When we published a slideshow about movie cars last June, readers politely pointed to our obvious inadequacies in the area of pop culture. How, they asked, could we have left out all of Batman’s cars? How could we have forgotten the General Lee from the Dukes of Hazzard? Or the Sunbeam Alpine from the television show Get Smart? Or numerous Pontiac GTOs from scores of different movies?
It was, in short, inexcusable. By way of apology, we now offer a second such slideshow. Here, we include three Batmobiles, two GTOs, two Sunbeams, a 1914 Model T, a ’48 Tucker, and others. Still, we know we’ve missed a few more, so we’ll brace ourselves for the next round of "suggestions."
Click on the image below to start the slideshow.
The television series Magnum PI used multiple Ferrari 308 GTS’s during its run, including models from 1978, 1980, and 1984. The Ferraris used in the show had to be specially modified to accommodate six-ft-four-inch actor Tom Selleck. Padding was removed from the seats so he could sit lower in the car, and the seats were bolted as far away from the steering wheel as possible to maximize leg room, according to the website magnum-mania.com. (Source: Wikipedia)
Charles, it helps if the vehicle is a lighter 3-wheeler, and has fairly stiff tires. Probably on a regular car the tires would come off the rims, go flat, and make it really hard to handle.
But with the three wheeler it is a whole lot like riding a bicycle, but keeping the frame at a weird angle. The trick to getting into that position without falling over is to enter it slowly. I am not sure that I would ever try it in a car, and certainly not in a normal car. But it should not be that challenging if one knew just what angle the balance would be at. The trick is to keep the CG right over the line between the wheels on the ground. Unfortunately the CG of a car can wander a bit relative to the wheels contact line. Not nearly as big a problem on a three-wheeler.
The two-wheel trick has been used in a lot of movies. I recently saw it in the movie Twins -- Arnold Schwarzenegger does it for several seconds. I still can't figure out how that's done. You're the only person I know who's actually done it, William K.
Chuck, I can't believe I missed this last September; it just was re-featured in an UBM email of past highlights. What a great collection!! --and nice leverage from the earlier slideshow in June, including the earlier miss's.
Oh, and My Mother, The Car-? WOW what a blast from the past. The forgotten fore-runner of KIP, the Knight-Rider (My Brother, the Car-?)
I did sometimes wonder about how that car jumped so perfectly. It would take an adjustment of the CG to do that. The only stunt that I have duplicated, sort of, is the driving on two wheels. But that was on a three-wheel plant vehicle, not a regular car. It is a challenge no matter what one does it in.
There was at least one scene where you can hear the passenger door, which was off camera, of the General Lee slam shut. The actors didn't climb through the windows when they were off camera- they simply opened the doors.
About 300 cars were destroyed making the series. The cars often didn't survive the jumps. They placed up to 600 lbs of weight in the trunk for the jumps, to prevent the car from nose diving.
The question of whether engineers could have foreseen the shortcut maintenance procedures that led to the crash of American Airlines Flight 191 in 1979 will probably linger for as long as there is an engineering profession.
More than 35 years later, the post-mortem on one of the country’s worst engineering disasters appears to be simple. A contractor asked for a change in an original design. The change was approved by engineers, later resulting in a mammoth structural collapse that killed 114 people and injured 216 more.
If you’re an embedded systems engineer whose analog capabilities are getting a little bit rusty, then you’ll want to take note of an upcoming Design News Continuing Education Center class, “Analog Design for the Digital World,” running Monday, Nov. 17 through Friday, Nov. 21.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.