullitt edition Mustangs grand reveal at the Detroit Auto Show. Just about then, March 2017, the Mexico junkyard Bullitt car was back in the world's attention. http://justacarguy.blogspot.com/2017/03/marti-confirms-bullitt-mustang-found-in.html

Through the many years, several things have been stolen from this car, the shift know, the steering wheel, and the air filter housing. But the car remains in the garage, and Bob's granddaughter is 16. If you don't think she's going to drive the car, and be the 3rd generation Kiernan owner, I'm sure the only thing you'll believe is that it's going to get auctioned for the highest possible dollar amount, and then sit in a collection.

The trouble is, now that the world knows, will thieves try for it? When McG was making Charlies Angels, the movie, Drew Barrymore wanted it in the movie pretty bad, and that didn't get the car to change hands, but it did get the picture car coordinator to locate it.... as difficult as that sounds, and event the next door neighbor was willing to help identify it for him. So, once the secret is out, nothing is safe from the demands of the rest of the world. The world is too damn greedy.

https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2018/01/14/mustang-bullitt-found-real-mcqueen

for a full production publicity event about this car, see http://www.automobilemag.com/news/molly-mcqueen-drives-2019-ford-mustang-bullitt/



tell me that does NOT give you the willies... Steve's grand daughter sitting in the car on the 50th anniversary of the movie Bullitt. Pretty damn cool huh?! 

Dual supercharged in the 60s





thanks Robert!