JF Ptak Science Books LLC Post 959, extended. Daily Dose from Dr. Odd
Nothing quite exceeds like excess said Mr. Wilde (and others) , and he/they could be no more correct when looking at this picture of a Movable Maginot Line—it is a mobile fort, complete with plane launching capacity, two dozen long canons, a crane, and a host of other stuff.
It looks as though it has ample room for all sorts of materiel though leaving little room for, perhaps, an engine. I just can’t see where it might be…perhaps it is near the not-room-enough-for-it-either ammunition compartment. Maybe they were in a smaller armed cart being pulled by the mothership? I reckon that this beast was 66 feet high, 100 feet long and 60 feet wide, which is a very big, heavy near-cube. Good luck with driving the thing in anything that was less than perfect conditions. A big profile like this, filled with guns and canons or not, also makes for a big target profile—a tall, broad target with flat/non-inclined sides. ( I should also point out that there are two 10’ loudspeakers mounted on the front of the fort to instill fear in the people that the thing was approaching with loud noise. The author points out that the Nazis used noise against the French with their “screaming dive bombers”, and so the fort would use the same tactics against the Nazis in the moveable fort—not that the sound of the engines and the attendant noise wouldn’t’ve been enough of a fear factor in themselves…)
But the image of such a monster, sensical or not, was enough for the purposes of the pamphlet in which it appeared. The Brains to Win was a piece of British spirit/hope propaganda issued at about the time of the Battle of Britain in 1940, and it listed the sorts of technological breakthroughs that were going to push the nation over the top to victory. Some of the stuff was real, some not—like the moving fort/Howl’s Castle above, and the floating fort, below.
I’m not sure where a floating fort would make sense, especially one of that size. (Iterating the figures on deck into distance, it looks as though the deck on the floating platform was 150 or 200’ square. It would’ve looked like a big target from above.) Given the time and expense and material needed for such a thing, it seems that it would’ve been cheaper to make a moveable fortress not quite so big, with less of a profile, and more mobile—I think that this was called a “destroyer” or “battleship”.
But no matter, I’m just poking fun at some of the future vision that became archaic the moment it was drawn, punk retro-future. All the pamphlet was trying to point out in its 32 pages was that overall the Brits were smarter than the Germans and that would be the balance for victory in the war. “Hitler will get some very unpleasant surprises before this is over” the author very politely pointed out, no doubt with one eyebrow raised. The scientists agreed.
And they were right, which is all that matters.