Ford Snowmobile Predates Snowmobile Patent
Nowadays, we have access to just about any form of technology our little heart desires. Okay, maybe not a transporter beam from Star Trek, or the Death Star I so greatly desire to aid in my commute to work, but almost anything else we could want. Some of the creations we’ve posted that are for sale on Craigslist alone are enough to make you marvel at our own abilities to develop useless crap, most of which will be sold in WalMart at 4AM to sleep-deprived consumers.
In the early years of the 20th Century, however, we had no such luxury. Sure, we thought we did, but much of it we had to develop ourselves. Needed a vehicle that would be able to travel over snow, mud, grass, and the bodies of early-20th-century zombie hordes? Well, Sparky, you’re just gonna have to build it yourself.
This particular conversion was done sometime around 1950, by best estimation, and utilizes the body from a 1927 Model T Ford which was previously converted to a pickup truck body. The engine is from a 1915 Model T, and the Kégresse track system appears to be from an early Bombardier snowmobile.
This technique had been employed many times before. Russian Czars apparently had a similar setup for their Rolls-Royce limousines to help them get around in cold pre-Soviet winters, and there were similar vehicles available in France in the pre-WWII years. This particular vehicle may win over all of them, however, as it is believed it was created by a farmer, in his barn, from whatever spare parts he could scrounge up.
Early-20th-century Farmer Hoon, we salute you.
For more on the original development of the snowmobile technology, you can thank engineerd for the help.
Says engineerd: “In 1937, Joseph-Armand Bombardier was awarded a patent for the sprocket and track system used in snowmobiles. This marks both a great day for winter activities, as well as the high point of Canadian technological achievement. Here is a CBC propaganda piece about Mr. Bombardier.”