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HOP 244 – 1948 Invicta Black Prince DHC
Image by homer—-simpson
Being one of the greatest names in the pre-war vehicle market, hopes were higher when Invicta Automobile Ltd announced their 1st post-war model in 1946: “The World’s most advanced car” proclaimed the firm literature. “Brilliant acceleration, scientific braking, superlative roadholding combined with luxury, simplicity and freedom from mechanical difficulty.” The reality turned out to be rather distinct but you couldn’t assist but admire the sheer ambition of the project.
Every little thing about the vehicle just bristled with innovation: the engine was a 120bhp Meadows 3-litre straight six with double overhead cams, dual ignition systems feeding 12 plugs and triple SU carbs, whilst the gearbox created it Britain’s first automobile with fully automatic transmission. Referred to as the Brockhouse Hydro-Kinetic Turbo-Transmitter, it offered an infinite selection of ratios controlled by one simple dashboard switch to choose amongst forward and reverse. Top speed was quoted as 107mph and it could hit 60mph in 12 seconds – in either forward or reverse!
The chassis was no less ambitious with all-independent suspension by torsion bars and sliding pillars, with forged wishbones and inboard Girling hydraulic drum brakes at the rear. For maximum refinement, the floor and seats have been finished as an completely separate structure from the bodyshell and mounted on eight Silentbloc chassis mounts. To save weight and improve rigidity, the physique was supported on aircraft-style light alloy box sections in place of the traditional wood.
Other features incorporated 24-volt electrics with two 12-volt batteries utilised in parallel for lighting and in series for starting. These also powered an onboard hydraulic jacking method and electric heaters in the sump and water jackets with a trickle charger and mains connection for effective winter beginning.
Sadly such innovations didn’t come low cost and by the time it was prepared for production the automobile price a mighty £3,579 with buy tax – as much as a Rolls or a Bentley. The gearbox also proved delicate in operation and unless utilized exactly as detailed in the handbook, it could very easily be damaged in the transition from forward to reverse ratios. Just 16 Black Prince cars had been produced in between 1947 and 1949 prior to Invicta went bankrupt in Might 1950, of which it is believed that no far more than six have been two-door dropheads.
Initial registered in April 1948, this particular drophead is chassis quantity 105 and was first owned by HH Turner of Turner & Co Timber Merchants, Bloxwich. Old buff log books on file show that in 1957 ownership transferred to Magnus Pegrum of Frimley Green, Surrey in 1962 to Ralph Crowe of Shrewsbury in 1967 to Bryan Adams of Hayling Island, Hants and in 1978 to Michael Hentall of Southampton.
The existing vendor acquired the vehicle from Mr Hentall in 1988 at which point it was still in exceptionally sound and original condition throughout and nevertheless fitted with its original engine and gearbox, both in functioning order. He planned to restore the car but after obtaining the brightwork rechromed, the brakes rebuilt and the engine cleaned and serviced with etch-primed cam covers and carbs, other commitments meant that the project was place on the back burner and the automobile was to languish in storage for yet another 20 years. The vendor has because emigrated and has reluctantly decided that the automobile ought to pass to an enthusiastic new owner with much more time and energy to devote to the project.
As you can see from the pictures, the auto remains in wonderfully sound and original condition with a particularly nice red leather interior which must revive beautifully. Regrettably vandals have removed the centre element of the dashboard containing the instruments, but images on file show what it looked like so it should not be as well challenging to recreate.
The vehicle comes with a quite massive history file from new like a wealth of technical information, engineering diagrams and blueprints from Invicta Vehicles, Brockhouse, Meadows and other sources which will no doubt prove of excellent worth to the restorer. Altogether a most rare and fascinating motorcar which will amply reward the sympathetic conservation and restoration it now calls for. We are extremely excited to have this vehicle in the sale and can not wait to see it restored to its former glory. The gorgeous Meadows twin cam engine have to surely be worth the estimate all on its personal!
Image from page 247 of “Locomotive engineering : a practical journal of railway motive power and rolling stock” (1892)
Image by Internet Archive Book Images
Title: Locomotive engineering : a practical journal of railway motive energy and rolling stock
Year: 1892 (1890s)
Authors: Hill, John A. (John Alexander), 1858-1916 Sinclair, Angus, 1841-1919
Subjects: Railroads Locomotives
Publisher: New York : A. Sinclair, J.A. Hill [and so on.]
Contributing Library: Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
Digitizing Sponsor: Lyrasis Members and Sloan Foundation
Click right here to view book online to see this illustration in context in a browseable on-line version of this book.
Text Appearing Before Image:
ighboring road, andwhen, for the comfort of passengers,the train in query was began, it wasrun specifically on the exact same time as the trainon the other road, and it may well be nicely to the smoke. This was too considerably for thefeelings of not only the passengers, butengineer and conductor, and the former,in his eagerness to make better time,occasionally did not quit just at the station,even with the engine reversed, and thelatter, with several apologies, would assistthe passengers to alight at the road-side.The brakes on the vehicles have been in goodorder and completely equal in power to ninetyper cent, of weight of car the tenderbrake was equally excellent but the driverbrake was of the pull-up variety, with theusual gland leakage. To hold the pistonpacking tight, the engineer was accus-tomed, when oiling, to carry an oil canin one hand and a water can in the other.This brake was produced to do great workby turning the cylinders upside down,altering the pistons on the rods, puttingon a long crosshead, and generating it push
Text Appearing Following Image:
CANADIAN PACIFIC ENGINE, WITH FIKST FORWARD TUUCK BRAKE APPLIED. mention that these roads ran side by sidefor the whole distance, and the stationson every have been straight opposite to eachother. The train consisted of two 50,000-poundcars and a four-wheel coupled Manchesterengine, with 16-inch cylinder and 62-inchwheels. The tank was sloped to the back,and a pilot place on the back of the tender,as thete was no indicates of turning engineat 1 finish of the run. A couple of passengers patronized the newtrain but when it was located that the littleengine could not get there on time, andmake all the stops, which had been thirteen ina distance of 23 miles, they produced verybroad hints of going back to the otherline. The engine on the other road was a re-markably good one, and was built tor thatparticular service, with the water tank onthe boiler, and it employed to get out of thestation with such surprising speed that thelittle Manchester could have a great viewof the rear of that train when it did not get up as an alternative
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Lake Street #five Near Engine Home at Crawford
Image by cta net
Just before electrification, the very first two ‘L’ roads ran trains with wooden vehicles pulled by steam locomotives like this one here. These locomotives burned coal to heat water and develop pressurized steam like any steam engine would, but have been much smaller than what you may possibly have noticed in old film footage of intercity railways. ‘L’ trains have been light and the locomotives necessary to be, also, so they could pick up speed and cease swiftly, thinking about the close spacing of fast transit stations.
The locomotive style is named a "Forney," following steam locomotive designer Matthias Forney, which could operate in either path, assisting to make it easier to attach a locomotive to the back side of a train at the end of a line, and change direction and run a reverse trip without having to turn a locomotive around.
The Lake Street ‘L’ in fact named its locomotives in addition to numbering them. Noticed here is #five, named "Lizzie A." (regrettably, we’re not positive who Lizzie was, but she most likely was a person who had a relation to the ‘L’ organization or somebody else who did). The Lake Street ‘L’ ran steam locomotives till 1896, converting to electric power a little ahead of its slightly older peer serving the South Side, a separate firm at the time.
The station in the background is Crawford, later renamed Pulaski.