Author Topic: Article in todays Globe.......  (Read 2304 times)

Les

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Article in todays Globe.......
« on: February 18, 2010, 10:26:17 PM »

marcus

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2010, 08:40:38 AM »
Nice one! A few typical newspaper errors, like Messereschmitt, and Heinkels with 203 cc engines, but quite fun.
Just remember: as one door closes behind you, another slams in your face

Bob Purton

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2010, 12:31:27 PM »
Who really "designed" the KR175 Messerschmitt or Fend? I was always under the impression that it was Fend, the article appears to contradict that, I will happily stand corrected.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2010, 08:32:40 AM by Bob Purton »

Big Al

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2010, 10:14:33 AM »
It is interesting to speculate on who designed the KR200. Officially it was Fend. However there have been rumours that a group of engineers working for Messerschmitt came in and added their expertise to the revision of the dated 175 design. This does happen quite regularly as good engineers tend to go from project to project guided by the technical and fiscal needs of their masters without gaining the merit for their skills. The KR175 is a fine car with clear linear development ongoing throughout its manufacturer and rooted in the Flitzer before it but the KR200 is very much better in so many ways. The KR200 a radical departure from what came before it. No chassis, freely hung engine with a drive to allow movement, rubber in torson rather than compressing for suspension etc. One key feature was Sachs created an engine that was modified inside and out to suit the installation, something most other Microcars did not have. This is why the KR200 was a success and still so popular where as the KR175 is really a much more difficult car to drive. If you have a KR200 as well a KR175 you would not have used the KR175 in the '60's. The Tiger, developed from the KR200, shows no such radical leap of ideas, not that this proves anything in itself as finance was always an issue. It is supposed that Messerschmitt was against the idea of the Tiger, again proving nothing. I have always found it odd that the Tiger was developed without sourcing a power unit of at least the Sachs 200 engines quality first. To do this on a car that was always going to sell in low numbers and then go on to build the engine in house with no prior expertise in engine production since nothing available would fit seems a rather odd way to go about things. It runs counter to the KR200 development which given the progressive development of the KR175, to me, suggests that indeed a team designed the KR200 as a project as it is out of character with the way the other machines were produced, not least it appearing nearly fully formed.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Bob Purton

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2010, 10:33:16 AM »
I was under the impression that Goggo were approached about an engine but sent them away with a flea in the ear? I think Goggo engines are superb, what a car the TG500 would have been!

marcus

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2010, 10:39:31 AM »
Fritz Fend set the ball rolling, and once you have a proven concept it is MUCH easier for others to add improvements. I have regularly designed instruments which no other person or company has come close to even imagining, and have a reputation as a wildly eccentric maverick among drummers. Some of the big drum companies like Yamaha, Pearl and DW (Drum Workshop) have huge budgets to spend developing "new" products, which are invariably re-hashes of familiar stuff, but done to a very high standard and mass produced in hundreds of thousands. Fend was very keen on developing and improving the KR design, with more performance etc., and th budget he was working with on the TG 500 was far less than other car manufacturers spend designing their badges. With Messerschmitt pulling out of bubblecars  and going back to aircraft (Messerschmitt Bolkow Blohm / MBB) Fend just had to knuckle down and do the best he could to bring out his last-ditch attempt to achieve publicity and sales.
I know only too well how hard it is trying to achieve good results when finance and resources are far less than satisfactory, and despite all the faults on the TG I still think it was a great achievement.
The engine was not fully developed, and the whole concept of Tandem seating was by then completely daft when it was comparable in length and width to Fiat 500s, Goggos, Minis etc, but with only room for 2 adults. The layout was fine to make a 3 wheeler stable and well balanced, but once you have 4 wheels that narrow body is totally stupid, and the whole concept is daft. I understand that Fend was desperate to develop a totally new small car that made use of it dimensions, but there was no money because of rapidly declining Bubble car sales; the brief boom ended suddenly, leaving no money for many makers to develop new products.

Perhaps that is part of the appeal of TGs, a shoddy path leading nowhere. But it is one of my favourite paths. and however flawed, like Morgan 3 wheelers, I still love them!
Just remember: as one door closes behind you, another slams in your face

Big Al

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Re: Article in todays Globe.......
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2010, 12:07:27 PM »
Well I understand all those points but surely that is all the more reason for sorting out a quality engine supply before developing the car. Cart, Horse? Yes Hans Glas would not let him have a supply of 400cc engines. I never heard that Glas did the dirty though ie agreeing to supply but then reneging. As a for instance, the Steyr Puch engine was available just over the boarder, what a good engine and it could have been fitted if taken into account early in the project. The fact they supplied engines for Invalid Carrages suggests that they would have supplied.

The fact is John Bannell's Frankenschmitt shows that there was life in the trike. If money had been put into putting a next generation 250 cc two stroke with 5 speeds type engine in , MZ in John's case,  uprating the brakes and a few other jobs - half way to a Tiger - the KR250 would have sold buckets for a few further years and financed a Tiger project.  Both Willie Messerschmitt and Ernst Hienkel moved into aero engineering as soon as they were allowed. Both knew where his bread was buttered. The difference is Heinkel owned the rights to the car with his name on so he had other people make the car and buy his engines until the end. Both moved to more lucrative work but neither threw over a profit to do so. Messerschmitt and Fend must have discussed the future. What did Messerschmitt see that Fend did not?

I agree for total car sales a Tandem is stupid layout. For a sportscar and a three wheeler however it is actually perfect. The balance is only effected for and aft by a passinger and you cannot hear them moaning about your driving to fast or their hair. Its a sportscar. Sense of moving passingers is irrelevant in a pure sportscar. Passingers are in fact a damned nuisance unless they can read a map and that is no longer required. That is why there are so few real sportscars available today. It is all about dirty great big engines now not clever design, nimbleness and driving experience as most of these 'supercars' are computer aided otherwise they are virtually impossible to drive. Pointless posing machines and not for the driving enthusiast unless you can afford the circuit to use it on. No Fend had the right concept but the wrong power unit. Besides the power unit consumed the budget that should have been spent on the chassis. Think what the Tiger could have been with wishbone suspension and a small screamer in it. Flipping eck you would be killed in the rush to get one today as those sort of machines are not made anymore. They would be racing them like Lotus Sevens at the value of ERAs. Another two totally impractical cars by the way but both road legal and one still in production. Who knows a well produced Tiger might have remained in production as a specialist sports racing car for sometime.

It all went wrong for sports cars when the cars at Le Mans could no longer be driven on the road to the course to take part. There have been few genuine Sports cars since but rather Grand Tourers which is not the same thing at all.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs