Richmond (automobile)

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At least 2 cars named Richmond were produced. The first was a steam car made by the Richmond Automobile Company in Richmond, Indiana from 1902 to 1903. The second was a car built by the Wayne Works in Richmond, Indiana from 1904 to 1917.

Richmond Automobile Company car[edit]

The engine was claimed to be simple and the most compact steam vehicle engine on the market.[1] The two-cylinder engine had a 2.5" bore and 3.5" stroke and weighed just 46 pounds. This engine produced its maximum 6 horsepower at 960 rpm. Just the engine was manufactured in 1901, with production of the entire car commencing the following year. The car was a chain-driven dos-a-dos four-seater. By 1903, auto production had terminated, though it is believed that engine production continued past this date.[2]

Wayne Works car[edit]

The Wayne Works had been making farm tools since the 1870s, and supposedly in 1901 the company president, Walter W. Schultz, asked the chief engineer Jack St. John to design an automobile "because everyone else is."[2] St. John designed a two-cylinder air-cooled touring car, which was sold to a local businessman. A subsequent car was sold the next year, but full-scale manufacture did not begin till 1904. Four-cylinder engines were always at least offered and in some years were the only option. The Richmond was a typical car of the time, though it was well regarded locally for its reliability and hill-climbing abilities. The biggest change to the Richmond occurred in 1910, when the engine became water-cooled instead of air-cooled. A six-cylinder model was offered from 1914 till 1916, with outputs rising from 45 hp to 50 hp. Horsepower for the air-cooled fours ranged from 20 to 30, while the water-cooled engines produced 22.5 to 40 hp. In 1917, the automobile department was closed, though agricultural tools continued to be produced for a number of years. The reason given for its automotive failure was that the firm "lacked the 'push' necessary to make it in the highly competitive automobile industry."[2]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Kimes, Beverly Rae. Standard Catalog of American Cars: 1805-1942 (Iola, WI: Krause, 1996), p.1290.
  2. ^ a b c Kimes, p.1290.

References[edit]

  • Georgano, Nick (Editor). The Beaulieu Encyclopedia of the Automobile. Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn, 2000. ISBN 1-57958-293-1
  • Kimes, Beverly Rae and Clark Jr, Henry Austin. Standard Catalog of American Cars: 1805-1942 (Third Edition). Iola, WI: Krause. 1996. ISBN 0-87341-428-4