The Fauber Hydroplane [1908]

Fauber — A French Hydroplane

A Fifty-Horsepower Outfit That is Claimed to Have Attained a Speed of Almost Thirty-Eight Miles an Hour Over a Measured Course

W. F. Bradley

On a quiet stretch of the River Seine, sufficiently near Paris to be in touch with all that experimenters are doing, yet sufficiently far away to be undisturbed by its gayness, America has an inventor who for two years has been working at the problem of the improvement of the hydroplane boat. W. H. Fauber, well known in the states by reason of his inventions connected with the cycle industry, and at one time proprietor and manager of the Fauber Manufacturing Co., Chicago, has covered the measured kilometer in exactly 60 seconds and is so pleased with the success of his hydroplane that he has made arrangements for building it in regular sizes and series for sale as a cruiser.

Unlike all other hydroplanes known in Europe, the Fauber craft has the external appearance and lines of a fast motor boat; indeed when at rest in the water there is practically nothing to distinguish it from an ordinary racing boat. The hydroplanes of the boat, however, are of an entirely novel type and mark out the craft as a distinct departure from what has hitherto been attempted. The inventor prefers that not much should be said about this feature of the boat, but it is permissible to state that there are multiple planes and that the under surface is not flat. The form adopted gives the boat a stability which is superior to that of the ordinary displacement boat and which is far removed from the ordinary type of hydroplane. The sharp pointed bow, another distinctive feature, neutralizes the wave action by cutting through the crest of the wave, thus increasing speed, and minimizing the pitching effect that has been one of the weak points of all hydroplanes.

Fitted with an Antoinette 50-horsepower, eight-cylinder, water-cooled engine, the Fauber hydroplane covered the measured kilometer on the Seine in exactly 60 seconds, with three men on board. This is equal to a speed of 36.7 miles an hour. With certain improvements that have suggested themselves in the form of the hull, and the substitution of a more efficient propeller, it is expected that the speed can be carried up to rather more than 40 miles an hour.

Another racer is now under construction and should be ready for trial trips in a couple of months. Its hydroplanes are exactly similar to those which have served so well on the present racer, the lines, however, are somewhat finer and should offer less resistance for starting and going through the water at slow speeds. For general touring purposes 21-foot boats will be built and equipped with some make of four-cylinder engine yet to be chosen. a boat of this type will have an open well sufficiently large to accommodate six people, will have all the stability of an ordinary displacement boat and a speed that can only be attained by skinning over the surface of the water.

It had been intended to give an exhibition of the speed of the boat at the Monaco meeting, and entries were made for this purpose. Owing, however, to delay in issuing patents, the craft had to be kept out of the Mediterranean speed carnival.

(Transcribed from PowerBoating, July 1908, p. 350)