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Steve_Colby

Two New Vintage Images Of Sideling Hill

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I pulled these two images of Sideling Hill off of the Internet recently...

 

Top of west side of Sideling Hill looking east.

 

top-of-sideling1_lrg.jpg

 

I believe this is the east side of Sideling Hill, looking west, near the summit... Only because of the reference to the "Big Curve". This was probably located on the abandoned section of road. There is still a barn marked "Forest Hill" near the base of the mountain on the old Western Pike.

 

sideling-hill-park1_lrg.jpg

 

~ Steve

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Steve,

 

Thanks for the interesting shots! I have never seen the term "snub" used. But I sure know what it meant.

 

We don't think too much about brake fade today, but even in my early driving days (mid 50's) it was very real. I recall coming down the long grade from Yosemite to China Camp and losing my ability to stop the car. Fortunately the road leveled off before I got in real trouble.

 

I came down a long 10% grade (that is very steep) off the Big Horn Mountains a few days ago, and had no problem. Big difference!

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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From my great grandmother's letter of March 2, 1921:

Our brakes gave out coming down Sideling mountains, sent for a garage man he came out, fixed us up so we got to the garage, they are now putting in new bands. I am sitting in the office where it is warm. Got ourselves together again started on but the machine did not work right so we turned around and went back and had the man look after it again, all together it cost us $6.75.
The bands on the Model T had also been replaced in December and possibly a few more time she didn't bother mentioning.

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From my great grandmother's letter of March 2, 1921:

The bands on the Model T had also been replaced in December and possibly a few more time she didn't bother mentioning.

 

 

Denny,

 

Double WOW. I wonder if that sign was there when your great grandparents went through? Maybe the sign was put up because of experiences like theirs. anyway, a great citation!

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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From my great grandmother's letter of March 2, 1921:

The bands on the Model T had also been replaced in December and possibly a few more time she didn't bother mentioning.

 

Denny,

Did your Grandparents travel Sideling often or were they on a road trip?

 

Steve

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Denny,

Did your Grandparents travel Sideling often or were they on a road trip?

 

Steve

There's a pretty good chance that was the only time either one of them ever saw Sideling. They were heading home to Ohio at the end of a trip to Florida. I know I've previously mentioned my weak 2001 re-do of their trip but will unashamedly do so again. I've crossed Sideling several times and every time I try, unsuccessfully, to imagine driving the older and steeper alignment in a brake-less Model T. Since there is no mention of panic or catastrophe, I'm thinking that either the brakes only gave out near the bottom or that they were going slow enough that Granddad was able to stop the car with engine braking. I've often wondered where that garage was.

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Denny,

It's possible they may have stopped at Norris' Garage a few mile from the western base of Sideling Hill.

 

norris-garage2_lrg.jpg

 

There also appears to have been a garage attached to Hixson Feed on the old west side alignment of the road.

 

hixson-feed1_lrg.jpg

 

...And a service station near the bottom the of the mountain.

 

missing-road-section4_lrg.jpg

 

~ Steve

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I've crossed Sideling several times and every time I try, unsuccessfully, to imagine driving the older and steeper alignment in a brake-less Model T. Since there is no mention of panic or catastrophe, I'm thinking that either the brakes only gave out near the bottom or that they were going slow enough that Granddad was able to stop the car with engine braking.

 

Here's a site that describes how to drive a Model T.

 

http://www.modelt.ca/drive-fs.html

 

I wonder based on what it says whether the "bands" that your grandparents had replaced were transmission bands. I guess it was very common to use the reverse pedal, or all three pedals together in a real emergency, to stop the car, and in so doing you engage the transmission.

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Steve,

Assuming they were in business in 1921, any of those three look like good candidates. Since there is just the one sentence, there's probably no way to determine which. I'd like to think it was Norris's 'cause that looks pretty cool.

 

Jim,

I imagine Granddad was pressing every pedal in reach and probably squeezing the steering wheel pretty good, too. There were no wheel brakes and the single brake band was indeed in the transmission. Granny does say bands though I don't think we can count on her for technical precision. That could have been a figure of speech or it may have been common practice to replace all three bands (low, reverse, brake) when replacing any. I'm guessing that's what they did. I have the Model T Instruction Book (owner's manual) and it not only explains how to drive the car but how to maintain and practically rebuild it, too. I did some rambling about it here.

 

EDIT: That isn't quite right. There was a brake on the rear axle that was activated by the hand level. It is called an emergency brake or a parking brake but I have the impression it was routinely used in stopping the car not just holding it.

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Great pics and posts! I also like the price tag for their car repair! Although, I'm sure that was quite allot of money in those days.

 

Becky

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At a family reunion over the weekend, I queried a couple of my uncles about Model T braking protocol. One uncle currently owns a T and the other is a long retired mechanic who has driven plenty of them in the past. Both thought the hand brake was pretty much a "holder" and not a "stopper". The ex-mechanic told me that a Model T "driving tip" was to occasionally use the reverse pedal instead of the brake pedal on long descents. This worked to slow the car and saved some wear on the brake band. I recall him telling me in a previous discussion about how easy it was to "rock" a T out of mud or snow with simple (for the well practiced) pedal work.

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Just this past weekend I visited Sideling Hill and saw for myself the Hixon Rd. alignment, enjoying in person the sites I had so far only seen here. I was inspecting the fruit cider stand at the top of the hill when someone drove up and informed me that there was a black bear on the road about half-way down the hill. I found that all the more reason to explore Hixon Rd. At the bottom of Hixon Rd., right where it crosses McFarlane Rd., there is a row of old tourist cabins. The driver of a passing pick-up truck confirmed for me that's what it was.

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Just this past weekend I visited Sideling Hill and saw for myself the Hixon Rd. alignment, enjoying in person the sites I had so far only seen here. I was inspecting the fruit cider stand at the top of the hill when someone drove up and informed me that there was a black bear on the road about half-way down the hill. I found that all the more reason to explore Hixon Rd. At the bottom of Hixon Rd., right where it crosses McFarlane Rd., there is a row of old tourist cabins. The driver of a passing pick-up truck confirmed for me that's what it was.

 

Mark,

Welcome to my neck of the woods! You can see more photos of the area, both vintage and current, at the Cumberland Road Project/Sideling Hill page.

 

~ Steve

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...And a service station near the bottom the of the mountain.

 

missing-road-section4_lrg.jpg

 

~ Steve

 

Was this the Cities Service station that the sign partway up the hill was advertising? Or was that Hixon's Feed? I'm a little mixed up about which way the sign was pointing. I'm just assuming that a sign placed on the right side of the road (looking downhill) would be aimed at the traffic going downhill. Or maybe the sign was assuring motorists that a Cities Service station was a few miles ahead and that drivers could confidently bypass the two stations on the west side of Sideling Hill.

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