Zeta - The Secret Project

 

Here are some excerpts from the book that talk about Lightburn’s “Secret Project”


I started work at Lightburn on the 3-9-53....


Liightburns had a large factory area, plenty of room to move about, and my design commitments gave me plenty of opportunities to explore the manufacturing plants, investigating the various parts and sub assemblies requiring new tooling or tooling modifications. It was during one of these plant tours that I happened to see a very queer glass like bubble running about, spewing out smoke and making one hell of a noise. I looked but it flashed past quickly, made another run around the factory and then disappeared into a building with the doors closing as soon as it entered showing a sign “do not enter”.

Back in the office I inquired as to what it was, and what was it’s purpose. The answer from the manager was, it was a special project not to be discussed, and that I would be well served if I forgot the incident and never brought it up again....


After three years with the company, and being involved in the design and testing of Washing Machines, Spin Dryers, Concrete Mixers, Hydraulic Jacks, I was enjoying the work and becoming more qualified each day....


Early one morning I was about to commence work when my Engineering Manager “Stan Pick” told me to report to the Technical Director “Harold Hallett”. I did and was told that I was about to be invited to join the very special team engaged to develop the Lightburn car project....


Harold Hallet spent the next three days bringing me up to date with the car project history. I was shown drawings and photos, of the four runabouts that had previously been developed and tested. The first, an unusual concept, a three wheeled chassis assembly fitted with two body components, one a clear plastic dome section in which the driver sat and controlled the unit. The other body part contained the engine and front wheel drive assembly. The two body components separated by four feet were joined by a pole type chassis. This arrangement was to give the driver comfort in all weather conditions with less engine noise and vibration. The second car, also constructed as a three wheeler, fitted with a Jawa motor cycle engine, also on the outside of the body. Then came a model with an aluminium body, with the engine again fitted outside, but driving a rear wheel. The fourth was a rebuild of the last model, giving better seating conditions, and providing air ducting to the engine. These vehicles were not built for style, appearance or performance, each vehicle served to test certain automotive components. The result of all this testing and investigations was to provide the Company with the necessary information to build a Lightburn Car of the future. Harold Harllett was now satisfied that we had sufficient knowledge to be able to build the first “registered” road testing car. I was to build the vehicle.


Model No 6, the first Lightburn vehicle built that was registered.