|Founder||John Isaac Thornycroft|
Thornycroft was an English vehicle manufacturer which built coaches, buses, and trucks from 1896 until 1977.
In 1896, naval engineer John Isaac Thornycroft formed the Thornycroft Steam Carriage and Van Company which built its first steam van. This was exhibited at the Crystal Palace Show, and could carry a load of 1 ton. It was fitted with a Thornycroft marine launch-type boiler (Thornycroft announced a new boiler designed for its steam carriages in October 1897). The engine was a twin-cylinder compound engine arranged so that high-pressure steam could be admitted to the low-pressure cylinder to give extra power for hill-climbing. A modified version of the steam wagon with a 6-cubic-yard tipper body was developed for Chiswick council in 1896 and went into service as a very early self-propelled dust-cart. While the original 1896 wagon had front-wheel drive with rear-wheel steering, the tipper dust-cart had rear-wheel drive and front-wheel steering. The Thornycroft tipper was built by the Bristol Wagon & Carriage Works, though engined by Thornycroft.
Thornycroft's first petrol vehicle was built in 1902,and the company completed the move into internal combustion engine power in 1907.
Thornycroft's Basingstoke factory supplied nearly 5,000 motor vehicles for the World War I effort. It also provided large numbers of engines of various powers to the Admiralty, War Office and other government departments at the beginning of the war and for the next two years. Thereafter the Basingstoke factory manufactured marine engines for the Coastal Motor Boats being built at the John I. Thornycroft & Company works in Woolston, Southampton. The 180HP 6-cylinder Thornycroft marine engine was also used in 20 petrol shunters made for war use by Manning Wardle & Co.[ citation needed ] Thornycroft also made the Thornycroft depth-charge thrower for anti-submarine warfare.
In 1924, the War Office, anticipating the immediate need for motorised transport in the event of another war, set up a subsidy scheme whereby purchasers of approved vehicles would receive a £120 subsidy per vehicle with the proviso that the War Office could buy the vehicles at a pre-arranged price when needed. The Thornycroft A1 chassis was chosen for this scheme.
From 1931, Thornycroft used descriptive names for its vehicle range. During World War II the company designed the Terrapinand other war-related vehicles.
In 1948, the company name was changed to Transport Equipment (Thornycroft) Ltd to prevent confusion with the shipbuilding Thornycroft company. The company was well known for providing fire engine chassis, with multi-axle drive for uses such as airports. A limited number of 4x4 chassis were also provided to Worcester-based fire engine manufacturer, Carmichael for sale to civilian brigades in the 1950s.[ citation needed ]
Thornycroft was taken over on 1 March 1961 by AEC parent Associated Commercial Vehicles (ACV),with production limited to Antars, Big Bens and Nubians, although the Thornycroft-designed six-speed constant mesh gearbox was used in AEC and later medium weight Albion and Leyland trucks. ACV was taken over by Leyland in 1962. Leyland already had a specialist vehicle unit in Scammell. Vehicle production at Basingstoke ceased in 1969 with production transferred to Scammell at Watford. The factory continued to manufacture gearboxes. It was sold in 1972 to Eaton Corporation.
Horseless carriage is an early name for the motor car or automobile. Prior to the invention of the motor car, carriages were usually pulled by animals, typically horses. The term can be compared to other transitional terms, such as wireless phone. These are cases in which a new technology is compared to an older one by describing what the new one does not have.
Leyland Motors Limited was a British vehicle manufacturer of lorries, buses and trolleybuses. The company diversified into car manufacturing with its acquisitions of Triumph and Rover in 1960 and 1967, respectively. It gave its name to the British Leyland Motor Corporation, formed when it merged with British Motor Holdings in 1968, to become British Leyland after being nationalised. British Leyland later changed its name to simply BL, then in 1986 to Rover Group.
Associated Equipment Company (AEC) was a British vehicle manufacturer that built buses, motorcoaches and trucks from 1912 until 1979. The name Associated Equipment Company was hardly ever used; instead, it traded under the AEC and ACLO brands. During World War One, AEC was the most prolific British lorry manufacturer, after building London's buses before the war.
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Guy Motors was a Wolverhampton-based vehicle manufacturer that produced cars, lorries, buses and trolleybuses. The company was founded by Sydney S. Guy (1885–1971) who was born in Kings Heath, Birmingham. Guy Motors operated out of its Fallings Park factory from 1914 to 1982, playing an important role in the development of the British motor industry.
Leyland Trucks is a medium- and heavy-duty truck manufacturer based in Leyland, Lancashire, United Kingdom. It can trace its origins back to the original Leyland Motors, which was founded in 1896, and subsequently evolved into British Leyland. After British Leyland became the Rover Group in 1986, the truck business was spun off and merged with DAF Trucks to form DAF NV, operating as Leyland DAF in the UK.
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The fifth-wheel coupling provides the link between a semi-trailer and the towing truck, tractor unit, leading trailer or dolly. The coupling consists of a kingpin, a 2-or-3+1⁄2-inch-diameter vertical steel pin protruding from the bottom of the front of the semi-trailer, and a horseshoe-shaped coupling device called a fifth wheel on the rear of the towing vehicle. As the connected truck turns, the downward-facing surface of the semi-trailer rotates against the upward-facing surface of the fixed fifth wheel, which does not rotate. To reduce friction, grease is applied to the surface of the fifth wheel. The configuration is sometimes called a turn-table in Australia and New Zealand, especially if it is a rotating ball-race-bearing type. The advantage of this type of coupling is towing stability.
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A steam wagon is a steam-powered truck for carrying freight. It was the earliest form of lorry (truck) and came in two basic forms: overtype and undertype, the distinction being the position of the engine relative to the boiler. Manufacturers tended to concentrate on one form or the other.
The Thornycroft Hathi was an early four wheel drive lorry built by Thornycroft in the 1920s. It was used by the British Army as an artillery tractor.
The RÁBA Automotive Group, commonly known as Rába, is a Hungarian public limited company, listed on the Budapest Stock Exchange. Rába engineers, manufactures and customizes automotive components, specialty vehicles and axles for commercial vehicles, agri-machinery and earth-movers. The Rába has been building axles as well as complete vehicles since 1902. The company has three strategic business units. The company is headquartered in Győr, employing more than 2000 people.
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The Thornycroft J Type was a British truck built by the Thornycroft company, it saw widespread service with the British military and Imperial forces during the First World War.
In 1900 the War Office formed a Mechanical Transport Committee looking to develop the use of mechanical transport as a way to move troops, equipment and supplies. A subsidy scheme - also known as a subvention scheme - was devised where approved vehicles bought by civilian owners would be granted a subsidy in exchange for the vehicles being made available in time of war. While the financial details of the scheme were complex and changed over time, the trials and their results both improved the vehicles and engines available for heavy transport, and had an important influence on the vehicles and engines that were made and used during WW1.