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A Horseless Carriage

When I was a young boy; many, many moons ago. My dad always came across with words of wisdom. One of them was, when opportunity knocks, get up and answer the door. This one served me well throughout my life.

My aviation journey started at eighteen. It took me a year to get my private pilots certification. Right after that, my friends and neighbors decided that I needed to wear a green suit for a couple of years and take long walk in different places in the world.

After the Army I started my adventure in aviation. I worked some really cool jobs, and some that sucked. I got to fly some hot airplanes and some dogs, but I learned something from all. I have been able to survive in my custom aircraft shop for twenty plus years. All of this was simply answering the door.

This brings us to A Horseless Carriage. A visitor to the shop was watching Mike Yancey weld up a new turbine run cart. He made the remarkI” think you guys can build anything”. Then he asked “can you build a horseless carriage out of a buggy that I have?”.

After a couple of minutes, the answer was simple. Sure we can. What an interesting time it has been. To go back and teach yourself what a blacksmith new in the early nineteen hundreds. As it turned out the net is full of info on early powered buggies. We purchased most of our material from Harbor Freight master car, from local suppliers, and our infamous scrap bin.

Most of parts required a lot of modifications to work. All of that math you learned in school, we used most of it. Bet RPM for the engine , RPM for clutch lock out. This turns a jack shaft which turns a sprocket which turns a big sprocket, secured to the wheel. What RPM on a wheel so as not to exceed ten miles per hour. Ten MPH in a horseless carriage is like the speed of heat.

After many different mods, we are happy with the results. Who would think that guys who work on cool airplanes could have this much fun working on A Horseless Carriage.

Life is short… live your dream!


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