The One Gallon Challenge

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Roo Trimble has been holed up in his backyard shed for months. Hunched amid whirring saws and jagged metal scraps, he has been welding the aluminum skeleton of a small car, smoothing the joints between the latticed pipes, aligning the wheels, and climbing in and out of the metal hull to make sure he can fit snugly – but not too snugly – inside.
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GRAPHIC One gallon challenge
Trimble hopes the three-wheeled, almond-shaped contraption will carry him to victory Thursday in a first-time event called the One Gallon Challenge. As part of the second Boston GreenFest, Trimble and six others will attempt to drive their homemade cars from Greenfield to Boston City Hall Plaza, a distance of 100 miles, using just 1 gallon of gasoline.
“These days,’’ Trimble said, wiping his brow with the back of one hand, “we need to think about taking the snail shells off our cars – not dragging our house with us everywhere we go.’’
Event organizer Jory Squibb, who in 2005 fused two Honda motor scooters to create a fuel-efficient microcar called “Moonbeam,’’ said the message he hopes the One Gallon Challenge sends is that 100-mile-per-gallon cars are not impossible to build. The technology is there, he said; all that’s needed “are gutsy entrepreneurs and gutsy buyers.’’

100 miles.  1 gallon.  Go! That’s the premise behind the upcoming One Gallon Challenge – a contest for alternative fuel vehicles to see who can get to Boston from Greenfield the fastest on one gallon of gas, if at all.

Contestants hope to drive the future into Boston

By Laura A. Bennett, Globe Correspondent

roo

(Aram Boghosian for The Boston Globe)

Roo Trimble has been holed up in his backyard shed for months. Hunched amid whirring saws and jagged metal scraps, he has been welding the aluminum skeleton of a small car, smoothing the joints between the latticed pipes, aligning the wheels, and climbing in and out of the metal hull to make sure he can fit snugly – but not too snugly – inside.

Trimble hopes the three-wheeled, almond-shaped contraption will carry him to victory Thursday in a first-time event called the One Gallon Challenge. As part of the second Boston GreenFest, Trimble and six others will attempt to drive their homemade cars from Greenfield to Boston City Hall Plaza, a distance of 100 miles, using just 1 gallon of gasoline.

“These days,’’ Trimble said, wiping his brow with the back of one hand, “we need to think about taking the snail shells off our cars – not dragging our house with us everywhere we go.’’

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