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This propeller-driven iceboat was built using an illustration featured in a 1924 Popular Mechanics magazine. It features a Heath Henderson, Model B-4 motorcycle piston engine. The Henderson Motorcycle Company, under an exclusive agreement with Heath, produced proprietary engines to use in their small Heath Parasol monoplane. Heath sold these in kit form for homebuilders in the 1920s and 30s.
Edward Bayard Heath was born in upstate New York in 1888. His family owned a machine shop where he gained his engineering education. Heath built his first monoplane here and dedicated his life to aviation. He settled in Chicago and founded the E.B. Heath Aerial Vehicle Co. in 1913 with perseverance, long hours, and very little money.
Steve Schackman and Bill Klein organized the Henderson Motorcycle Company of Saint Louis, Missouri in the mid-1880s. Henderson manufactured 4-cylinder motorcycles from 1912 until 1931. At the time, they were the largest and fastest motorcycles and police departments used them for traffic patrol.
The Heath-Henderson B-4 engine was reliable and service was simple because parts were cheap and easy to get throughout the country. It was also a light 119 lbs. and came at a low-cost of $325 with propeller! These factors made it well-suited for the Heath airplane design because it helped make sport flying approachable. Heath advertised his kits, engines, and plans in countless Popular Mechanics classifieds for home builders. One could purchase an Ice Sled blueprint for $1.
Country of Origin: USA
Drivetrain Configuration: Propeller-driven
Engine: Heath-Henderson Model B-4, Air-cooled,
four-cylinder, side-valve, 30 hp
Top speed: Unknown
Years Produced: Heath-Henderson B-4 engine,
circa 1920 – 1930s Sled - Unknown
Number Produced: Unknown
Cost: Heath-Henderson engine $325 with propeller.
Sled - unknown