Encounter with a Cast-off Military Surplus Engine The Starting-point of the “Dream” and the “Response to the Needs of the Time” (1946)



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Encounter with a Cast-off Military Surplus Engine
The Starting-point of the “Dream” and the “Response to the Needs of the Time” (1946)


One day in September 1946, Mr. Honda visited the home of a friend, Kenzaburo Inukai. There, by chance, he came upon a small engine. He had come to know Mr. Inukai through automobile repair work he did when he was running the Hamamatsu branch of Art Shokai and Mr. Inukai was running a taxi company. Mr. Inukai happened to have a generator engine designed for a No. 6 wireless radio from the former Imperial Army that an acquaintance had left with him. When Mr. Honda saw it, he was immediately inspired with an idea. It was a moment of destiny. This encounter determined his whole future direction, and it was from this decisive moment that the later Honda Motor Co. would be born.

Mr. Honda had started out as an automobile repair mechanic. Engines were what he knew best, and on top of that, he was an inventor.

It did not take him any time to come up with an idea: “Let’s use this to power a bicycle.”

The notion of attaching an auxiliary engine to power a bicycle had been around for a long time. It had been made into a commercial product in ...

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The Starting-point of the “Dream” and the “Response to the Needs of the Time” (1946)

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