NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

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MochetVelo
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NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by MochetVelo » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:34 pm

The first New York City taxis were electrics, I believe. Now, a group wants to bring them back to replace the horse-drawn carriages. What do you think?

https://autos.yahoo.com/blogs/motoramic ... 14594.html

Phil
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E-Carriage

oldcarfudd
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by oldcarfudd » Fri Apr 18, 2014 3:47 pm

What I think is unfit to print on a family website.

Jugster
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by Jugster » Sat May 03, 2014 12:00 am

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At first, I was just going to make an off-the-cuff, snide comment, but okay; I'll be a little more constructive about my criticism.
There's never been a shortage of amusement parks that feature "antique car" rides and back when I was a kid, such kiddie-cars were usually a very generic compilation of recognizable features from the Brass-Era, so they had spoked wheels, gas-headlamps, cowl-lamps, flat radiators and, for easy ingress and egress, doorless tourabout bodies. And that was good enough.

But over the years, consumers have become maybe a bit more sophisticated and the "antique car" rides have now come a long way. In the attached photos, you'll see that these cars are actually recognizable as to brand and the Cadillacs even have semi-eliptical springs and a dropped, I-beam front axle! Pretty darned good, huh?

Now look at what the Mayor of New York City sees as Brass-Era, horseless carriage replicas, authentic enough to have all the romance of the horse-drawn carriages which, since time immemorial, have drawn tourists to Manhattan for that magical ride around Central Park. Well, first thing I notice is that the amusement park ride manufacturers did a much, MUCH better job of replication. The mayor's truck—and it certainly is a truck—has none of the delicate fragility and top-heaviness that usually characterizes a horseless carriage. The body is massive and blocky, almost as though it were made of giant Legos. The tires are big, heavy-duty truck tires and the front bumper looks like it belongs on a fire engine. The gas-headlamp replicas are not even as authentic as those on amusement-park kiddie-cars, and the cowl-lamps look like they came off my front porch. Look in the dictionary under "ugly" and there's a picture of this pretentious monstrosity. Oops... guess I'm snide, after all.

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MochetVelo
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by MochetVelo » Sat May 03, 2014 9:08 am

Two questions about the previous post:

- Where are those nice little amusement/kiddie cars located?

- How do they drive? The first photo obviously has a center track, but the other two "Cadillacs" look like they're being driven like a regular car, but by little kids.

Phil

Jugster
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by Jugster » Sat May 03, 2014 7:41 pm

Here's the mother lode list of antique car rides at amusement parks:

http://themeparkreview.com/parks/search ... &x=29&y=13

From what I've seen, they all operate on the same principle. The cars run on little gasoline engines that make a surprising volume of noise. Step on the single pedal and it acts like a throttle. Take your foot off the single pedal and the engine idles as the brakes apply and bring the car to a gentle stop. The cars have some serious bumpers because they rear-end each other often. Top speed is governed at something like 3 mph. The steering wheel does control the car, but the center rail will engage a hanging "finger" on each end of the steering mechanism such that the cars can neither pass each other, nor be steered off the road (They'd steer normally if not for the center rail). These cars are made to be driven by kids of just about any age, though the smallest shavers do need to be accompanied by an adult. The first one I drove was at "Freedomland," in the Bronx, New York, when I was about eight years old.

Jugster
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by Jugster » Thu May 08, 2014 10:51 pm

Here's a nice video of some little kids driving the amusement park antique cars. The cars are self-powered and are steered by the driver.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xh3xOKDvifY

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MochetVelo
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by MochetVelo » Fri May 09, 2014 5:00 am

I like the design of those cars. I assume the brakes are not controlled by the driver, but the steering is, assisted by the guide rail. They even sound authentic. They ought to get some of these for the AACA Museum.

Phil

Jugster
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by Jugster » Fri May 09, 2014 7:32 am

The brakes engage when the driver takes his/her foot off the accelerator pedal. And yes, if the guide rail were removed, the cars would steer like any other car. Today, the Gould Manufacturing company of Canada makes a version of the antique car ride (Arrow Dynamics used to make a much nice looking version, but they went out of business). See link:

http://www.gouldmanufacturing.com/antiqueautoride.html

Gould Manufacturing also makes a "Parade Car" version with separate accelerator and brake pedals and reverse. It's also available in a silent, electric version. The cars cost as much as $14,500 each, so they're not exactly cheap.

http://www.gouldmanufacturing.com/paradevehicles.html

Retired ride cars might be a heck of a lot of fun to restore and drive on private roads and in gated communities (with a proper muffler installed); it'd sure beat the living daylights out of driving a golf kart!

See the videos here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vp1MuvcM5JM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wM2VwhvPdSs

Okay, maybe seat-belts would be a good idea. Well, we certainly drifted off topic, but hey... does this look like fun or what?

Jugster
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Re: NYC's New Horseless Carriage?

Post by Jugster » Sun Nov 30, 2014 6:43 am

Here's a YouTube video of the monstrosity:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1L-6SWuYxc4

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