It seems to us that scientific and technological progress is moving progressively, from simple to complex. Well, let's take a look at these unique inventions. Let's start with a truly fantastic car. She is worth showing at least because of her stunning appearance - she seemed to slip into our world straight from the games where steampunk and dieselpunk rule.

But she really was just that - with steam and diesel power plants. And besides these units, an electric transmission, which seemed unrealistic at the beginning of the last century, was present in the design of the machine. The history of this apparatus is as follows. In 1889, the New York City Fire Department received a unique mechanism at its disposal - a steam pump, and not an ordinary one, but a truly gigantic one. This was due to the fact that the city began to grow upward, the first "skyscrapers" appeared, on the upper floors of which there were also fires.

Hand pumps could not cope - the water pressure was required serious. Low-power steam pumps did not help either. The new pump solved the problem of delivering water to the fire site. But what could be used to deliver the pump itself to the places of fire, considering that it weighed nine tons? Eight heavy trucks, harnessed to a special cart with difficulty, but coped, but it was not always possible to turn around with such a team.

American engineers proposed a way out: to use the pump's steam engine as a propulsion device. For a decent, at that time, amount (seven thousand dollars), a real "monster" was constructed - a self-propelled steam pump car. And he was good: he drove quickly, delivered the pump where needed, and this mechanism had only one "BUT" … No matter how fast the ferry car went, quite a lot of time passed before its "start": the steam engine required a certain pressure to start work, and the boiler was not heated instantly.

It turns out that the saying “to hurry like fire” in this case was black humor. And so, in 1908, the New York steam pump received a "global upgrade" - for efficiency, a gasoline internal combustion engine was installed in the design. And not just installed, but in "symbiosis" with the existing steam. Since the steam boiler is "integrated" into the rear wheel drive, it is difficult to remodel it, and the gas boiler uses … front wheel drive! But that's not all: another fantastic innovation was adopted - the electric transmission. She solved the difficulties with clutch and transmission placement that could not be designed and placed in the allocated space.

The engine (which had six cylinders) was used to turn the generator, which supplied current to the electric motors to drive the front wheels. The result is a unique design, and if we take into account that the steam drive could also sometimes be turned on, turning the steam-gasoline-electric pump into an all-wheel drive unit, then the car was absolutely fantastic! According to rumors, the car, having worked for many years, was nevertheless written off and sold to a private collection to some lucky man.

And here is a domestic development. True, realized in England. Fantastic two-wheeled gyrocar of Count Shilovskiy. We have already shown it briefly in one of our videos, but now we will add details that few people know about. In 1914, a very entertaining car was shown in London - it was designed for four people, under the hood was a gasoline internal combustion engine that was gaining popularity, but there were only two wheels under the car.

They were located like a bicycle, but the device did not fall even while standing still and when moving at low speed! The remarkable mechanism was made by a Russian inventor, Count Pyotr Petrovich Shilovsky. Incidentally, the former governor of Kostroma. Shilovsky did not make a special secret of his device: the balance of his car was ensured by an untwisted flywheel, which created the effect of a gyroscope.

With a total weight of the car of about 2750 kg, the flywheel was made of metal 12 cm thick and a meter in diameter. A pair of fifty-kilogram pendulums helped to avoid "distortions". The pendulum was spun by a special electric motor powered by the main engine. It is interesting that initially Shilovsky offered his invention at home, but was extremely disappointed with the reaction of the authorities. Then he proposed the concept of his device to the Walsley Motors automobile plant in 1912, received consent and two years later showed the car to the public.

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