Locomobile – Ottawa Science and Technology Museum, Canada

Posted by jerry on June 9th, 2008 — Posted in History, Journal, Steam, Technology

The Locomobile steam car at the Canada Science and Technology Museum in Ottawa is described as “circa 1901”. I have a feeling it might be an early 1902 model. It is chassis number 555 and has the Stanhope type two body with the ogee shaped front, rather than the flat upright dashboard.

Locomobile ca1901

The Locomobile was designed and built by the Stanley Brothers from 1899-1904. In 1901 they sold the Locomobile company, and bought it back a year later – making a profit both times. They produced the most successful steam car of its day – around 4000 were built in total, before the Stanley company produced cars under its own name until 1927.

Locomobile ca1901

The cars were simple and quite fast for their day, winning several hill-climbs. They could take off with enough acceleration to lift the front wheels and were quite popular as runabouts. But they had quite a short range – 20-30 miles between water stops as they had no condenser to recycle the exhaust steam back into the boiler.

Locomobile ca1901

The early ones had a two-cylinder Masson engine, but these were not very reliable, being prone to breakdowns. But this was fixed by late 1901 when FE and FO Stanley designed their own engine.

You can read more about Stanly steam cars at the British Steam Car Club of Great Britain (page two of the locomobile specs gives chassis numbers for the type B and C), as well as at the Stanley Museum in the USA.

Locomobile ca1901

The car is currently on display in the the main museum building in Ottawa.

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.