Jump to content

Lycoming 4 Cyl engine


Recommended Posts

I have a 1923 Gardner Motor car I have just finished a full restoration on the car and I have had to pull the engine down again because it has a very bad vibration. The engine man has ask me if I had any information on the valve timing and assembly information which I don't.

Does any body out there have a work shop manual or information that may help with reassembly of the 4 cyl Licoming engine:confused::confused:

Ian

Link to post
Share on other sites

Basic principle is that with pistons 1 & 4 at top dead centre, you set the camshaft so that exhaust valve on # 4 has just closed and #4 inlet is just about to open. If you have the engine down, just check that the valves are not sticking in the guides. Rule of thumb (without accurate means to measure accurately stem - guide clearance), is that with stem and guide lubed with light oil, it should go "pop" when you pull the valve out with your finger over the other end of the stem. If the valve is too tight you will feel that.

If there is something not quite right with the way it runs, honourable economical oriental vacuum gauge connected to tapping on the inlet manifold will tell you exactly what is amiss. Tom Reece had a very good diagnostic chart for vacuum gauge testing in Antique Automobile a good many years ago; but most vaccum gauges probably have a similar guide. Of course if one pair of spark plug leads are crossed, or if there is cross-tracking inside the distributer cap, it will not run well or evenly. You have to work things out from first principles.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,,,How would you best describe this viberation,,,is it a shaking,,roughness or???

Can you get an idea of frequency??

If it is bad enough to pull down before investagating,,first thing I would check out

would be to see the flywheel is mounted squarely,,,and has no run-out

Is the clutch mounted yet,,,are all the pieces checked for balance,seperately and as

an assembly,,,A small runout on flywheel would almost lift the engine off the frame

Have only seen that once,,,was impressive,,!!!

Next,,,has anyone weighed the con-rods,,pistons,wrist pins rings,,etc,,it all ads up,,

Most of these old engines were not balenced,,and yes some shook more than others

I had one Packard out of dozens ,,that was the smoothest of all,,proved they ALL

could'a been that smooth,,,,Another had the universals off the mark,,shook awful

Well maybbee this will get you started,,Things are always complicated til you

find the problem,,Look for a wobbly f ' wheel,not missing lockwasher

Good luck,,Ben

Link to post
Share on other sites

If my catalogs are correct that should be a "CE" 3 11/16 bore...

(1) Have you tried for other CE owners thru the Gardner club, to see how smooth those engines are when they're right??

(2) If no help, try

(a) the Auburn people---the 1926 4-44 used a CF, another 3 11/16 in the Lyc "C" series...

(B) The oldihc people--IH used the C and the CT in the late 20s early 30s...lots of various Cs in trucks...is there a Stewart club??...

(3) If by pulled down you mean apart, I would dearly love to know, if you do have any one of the Cs, if yours has the potmetal don't touch with a ten foot pole oil pump used on the CT...

Link to post
Share on other sites
If my catalogs are correct that should be a "CE" 3 11/16 bore...

(1) Have you tried for other CE owners thru the Gardner club, to see how smooth those engines are when they're right??

(2) If no help, try

(a) the Auburn people---the 1926 4-44 used a CF, another 3 11/16 in the Lyc "C" series...

(B) The oldihc people--IH used the C and the CT in the late 20s early 30s...lots of various Cs in trucks...is there a Stewart club??...

(3) If by pulled down you mean apart, I would dearly love to know, if you do have any one of the Cs, if yours has the potmetal don't touch with a ten foot pole oil pump used on the CT...

I am in the process of checking the other makes of vehicles with the lycoming engine. Found nothing yet. My oil pump is made of cast iron it came from a international truck with the same engine. I made new gears for it before putting the engine together

Link to post
Share on other sites

(1) Forgot Jim Tremble in Wash State was involved in rebuilding a CT in a Fageol tractor a tear or two ago (oops--Freudian slip??); he could tell you how smooth it was and/or whether they found any timing etc idiosyncrasies on theirs...he posts under his own name on smokstak...hit search, click on his name on any post and an email box will open...

(2) per a 38 Victor gasket catalog looks like the 4cyl "C" series runs C, CE, CF, CH, CT, CU, CUWM (marine??) C4 and C4W; only other car listed is Elcar, but these listings are never complete...

(3) If you draw a blank on other "C" series car owners you might try aths.org and justoldtrucks; they're 90-95% modern stuff (1950s up) but they're free...

(4) Many thxx for oil pump info...good luck.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 years later...

Well I thought I would through this up again The CE Engine in my Gardner still giving me problems with Vibration

The engine has been removed from the car again and pulled down for the second time, every thing that can be checked has been checked. The crank and fly wheel have been re  balanced all pistons and rods checked for weight Every possible part that needs to be checked for run out has been checked. With all the drive train removed it starts to vibrate at about 1000 rpm's. I have remounted the engine on rubber mounts that has helped mask the problem but not fixed it. I must add that it has no miss firing on any cylinders and idles real nice. 

 

Is it possible that the engine should not of been balanced? 

 

Is there somebody with a 4 cylinder that is going that can help with a reply and a report on how smooth it runs.

 

Ian

Link to post
Share on other sites

Does it have the original pistons? If they are replacement pistons do they weigh exactly the same as the originals? Many 4 cyl engines of the time were balanced to quite close tolerances, road speeds were getting higher and as you know they did not have flexible mounts.

Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Curti said:

Does it have a harmonic balancer ?  What about the flywheel?

Thanks for your reply the flywheel has been balanced with the crank  the original aluminium Pistons have been replaced with aluminium  again  and it only has a flat belt pully on the front I would not call it a harmonic balancer pulley I have just read a bit about harmonic balancer.

 

Ian

Link to post
Share on other sites

Is the clutch on the flywheel when you get the vibration?

 

Was the clutch on the flywheel when it was balanced? Have you measured run-out on it? i.e. is it possible the clutch is slightly off centre or out of balance?

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Spinneyhill said:

Is the clutch on the flywheel when you get the vibration?

 

Was the clutch on the flywheel when it was balanced? Have you measured run-out on it? i.e. is it possible the clutch is slightly off centre or out of balance?

The running gear was all removed no clutch or pressure plate and yes the flywheel has been checked for run out I am really thinking that I should not have had it balanced.

is there a smooth running 4 cylinder lycoming out there that does run they were fitted to a lot of other vehicles besides Gardner.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Rusty_OToole said:

If the piston weight is different from the originals it can cause a vibration. Even if all 4 weigh the same. Does it have a counterbalanced crankshaft?

Thanks 

I don't know if the new Pistons weigh the same as the old ones I have not checked that but new aluminium replaced old aluminium. The crank is externally balanced 

Link to post
Share on other sites

It is possible to have a 4 cylinder motor perfectly balanced for primary vibration and still have a bad secondary vibration. The manufacturers went into this very carefully back in the day, adjusting the weight of the pistons, connecting rods and crankshaft to get the least vibration. This point is often overlooked at rebuild time. Your pistons may be a "one size fits all" casting of a different weight from the originals. This alone will cause vibration.

 

I suppose these days all the calculations are done by a computer program. There are places that balance motors for race cars, I wonder if they have a way to calculate the balance factor of a long stroke 4 cylinder motor.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Reviewing this thread, I see no mention of whether the car ran before the overhaul and, if so, whether the vibration only showed up after overhaul. If purchased non-running, any previous owners statement that "it ran fine until" might've been, well, marketing...

If purchased non-running, did engine show any evidence of recent work?/ (someone  may've attempted engine work/overhaul, goofed up something, decided to dump it)...

Nevertheless, Gardner was a quality car; it's highly unlikely the car came from the factory with vibration strong enough to be worrisome...

Have you been able to contact any other owner of a running CE or any C-Series engine?? If so. what was their opinion of their engines?

While the Cs only got into a few cars per my old catalogs, they went into at least 15 truck makes, so a few should be around running for comparison...

:

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

This may be a long shot but easy to check.  - You have a replacement oil pump, the original was pot metal, could there be a problem with the new oil pump??  The oil pump is controlled by the throttle, you might try to disconnect the linkage from carb to pump and manually control the pump at different rpm's.  I know it's a long shot but you've tried so many other things - good luck.

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Bud Tierney said:

Reviewing this thread, I see no mention of whether the car ran before the overhaul and, if so, whether the vibration only showed up after overhaul. If purchased non-running, any previous owners statement that "it ran fine until" might've been, well, marketing...

If purchased non-running, did engine show any evidence of recent work?/ (someone  may've attempted engine work/overhaul, goofed up something, decided to dump it)...

Nevertheless, Gardner was a quality car; it's highly unlikely the car came from the factory with vibration strong enough to be worrisome...

Have you been able to contact any other owner of a running CE or any C-Series engine?? If so. what was their opinion of their engines?

While the Cs only got into a few cars per my old catalogs, they went into at least 15 truck makes, so a few should be around running for comparison...

:

 

 

When I purchased the car it was very complete car although the body had no wood left in if from the white ants eating it all out and a seezed up engine. The car had changed hands and I don't know of the previous owners.

I did think that this thread would may be stir some owners of lycoming engines to put up a hand or two and give an opinion from running the vehicle they may own but nothing and I don't know any other owners to go and have a listen to

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Rusty_OToole said:

It is possible to have a 4 cylinder motor perfectly balanced for primary vibration and still have a bad secondary vibration. The manufacturers went into this very carefully back in the day, adjusting the weight of the pistons, connecting rods and crankshaft to get the least vibration. This point is often overlooked at rebuild time. Your pistons may be a "one size fits all" casting of a different weight from the originals. This alone will cause vibration.

 

I suppose these days all the calculations are done by a computer program. There are places that balance motors for race cars, I wonder if they have a way to calculate the balance factor of a long stroke 4 cylinder motor.

The feller that has carried out the engine re build has been building race car engines for the last 30 or so years. Really has him stumped that is why 

 

1 hour ago, prewar40 said:

This may be a long shot but easy to check.  - You have a replacement oil pump, the original was pot metal, could there be a problem with the new oil pump??  The oil pump is controlled by the throttle, you might try to disconnect the linkage from carb to pump and manually control the pump at different rpm's.  I know it's a long shot but you've tried so many other things - good luck.

I am looking for other ideas. 

I have a few new things to try and check which I will do next week. 

I would love to talk to another owners with 4cylinder lycoming engines and hav a listen to them running.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, prewar40 said:

This may be a long shot but easy to check.  - You have a replacement oil pump, the original was pot metal, could there be a problem with the new oil pump??  The oil pump is controlled by the throttle, you might try to disconnect the linkage from carb to pump and manually control the pump at different rpm's.  I know it's a long shot but you've tried so many other things - good luck.

I will check that out that will be an easy check

Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's see. You just had the engine completely rebuilt by a guy who builds race cars for a living,  is an expert at balancing engines, and never makes mistakes. He has torn down the engine twice and can't find a single thing wrong.

 

All I can say is, hop in and go for a drive. If everything you say is true, there can't be anything wrong with the car.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Reviewing this thread again, I can certainly sympathize with Rusty...a few points:

Did you verify you have a CE (engine tag, stamping?)...something else might've gone into it at factory or later...

Did you verify any reciprocating parts replaced were same weight as what came out (same material not reliable for weight) this is a major requirement...

Was Club able to verify parts pulled out were original   (if vendor replacements car might've had vibration before parked)...

You keep hoping some kind soul will call in with a cure, but remember what the Russian fisherman say about being caught out in a storm--"pray to God but row towards shore"---you must actively post around, asking for help---I don't see you on aths, justoldtrucks or smokstak (can't get into oldihc.org)...my apologies if you're on other sites..;.

How about your race car rebuilder?? 30 yrs only goes back to 1988, and you've a 23. This's not an intimation of incompetence, but the possibility  that if he has little or no experience with period engines, there might be some period (or Lycoming) idiosyncrasy he 's never heard of..

The Club should've provided other owners to contact; since Gardner used Lyc's exclusively, they should know if any vibrating 4s  have a particular cause or causes; what did they say?? The Club should be able to name someone familiar with rebuilding Lyc's that you can contact for help/aadvice/sympathy......

Link to post
Share on other sites

There is another angle I don't think anyone has mentioned. Cars in the twenties didn't rev that fast. First gear was just for getting moving, you got into high as soon as possible and stayed there. Cruising speeds in the early twenties were 30 - 45 MPH. 50 MPH was burning up the roads and 60 was going a mile a minute or going like sixty, very fast indeed.

 

If the vibration does not intrude until you get going 50 or more, it may be characteristic.

 

But if it vibrates to an objectionable degree at 1000 RPM something is wrong. A 4 cylinder car of that day may not be perfectly smooth but it should be capable of normal road speeds without scaring you.

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

A search turned up this information on the Gardner car.

 

"

In 1923 Gardner took the four cylinder engine to a level never seen in the auto industry.  The redesigned Lycoming engine for 1923 had 5 main bearings, and no four cylinder car had it except Gardner.  At 43 BHP it was also the most powerful 4 on the market. 

rs-01_260x207.jpg Best said by Menno Duerksen (Aug '72 Cars & Parts)

... But the builders of the Gardner-Lycoming went even beyond that.  In addition to the five main bearings to reduce vibration, the crankshaft and flywheel were statically and dynamically balanced.  The pistons and connecting rods were carefully weighted and matched.  The engine even included a feature the Willys-Knight sleeve valve engine used to improve lubrication of its intricate sleeve system when operating under heavy loads.  This was a valve connected to the carburetor throttle, which

caused the oil pump to deliver more oil to the bearing, under pressure, as the load on the engine increased.  There is little doubt but that Lycoming and Gardner had indeed come up with one of the most powerful, smoothest and most efficient four cylinder engines ever produced up to 1923....""

 

It seems they went to a lot of trouble to make a high grade 4 cylinder engine. It should be exceptionally smooth for a 4 cylinder, smoother than cheaper cars like Ford and Chevrolet. Contemporary ads quote prices of $1100 to $1200. This would put them in a class with medium priced cars like Studebaker, Hudson, and Nash most of which were going to 6 cylinder engines. You would expect them to go all out for smoothness and power if they wanted to compete.

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 18 June 2018 at 11:34 AM, Rusty_OToole said:

A search turned up this information on the Gardner car.

 

"

In 1923 Gardner took the four cylinder engine to a level never seen in the auto industry.  The redesigned Lycoming engine for 1923 had 5 main bearings, and no four cylinder car had it except Gardner.  At 43 BHP it was also the most powerful 4 on the market. 

rs-01_260x207.jpg Best said by Menno Duerksen (Aug '72 Cars & Parts)

... But the builders of the Gardner-Lycoming went even beyond that.  In addition to the five main bearings to reduce vibration, the crankshaft and flywheel were statically and dynamically balanced.  The pistons and connecting rods were carefully weighted and matched.  The engine even included a feature the Willys-Knight sleeve valve engine used to improve lubrication of its intricate sleeve system when operating under heavy loads.  This was a valve connected to the carburetor throttle, which

caused the oil pump to deliver more oil to the bearing, under pressure, as the load on the engine increased.  There is little doubt but that Lycoming and Gardner had indeed come up with one of the most powerful, smoothest and most efficient four cylinder engines ever produced up to 1923....""

 

It seems they went to a lot of trouble to make a high grade 4 cylinder engine. It should be exceptionally smooth for a 4 cylinder, smoother than cheaper cars like Ford and Chevrolet. Contemporary ads quote prices of $1100 to $1200. This would put them in a class with medium priced cars like Studebaker, Hudson, and Nash most of which were going to 6 cylinder engines. You would expect them to go all out for smoothness and power if they wanted to compete.

Like Bud has said in previous reply I have been rowing fairly hard but have only found a few things to try which I will be doing this week. I was hoping that a Lycoming owner may have come forward but not yet I have made a request through the Gardner registery

that may bring up something else.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...
On 17 June 2018 at 3:03 AM, Rusty_OToole said:

It is possible to have a 4 cylinder motor perfectly balanced for primary vibration and still have a bad secondary vibration. The manufacturers went into this very carefully back in the day, adjusting the weight of the pistons, connecting rods and crankshaft to get the least vibration. This point is often overlooked at rebuild time. Your pistons may be a "one size fits all" casting of a different weight from the originals. This alone will cause vibration.

 

I suppose these days all the calculations are done by a computer program. There are places that balance motors for race cars, I wonder if they have a way to calculate the balance factor of a long stroke 4 cylinder motor.

Rusty 

Thanks for your reply about secondary balancing I have done a lot of reading in the last weeks but have been un able to find a fix method for the old long stroke engine do you have anything up your sleeve that I can do. It's a bit strange that you mention about the secondary balance because two of our club fellow members talked about the speed of the vibration when looking at the car with me they thought the vibration was faster than engine rpm' that was before you put up your reply . It was also suggested that the exhaust could be causing part of the problem so I fitted a flexible joiner and mounted the rest of the system on rubber straps. But nothing changed.

I still haven't had any contact with a fellow Lycoming owner they must be out there.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Secondary vibration occurs at twice engine speed so if they felt the vibration was faster than engine speed that would fit. I am not a mathematician, or engineer.

 

Does the crankshaft have counterweights? A lot of early cars didn't. I know that English motorcycles with vertical twin engines, did not have perfectly balanced engines. If they balanced out 100% of the primary vibration they would get a terrible secondary vibration. So they only balanced out 70% to 80%. This meant the engine vibrated but at an acceptable level. Then they damped out that vibration by the way they mounted the engine (not on rubber). I mean where they positioned the engine mounts.

 

If the engine is meant to be mounted rigid it must be rigid. No loose or missing bolts, no missing engine stays. Any mistake here can multiply vibration.

 

All these things have to work together. That is why it is so important that everything weigh the same as original. As the only thing you have changed is the pistons I suspect they are not the same weight. You could make a monkey out of me by weighing one of the old pistons and comparing it to the new ones, if you still have the old pistons. I can't imagine why you haven't bothered to do this, when it would answer your question in minutes.

 

In the meantime you might look on the internet for engine balancing articles. The math is well known and has been since the steam engine days.

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

As for why they stuck with the 4 cylinder. Back then a lot of experts felt the 4 cylinder was the best performing engine as well as the simplest and most practical. 6 cylinders had been around for some time but the first ones were disappointing in power. They were smoother than a 4 but produced less power than a 4 of equal size. They had V8s too but they had little advantage over a big 4 cylinder since they had a 4 cylinder type crankshaft and a vibration period to match. The straight eight was not out yet, the first one in mass production being the 1923 Packard.

 

It is entirely logical that an engineer would figure he could design a really good 4 cylinder that would match the 6s and 8s for power without sacrificing smoothness and have the advantages of simplicity, ease of service, and low cost.

 

Overlooking the point that it would soon be impossible to sell a 4 cylinder car when everyone else had 6 or 8 cylinder engines.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Rusty_OToole said:

As for why they stuck with the 4 cylinder. Back then a lot of experts felt the 4 cylinder was the best performing engine as well as the simplest and most practical. 6 cylinders had been around for some time but the first ones were disappointing in power. They were smoother than a 4 but produced less power than a 4 of equal size. They had V8s too but they had little advantage over a big 4 cylinder since they had a 4 cylinder type crankshaft and a vibration period to match. The straight eight was not out yet, the first one in mass production being the 1923 Packard.

 

It is entirely logical that an engineer would figure he could design a really good 4 cylinder that would match the 6s and 8s for power without sacrificing smoothness and have the advantages of simplicity, ease of service, and low cost.

 

Overlooking the point that it would soon be impossible to sell a 4 cylinder car when everyone else had 6 or 8 cylinder engines.

 

I agree. That was a problem that Stutz, Mercer and several other builders of expensive four cylinder cars found. Also Bentley in the UK.

Link to post
Share on other sites

"the crankshaft and flywheel were statically and dynamically balanced" This may be where your vibration problem comes from. It was common practice to fit the flywheel to the crankshaft and machine and balance them together. After that they were a matched set. If you changed either you had to start over to true them and balance them again. This also means if you take the flywheel off you have to put it back on the exact same way. If they are held together by 6 bolts and you don't mark them it is likely they were put together wrong and that is enough to throw the balance off.

 

You may have to strip the engine and balance the crankshaft and flywheel again.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 6 months later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...