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Horseless Age, September 26, 1900,
THE INTER-OCEAN TOURNAMENT
By E. C. Oliver, M.E.
The First International Exhibition and Tournament at Chicago, under the auspices of the Inter-Ocean. closed Tuesday, September 25, it being continued two days in order to make time for races delayed on account of bad weather.
The exhibition may be considered a success from the standpoint of the builders, as they report many sales on the grounds. However, very little was shown which was new in principle, only the familiar types being exhibited. The attendance was rather light.
The principle exhibitors were as follows:
- The Woods Motor Vehicle Company (electric), about twenty vehicles oi various types, including road wagons, delivery and mail wagons, hacks, cabs, etc.
The Mobile Company of America (steam), 12 vehicles of the runabout type.
The Chicago Motor Vehicle Company (gasoline), several vehicles with interchangeable bodies.
The American Bicycle Company, several types of Waverly electric vehicles, a Rambler gasoline carriage and tricycles.
The Hewitt Lindstrom (electric), five machines, including omnibus, Stanhope and runabout types.
The Locomobile Company of America Company (steam), several two and four passenger machines.
The St. Louis Motor Carriage Company (gasoline), two road carriages.
The Ohio Automobile Company (gasoline), two carriages—one a standard road machine and one a special high-speed road machine.
The Milwaukee Automobile Company, two steam runabouts and a standard running gear.
The De Dion-Bouton Company (gasoline), a “Motorette” and tricycle.
Olds Motor Works, electric standhope.
Eastman Automobile Company, several pressed steel boules.
The exhibitors of sundries were: Springfield Tire Company, United States Ball Bearing Company, Wells folding buggy top, Lemp steering check, Apple gas engine igniter, Helios-Upton storage batteries. Motsinger auto sparker and Buffalo Gas Engine Company.
The racing interest was centered in the fast machine of Alexander Winton and the tricycles ridden by Champion and Skinner. Probably the most interesting race took place Tuesday between Winton and Skinner, for 10 miles, won by Winton in 16:02 2-5, the pair keeping close together throughout the race and changing lead several times. The fastest time for one mile was 1:08. T. E. Griffin, in a locomobile racing machine, is recorded to have made a mile in 1:06, although many of the experts who timed his machine deny this.
Some clever handling was shown by “Jack” Worth with a Chicago gasoline delivery wagon. A large framework was built in front of the grandstand alter the manner oi a see-saw, up which the machine was driven and worked back and forth across the center causing the frame to rock; while on the framework a box was placed in the track of the wheel and the machine carried over it with such control that an egg placed on the opposite side oi the box was cracked but not crushed. The machine was also driven up a grade of 80°.
Mechanically, there was little shown that was new. The Rambler carriage was noteworthy in differing radically from the other machines. In this carriage was a starting device operated from the seat. It consisted of a ratchet wheel on the cam-shalt of the engine, which was engaged and turned by a pawl on a hand lever. the movement of the hand in pulling the lever forward engaging the pawl, which is at other times held out of contact by a spring. The motor, instead of being under the seat or behind the operator, is placed in front of the carriage, distributing the load more nearly equal and is at all times accessible by raising a cover. The tubes for cooling the jacket water are placed in front as, in French machines, and are supplemented with radiating tins of thin brass.
The carburetter, or vaporizer, used on this machine is shown in the accompanying sketch. it consists of a circular brass chamber in which is a wire gauze disk rotated by gearing to the cam shaft of the engine; the lower part of this disk is immersed in gasoline and on revolving carries a thin film across the air inlet; the mixture is adjusted by changing the size of this inlet.
In the Packard carriage has been eliminated many of the faults generally accompanying the gasoline engine. It is practically noiseless and has very little vibration—practically none—when the carriage is running. The speed is regulated by a pedal, and the various speeds and brake by one lever. One distinctive feature is its rim brake, used only for emergency. It consists of a curved band of steel, attached to the inside of the rear wheels, on which the two shoes of wood may be set by a foot lever.
The gasoline machine all employ one or two cylinders; for cycle engines none being shown having a greater number than two.
In the frames or running gears were a few having horizontal King bolts to allow the carriage adapt itself to varying road surfaces, but by far the greater majority depended on the spring of frame or the action of the springs for adjustment.
The arrangement used by the Woods Motor Vehicle Co. is shown in sketch No. 2.
The application of steam to carriages offered no choices whatever; the several companies building steam machines have the same design throughout, differing only in slight details. The vertical marine engine is used and a five-tube shell boiler.
The utility tests were made with a machine of the general design shown in The Horseless Age of April 18, 1900, and may be clearly understood by reference to the cuts shown herewith; the carriage is seen with the driving wheels resting on two supporting pulleys; the machine is secured by wire ropes to a series of links which transmit the pull or tractive effort to a scale platform; friction in addition to the friction of the supporting shaft may be applied by a brake attached to the pulley in front of the machine. The apparatus is also arranged to be run by an electric motor, which allows the friction to losses to be obtained running the carriage from the motor. The apparatus was so heavily and crudely constructed that it would seem doubtful if results obtained therefrom would be exact or comparable.
These tests were made on a Milwaukee steam automobile, a Hewitt-Lindstrom electric delivery wagon, and a Rambler gasoline carriage.
ADDITIONAL SHOW NOTES.
Apple Automatic Igniter.
This machine, the latest product of the Dayton Electrical Mfg. Co., caused much favorable comment. It weighs 20 pounds (with spark coil in base 80 pounds), is 5½x7½x10½ inches in size, has a centrifugal governor, and is water and dirt proof. It is a cross between the magneto and dynamo, having permanent magnet pole pieces, which are kept up to the same strength by the field coils while the dynamo is running, giving the one advantage of a magneto, in that it picks up its load quickly and yet doing away with the magneto’s weakest point, the magnets dying.
Snatched Victory From Defeat.
The racing events were, as a rule, were not closely contested on account of the lack of racing machines in the United States at the present time. The motor tricycle races seemed most interesting to the spectators on account of the sustained speed of the machines and the able manner in which they were handled by their riders. One of the most exciting events was the 50 mile race for motor tricycles on Saturday, in which Champion, riding a machine fitted with two Aster motors, snatched victory from defeat, when Skinner, after reeling off over 40 miles with that regularity of action which has made the De Dion motors famous among the air-cooled types and leading the Frenchman by half a mile, was unfortunately put out of the race by the setting of the inlet valve of his motor, due, as was said, to carbonization, owing to the excessive amount of gasoline he was feeding into the machine. Skinner used one of the large sized cylinders, developing about 3½ horse power, while Champion’s two cylinders are rated at six horse power. Wridgeway, the third entry in these races, had a 2½ horse power motor, and consequently was hopelessly handicapped. The Aster motor gave frequent trouble in each event, showing well at the start, but slowing down after a few miles, and thereafter intermittently regaining its normal speed only to fall back again.
NEW ST. LOUIS MODEL.
The St. Louis Motor Carriage Co. showed two carriages of their latest design, one of which had been run overland from St. Louis to the grounds without serious delay or mishap of any kind.
The engine and gearing are self-contained and can be removed from the carriage by the loosening of four bolts. One friction clutch operates the gears, which run in oil in the base of the engine. Lubrication is effected by means of two oil cups, the bronze bearings being provided with ring oilers, the phosphor bronze bearings being provided with ring oilers, which is necessary to supply with oil only once a week.
The water tanks, paneled in the sides of the body, are furnished with cooling fins to assist in the radiation of the heat, and the steering gear is fully compensated for strains in all directions.
The motor, of 6 h.p., has but one cylinder and is mounted on an angle iron frame. As all the bearings are in one casting they cannot get out of line, and one serious cause of derangement from vibration is avoided.
The rear axle is of Bethlehem Nickel steel, which the St. Louis Company reports is the only material they have found that will stand the strains.
Other details that may be mentioned are cotter-pinned bolts, the Baldwin drive chains, the Auto sparker for igniting the charge, (which has proved a most satisfactory device, having been used in the run from St. Louis without batteries even for starting the motor), and a powerful toggle joint brake that will slip the wheels.
The weight of the machine is 1,300 pounds, and a practical test of its hill-climbing capacity was made on the grounds when it ascended to the 35% mark.
The St. Louis Motor Carriage Co. wish to state that they are not connected with any other motor concern in St. Louis and that they do not make any parts, but confine themselves to the production of complete carriages.
On Saturday Alexander Winton made a 50-mile run against time in 1h, 17m, 50s.
Skinner won the hour record for the De Dion, making 40 miles 132 yards. The 50-mile record went to Champion, time 1hr. 15m. 58s.
“By the Great Tod Sloan, Sidney Lucas! Isn’t this enough to make a poor horse wish to cast his last shoe?”1
Inter Ocean September 16, 1900
The automobile tournament and exhibition which is to be given at Washington park under the auspices of The Inter Ocean opens on Sept. 18, and for five days all styles and makes of automobiles will be shown. The Inter Ocean recognizes the fact that few of the people who have seen automobiles in use know to what extent they are used. So many auto vehicles have been invented that the public mind has not been able to keep pace with them, and a public exhibition is necessary to bring home to the laymen the fact that they are here as an institution bound to stay. Unlike the bicycle, the automobile is not a vehicle requiring any degree of peculiar skill in propulsion. It requires more knowledge to drive a horse to any kind of vehicle, and when once the mastery of details has been accomplished the automobile is at the command of the driver.2
The committee in charge of the first international automobile exhibit and race meet, which commences at Washington park race course Tuesday under the auspices of The Chicago Inter Ocean, agreed yesterday on a programme, which is as follows:
May Examine Vehicles.
The public will be permitted to examine the automobiles on exhibition subject to the owners’ approval. A few of the automobiles will be placed at the disposal of the public, and a skilled driver will accompany each of them, thus affording an opportunity to those who desire to investigate the merits of the different machines on exhibition.
In the obstacle races the track will be prepared with dummy figures representing men and women, trunks of trees, large stones, and such things that might be met within a journey across country or in the mazes of a large city. Thus with a view of exhibiting the dexterity of driver and the safety of the vehicle in avoiding obstacles in crowded thoroughfares, and at the same time proving the utility and safety of the vehicles when under control of competent operators. This should prove to be interesting as well as humorous, as the possibilities for amusing accidents, without the chances of serious injury, are numerous.
Practical utility, however, as in all mechanical tests, cuts the grandest figure, and practical utility will be the feature upon which the manufacturer and the inventor will put forth their greatest efforts. The test for utility is open to all manufacturers who have perfected a machine and have passed the experimental stage. The tests will be for friction, economy of power, speed, power in hill climbing, mechanical construction, safety devices, accessibility of brakes for repairs, noiselessness, etc. A committee to pass upon the technical construction of the vehicles will be in full charge, and will be composed of men who have a thorough knowledge of the subject in hand. They will be men of high in the mechanical and engineering world, and they will pass upon each pat and each principle separately and under competitive tests. Vehicles not completed will be allowed upon the grounds, but will not be considered by the judges.
Practical Utility Contests.
In these contests of practical utility each manufacturer who enters will be allowed to exhibit three vehicles, having in view the following requirements:
In these contests the following ratio will be established for winning values:
In the heavy drafgt contest, the following ratio of points will beestablished for winning values:
Should Furnish Catalogues.
In entering automobiles manufacturers are required to furnish the necessary catalogue, drawings, etc., of their power apparatus, for the use of the technical committee and judges of award. This is required in order to facilitate a correct understanding of the mechanical construction of each motor carriage. The rated horse power at eight, ten, twelve, and sixteen miles per hour is desired.
In the mail race each driver will be required to stop as each mail box on his route, unlock the box, take out the contents, lock it, and return to the wagon. In all, forty stops will be made, and will be under the supervision of postoffice officials.
In all of these contests the amusement of those who occupy the grand stand has been taken into consideration, and many of the races which upon the programme may appear prosy and unattractive will be found to be not only amusing, but of exciting and interesting character.
A pulling contest will prove the power of motor vehicles, and will be demonstrated by attaching them to powerful springs and pulling the limit of the strength of the spring or machine. This will take place immediately in front of the spectators, and should prove an object lessoj well worth remembering. The power expended will be indicated by a dial in plain view of all.
For the grade-climbing tests special machinery is now in process of construction. Special charging apparatus will be provided for such of the automobiles as may be propelled by electricity.
For some time merchandise delivery wagons with motor power other than that furnished by horses have been before the public, and many a merchant in this city, as well as in almost every part of the United States, has watched with eagerness whatever progress has been made with automobile development.
LEFT: The handsomest automobile ever made. Built by String & Rogers, Cleveland, Ohio on exhibition at Washington Park.
RIGHT: C. G. Wridgeway, in long-distance machine at Washington Park.
Economy the Main Question.
The experimental stage of the auto is past, and the question that is now paramount is one of economy, and the motor of the future will be the one that furnishes the greatest amount if power at the least expense. The tests at Washington park, it is believed, will go far toward convincing the public that the motive power of the future will be one that is now being experimented with. Whether it be electricity, gasoline, oil, or something that may yet come to the surface, is a matter of speculation, but that the automobile has come to stay is sure. Power economical enough to make it practical has been discovered, and it is only a question of finding some means of making it cheaper still that holds in abeyance the desire to possess automobiles for mercantile purposes.
Eight stations have been arranged for on either side of the track at Washington park, where each driver of an automobile truck will be required to deliver a package weighing not less than twenty pounds. Each driver will be allowed one assistant. The vehicle winning the race must arrive at the finishing point after having delivered all packages intrusted(sic) to the driver’s care.
Washington park club is provided with two tracks, and on Friday, when the great fifty-mile sweepstakes race takes place, which will consume nearly the whole day, numerous other events will be added to enliven the proceedings between the start and finish of the main event of the day. These will be run on the small or inner track.
There has been an impression that the exhibition will be for the rich persons alone. This is incorrect, as the admissions price has been put within the reach of all. While the automobile is new, and its use is now restricted to the wealthy, one of the objects of the exhibition, and the one on which The Inter Ocean places the most stress, is to show how inexpensive a machine may be constructed.
Inter Ocean September 23, 1900
The best if Chicago’s society was in possession of the Washington park race course yesterday afternoon during the International Automobile Exhibit and Race Meet. The crowd was the largest which has yet attended the meet, numbering over 4,000 persons, largely women. There were also automobile buyers. Many a “machine,” as the “auto fiends” call them, was sold yesterday.
The feature of the day was the race for The Inter Ocean Challenge cup, fifty miles, free for all. The peculiar thing about this race was that started a quarrel which will last for months. The owners of steam and electric machines declined to enter for speed with gasoline machines. They admit that the gasoline is best for distance and speed, but they also mention the disagreeable smell and the “chug-chug” of the machines.
The Inter Ocean Challenge cup, value $500, was offered as an inducement for automobile racing, the management believing that it would promote science and applied art.
Winton took his four-wheel motor vehicle about the track fifty times, and made faster time than ever before. He started at noon promptly. His best miles were the thirty-sixth and fortieth, each of which he made in 1:30. His slowest mile, after the first, was the twenty-sixth, which he made in 1:37. His total was 1:17:50 for the fifty miles. That was considered emarkable.
Tricycle Men Allowed in Race.
But the tricycle men insisted that they should be given a chance for the prize, and the judges yielded. This was only after the most vigorous protest, and the matter, it is said, will be referred to the most eminent authorities in the world.
The Inter Ocean cup will be the challenge cup of the world. The machine, under proper conditions, which can make the best fifty miles is the champion, and must possess this cup, which is said to be the finest in America.
Champion, on an American tricycle motor, was in the lead most of the distance. But near the thirty-fourth mile his “quad-centri” box ran out of oil and he had to slacken the terrific speed to inject more fluid. By that time Skinner, an American on a French machine, had gained nearly half-mile on him. But Champion, on his American machine, came up, and on the forty-second mile, while nearly one-half mile ahead, Skinner broke down. The inlet valve for gasoline on his French motor became so hot that it swelled and choked off the feed. He retired, and Champion finished the fifty miles in 1:15:57 2-5, establishing the world’s record for fifty miles. This is the longest race which has ever been run by horseless vehicles on a regulation track for speed.
Monday and Tuesday the races—that is, the fast ones—will be made against time by Jack Prince and his wonderful motor tandems and bicycles.
Ten miles race for steam vehicles, manufacturers; first prize, silver cup; second prize, silver medal; first Locomobile, Griffin driving, Milwaukee, second; Douseman driving.
Chicago Tribune, January 24, 1899
1 James Forman “Tod” Sloan (August 10, 1874 – December 21, 1933) was an American thoroughbred horse racing jockey. He was elected to the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1955. Sidney Lucas was a popular turn of the century race horse.
2 This paragraph was originally published in The Inter Ocean, September 10, 1900.