As a fan of all walking machines and backyard inventers, I want to believe it, but something doesn’t ring true. Here’s my pro and con list:
1. Italian fascists apparently wore the fez (link). The tassle shows action.
2. The jointing of the legs look plausible; someone must have built at least parts of this thing.
1. There doesn’t seem to be any power linkage between the engine and the legs. Nor a flyweel; the torque and power distribution issues would be pretty challenging.
2. Doesn’t seem to be any way to steer the thing. What’s the boy holding onto?
3. “Canter across a rough field with ease?” What happens if you step on some soft ground with those little feet?
4. Balance and control issues for a four-legged walker are too sophisticated for a straight mechanical solution. Even a walk would be tricky. Change of gait would require computer control. Six or eight legs might be more likely, giving you tripod balance at all times. (See 8-legged spider at Burning Man Festival.)
5. Lighting doesn’t seem consistent on the boy vs. the rig vs. the background. There’s no cast shadow on the far rear leg. No depth of field or motion blur, which you’d expect to see on an action shot taken in the 1930s.
My reluctant conclusion: Hoax. The inventor’s name must have been Bubbolone Bugiardo. What do you think?
Source: Modern Mechanix
Previous GJ posts: Timberjack forest walker, Walking Vehicles, Part 1 and Part 2.