Steam­punk

Motor Equipment News - - CONTENTS - Story and pic­tures John Ox­ley.

Fancy your­self as a mechanical ge­nius? Have you watched “Mad Max” in amaze­ment, and wished you could drive some of the ma­chines in the movies, won­dered at the ge­nius of “MacGyver”, or longed to build a real Heath Robin­son ve­hi­cle?

If so, you’ve about 10 months to work on your spe­cial project and en­ter the Steam­punk Pa­rade in Thames, Waikato, where the town’s Steam­punk The Thames group shows off its amaz­ing ma­chines, all the while dressed in cos­tumes which are a mix­ture of Mad Max meets Vic­to­rian.

The pur­pose of the so­ci­ety is to “ex­plore the Vic­to­rian, en­gi­neer­ing, in­dus­trial, sci­en­tific and tech­no­log­i­cal her­itage and fu­ture of Thames through the arts”, while en­cour­ag­ing artis­tic ex­pres­sion, ed­u­ca­tion and men­tor­ing – and it seems, hav­ing great fun while build­ing a good com­mu­nity spirit.

What­ever, any­thing goes, es­pe­cially as far as ve­hi­cles are con­cerned, and it’s a great long week­end, held next year from Novem­ber 9-12, and also in­cor­po­rates lots of other events, in­clud­ing a grand ball. More de­tails at www.steam­punk­thethames.org.

How­ever, we at Mo­tor Equip­ment News were far more in­ter­ested in the mag­i­cal machin­ery. Here’s a sam­ple.

This looks a bit like a two-wheeled Dalek, com­plete with ray gun!

Brian Connors swapped his Holden Com­modore po­lice car for this spe­cial “tin­ker” mo­tor bike, with a cut-out so his dog Zak can ride along too.

Talk­ing of cop cars, this is a tiny Subaru 360 circa 1958 which tra­di­tion­ally leads the pa­rade. The 360 is a tiny rear-en­gined car, Subaru’s first, that’s been des­ig­nated a mechanical en­gi­neer­ing her­itage item by the Ja­pan So­ci­ety of Mechanical Engi­neers.

Get out of the way or I’ll blow you off the road.

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