What are they doing here?? 1912

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Ken Findlay
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What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Ken Findlay » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:00 am

This picture is from the 1912 Toronto Auto Show as found today in the Toronto archives. It's labelled as demonstrating the electric start! I'm not familiar with aftermarket starters from back then but that doesn't look to me like that's what it is. Anybody know?
Ken
1912 Auto Show Ford.jpg


Wayne Sheldon
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Wayne Sheldon » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:43 am

I am not good enough with computers to skew the picture and read the sign. Something for sale was $85 which was quite a bit of money those days. Could be some type of starting system.
Quite a lot going on with that chassis. It has the two-piece firewall, so it could be an early 1912 or even '11 chassis. Many, but not all the after-market electric starting systems made for the Ford were bulky units that mounted on the left (near) side of the engine. This clearly is not one of those. There were a few made that mounted a starter down front in place of the hand crank. There does appear to be something there? So maybe? Many of the down front units were not electric. Other types included wind-up springs (believe it or not!), compressed air, or gas injection types, and more than a few cable or complicated lever systems to operate from the driver's seat. There appears to be a hose, likely a high pressure type, wrapped around the steering wheel. That could indicate an air (or gas) type starter, or not. There are also a few extras on the floor boards. A foot pedal of some type, and something else with a piece of tubing etc attached. That stuff could maybe also have something to do with either a compressed air or some form of gas injection starter. There also appears to be some sort of tank hung between the frame rails behind the gasoline tank on the near side of the torque tube. My guess? And this is only a guess (although I think maybe an educated guess?). I suspect it is a compressed air starter with the air drive down front in place of the hand crank. It would require some sort of pump to provide the compressed air into the storage tank. Most such systems incorporated a small compressor somewhere (which may be out of our view). I have heard of some systems that required routine fill-ups from a home or service compressor, but never seen one.
Such compressed air starters actually were becoming more common on high end automobiles in the few years before Kettering's famous Cadillac starter in 1912. A good friend has a beautifully restored 1911 Pierce Arrow roadster with a working compressed air starter. It has a compressor built onto the engine that keeps the supply tank full and ready to use.

As for the labeling of the photo as "demonstrating the electric start!" ? We know museums and archives often get facts and details mixed up or outright wrong. Just ask David Dewey.

Notice also, the chassis has a front bumper on it.

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Mark Nunn
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Mark Nunn » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:16 am

I was thinking this looks like a compressed air starter too. I saw one on a 1909 Lozier.

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DanTreace
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by DanTreace » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:20 am

Correct i.d., that is a compressed air system starter for the Model T.

Compressed air storage tank under the chassis, holds up to 200 psi. Cam driven air compressor feeds the tank. Starter motor mount on front of motor replacing the hand crank. Useful air hose with gage for filling tubes. Pressure gage on dash. Claims in adv. says only adds 40 lbs. to the car, much less than bulky elec. systems and storage battery!


IMG_0002.JPG
Click on picture to enlarge

And...when you step on that starter button, you get to hear a PzzzzzSwoochPzzzzz as the air escapes, unlike our today's ErrahErrahEarrh of the electric starter :lol:
The best way is always the simplest. The attics of the world are cluttered up with complicated failures. Henry Ford
Don’t find fault, find a remedy; anybody can complain. Henry Ford

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DanTreace
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by DanTreace » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:37 am

On the subject of starting the Model T, if you never have heard Tennessee Mort on stage to perform his vocal interpretation of starting the Model T, here it is on You Tube! Turn up your speakers for a good laugh :D

https://youtu.be/Ua6czAxOEs4
The best way is always the simplest. The attics of the world are cluttered up with complicated failures. Henry Ford
Don’t find fault, find a remedy; anybody can complain. Henry Ford

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TFan
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by TFan » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:45 am

The sign on the wall looks to say "Canadian Thurbur rotary starter" any of our friends to the north ever hear of it. Jim
Back road kinda guy stuck on the freeway of life.

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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Ruxstel24 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:57 am

That thing really blows !! :D

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TFan
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by TFan » Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:11 am

I just did a quick search and found this. Jim

https://books.google.com/books?id=PCofA ... er&f=false
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Layden Butler » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:21 pm

Thurber controls
Attachments
thurber air starter a.JPG
thurber air starter b.JPG

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RajoRacer
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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by RajoRacer » Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:22 pm

Got the rest of it, Layden ??????????


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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Layden Butler » Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:38 pm

Unfortunately not but maybe you do????

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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Wkndead » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:59 pm

HCCA has a Kellogg air pump for sale.

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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by John Warren » Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:57 pm

Thanks Dan, I'm still laughing.
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Keep it simple and keep a good junk pile if you want to invent something :P


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Re: What are they doing here?? 1912

Post by Colin Mavins » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:31 pm

I dont see any plug wires so they mite be cranking but they are not starting. Cheers Colin

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