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  • Hi from Scotland.

    Hi folks,

    I've joined this group as I'm working on a research project regarding the "Antarctic Arrol Johnston" car for the Museum of Transport in Glasgow, Scotland.

    But what I have also discovered is the "spin-off" interest I've developed in reading about Shackleton himself during my research, and of course the various attempts by others to on be first to the South Pole.

    I'm looking forward to spending some time with you all, and perhaps joining in some of the threads, although I'm very much a novice with regard to the core subject of this web site.


  • #2
    Re: Hi from Scotland.

    Hi Argyll,

    Welcome to the forum and website. I'm not all that far from you being just down the road near Kilmarnock. I know the Museum of Transport well and visited it a fair number of times though not so much recently as my weans are young adults now and no longer rely on their elderly parents for entertainment suggestions.

    Sounds a fascinating research project and one with plenty of potential for getting hooked on the 'deep south'. Whilst we had some seriously antiquated snow vehicles at the base I was on, the main mode of transport was dog sledge. I recall we had a couple of old Foxtracs plus an even more elderly Eliason machine in addition to more modern skidoos. Despite our dedication to the dogs, we were more than welcome to make use of the machines when it came to trogging round 150+ dogs at feeding time.




    • #3
      Re: Hi from Scotland.

      Thank you for the welcome drummy - I laughed at your reference to the 150 dogs, I complain about 2 hungry cats, goodness only knows what it would be like with 150 hungry mouths to feed.

      This may interest you (and perhaps others), currently we're building a replacement transport museum at a snip under ?90 million and the objects, including our 3 Arrol Johnstons are going to be moved there in 2011 - Riverside Museum



      • #4
        Re: Hi from Scotland.

        Aye, I was aware of the replacement museum. It should be a wonderful facility when it's up and running. I assume you'll be able to put a lot more exhibits on display?

        As far as the 150+ dogs on base go, I was always convinced that was the reason we only got one mail delivery a year and no newspapers. The postman and newspaper boy would be bound to be put off by all those crazy sledge dogs not to mention their even crazier drivers!

        It's a wee bit ironic that 30+ years after bidding farewell to my dog team I now live within 100m of a couple who have a team of 8 racing huskies. It's very nostalgic to hear the team howling together but the rest of our neighbours are not endowed with the tolerance of 'dog song' I built up during my 2? years down south.

        Whisper it quietly but my wife and I have 4 cats!




        • #5
          Re: Hi from Scotland.

          Hello Argyll,

          I'm also new to the board, but have a little Antarctic experience. I also have some cultural ties to Scotland - my area of the United States has a lot of Scots-Irish (Ulster Scots) heritage.

          You say you are interested in Shackleton, and it seems like most people who are interested in Antarctica these days like Shackleton the best of the early Antarctic explorers - mainly because of his combination of intelligence, determination, and the value he placed on the lives of his men.

          As for transportation in Antarctica - you won't find any Dogs these days in Antarctica. Large sleds are often pulled by Cats. The yellow, tracked kind, that is. The American South Pole Traverse is using mostly Case tractors, but had a couple Cats this year. I've got lots of photos on some data DVDs I've offered to the community.

          Anyway, good to see you here.


          • #6
            Re: Hi from Scotland.

            Thanks Alan.

            I suppose my interest in Shackleton is because of the car link, if anything I'm probably the last person I'd anticipate you folks would expect on a site like this as I'm heavily involved with the internal combustion engine with all their associated problems for the environment.

            All that said, I've enjoyed reading the content of the site and for a dyed-in-the-wool petrol-head that I am I'm much better informed about the Antarctic now than I was a month ago - so something has rubbed off!



            • #7
              Re: Hi from Scotland.

              I'm not quite sure how to read this line of yours:

              "I'm heavily involved with the internal combustion engine with all their associated problems for the environment."

              I'm not sure if you are saying you are involved with internal combustion engines despite their problems, or if you are interested in resolving those problems.

              If the latter, there is a thread here that might interest you:


              There are some very neat technologies that are starting to become available that could rid us of our need for internal combustion engines. I think this is pretty neat, to get more (power) for less (fuel).

              Of course, I recognize that some people just like internal combustion engines, the same way some people just like horses - despite the fact that horses, in their day, polluted cities more than automobiles ever have. I think we can have the benefits of cleaner, cheaper power without having to give up all recreational use of internal combustion engines, just as people still keep horses.

              Of course, most of the equipment in Antarctica at present uses internal combustion engines, so that's right up your alley.


              • #8
                Re: Hi from Scotland.

                Hi Alan,

                To answer your question - I'm "involved with internal combustion engines despite their problems" - from a historical perspective.

                The research work I'm involved with investigates the development of the motor vehicle from the late 19th century up to about the mid 1920's looking at its social and technological impact. As you probably know during these years the internal combustion engine was seen as the answer to all sorts of issues - freedom of movement, economic growth, jobs, commerce, etc, etc. To be absolutely honest, from a research point of view its a hugely interesting subject.

                From the environmental perspective I'm an interested onlooker - and a supporter of those who are working towards alternative power sources for transport. Its early days yet from a museum point of view, but it won't be too long before we see the first evidence of early attempts of "environmentally friendly" transport becoming part of the collection, its only a matter of time.