Amphicar to Australia!!

D

damo

Guest
Hi everyone,

Finally have signed up here and got activated so I can now post this message ive been very interested to find out the answer to!

I have been thinking about finding an amphicar for sale and seeing if I
can import it to australia and convert to right hand drive (could the
amphicar be converted to right hand drive)? I don't know if there is any
or many in australia. I think Sea World has one or something similar on
the Gold Coast in one of their shows but I haven't seen any others.

My question is, could one of these cars handle the following 5 days a
week (monday-friday) or would this be impossible/very hard work to keep
the vehicle going under these circumstances:

3 mile water trip followed by a 32 mile car trip on road, return each
day (so all up 6 miles of water travel and 64 miles of road)? This water
component would be in a calm salt water bay. That would add to 300 miles
land and 60 miles water a week.

The reason I ask is a car 40 yrs old to be subject to that sounds a bit
cruel ! But I know back 'in the day' cars were built a lot more solid.

On a side note, I am really curious as to what makes the amphicar float
given its made of metal!

Thanks for ur thoughts all :)
 

mike_israel

Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
I am sure others will chime in but here are my own top of mind thoughts.

1) There were some small number of RHD amphicars produced so, in theory at least, conversion would be possible. Not sure if that would require any unobtainable parts.

2) The biggest challenge to what you propose is the salt water. Salt water will quickly turn even the best amphicar into a rust bucket in very short order. They are made of cold rolled steel. the best epoxy paint on earth will not save it from the ravages of salt water. An amphicar full of rust holes will not float very well at all. The salt also has rather nasty effects on cables, bearings, etc.

3) Reality is that the Amphicar was not an especially good car nor an especially good boat. Forget about modern safety and comfort conveniences like A/C, airbags, etc. 6 miles a day on the water will easily take you an hour or more (depending on the current). While no vehicle is more fun for a long weekend, I suspect that driving one on a daily basis would grow old very quickly. It goes back to the old saying ... never marry your mistress.

4) Using one on a daily basis as you describe would indeed be VERY maintenance intensive, even if you were only using it in fresh water.

5) Any Amphicar is now getting closeto 50 years old. The scarcity and cost makes using one on a daily basis a questionable proposition. While Amphicars are used more than many other classics, most long journeys take place on the back of a trailer.

As to what makes it float, it all comes down to buoyancy ...
HowStuffWorks "Why can boats made of steel float on water when a bar of steel sinks?"
How Boats Float - BoatSafe Kids!
 

Canadian four amphs

Amphicar Expert
A good post, should get lots of response.
I''ll address useability.
Long trips.Your behind gets very sore, even sitting on exta pillows, I drove one home once.1000 miles.Had to make many rest stops too.
On the otherhand, I have been swimming here in Fl. almost every day since Jan. 1st.On land I have Taken many 30 mile trips(1 way)and a few over 60 miles,Day and night.but my car was fully redone in 2005 and all snags cured since then, but still had a head gasket leak I changed in Jan.
I converted the car to Neg, ground a few weeks ago so I could add some toys,(Radio, and my remote squirtes etc) but still have a generator system.
I am now due for a full regreese now, and bearing inspection,I would never take a Amphicar in SALT WATER. Steel wheel cylinders, Aluminum brake pistons together in salt water would be instant seize!
GORD
 

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SplitPersonality

Guest
Hello "thanks for ur thoughts all" Do you have a name too ?

Re your question of how the heck does a metal craft float? I spent 2-1/2
years sailing around the world in a steel boat and sank very few times. I've
heard that there are a number of steel freighters and other steel craft in the
world, so since the Amphicar is a boat, why wouldn't it float? A better
question might be "What might make it sink ?" At our recent Annual Lake Dora
Swim-In, we were pleased to not lose a single Amphicar !

Vic near Daytona with the "Split Personality" 1967 Amphicar



In a message dated 4/1/2009 8:01:28 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
writes:

Hi everyone,

Finally have signed up here and got activated so I can now post this message
ive been very interested to find out the answer to!

I have been thinking about finding an amphicar for sale and seeing if I
can import it to australia and convert to right hand drive (could the
amphicar be converted to right hand drive)? I don't know if there is any
or many in australia. I think Sea World has one or something similar on
the Gold Coast in one of their shows but I haven't seen any others.

My question is, could one of these cars handle the following 5 days a
week (monday-friday) or would this be impossible/very hard work to keep
the vehicle going under these circumstances:

3 mile water trip followed by a 32 mile car trip on road, return each
day (so all up 6 miles of water travel and 64 miles of road)? This water
component would be in a calm salt water bay. That would add to 300 miles
land and 60 miles water a week.

The reason I ask is a car 40 yrs old to be subject to that sounds a bit
cruel ! But I know back 'in the day' cars were built a lot more solid.

On a side note, I am really curious as to what makes the amphicar float
given its made of metal!

Thanks for ur thoughts all





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Ed Price

Member
_____

From: SplitPersonality [mailto:]
Sent: Thursday, April 02, 2009 7:56 AM
To: edprice@cox.net
Subject: RE: [General Amphicar Discussion-t-20380] Amphicar to Australia!!


Hello "thanks for ur thoughts all" Do you have a name too ?

Re your question of how the heck does a metal craft float? I spent 2-1/2
years sailing around the world in a steel boat and sank very few times. I've

heard that there are a number of steel freighters and other steel craft in
the
world, so since the Amphicar is a boat, why wouldn't it float? A better
question might be "What might make it sink ?" At our recent Annual Lake Dora

Swim-In, we were pleased to not lose a single Amphicar !

Vic near Daytona with the "Split Personality" 1967 Amphicar




Amphicars, and other larger vessels, have been known to sink when the air
inside the hull is replaced by water. Endeavor to avoid this condition!

Ed Price
El Cajon, CA USA
WB6WSN
61 Rust Guppy
1987 MB 420SEL
 
On a side note, I am really curious as to what makes the amphicar float
given its made of metal!


I recommend watching Bill Nye The Science Guy episode on Buoyancy. It answers all of your questions, has an Amphicar in it, and a song called Bills got a Boat sung to the back track of Babys got back. That alone is worth the price.
I have no idea if this is on the internet anywhere, I have an old tape somewhere of it from the late 90s. Enjoy.
 
D

damo

Guest
Thanks for the replies guys, I did not realise salt water had such an effect. Makes sense though.

Bit of a bummer but better I found out now rather than pay 50,000+ and import one only to watch it get eaten away in front of me :)

Thanks everyone
 
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