Between composing and publishing yesterday’s post we went to a local museum in Nashvegas, the Lane Motor Museum. Mrs. the Poet, our host, and myself wandered about the exhibits and I queried Mrs. the Poet as to the acceptability of each so that I can design the creature comforts of the car I’m building to her desires.
Broadly stated Mrs. the Poet demands “windshield, roof, and trunk” as her bottom-line criteria for a car. A canvas top meets her specifications as long as there is some kind of way to keep rain from coming in the sides of the car. So it looks like a bikini top over the roll cage that attaches to the top of the windshield, and side curtains that attach to the underside of the top so that the rain flows over them, are going to be on the agenda for design. Or a complete top with side curtains that fits under the roll cage would also do the trick with a little less headroom. What to do about the shoulder harness mounts on the rear roll hoop are another question entirely, but not insurmountable.
Size does not seem to be a stringent requirement for Mrs. the Poet’s motor vehicle specification. We looked at several cars that would fall under the “sub-compact” to “micro car” category and as long as the engine and suspension would allow extended freeway cruising for our long trips she would be happy. There was a Citroen 2CV that was set up for people to sit in and take pictures that Mrs. the Poet found “not bad” for interior space, and the Austin Bantam also met with her approval after I mentioned the convertible top had been removed to make viewing the interior easier. I can even get a fiberglass replica of the 1932 Bantam from Speedway Motors should the pendulum actually swing to the stop and stay there on the Bantam vs. T Bucket debate. While there is less legroom fore and aft in a Bantam, there is much more in the other direction for feet to “spread out”. And there is nothing that says the footbox has to stay completely behind the original 1932 firewall location. I could make a footbox that extends on either side of the engine for both the fore and aft and left to right foot/legroom. Or I could use the deep section frame to allow the feet to extend more down than out in a chair-like seating arrangement rather than the flat floor with the legs in front, or some combination of the two so that there was someplace to stretch out while on the road.
So, it looks like we can find common ground for a vehicle that both of us can be happy driving/riding in. I’m still looking mostly at the T Bucket formula, but Mrs. the Poet has given me criteria that will allow modifications from that formula to fit her needs and desires while not compromising my own. The big thing is she demands the top be up any time she rides in it. I can live with that and might even make it a hard top with soft side curtains.