ES Bible: "No suitable matches were found."... for "Garrard & Blumfield"...
Throwback Thursday: An electric autocar, 1895
("In the second ever issue of Autocar, we published a piece on the Garrard & Blumfield electric four-seater which had an 80-mile range"):
https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/anyt ... tocar-1895
(Cap:"Garrard & Blumfield's phaeton")
In the second ever issue of Autocar, published 6 November 1895, we published a report from the Cyclist magazine on an electric car that had been built in the summer of 1894.
Produced by the Garrard & Blumfield bicycle engineering company of Coventry, it was a four-seat phaeton with an innovative drive system.
The electric power unit for the Garrard & Blumfield was “contained in a series of twenty-four accumulator (rechargeable) cells”. These were likely lead acid, although we could not find any writing confirming this.
“The accumulators (batteries) weigh some 500lbs,” we continued, “and the completed vehicle comes out at about 1000lbs, or, roughly speaking, about half a ton, as against two and a half tons the weight of the lightest electric road carriage hitherto placed upon the road.”
The phaeton’s “cells were connected with a motor carried upon the (car’s) framework beneath; the spindle which the motor works, being arranged with a feather, so that it can be slid to and fro several inches by means of a lever, placed in contiguity to the rider’s left hand.”
“This is effected by quite a new system,” we said, with “the spindle carrying a roller or a pair of rollers so arranged that they jamb between the surfaces of two metal discs which face each other in the rear portion of the carriage.
“By sliding the roller in or out from the centre of these discs, the power applicable, and inversely the speed attained, is graduated to the nicest degree. The discs are then connected by toothed gearing and a chain with the balance gear which drives the two back wheels.”
This method, instead of finding a way to modulate the available power, “saved a tremendous waste of electricity”.
What a shame that electric vehicles never truly took off, and are only returning to the forefront of the industry now, 110 years later. If they had co-existed with ICE cars, who knows what the common electric car would be like today, and for how long ICEs would have been dead and buried.