Thursday, 14 September 2017

Dig This Old MG

I saw a repeat of Time Team yesterday on Yesterday.

(For non-viewers of British TV, I can assure you that that sentence does make sense)

Phil Harding was his usual, fun, self.
He is still going strong and still works with Wessex Archaeology.
He doesn't get a mention on this BBC story involving Wessex Archaeology though.
While excavating an old military site on Salisbury Plain, they dug up an old MG J2:
I'm not sure how they could tell what it was - it looks like a soap-box derby cart to me but this is how it probably looked half-a-century ago:
They can tell by the tyre patterns that it was last used in the 1960s.
So it probably wasn't Roman.
Still very interesting though - and a change from looking for flint or dinosaurs.  Maybe they should expand their search? - this could be down there somewhere:

Wednesday, 13 September 2017


Search for "nice cheese sandwich" on Google Images and you get lots of pictures of cheese toasties.

You do get some proper ones too though - like these ones:
So what piece of motoring journalism prompted me to look for cheese butties today?

This piece.

It's an Autoguide story about something that is probably the biggest thing to happen to maps in a very long time - and how Mercedes are getting on board with it.

Basically, someone has gone away and quietly divided the Earth into 3m x 3m squares and allocated every one of them a three word identity.  I have some in my front garden and even more in my back garden.  My property includes the words "boring", "slices" and "upset".

I'd love to know what algorithm they've used to allocate these words - and can they move them around?

For example, is in an industrial area in the town of New Tazewell, Tennessee - I'm sure a few supermarkets would pay to have that in the middle of their canned goods aisle.

Not all words are included of course.  The nearest they have to "Iver Child Bollards" is over.chill.billiards (it's in the bit of Angola that makes it look like a jigsaw piece)

location.location.location is in Russia.

The uses for this are incredible - imagine your ship is sinking at misspellings.appendages.history (for this covers the sea as well as land) - you could summon aid to exactly the right spot before you became a victim of The Bermuda Triangle.

Pirate treasure maps would be a lot simpler too.

This amazing tool is called what3words and can be found at or on the Sat-navs of upcoming Mercedes models.

And my phone.

Incidentally, nice.cheese.sandwich is near the town of Los Mantos in Northern Chile.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Iver Child Bollards

The title of this post ought not to make any sense.

But it does.
That is an Iver Child Bollard.  They don't look much less scary during daylight hours:
They have been placed outside Primary and Junior schools in the Buckinghamshire town of Iver to deter bad driving and people parking on the kerbs.  The Telegraph reported it here and the BBC have a short video about them here.
I'll bet a few of the pupils at these schools have nightmares after seeing them.
I think it is the soulless expression staring out, judging anyone who dares to drive a car in their vicinity.
Perhaps even more scary is the cost - they seem to be £5,395 plus installation.  Each!
Still, I look forward to seeing them feature in a Doctor Who storyline in the next couple of years.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Electric Rod

Not sure what Steve Darnell will make of this story.
Steve Darnell is the one who isn't Richard Rawlings.
Richard Rawlings owns Gas Monkey Garage as featured in Fast'n'Loud while Steve Darnell owns Welder Up as featured in Sin City Motors (or, as it is known in America, Vegas Rat Rods)

And one thing Steve Darnell loves doing is sticking huge Cummins Diesel engines into Rat Rods.

But the story, from Autoguide today, tells of Cummins producing an all-powerful, all electric Semi.  (Note that in this case we are talking about a tractor unit not a suburban house or the start of an erection)

Here it is:
and here is another type of semi - a small one:
Very neatly erected in its own way.
But I digress.
The Cummins/Aeos truck is challenging Tesla who are working on an electric truck themselves.  Autoguide claim that Cummins have got there first since they put out this tweet yesterday at an unveiling:
Very impressive.
Does this mean that Steve will now have sparks rather than plumes of black smoke coming from his creations in the future?
It's already been done with a few examples coming up if you Google "Electric Rat Rod" but I reckon he will end up doing one too.

I'd put some money on it if I could just think of somewhere in America where it is legal to gamble.

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Sex Plates

It is approaching September 1st which means that a new set of car registration numbers will be made available.

This means that a news organisation will do a report on numbers that the DVLA will hold back because they are "offensive".

This week it was the BBC's turn.

They use this depiction:
To be fair, rather than say they are offensive, they ask the question, Do these "suppressed" vehicle registration marks cause "upset or offence"?
The first looks a bit like "MURDER" and the second (and it took me a while to work it out) looks a bit like "NEGLECT" so the third one must be "NOGLMUM".
They claim that "NO MUM" has potential to cause offence irrespective of the numbers in between.  I'm not convinced that if you wanted to upset someone who had lost a parent that you would go to the trouble of transferring this registration to their car.
It may be more likely that the MUM, DAD and SON registrations are being held back to sell off at the next DVLA auction.
I'd like to know what will happen in two years time when ALL plates will be deemed offensive.