Sign in to follow this  
FrankWest107

antique air cooled engine

Recommended Posts

I know Franklin used an aircooled engine, any experience with these engines? I am familiar with volkswagen air cooled simple engine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Franklin engines were similar to VW in some ways. Aluminum crankcase, iron cylinders, OHV pushrod heads, forced air cooling with a squirrel cage blower. Made in 4 cylinder inline, 6 cylinder inline and V12 configurations. After they went out of the car business continued making aircraft engines.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the original poster is asking a general question about, how well do air-cooled engines work.  If I am wrong I apologize; but I will go ahead and tell of some of my experience with air-cooled engines.

 

First of all I grew up with air-cooled motorcycles.  In the late 1960's and early  1970'S; the majority of  off-road and motocross motorcycles were air-cooled.  A Huge weight savings was realized,  less weight more speed, power at a lower cost. Of course liquid cooling has advanced light years, since then.

 

Then automobiles,  I like most of us had a few VW's.  Again less weight, lower cost.

 

Moved on to Corvairs, of all types and different horse power  ratings.  If you never owned a 140 horsepower, 4 carb, 4 speed Corsa; you indeed missed something. I never owned the turbo.

 

I own a farm, and had various tractors of all sizes and makes. I still have one Deutz. The most efficient Tractors were those made by Deutz-Fahr, a German Tractor.  More horsepower per cubic inch engine than any thing else.  The modern Deutz-Fahr, company was forced out of the US due to  stricter emissions and  noise ratings.  Still can be bought worldwide though.  Maybe a few models in the USA but liquid cooled now.  Not anywhere near as good as the air-cooled.  The liquid cooled engine blocks, tend to deaden the combustion noise a lot better.

 

Sad to see the air-cooled engine is a thing of our past.   And Yes, to the first poster, air-cooled engines do work and work very well.           

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have an Air Cooled Engine in my '74 Porsche 914, 90 HP 1.8 liter flat 4 cylinder  Boxer engine.

Air Cooled and Oil Coiled in that the Oil is very important to keeping engine temperature down.

 

I have an old Ted Williams 7.5 HP Sears outboard Motor from the '60s which is basically a push lawn mower engine not water cooled. Never had a problem. Also had several Motor Cycles over the years. Think about it this way, many Air Planes since the beginning had, and still have, Air Cooled Engines that demand dependable operation. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Doug Novak said:

I have an Air Cooled Engine in my '74 Porsche 914, 90 HP 1.8 liter flat 4 cylinder  Boxer engine.

Air Cooled and Oil Coiled in that the Oil is very important to keeping engine temperature down.

 

I have an old Ted Williams 7.5 HP Sears outboard Motor from the '60s which is basically a push lawn mower engine not water cooled. Never had a problem. Also had several Motor Cycles over the years. Think about it this way, many Air Planes since the beginning had, and still have, Air Cooled Engines that demand dependable operation. 

 

Aeroplanes do tend to have better air flow over the cylinders for cooling. I think idling in traffic must have done for many earlier air cooled cars.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I own 2 1929 Franklins and a 1931 Franklin and have never had any problem what so ever from any kind of overheating . Franklin had some of the best engineers working for them back in the day.  They did extensive testing including  idling a car for 2 weeks straight. They also took second and third gear out of the transmission and drove the car thru the desert for about 2 thousand miles . I think this was sometime in the late 20s. They could not be over heated . A lot less moving parts.  A big consideration back in the day was what to do about antifreeze protection in cold climates. Franklin needed  nothing.  Antifreeze as we know it was not invented yet. That is why the Franklin was called the Doctors car for late night house calls in cold climates. From experience you cant go wrong in a Franklin, plus our club is very active. You will get more help than you bargained for !!! 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, 29 franklin said:

I own 2 1929 Franklins and a 1931 Franklin and have never had any problem what so ever from any kind of overheating . Franklin had some of the best engineers working for them back in the day.  They did extensive testing including  idling a car for 2 weeks straight. They also took second and third gear out of the transmission and drove the car thru the desert for about 2 thousand miles . I think this was sometime in the late 20s. They could not be over heated . A lot less moving parts.  A big consideration back in the day was what to do about antifreeze protection in cold climates. Franklin needed  nothing.  Antifreeze as we know it was not invented yet. That is why the Franklin was called the Doctors car for late night house calls in cold climates. From experience you cant go wrong in a Franklin, plus our club is very active. You will get more help than you bargained for !!! 

 

I was thinking of the early ones that weren't that clever. Some of which didn't have the cooling fans like a Franklin has.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are some beautiful old air cooled engines from the early days besides the superb Franklin. They were the engine of choice in the desert where water cooled engines gave out. I’m thinking particularly of engines like the Knox, the  so-called “porcupine” engine, that looked like a can with hundreds of spikes in it. Some great innovative engineering back in the early days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fascinating...I love the idea of air cool or are they actually oil cooled? Anyway, considering all the problems with cracked blocks on the old fords,  do these air cooled also crack releasing oil?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1909 Sears autobuggy had a flat 2 cylinder engine with duel fans to cool the cylinders and heads. The cooling from the oil would be minimum at best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Water freezes and cracks blocks unless the anti-freeze prevents it, or the freeze seal on the blocks release the pressure.  I don't think Oil freezes. The oil cooling brings engine temperatures down some what and air flow over the entire engine, such as on the Porsche and VW, is routed to flow over cooling fins in the Cylinder heads which are horizontal to the block, Oil pan of sump, oil filter, etc. The porches have a fan as part of the fly wheel on the front of the engine. Also the engine is  made from light metal with good thermal conductivity. Magnesium and Aluminum was used for engine blocks. An Air Cooled engine, vs. water cooled, will never boil over or freeze. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Guess I should clarify, I'm speaking of the newer Antique Cars, such as my 1974 Porsche.  The more Vintage Antique Cars may not have achieved what has evolved in the development of Air Cooled Engines.  

Edited by Doug Novak (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Franklins did not call it  a cooling fan.... they had a flywheel with blades that acted as a fan. In their advertising they stated that there was only one moving part in the cooling system, the flywheel. And that as every engine must have a flywheel to run, it is evident that the limit of simplicity has been reached.

 

1933 Franklin, see it run. One of the last Franklin cars made. There are quite a few Franklin engines on Youtube. Search Franklin car engine

 

 

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this