Gottlieb Daimler

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Gottlieb Daimler

IT WAS DEAD OF on an autumn evening in 1883, yet the at the bottom of the garden of number 13 in the German spa town of Bad Cannstatt, was a of activity.

From inside the clink and rattle of machinery. another noise disturbed the air, the clatter of boots on the path as a detachment of the Royal Police Force marched up to the

The inspector rapped sharply on the and the door was opened by a portly man with a neat beard. Daimler,’ said the inspector, neighbours have laid a that they strongly you of being involved in the manufacture of banknotes. I have a warrant to your workshop.’

A few minutes later, however, the withdrew, apologising profusely, discovered that, far from a coiner, Daimler was just an who seemed to be working on some of engine. Though how he expected it to run a boiler, goodness only

What the inspector and his minions to realise, though, was that had been looking at a power that represented the culmination of a search for a self-contained motive that would supplant the engine.

Gottlieb Daimler was born on the 17 1834, at Schorndorf, in the Rems ‘Wurtternberg’s little Garden of His father ran a bakery and wine bar from an early age, his son great interest in technology. He from the local Latin in 1848, and went into with a carbine manufacturer Raithel, whose products in great demand, owing to the of revolution that was then through Germany.

Four later, Gottlieb passed his test by making a pair of pistols with rifled and engraved handles; and left behind him for ever. He enrolled at the for Advanced Training in the Industrial at Stuttgart, under Ferdinand

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The course was essentially practical, the working at a factory all day and studying mechanics at the school every as well as on Sunday mornings. In Steinbeis found Daimler a job the firm of F. Rolle and Schwilque at near Strasbourg; the works was as ‘the Factory College’, the manager, Friedrich Messmer, was a teacher at the Karlsruhe Institute of and was now devoting his skills to the advanced of promising young engineers.

The work was hard, the day often from 5 am well into the but Daimler thrived on it. When the began building railway in 1856, the 22-year-old Daimler was to foreman. He felt, however, he lacked sufficient knowledge of and took a two years’ leave of to study engineering design at the Poly technical Institute. He through this with a knowledge of locomotive technology and a conviction that the future lay a source other than: What he envisaged was a small, easy-to-run engine which be afforded by light industry; a perhaps of the crude gas engines were just making debut.

In the summer of 1861, Daimler from the Grafenstaden firm to his dream. After a brief to Paris, he moved to England, he spent a year working leading engineering companies, much experience in the use of machine The climax of his visit came in with a visit to the London Fair, where among the and technical exhibits were a of steam carriages. When he to Germany, Daimler’s he wanted to set up a to build machine tools and woodworking machinery such as he had in England.

For a while he worked at the Maschinen-fabrik in Geislingen, designing mills, and turbines. Then, at the recommendation of his old Steinbeis, Daimler took the management of Bruderhaus Reutlingen, an of a charitable institution founded in to combine modern industrialism a socialism based on Christian love. The Reutlingen factory machinery for paper mills, machinery and weighbridges but, the of socialism proved incapable of applied to the profitable running of a and, by 1863, the Bruderhaus was in

A fter much experimenting, Daimler’s first four-wheeled (a

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