Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

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oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Sun Sep 07, 2014 6:09 pm

We arrived today and checked into the excellent Country Inn in Camden. Met old friends and kicked off the festivities with a lobster dinner.
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lud Gocek shows why we tour in Maine.
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Nobody went hungry tonight!
Tomorrow will be the longest day, 70 miles, to a boatyard specializing in wooden boats, and to a lighthouse. We're anticipating three coastal (flattish) days and two inland (hillier) days. Thursday we'll take the cars on a ferry ride to Islesboro Island. The forecast is for gorgeous weather the next three days, rain Thursday, cloudy Friday. Stay tuned.

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder
Last edited by oldcarfudd on Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.

oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Mon Sep 08, 2014 6:33 pm

I'm sometimes astounded at the things people feel compelled to apologize for. Bill Jones, today's tourmaster, apologized for the number of short twists and turns in today's 70-mile route. No apologies necessary! The coast of Maine is convoluted. If you take straight roads, you miss some glorious maritime vistas. If you hug the coastline, you see it all. And what a spectacular ride it was!

At only mile 6, we had a major destination. Rockport Marine is a premier wooden boat shop doing new construction, restoration, and maintenance. Here is a recent build using cold-molded construction. Criss-crossing layers of epoxy-coated veneer are laid up over molds and laminated under vacuum to form a custom-molded curved plywood hull.
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This is a 37-foot-long, cold-molded, custom yacht.
Long and cold molded.
They also make new small boats, like this traditional lapstrake dinghy.
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Lapstrake dinghy being built upside down
And here's a traditional double-planked yacht being repaired after it ran aground.
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The damaged wood must be cut away before repairs can be spliced in.


From Rockport Marine we had a 30-mile run to lunch. Vince Altieri was spotted doing some minor tweaking to his '04 CDO at a pleasant spot along the route.
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If you have to tinker, there are worse places to pick.
And the spot we parked for lunch wasn't too shabby, either!
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Cars at the lunch stop.
The final stop was to visit a lighthouse and museum.
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Norm Woolley's REO at the lighthouse.
It was 28 miles to home and, as we got away from the coast, we discovered that Maine isn't flat!

Cadillacs had some troubles today. Jeff Lee's newly restored 1905 broke its brake pedal; it is now splinted together for tomorrow's run. My '07 developed serious misfiring, which turned to be due to a dying battery; I put in my spare and all became well. Mike Landry's '07 broke its water pump drive; a splice from a piece of flexible tubing restored function, if not beauty. Doug tomb's Chase highwheeler needed some extra tweaking to perform; it wasn't ready to roll until 10 am, too late for a 70-mile day in a car that cruises at 17 mph on a flat road, but it will be ready for tomorrow.

Good night, folks!

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder

oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Tue Sep 09, 2014 6:35 pm

Today's tour was shorter than yesterday's; 52 miles if you didn't want ice cream, 56 if you did. (Did anyone NOT want ice cream? REALLY??) But it was much hillier. Low gears got serious workouts, though I heard of no cars that couldn't climb in low or passengers who had to walk. That was quite a difference from the last two 1&2 tours!

Today's uniquely Maine experience was a builder of lobster traps. I was surprised to learn that they aren't wood anymore, but vinyl-coated steel wire. Every lobsterman has his own ideas about what he wants in a lobster trap, so there's a surprising amount of custom building. In a good season like this one, the builder can't keep traps in stock.
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Making lobster traps.
Three beautiful old ladies tried to lose their virginity by completing their very first touring day. Jeff Lee's 1905 Cadillac made it, with the help of some temporary fixes.
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Jeff Lee's 1905 Cadillac
Rob and Mary Ann Roark's Rambler made the first two stops, but then jammed in high gear and couldn't continue.
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Rob Roark's Rambler getting admired,
Doug and Beverly Tomb's 1910 Chase highwheeler surrey made the first stop, but then one of his 104-year-old solid tires (held on with wire ties!) disintegrated. But the car had made a LO-O-ONG hill, so Doug was pretty enthusiastic.
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Doug Tomb's Chase highwheeler while it still had two front tires.
The Landry Cadillac was down with a water leak too serious to be fixed on the road. Stu and Bunny Lyon were going modern due to unspecified REO troubles.

One possible lunch stop was a well-stocked farmer's market, where some folks dined on huge portions of home-made strawberry shortcake.
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Lots of good things to eat at the farmer's market.
Further down the road was a large delicatessen, where others had various German specialties.

And then there was the ice cream stop - - -

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder

oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Wed Sep 10, 2014 7:29 pm

Never say never! Mike Landry was back on the road today, having had some repair parts custom-made at the Owls Head Museum's restoration shop over night.
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Mike Landry' and Jeff Lee's Cadillacs on the road at Owls Head
Unfortunately, he broke down later for what seems to have been a different reason, and needed another ride in his trailer.

Doug and Bev Tomb's Chase highwheeler made a brief appearance at Owls Head, so we could see a "flap" tire. That's when a section of 104-year-old solid tire becomes a flap, and has to be secured in ways OSHA wouldn't approve; the Tombs did no more driving.
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The Tomb's Chase shows off its "flap" tire at Owls Head
When I went out to lubricate my clutch bearings and transmission this morning, I found a flat (not flap) tire. A million curses upon those in third-world countries who put brass stems into inner tubes inadequately. With Jeff Berdass supplying skill and muscle, the tire was again made round in all four corners, and my touring resumed. The morning stop was at the Sail, Power and Steam museum, which provided an excellent lecture to those whose arrival hadn't been delayed by tire troubles.
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Cars at the Sail, Power and Steam Museum
We then went on to the Owls Head lighthouse, a beautiful site to visit. The lighthouse itself is off limits to visitors, in case one of us is a terrorist with nefarious plans. I recalled the parking lot with less than fondness; a few years ago I was on a steam tour here and managed to set my Stanley on fire. While I was waiting for it to burn itself out, a helpful local came rushing up to my petroleum fire with a bucket of water yelling: "I'll put it out!" I thought I was going to have to tackle him!
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The view from Owls Head lighthouse
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Helen and Lee Turner's REO at the Owls Head lighthouse
The main destination today was the Owls Head Museum of Transportation. This place just gets better and better. We were given a good box lunch and a tour of the auto and aircraft restoration facilities. One of their more spectacular cars was an enormous French Panhard et Levassor from 1905 which cost over 7 thousand bucks for the chassis alone. In those days, you could buy a pretty good house for $2,500. Apparently at least a few aristocratic French families managed to escape the guillotine.
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A Panhard et Levassor, an Autocar, and a Bleriot monoplane at Owls Head Museum
There were many other cars, magnificent (Silver Ghosts) and mundane (Crosleys) as well as an extensive private collection of M.G.s (not all were little sports cars) and some wonderful early airplanes.
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A pre-World-War-I German airplane

Difficult as it was to tear ourselves away, an ice cream social was calling, along with an excellent four-piece musical combo. First things first!

Tomorrow we're supposed to take a ferry to Islesboro and drive around the island. The weather forecast is for ugly. If it doesn't look good, Joan and I may go somewhere else in our modern car, and any report you get from me will be second-hand.

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder

oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Thu Sep 11, 2014 6:48 pm

Joan and I did other things today, but several cars went out on tour. They didn't get rain until waiting in line for the ferry back from Islesboro Island; upon returning to the mainland, most of them cut short the afternoon tour and returned directly to the hotel.

On the ferry ride over, the group met one of the members of the combo that had played at the ice cream social. He's the postmaster on the island, and he suggested they drop in at the local school to give the kids a treat. Drop in they did indeed! Not only did they give rides to all the kids, but any kid who could reach the pedals was given the opportunity to drive a brass car in the parking lot. We're talking fifth and sixth graders here; the older kids were off on a three-day camping trip. It's obvious that kids who grow up on a small island are raised to be more independent than most mainland kids these days. If anyone had suggested such a caper at most mainland schools, the school administrators, horrified parents, child safety officers, lawyers, cops and other worry-warts would have put a stop to it. Hats off to Islesboro!

We've had some more attrition. Jeff Lee's brake pedal broke again, in a different place. Andy Wallace's clutch lining ceased either to clutch or to line. Stu Lyon's water pump no longer pumps.

This evening Jeff Lee treated us to a wonderful presentation about the 20-year saga of his Cadillac restoration. As a 20-year-old university student, he traced down a rumor about an old Cadillac on a farm. There was an engine that had been used in a sawmill; a transmission whose low and reverse had been pressed into service on a log splitter; a wheel that was part of a wheelbarrow; a wheel hub that was the swivel of a home-made 8-inch telescope; a steering wheel that controlled a water sluice; radius rods that were in various jobs needing water tubing - are you starting to get the picture? And Jeff lives in Nova Scotia, where there is essentially ZERO early car activity. Over many years he got introduced to people who could help him - Greg Tocket, Harold Sharon and Don Rising were frequently-mentioned names. One day at Rheinbeck, a load of miscellaneous old car parts appeared. Right away someone bought a seat that Jeff recognized as belonging to a Cadillac; the buyer intended it for a Ford speedster. Several people spent the day persuading the buyer that Jeff's Cadillac would be a better home for the seat, and eventually the buyer relented. Jeff has spent the last few days learning how good a car a one-lung Cadillac really is, despite his tribulations. We expect to see him and his car at lots of future tours.

oldcarfudd
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:15 pm
Location: Morristown, NJ

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oldcarfudd » Fri Sep 12, 2014 5:21 pm

Fall comes early to Maine. After the front came through yesterday, today dawned bright and clear and windy. Extra layers were in order.
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The Risings' Cadillac, with extra clothing awaiting its passengers
The route was inland, often on top of a ridge, almost 10% unpaved, with glorious views. The first stop was a real sleeper. We arrived at a long, nondescript, weed-overgrown shed that looked like a set for a Hitchcock movie. Inside was some of the most beautiful restoration work on antique fire engines, both horse-drawn and powered. The gold leaf art work was breathtaking.
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A restored horse-drawn fire engine - - -
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- - - and some of its details.
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Some detailing on a '20s fire engine.
We visited George Sprowl's restoration shop, and he had this Maxwell on display outside - - -
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George Sprowl's big Maxwell
There are lots of reasons to buy an old car, but Sue Littlefield gave me one I hadn't heard before: "We have a red one, a yellow one, and a green one, and we wanted a blue one." So the Littlefields bought George Sprowl's 1912 Maxwell Messenger. I didn't learn about this deal until the lunch stop, or I'd have taken a picture for you. Speaking of the lunch stop, it was at a great little restaurant with an extensive beer menu and interesting food. Joan and I had a coconut, peanut and shrimp chowder - yum!

The farewell dinner was outside, in crisp weather with no mosquitoes. The Tombs got the Tire Award for their flap tire. The Woolleys got the Lightning Bolt Award for discovering they had a wheel held together with only one bolt. The Altieris got the Traffic Jam Award (a jar of jam by that name) for having the slowest car (the Tombs had already won an award, so they were out of the running). Jeff and Debbie Jones got a similar award for the rarest and smartest car (a Yale). Jeff Lee got the Golden Pedal Award for twice breaking the brake pedal on his 20-year-long restoration of a 1905 Cadillac. The Wallaces announced that next year's eastern national 1&2 will be in northwestern New Jersey in July. Be there!

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder

oakland12
Posts: 38
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 1:20 am

Re: Maine 1&2-Cylinder Tour

Post by oakland12 » Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:24 pm

As usual a great tour report Gil. Makes me want to sell off a few T's and get a 1 or 2 cyl automobile. :D
Ken Findlay

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