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Info On Continentals 1903 2Cyl/1904 4s???

Bud Tierney

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Online Continental Mtr Mfg Co (Muskegon/Detroit) histories say their  first engine, shown by the founders, Judson and Tobin, at the 1903 Chicago  Auto Show was 2 Cyl---but don't mention if hor-opp or vertical, air or water cooled...and that they got numerous orders (for the 2 Cyl or 4s under development??)...this 2 Cyl was reportedly based on a (the?) Mercedes of the period, but don't say if it was flat or vertical...

Going thru some 1903 car desc's I was surprised to see more 2 Cyl verticals than opposed, at least in those that described motors, along with several 4 cyl verticals from 37/8x4 to 4x6...

Those histories say Judson and Tobin decided to concentrate on engines in 1904, naming the business Autocar Eqpmt Co...

In December 04 (and perhaps earlier) Autocar Eqpmt Co, 240-244 Lake, Chicago, was advertising "Continental" 4 Cyl verticals in "power equipments" consisting of their 4 Cyl, their thansmission, clutch and carb with the note to "beware of imitations" (a reference to Continental Engine Co of the Fisher Bldg, Chicago, works at Dallas City,IL. approx 1899??-1913/14?? which was ALSO advertising "Continental" engines, including inline 4s)

Their (Autocars) first fours must've been good size, as a later account of Cont'ls new "Baby Cont'l 31/2x5" states it was the smallest Cont'l built...

The ads I've been able to bring up 1904-05 had no size info, simply becoming Cont'l Mtr Mfg Co, fmly Autocar Eqpmt Co ads...

Does anyone here know of a better online history that might have this info, or if you have the Continental Book are these engines mentioned or described???

I knoe the Lakeside Museum probably has this info, but it doesn't appear to be online...

Any comments appreciated...               Bud T


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  • 2 weeks later...

Very Embarrassing---going thru some scribbled Cont'l notes, found I already had the answers---trade pub article and various ads describe both the two and early 4 cyls as all verticals, the various illus obviously water cooled...

Now I'm hung up on why the 1905/06 model "0" 45HP engine is referred to in online Cont'l histories as an aircraft engine (Cont'l aviation engine histories usually say their first aviation engine was 1929) when 06/07 ads that illus the "0" clearly show auto-marine type water cooled engine,presumably much too heavy for aircraft of the day

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