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Racer's engine burnt alcohol, produces 550 horsepower at 8,500 r.p.m. to drive car at 260 m.p.h. Three Winfield carburetors feed 38,000-r.p.m. supercharger; aftercooler, on top of block, prevents pre-ignition. Compression ratio is 24 to one. Front-wheel drive helps hold the "Mobil Special" on its course. Front wheels are individually sprung, with torsion bars replacing ordinary leaf springs. Tires' rubber tread is only 3/32-inch thick. Bud Winfield, who built the engine, examines completed car. Tail, narrowing to a thin line, is designed to stabilize machine while it races over a 10-mile circle on the hard-packed natural track.
1. New American-LaFrance-Foamite aerial truck illustrates compact power of postwar fire engines (See "Here Come the New Fire Engines," p. 66). Unlike old-style articulated trucks, it is a single unit and needs no rear-wheel tillerman. Steel extension ladder is 100 feet longâ€”15 feet more than prewar typeâ€”and holds eight men when it is supported at the top.
TEN pounds of clothes are washed, rinsed and damp-dried in 30 minutes by the Akka automatic washer, at right. The machine swishes soapy water through the clothes 144 times a minute. When the washer is done, a rubber lining in the lower half of the sphere hydraulically presses the clothes against the washer's perforated top and removes 92 per cent of the soap. Then the washer rinses out the rest with cold water and, finally, squeezes water from the clothes.
A NEW desk telephone directory not only finds the number you want but actually dials it for you. All you have to do is slide the knob on the face of the device, called an Auto Dial, to the name you want, then press the small lever at the foot of the machine. When the lever returns to its normal position, in five or six seconds, your call is made and you pick up the phone.
How the mechanical "spectaculars" work with steam, bubbles and light. The new sky sign is an excellent example. Nearly every large city has at least one running electric signâ€”where words chase one another across the side of a building. But the dirigible "runner" is definitely new. It took 26 miles of wire and 10,000 light bulbs, 5,000 on each side, to construct the dirigible sign. Enough ordinary lamps to light the display would have added too much weight, so Leigh's thinker-uppers grouped small bulbs, about the size of Christmas-tree lamps, in such a way that their light appears to come from single large bulbs. "What from the ground looks like a single pinpoint of light is actually 10 small bulbs arranged in a spiral cluster 18 inches across.
FOR Fun-Loving EXECUTIVES THE makers of this postwar “dream desk” imply that it began as a designers’ joke, but its reception at a Chicago exhibit has brought it into actual, though limited, production. All set for work or play, as the drawings indicate, it is made by the Gunn Furniture Co., of Grand Rapids. The [...]