Detroit’s Packard Plant cranked out 70,000 engines during wartime

PT boats! Kittyhawks! Hurricanes with 40mm guns to rip open Nazi tanks! Mosquito bombers! And, of course, the mighty P-51 Mustang! What do all these marvelous manifestations of the Allies’ mechanized might have in common?

Why, they’re all powered by might V12 motors assembled by America’s Master Motor Builder: Packard. The film reel is all about the automaker’s contributions outside the world of luxury automobiles, including motors for flying boats, tanks, zeppelins, speedboats and more. –

Go to Autoweek to read an article and watch a terrific movie

Obscure hydroplane, built in a barn in an out of the way place, never raced, never to fulfill the dreams of her builder.

Wonderful story posted in the new issue, over at Unlimited New Journal, that some of you may not even know much about. The Miss Grays Harbor unlimited hydroplane and it’s history.
The mid-1950’s building boom of championship hulls had subsided somewhat, with only three camps officially giving notice of their intentions. In the east, Les Staudacher was putting the finishing touches on a new, drop sponson sister ship to Sam DuPont’s Nitrogen. Little did we know that eleven years later as Miss Madison, it would record a victory in one of the most famous Gold Cup races of all time!
Out west Peter & Richard Woeck were getting a brand new Miss Burien off of the Ted Jones drawing board to replace their former hull which had been destroyed in the 1959 Diamond Cup. Bob Gilliam had been working tirelessly on another of his home built hydros, the new KOLroy 1, which would go on to be his most successful hull in a career spanning the next 13 years. An interesting read for sure. Use this link to go directly to the September Issue.

making a carbon fiber hydro

UPDATE ON THE TWO PIECE CARBON FIBER MOLD.

Today was lifting the carbon fiber mold off the mule (or donor hydro).The first two photos are before we lifted it off and the remaining photos are after it was broken free. The plan was to lift it far enough to temporarily place carton between the mold and the hull (tomorrow we will actually lift off the mold and place it on a cart we built. The reason for the delay is because the Spokesman Review was going to come over tomorrow to an article, but that has been moved to Monday. We will go ahead and take it off tomorrow and start cleaning up the hydro and mold. We used two cherry pickers and a fork lift to pry off the mold. About 9 air ports were molded into the mold to help free it from the hydro and those same air ports will be used to free the production part. The only casualty today was me, when the rear cherry picker I was counter balancing, kicked out from under the boat – scared me a wee bit.
Bob Bolam
N-22 Vintage Hydroplane Team

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Day 2, UPDATE ON THE TWO PIECE CARBON FIBER MOLD REMOVAL. At 9 AM we reconvened at NIC Composite School to continue removing the mold from the master. We three UNWISE men (Murdo, his son and myself) lifted it with the forklift and moved it away. That went fine, then we rolled the wood temporary cart under the mold. All’s well.. until the wooden cart decided to brake while on was on top of the mold removing the straps… OOPS !! I got back off the mold and we lifted the mold up far enough to get the cart out. Then I proceeded to fix it and make it stronger… Lowered it again and this time everything worked as PLANNED… Murdo, Holly and her son started removing all the aluminum foil. That aluminum foil worked great to protect the hydro and actually did make it easier to pull the two apart. Murdo started pressure washing both the hydro and the mold. The process to get the hydro ready to be put back on the trailer and returned to her owner begins. But I over heard the mold saying, “I’m Free, I’m Free, I’m really Free.

Bob Bolam
N-22 Vintage Hydroplane Team

Carbon Fiber

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Ford Cammer —- in a boat.

MidLife Crisis
In my opinion – prettiest photo I have ever seen of a FORD SOHC 427. That boat is a 1964 Sanger owned by John Vermeesch (who worked on the Ford motor development team).
Oh….and you can’t just tow this boat with just any car. You’ll need a woodie station wagon.
© F. Peirce Williams – Quake at the Lake 2010.
This photo and other great Mr. Williams photographs are available for purchase.

Tidbits that cross my desk