Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

 

Gyro-X Self-Balancing Two-Wheeler Car

It's time for a blast from the past, and a blast from further past. And a blast from even further past!

Why only two wheels? Tremulis and Summers suggested that a two wheeled vehicle could be more efficient than its larger four-wheeled counterpart. Smaller and lighter weight means it can use a smaller engine. The Gyro-X was reported to reach speeds of 125 mph using an 80 hp Mini Cooper S engine. Also, the gyroscope’s stored kinetic energy would be harnessed as an additional power source in future gyro vehicles! The aerodynamic body design reduced wind resistance, while half the number of tires reduced road drag. As far as drivability, two wheels made for greater maneuverability, like that of a motorcycle. While a two-wheeled automobile may at first glance seem unsafe and definitely unstable, the Gyro-X made use of a single 22- inch hydraulically-driven gyroscope which stabilized the vehicle, allowing it to “swoop through 40 degree banked turns without tipping.”

(Via Lane Motor Museum.)

Winchell Chung (@nyrath on Twitter and developer of the Atomic Rocket site), reminds us that Doc Smith lovingly described a similar vehicle in First Lensman (1950); he called it a Dillingham eleven-forty:

He got in. The door jammed itself gently shut. The runabout--a Dillingham eleven-forty--shot smoothly forward upon its two fat, soft tires. Half-way to the exit archway he was doing forty; he hit the steeply-banked curve leading into the lofty "street" at ninety.

The first fictional description of a gyrocar - a two-wheeled automobile - was in 1911 in Two Boys in a Gyrocar: The story of a New York to Paris Motor Race by Kenneth Brown.


(Two-wheeled gyrocar)

Most of the cars were between sixty and seventy horse-power; the Amphibian alone being as low as forty-five; while the Capri was eighty, the Gowfer's Goer a hundred, and the huge Liebig a hundred and twenty horse-power.

And it was among these leviathans that the little gyrocar was daring to thrust its puny self, with its two young drivers - and their dog...
(Read more about the gyrocar)

The first prototype Gyrocar, The Shilovski Gyrocar, was commissioned in 1912 by the Russian Count Pyotr Shilovsky, a lawyer and member of the Russian royal family. It was manufactured to his design by the Wolseley Tool and Motorcar Company in England in 1914 and demonstrated in London the same year.[3][4] The gyrocar was powered by a modified Wolseley C5 engine of 16–20 hp, with a bore of 90 mm and a stroke of 121 mm. It was mounted ahead of the radiator, driving the rear wheel through a conventional clutch and gear box. A transmission brake was fitted after the gearbox – there were no brakes on the wheels themselves. The weight of the vehicle was 2.75 tons and it had a very large turning radius. (Wikipedia)

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/9/2020)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Vehicle ")

Elon Musk Says Robotaxis Will Be Ready This August, 2024
'The car had no steering wheel, and no one drove!'

Cheap Drunk Driver Detection From UofM
"Look, I can drive... Start, darn it!" - Philip K. Dick, 1963.

More Like A Tumblebug Than A Motorcycle
'It is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel...'- Robert Heinlein, 1940.

Tesla Camera-Only Vision Predicted In 1930's SF
'By its means, the machine can see.' - Miles J. Breuer, 1930.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Current News

NASA Wants Self-Driving Or Remote-Controlled Vehicles For Lunar Astronauts
'THE autobus turned silently down the wide street of Hydropole. Robot-guided, insulated from noise and cold...'

Elon Musk Says Robotaxis Will Be Ready This August, 2024
'The car had no steering wheel, and no one drove!'

Moonwalkers AI-Controlled Electric Shoes
Now that's power walking that Hugo Gernsback would have approved.

Steve Jobs: 'Capture The Next Aristotle - With AI'
'It was disturbing to think of the Flatline as a construct...'

No Tips! Robotic Food Delivery In Phoenix
'...he rewired the delivery robot so that it would serve him midnight snacks.'

Electric Catamaran 'Explorer Eco 40m' Has 'Solar Skin'
'On went the electric-yacht faster and still faster.'

Orbital Mechanics, The Liftoff, The Turnover, The Retrograde Burn
'...the huge vessel had spun, with a sickening lurch, through a complete half-circle, the instant the power was reversed.'

Harvest Power From Tears And Blinking With Smart Contact Lens
'...he realized that it was not quite a clear lens. Speckles of colored brightness swirled and gathered in it.'

Europa Clipper Plate Carries A Special Message
'...a universal cryptogram — yet it is one which can be interpreted by any intelligent creature on any planet in the Solar System!'

Micro-Robots Are Smallest, Fully Functional
'With a whir, the Scarab shot from the concealing shadows of the corner where it had hidden itself.'

AI Enhances Images Your Brain Sees
'I could have sworn the psychomat showed pictures almost as sharp and detailed as reality itself'

Illustrating Classic Heinlein With AI
'Stasis, cold sleep, hibernation, hypothermia, reduced metabolism, call it what you will - the logistics-medicine research teams had found a way to stack people like cordwood and use them when needed.'

Deflector Plasma Screen For Drones ala Star Wars
'If the enemy persists in attacking or even intensifies their power, the density of the plasma in space will suddenly increase, causing it to reflect most of the incoming energy like a mirror.'

DIY Robotic Hand Made After Loss Of Fingers
'I made them... with the fine work of the watchmaker...'

Cheap Drunk Driver Detection From UofM
"Look, I can drive... Start, darn it!"

Can A Human Land A SpaceX Rocket On Its Tail?
'If she starts to roll sideways — blooey! The underjets only hold you up when they’re pointing down, you know.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.