History of Scooter Too
Henry J. Kaiser, industrialist, was a club racer at Lake Tahoe, California. He and his son Edgar competed in numerous races at that high altitude lake. The success of Stanley St. Clair Sayres' U-27 Slo-mo-shun IV, brought notice to the Kaisers. Scooter Too was built by Bart Carter, in 1955, to the specifications of the U-27. With one difference. The power plant.
Kaiser chose to power his new unlimited hydroplane with the 24-cylinder V-3420 Allison. Essentially, an experimental engine designed to increase the power output and fighting capability of America's Allison engines during World War II. Unfortunately, Jet-power was also being developed at about the same time and proved superior in performance.
The V-3420 is a 24-cylinder double-vee, twin crankshaft, liquid-cooled engine derived from the V-1710, a 12-cylinder engine that powered such WWII aircraft as the Lockheed P-38, Bell P-39, and the Curtiss P-40. Essentially, the V-3420 is made up of two V-1710 engines mounted on a single crankcase with the two crankshafts geared together. In the Scooter Too, the twin output shafts were connected to a gearbox which turned the single twin bladed propeller. The engine was manufactured from 1941 until 1945 and used in several experimental US Army Air Force aircraft, including the XB-19, XP-58, XB-39, XP-75, and the P-75A. None of these aircraft were produced in quantity, therefore only about 150 of the V-3420s were built. One of Scooter Too's engines is now on display at the US Air Force Museum, located at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio.
Ill health forced the Kaisers from unlimited boat racing after the end of the 1956 season. The U-10 Scooter Too, was sold to Stan Adams, who campaigned the boat as the U-10 Adios. George Gilham, campaigned the boat in 1958-9 as the U-26 Miss Moses Lake and the first Miss Tri-Cities. The temperamental engine of the Scooter Too was perhaps its downfall. The boat ended up on a pole at the entrance to Columbia Park at the Tri-Cities race site. It was finally removed in 1992.
Scooter Too's competition record was less than exemplary. She sank six times, her best finish in two years was two third places at Lake Tahoe races. Her driver went on to fame in the U-8 Hawaii Kai III, under the tutelage of the U-27 Slo-mo-shun IV's crew.
Type: 24-cylinder, liquid-cooled, double-vee, with gear-driven supercharger
and exhaust-driven turbo-supercharger
Displacement: 3,420 cu.in.
Weight: 2,655 lbs.
Maximum RPM: 3,000
Maximum Horsepower: 2,885
OWNER: Henry J. Kaiser DESIGNER/BUILDER: Bart Carter
DRIVER: Jack Regas
LENGTH: 28 feet BEAM: 12 feet 4 inches
COLORS: Mahogany and white for 1955
Orange and Persimmon for 1956
WEIGHT: 5,200 lbs.
POWER: V-3420 Allison
[Thanks to Parker Jones for help in preparing this page]
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© Leslie Field, 2001