In Reply to: Three point control lever question? posted by chris eby on November 30, 2018 at 13:38:09:
The term "plastic" doesn't simply mean a soda, CD, or milk container. It has a few different meanings. I can see using alternative materials for the wartime 2N, aluminum being high on the list to change, but by mid-late 1943, Ford was ramping back up to standard tractor production. Ford had recruited George Washington Carver to come to Dearborn and head up his lab in order to experiment with different plants to find a suitable one in which to synthesize its resin for producing a polymer for making plastic parts. It was his discovery that the soyabean fit those criteria best. Ford had a 1941 test car built using soyabean hood, fenders, and trunk, shown in a promo photo of Henry trying to dent or crack it with a sledge hammer to no avail. Carver also discovered the soyabean could be used to make fabric and Henry had a suit made of the material as well. He also discovered the soyabean contained a high protein content and Ford had numerous foods developed with it and served in the company executive dining room. Soymilk was used at the Henry Ford Hospital for a cow’s milk substitute as Ford believed the healing power of the stuff as well. With the early 9N Ford-Ferguson tractor, there was an alternative optional pan seat available. It was made entirely from the soy bean polymer. Listed as p/n: 9N-400-B, SEAT ASSEMBLY, DRIVERS, (PLASTIC). Because it was organic, when farmers parked their tractors in the barn, mice, rats, birds, and other rodents would chew on the material and destroy the seats. By 1941 Ford stopped producing the seat altogether. One of the foods Carver and his team developed was a soymilk non-dairy cream then used as dessert topping. Later, an independent man, Bob Rich, leased the patent from Ford for $1 a year to market the product himself as Rich’s Whip Topping. In 1945 the recipe was basically ‘stolen’ by the Delsoy Company and marketed as ‘PRESTO WHIP’ in a new aerosol can. The brand is still sold today however very little or no soy material is used in it at all. All the companies like the makers of Cool Whip owe Henry Ford a chunk of their profits for being involved in the whipped cream market. It soon became non-cost productive to produce soybean polymers and foods and Ford closed their factory in the Rouge Complex. Imagine having a car or truck that couldn’t get dinged in a parking lot or smashed in minor fender bender?
FORD & THE SOYBEAN EXPERIMENTS:
PRESTO WHIP, BASED on HENRY FORD’S SOYBEAN DESSERT TOPPING RECIPE: