Talk:Oldsmobile Curved Dash
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Wasn't the correct name "Olds Runabout"? John Delorean 06:29, 2 October 2007 (UTC)
- That depends on the def of "mass-produced", unfortunately. The Runabout was the first to be built in substantial numbers, rather than in batches & by hand. How would you suggest a dab from "mass production" on that without having somebody change it? TREKphiler any time you're ready, Uhura 04:22, 11 February 2010 (UTC)
Olds made the 1st automotive assembly line for his cars. Ford made the 1st MOVING and CONTINUOUS automotive assembly line which mechanically brought the parts and sub assemblies to the work stations. The simpler Olds style line had been in action from before the American Civil War (mostly for firearms). Ford mechanized it. Jopower (talk) 13:12, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Years and volume of production
"A factory was outfitted for production in 1899 in Lansing and the following year 1,400 Oldsmobiles were manufactured and sold. This production figure jumped to 2,100 in 1901 and 2,300 in 1902." Plain Dealer, Jan 18, 1925, Page 42. These numbers may be incorrect? Ref: Automobile Manufacturers Association Inc., Automobiles of America, Wayne State University Press, Detroit, 1968, Page 26: gives production as 425 in 1901. --Rupertlt (talk) 16:48, 1 March 2011 (UTC)
"The Standard Catalogue of American Cars, 1805-1942", Beverly Rae Kimes (Ed.) and Henry Austin Clark, jr., 2nd Ed. (1985); Krause Publications, Iola WI 54990, ISBN 0-87341-111-0, states these production figures (which include other models after 1904 although Curved dashes were main product):
- 1901: 425
- 1902: 2,500
- 1903: 3,924
- 1904: 5,508
- 1905: ?
- 1906: 1,600
- 1907: 1,200
- 1908: 1,065
Drop in sales was because Oldsmobile turned production toward more expensive models; company was bought in December, 1908, by W. C. Durant for General Motors.--Chief tin cloud (talk) 12:09, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
- The story thus far:
- 425 — Automobile Manufacturers Association (1968), Kimes & Clark (1985), Posthumus (1977)
- 400 — Georgano (1985), supposedly
- 2500 — Kimes & Clark (1985)
- 2100 — Posthumus (1977) (the supposed 1901 production according to the Plain Dealer (1925))
- 3924 — Kimes & Clark (1985)
- 3750 — Posthumus (1977), Sedgwick (1972)
- 5508 — Kimes & Clark (1985)
- 5000 — Posthumus (1977)
Suggest Adding Section For Notable Accomplishments
The Oldsmobile Runabout accomplished a number of notable feats for early automobiles. Some of them are worth noting in the article. I'll recommend this item:
In 1903, a new 4.5 HP "Oldsmobile Light Runabout, Model R" driven by Lester L. Whitman (42) and Eugene I. Hammond (23) became the 3rd auto to cross the United States and the 1st to deliver mail from coast to coast. The trip began July 6th in San Francisco, made New York in 4225 miles on Sept. 18th, and ended over 4500 total miles later in Boston on Sept. 23 (this performance is contrary to their failure as stated by Ken Burns in "Horatio's Drive: The First Road Trip"). At that time it was the longest trip completed by any automobile in the world. Whitman and Hammond braved a wide variety of hazards, not the least being swamps, deserts, sandstorms, breakdowns and a major Mississippi-Missouri River flood. Only half the route was driven on anything remotely approaching maintained roads. (It also might be mentioned that the rail-road shipping system at the time was amazingly quick and efficient in getting spare parts and fuel to them along the way.) Reference: "Sea to Sea in 1903 in a Curved Dash Oldsmobile" by John S. Hammond II (Laureate Press, 1985, illus), Library of Congress #85-90940
Another item: In 1902, a pair of specially prepared cars from Olds and Winton raced to a 57 mph tie for maximum speed at Ormand Beach, Florida. Reference: "The Cars of Oldsmobile" by Dennis Castile (Crestline Publishing, 1981, illus), ISBN 0-87938-677-0 Jopower (talk) 13:15, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Details of the car and more
R. E. Olds had already decided to center manufacture on the Runabout before 1901. The 1st 10 "Curved Dash Olds" began production in October 1900 and sold instantly. The 2nd lot of 20 (and other prototypes) were under construction when the fire of 1:30pm, March 9th 1901 burned the main factory. As you state, only one car was saved. Production was restarted immediately in the Foundry Building, which had escaped the flames.
The power output of the Oldsmobile engine was not a set "5 HP". The 1900 was about 4 HP and increased incrementally to 7 HP by the 1904 model, which introduced a Holley carburetor.
Max speed of the Olds was 25 mph and it could idle along at 3 mph. A well tuned engine gave about 25 mpg on good roads.
The rugged Runabout chassis eventually accommodated several bodies and bolt-in seat or bed options, such as: tonneau and do-si-do seats, folding top and storm curtains, straight dash, sloping or box bed, light delivery and express wagons, and railway 4 seat motorcoach and inspection cars.
The book "Sea to Sea in 1903" has an good short history of Ransome E. Olds and his vehicle manufactures. Also a detailed description of the 1903 Olds and it's engine. "The Cars of Oldsmobile" has a year by year breakdown of everything Olds, with copious photos. References: "Sea to Sea in 1903 in a Curved Dash Oldsmobile" by John S. Hammond II (Laureate Press, 1985, illus), Library of Congress #85-90940 and "The Cars of Oldsmobile" by Dennis Castile (Crestline Publishing, 1981, illus), ISBN 0-87938-677-0 Jopower (talk) 13:12, 21 May 2012 (UTC)