Simulator trains locomotive engineers (Jan, 1966)

Things have progressed a bit since this.

Simulator trains locomotive engineers

Color movies on the windshield of a mock-up locomotive cab help British Railways train engineers to drive on a newly electrified line between London and Manchester. Simulated speeds up to 100 m.p.h, are controlled by hand throttle and brakes at the engineer’s side. The electronically operated cab, hung in a frame, is tilted by hydraulic jacks to show acceleration, braking, sway, and banking.

Taped sound effects include wheel-rail clicking, trolley splutter, brake roar and squeal, motor noise, cooling fans, and vacuum pumps. Volume increases when the locomotive “races” through stations and under bridges.



It took 11 years to get the new Colonial Skimmer Amphibian off the drawing boards into the sky.

IT TAKES more than a pair of wings to get a plane off the ground and the new Colonial Skimmer Amphibian is a perfect example of the complications that plague designers from the initial plans until the ship takes to the air.

Back in 1945 David Thurston, a young aeronautical engineer, put down on paper his idea for a small, two-place amphibian. The first step was to design a ship capable of operation from both land and water yet have the plans conform to CAA regulations.

New Stop Signal for Police Cars (May, 1932)

New Stop Signal for Police Cars

STATE police in Michigan have adopted a new departure in stop signals to supplant the familiar flashlight command when halting a motorist on the road.

The scheme makes use of a regulation automobile headlight mounted on the right front fender of the police car. The lens is lettered with command to “stop,” as shown in the photo. In operation the police car drives up beside the culprit motorist and switches on the signal, thus commanding by light.

Broadcasting from a Submarine (Mar, 1931)

Broadcasting from a Submarine

By William J. Harris

Millions of radio listeners recently experienced for the first time in history the vicarious thrill of diving in a submarine and cruising along the ocean floor when announcers, stationed before a mike placed aboard the Submarine 0-8, gave a word picture of the boat’s maneuvers. This amazing feat was made possible by use of short wave radio, which also provides a means for transmitting from airplanes, autos and trains.

Airplane Gun Fires Through Shaft (Jan, 1932)

Airplane Gun Fires Through Shaft

THIS new eight cylinder motor has only five major working parts. It has no crankshaft, no wrist pins, no piston skirts, and only two bearings; yet it will develop a higher horsepower at low speed than any motor of similar weight of the type now in use, its designers claim, and allow greater streamlining than the radial type.

VTO – Build a flying model of the most revolutionary of all aircraft — a plane that takes off vertically. (Nov, 1955)

The only prototype to fly is at the Florida Air Museum, Lakeland, FL.  Because the intended engine never arrived the plane never actually took off or landed vertically.  Takeoffs and landings were accomplished by attaching wheels for conventional takeoffs and landings although a few transitions were made in flight as well as one instance of bringing it to a hover.

VTO – Build a flying model of the most revolutionary of all aircraft — a plane that takes off vertically.

SOME ten years ago, the United States – Navy initiated a development program for a vertical take-off type of plane. Two aircraft of this new species were built, one by the Convair (Consolidated Vultee) designated XFY-1. The other, built by Lockheed Aircraft is designated XFV-1. A model of the latter is the one we are going to build. These planes are not helicopters or convertiplanes. However, they have attributes of both in their flight patterns.

Road Automat Saves Walk for Gas (Oct, 1930)

Road Automat Saves Walk for Gas

LATE hour motorists whose tanks run dry when they are out somewhere several miles from a filling station will find these new gas automats, shown in the photo below, which are being installed around Los Angeles as emergency stations, a great boon.

BIKE for TWO (May, 1950)


A comfortable tandem seat convenient for small “back seat drivers” can be attached to the luggage rack of your bicycle. The seat, which will be welcomed by every kid you know, is made of three layers. The first, which rests directly on the rack, is a piece of 1/4 in. felt padding.

He Makes Fish Out of People (Nov, 1956)

He Makes Fish Out of People

Ed Townsend’s how-to skin diving school teaches aquatic enthusiasts to explore the briny deep safely.

By Sam Schneider

EARLY in the fall of 1953 two men set off on a skin diving prowl of the coral reefs in the ocean of Hillsborough, a tiny community on the southeast coast of Florida. The younger of the pair, wearing a brand new “lung” he’d recently bought, dropped off their boat and never surfaced alive.

The tragedy made headlines in south Florida, a climatically natural stronghold of the increasingly popular aquatic activity. It also spurred 260-pound Edwin D. Townsend into the development of a unique business.

Flying Auto (Jun, 1946)

If you keep the original formatting, the first line is “Flying Auto kills two”. That would explain why it’s “not yet ready to be placed on the market”.

Popular Science did a much more comprehensive article on the car.  They at least mentioned the inventor’s name. It was designated as the Convair 116 which led to the Convair 118.

Flying Auto kills two birds with one stone. Minus the wing and tail structure it is an automobile; with them, it becomes a creditable flying machine. The two-passenger plane is still in the experimental state so far, and is not yet ready to be placed on the market.