Auto Oddities - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 08:35 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
Post Auto Oddities

Over the decades there have been an endless number items or accessories pitched to car owners. Some were useless and some were frauds and I think BB members can come up with an interesting list.

One that I heard about decades ago was the "Fish" carburetor that gave fantastic mileage. It was so good that the big oil companies (even evil in the 1930s) kept it off the market. I Googled it and there was one for stock car racing in the 1960s, but the legendary one has a good write up.

A gimmick for night driving was often seen in the 1950s. This was a small light mounted high on the driver's side 'A' pillar. The purple light shining across the view of the driver was thought to improve night vision. People bought and used them.


Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.
Subtle is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 08:42 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 4,075
I vote for the magnet people put on the fuel lines.
Greg Gordon is offline  
post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
Yeah, I bought one of those on eBay last year and thought I would use it for an April 1st joke.

Did not get around to that and don't have the skills to put it on the fuel line.

Waste of time all around.


Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.
Subtle is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 10:00 AM
Registered User
 
86spider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Pasadena, Texas
Posts: 2,069
What about the tornado vortex generator?
86spider is offline  
post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 10:40 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
I found a Vortec Generator on the internet and thought about buying one. But $39 is too much for a joke.

Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.

Last edited by Subtle; 01-01-2015 at 10:45 AM.
Subtle is offline  
post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 12:47 PM
Senior Member
Platinum Subscriber
 
conedriver's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 3,529
Way back in the mid-20th century, Greyhound bus lines were said to have determined there were fewer daytime wrecks when driving with headlights on. Someone thought a profit could be made from this concept, so began selling little white lights to be mounted in the center of car grills. These were very popular in Indiana, but were disparaged by some since it was thought that anyone could see a car in the daytime and didn't need a light for identification. Accordingly, the term "Indiana Idiot light" was used around the Midwest. Now we now see lots of DRL's (Daytime running lights). I understand these have been required for a long time in Canada, but are not required in the U.S. even though many cars have these. Rant: DRL's are not to be confused with the contemporary idiots that run around with their bright driving lights lit during the daytime. End of rant...


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

George Schweikle

1976 Spider (Dedicated Autocrosser, "SPICA, No Carbs")
1991 Spider Veloce (Retirement cruiser)
Scuderia Non Originale
conedriver is offline  
post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 05:14 AM
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
jc96's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Casarsa Della Delizia Italy
Posts: 4,752
Garage
I had a guy who worked for me and swore up and down by those tornado vortex thingys. Swore by them. Had one in his king Ranch and Malibu. ciao jc

Maintaining my tenuous strain on reality.
89 164 2l Twin Spark, 2011 Tonka Dump

Recently added: an 89 75 (Milano) 1.6 litre w/44K on the klok.

Past loves:
79 Alfetta GTV w/Spica, my 1st Alfa

An 88 Graduate. Not really love but interesting nonetheless.

A 68 BMW 1602 - man do I regret letting that one go!

79 Scirroco, ex plowed into an illegally parked house with it...
jc96 is offline  
post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
I had forgotten about the add-on light for daytime.

The issue in Canada is that too many drivers forget to put the real headlights on after dark. That means their tail lights are not on. Even cab drivers.


Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.
Subtle is offline  
post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-03-2015, 01:45 PM
Registered User
 
Lokki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Dallas Texas
Posts: 1,704
Garage
Back in the 80's I lived in Japan and had a Kawasaki 750 for my ride. Bikes in the states were starting to come from the factory with the headlights permanently switched on. My bike, being a Japanese Domestic Model, had a headlight switch; normal condition = headlight off. I figured though that if it was mandatory in the States to ride with your headlight on, it wasn't a bad idea in heavy Tokyo traffic, so I started making a regular habit of it.

Imagine my surprise when one day I was stopped at a traffic light with a police car in front of me, and one of the Cops got out of the car and walked back to tell me to turn my ****ed headlight off.

Well, okay then!

I have been watching the subject ever since and it seems that these days DRL's are considered ineffective for bikes anyhow because they no longer stand out in traffic.


Anyhow my favorite worthless accessory is the Deer Whistle- over two million sold!
Too bad so many deer seem to be deaf these days....

http://www.amazon.com/Living-Product.../dp/B003XNGLJU

71 Spider

Last edited by Lokki; 01-03-2015 at 02:18 PM.
Lokki is offline  
post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-05-2015, 02:15 PM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
Cool

Yup--I had those on my Alfetta sedan and coming down from Whistler one night--bang.

Deer leaped across oncoming traffic to my side of the road. The car had to be transported to town.

Department of Highways had the deer.

Stayed in motel where the band was drinking "Jack". I thought it was great until the morning.

Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.
Subtle is offline  
post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-06-2015, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
Cool

There are some really ludicrous ones to come, but there was one gadget that was practical.

With most highways having only two lanes, passing became an art form. When following closely, one had to edge out to get a glimpse forward. Then pull back if there was traffic coming the other way.

There was an outside mirror that was mounted high on the driver's door. Actually, it was two small mirrors. One was placed looking backwards at another looking forwards. This enable a "peek" around the car in front without having to venture too far into the opposing lane.

I'll check ebay to see if any are around.

It was called a "Passing Eye Mirror".

Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.

Last edited by Subtle; 01-06-2015 at 09:52 AM.
Subtle is offline  
post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-07-2015, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
Speaking about almost useless car gadgets--I just bought one on eBay:

Vintage "Oil-O-Meter" for $14.

About a 3-inch long metal with five thumb-wheels on top to dial in the mileage for your next oil change. Five openings--each one shows the number.

Clips to the visor.


Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.
Subtle is offline  
post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-07-2015, 05:34 PM
Registered User
 
86spider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Pasadena, Texas
Posts: 2,069
What about the toilet paper oil filter. I remember a co-worker in 1978 talking nonstop about that thing.
86spider is offline  
post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-11-2015, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Gold Subscriber
 
Subtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver, B C
Posts: 6,243
External Sun Visors

Using Ford and Chevrolet as examples up to 1931 car bodies had an external sun visor. This changed in 1932 and 'forever' with the Chrysler "Airflow" in 1934.

Post-War prosperity arrived and external sun visors became a fad.

http://assets.hemmings.com/uimage/18...00-0.jpg?rev=1

Most cars by this time had internal visors, but as Mencken observed "You can never go broke underestimating the taste of Americans"

Wind drag must have been impressive.

Bob,
Avatar is the 68 Super, bought new.

Last edited by Subtle; 01-11-2015 at 10:12 AM. Reason: Typpo
Subtle is offline  
post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-11-2015, 01:50 PM
Weaving a Spider's Web.
Platinum Subscriber
 
brownie93's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,154
Garage
My other car is has the airscarf system, heat behind your neck for when it's cool and you want the top down. Not very useful but maybe I'm just too short
Not an old gimmick though.......

77 Spider-rust issues-but fun! SOLD
93 Spider-151k km-SOLD
94 Spider CE- 48k miles
2012-MB SLK350-45k km
Joyce
brownie93 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome