Landmaster

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Landmaster
Landmaster.jpg
Promotional picture of the Landmaster from Damnation Alley
Type Amphibious APC
Place of origin Studio City, California
Service history
In service 1977—
Used by film, television, & car shows
Production history
Designer Dean Jeffries
Manufacturer Jeffries Automotive
Unit cost US$350,000
Produced 1976
Number built 1
Specifications
Weight 23,000 lb (10,000 kg)
Length 35 feet (11 m)

Armor 38-inch (1 cm) steel plate
Main
armament
6 autocannon
2 bazookas
Engine 427-cubic-inch (7.00 L)
Transmission 5-speed Allison
Suspension 12-wheel tri-star
Ground clearance 2 feet (0.61 m)
Speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
Steering
system
hydraulic rams

The Landmaster is a unique 12-wheeled amphibious articulated vehicle constructed by Dean Jeffries at Jeffries Automotive in Universal City, California for the 1977 science fiction film Damnation Alley. Despite the appearance of two Landmasters in the film (achieved with process photography and models), only one was built at a cost of $350,000 in 1976.[1] ($1.4 million in 2010 dollars)[2]

History[edit]

A staple of Southern California car culture for many years, the Landmaster was parked in full view next to Dean Jeffries' automotive shop on Cahuenga Boulevard in North Hollywood, California from 1977 to 2005.

The Landmaster was sold to a private owner in 2005 and was restored to its original condition as featured in Damnation Alley. The Landmaster was then on the show car circuit for several years.[3] In 2007 it was featured at the San Francisco Rod & Custom Show at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, California[4] as part of special exhibit with other notable movie and TV cars.

Some time in the late 2000s, the Landmaster was vandalized while in storage. The damage is relatively minor, but repair and restoration is required again. In March 2014, Landmaster was moved from its storage location in Campbell, California to a new maintenance and storage facility in central California (see photos and Galley).

Construction[edit]

Popular Science described the Landmaster:

Three independent drive sources running from a gasoline power plant. Uses semi truck parts in the drive train. Can operate with the front or rear wheel trinary out of commission. Side and top hatches on the main unit and rear and top on the after section. Full running lights and brake lights for urban street use. External video camera is mounted on the forward pylon located just behind the front top hatch. Could also house the antenna. All pylons are hardened and armored. Can operate in water and will remain sealed when fully submerged. Can float while half full of water.[5]

While the film is fiction, the Landmaster vehicle is real. In the story, the Landmaster was designed to use as many standard truck parts as possible, so that any junkyard would have whatever was needed for repairs. The real Landmaster is powered by a 390-cubic-inch (6.4 L) Ford industrial engine, and uses the rear-ends of two commercial trucks and an Allison automatic truck transmission. It features a fully functional, custom-built "tri-star" wheel arrangement, which could actually help it crawl over boulders. All 12 wheels are driven, but only 8 are normally in contact with the road surface at any one time.[6]

The vehicle was steered not by turning the front wheels, but by bending the middle section with hydraulic rams to effect a turn, similar to large construction equipment. The Landmaster's bodywork was made with 38-inch (1 cm) steel plating, which helped it tip the scales at over 10 tons. The design's strength allowed it to survive a 25-foot (7.6 m) jump during testing with no damage.

Landmaster features
Landmaster
Front view, just prior to loading on trailer. 
Landmaster
Gantry/entry into cockpit. Raises/lowers via a motor driven cable system. 
Landmaster
Close-up of trinary wheel system. 
Landmaster
Closeup of section pivot and drive system 

Other appearances[edit]

Gallery[edit]

Loading and move from Campbell, California to its new facility in central California
Landmaster
Landmaster was driven under its own power onto trailer shown. 
Landmaster
Landmaster just after driving onto trailer 
Landmaster
Loaded onto to heavy duty trailer for transport 
Landmaster
Rear view, loaded onto to heavy duty trailer for transport 
March 28, 2014

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ McComb, Gordon; J. Steven York. "Automotive Fantasies—And The Men Who Make Them". Science & Mechanics (unknown): 66–67. 
  2. ^ "Inflation Calculator". DollarTimes. 
  3. ^ Landmaster picture from its recent showing.
  4. ^ 2007 San Francisco Rod, Custom and Motorcycle Show Event Guide
  5. ^ Scagnetti, Jack (March 1977). "Monster vehicle to star in movie". Popular Science (March, 1977): 83. 
  6. ^ "CB Supercar: The Incredible Landmaster". CB Guide (unknown): 12–15. 
  7. ^ Quiet Riot (July 1986). Quiet Riot - the Wild and the Young. YouTube. 
  8. ^ Landon, Michael (director) (August 1989). Merry Christmas From Grandpa (4). YouTube. 
  9. ^ Jittlov, Mike. The Wizard of Speed and Time. 
  10. ^ Baldwin, Peter (director) (November 1990). Get a Life - S1E06 - Paperboy 2000 - Part 3/3. YouTube. 
  11. ^ Roth, Phillip J. (director) (1994). A.P.E.X 2/7. YouTube. 
  12. ^ Ray, Fred Olen (director) (1997). "Hybrid". IMDb. 
  13. ^ Stokes, Trey (January 4, 2002). "Dino Island". Motion Simulators. The Truly Dangerous Company. Archived from the original on 2009-04-19. 

External links[edit]