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Treaty of Versailles
The end of World War I was finalized by the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, 1919. It was signed by Great Britain, France, Italy, and Japan but not the United States, as the U.S. drafted its own treaty with Germany in 1921. Many historians argue that the Treaty of Versailles was the major cause of World War II which occurred twenty years later. On the Treatys most superficial level, the extreme punishment and fines that were levied by the Allied Powers on the Germans were causes enough for war. Historians argue that this and the international fallout that resulted most notably with the United States were simply too powerful to avoid war at all. The ramification of the Treaty sent the German economy into a severe depression and planted the seeds needed to sprout revenge and uprising such as the world had never seen before.
Estimates for the costs of the war for the Allied Powers fluctuated between ten billion and one hundred billion dollars. Ultimately, the Allied Powers settled on the astronomical sum of thirty-three billion dollars which the German government was mandated to pay but simply did not have the funds to do so. In addition to paying reparations, Germany had to severely limit military spending and personnel, relinquish land previously gained in the World War, and was barred from having any air force at all. The lack of American involvement, which was sorely needed at this time, had significant impacts on the actions of other key states. Sudden American withdrawal from the Treaty of Versailles sent France into a panic and their subsequent occupation of the Ruhr Valley in Germany. This action dealt a harsh blow to the Germany and British-French relations. The former came into economic conflict with France, creating hyper-inflation, and throwing Germany into a severe depression. Wheelbarrows of money were necessary to buy loaves of bread until the Deutsche Mark became so devalued that the bills were burned to provide heat to those living in poverty.
Following this collapse in German currency, a desperate and vulnerable Germany capitalized on the breakdown of relations between Britain and France and United States isolationism to begin rebuilding. This included rearmament that was in direct violation of the Treaty of Versailles. The dictator behind this proposed revitalization in economic and military strength was Adolf Hitler. Current economic hardship made Germany ripe for the rise of a dictator. Hitlers timing was impeccable and he perhaps never would have gained such prominence in the German government if it was not for his propaganda that the weary and desperate German people needed so badly to recover from their depression. The depression however, was not contained within German borders. The politics of the era, most notably Americas isolationist policy contributed to world wide economic collapse. This was the result of then President Woodrow Wilsons inability to persuade Congress to ratify the Treaty of Versailles and become a co-signer with the other Allied Powers. The major failure in Wilsons pitch came in his proposal of the Fourteen Point Plan.
The Fourteen Point Plan outlined Wilsons view of what the post-WWI world should look like, providing for the liberation of certain peoples and territories. Presented to Congress on January 8, 1918, strong debate ensued over the proposal of the fourteenth and final provision; a general association of nations must be formed under specific covenants for the purpose of affording mutual guarantees of political independence and territorial integrity to great and small states alike. Congress voted against what Wilson dubbed the League of Nations, the failed basis of todays United Nations. Although the U.S. proposed the League, they were the most notable nation that failed to join. The U.S. subsequently retreated to a policy of isolationism and combined with a rebuilding and weakened Europe, there was little opposition to Hitlers rise to power and continued violation of the Treaty of Versailles.
The rest of the world exercised a policy of appeasement, allowing Hitler to make small advances in Europe hoping that he would be satisfied with what he was given. He became emboldened as each of his new advances into Europe met little to no opposition in the international community. He ... more
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Brake Hydraulic System Principles & Service Tips.
Author/s: Bob Freudenberger
Issue: Sept-Oct, 1999
Everyone who works on brakes MUST know these concepts and procedures
In the early days of the automobile, some very clever engineering was employed to apply brakes mechanically. For example, the Italian Bugatti routed the cables over the top of the front axle so that the twisting action generated by stopping added force to the shoe cam lever.
No matter how ingenious the design, however, there was always a major drawback: Nothing could insure that braking force would be exactly equal at any pair of wheels, so there was a good chance that stepping on the pedal would cause swerving and skidding. This made the idea of hydraulically actuated brakes attractive--according to Pascal's Law, pressure at all points in a closed hydraulic system must necessarily be the same--but it took many years to develop dependable systems. The first car of any consequence to carry four-wheel hydraulic brakes was the. 1921 Dusenberg of the U.S.
On the most basic level, all brake hydraulic systems share the same principle: Muscle strength amplified by leverage and perhaps a power booster displaces fluid from the master cylinder and causes pressure to increase all through the circuits. This overcomes the retracting springs in drums and the seals' elasticity in disc calipers and pushes the friction material against the rotating member.
That much is obvious, but the subtleties of modern designs that provide proper performance in the real world deserve some explanation. Hence this article, which also includes important service information every mechanic should know about.
Although it has been in use for decades all over the world, the dual (also called "split" or "tandem") master cylinder is still widely misunderstood, so we had better explain its construction and operation. A typical late-model specimen will be of the composite variety (aluminum with a plastic reservoir), but iron one-piece units are still around in abundance. Two pistons ride in the bore, and here is where we encounter some confusing terminology. The rear piston is the primary, and the one in the front is the secondary. This apparent misnaming resulted because the rear piston is the first to receive the force of the driver's leg.
Each piston has a primary seal at its front and a secondary at its rear, so you will be hearing such combinations as primary piston secondary seal, secondary piston secondary seal, etc. The primary seals are the most important because they trap the fluid that is about to be squeezed into the lines. The primary piston's secondary seal keeps fluid from escaping out of the back of the cylinder (commonly into a booster), and the secondary piston's secondary seal acts as a barrier to make two essentially separate cylinders out of one.
In normal braking, the push rod from the pedal or booster forces the primary piston forward. No pressure is created until the primary seal covers the compensating or vent port from the reservoir. Once it does, fluid is trapped in the chamber between the pistons and becomes, for all intents and purposes, a solid column. Pressure is routed from this chamber to two wheels. The trapped fluid and the primary piston coil spring both bear on the secondary piston, moving it forward and creating pressure in the chamber ahead of the secondary piston's primary seal, to which the line to the other two wheels is attached.
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When the pedal is released, a partial vacuum occurs in both pressure chambers because the fluid's inertia and viscosity prevent it from returning from the lines immediately. In order to re-arm the brakes instantaneously, the primary seals are designed to allow fluid to flow one way (forward) from behind each seal into the pressure chambers.
The replenishing ports allow fluid to move freely between the chambers behind both pistons' primary cups and the reservoir according to demand and expansion and contraction from temperature changes.
If a hose should rupture or one of the brake lines should become perforated from corrosion resulting in a catastrophic loss of fluid in half the system, the other half will still provide a means of decelerating the vehicle, albeit with a lower pedal and reduced stopping power.
Both pistons have extensions which project out ... more
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