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1908 Albany engine question


Dave Gray
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Other horizontal 2-cylinders are like that.  The oil it needs it gets from the oiler and doesn't so much rely on splash, so it's a once-through / total-loss sort of thing.  This is particularly true of engines that have the lifters mounted on the underside as it's not a sealed assembly and is free to run out, particularly after things wear, but yours are on top.  What does the underside look like?  Typically they do hold a little oil that gets splashed around in the lowest point as it's running, but it's not intended to hold quarts-worth as you're accustomed to with newer cars.

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Thank you for the responses. I removed the top cover from the engine

this afternoon and it is pretty much as you described.

I could see how the oil dripped on the camshaft and then on to the lower bearings. Quite a unique lube system.

My only question is, what becomes of

the oil that accumulates in the lower part of the block?

There doesn’t seem to be much. maybe 1/2 inch.

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Amazing the knowledge we take for granted today, things that simply were NOT known a bit over a hundred years ago. Automotive and petroleum engineers debated for a couple decades over whether "oil" was only good for one time through the bearings or could it be recirculated safely and reused. Many of the world's top experts truly believed the molecules in oil would break down going through the bearing and allowing the oil to be reused would risk severe damage to the engine. Articles in magazines such as "Horseless Age" and "The Motor" (if I recall it correctly??) during the 1890s and first decade of the 1900s argued either side of that debate (fun to read today!). The result of that lack of knowledge was that many gasoline engines in the first few decades of internal combustion engine use used what was/is called "total loss" oiling. The oil is fed by individual oil lines to each bearing, gear, and cylinder. The oil was then deemed used or damaged and allowed to leak out where it would eventually be reclaimed by the soil.

 

There should be adjustments to regulate the rate of flow to each line. Although there is a perfect amount of flow at any given speed, the amount needed goes higher with rpm, speed, and/or load, as well as ambient temperature. Too much oil flow risks running out in the reservoir too soon. Too much also means a lot of oil dripping onto the ground, and making a nasty mess around the engine and the chassis where it gets thrown by various means. However not enough flow is even worse. Bearings starve, and very quickly are destroyed resulting a very expensive necessitated repair. It takes quite a bit of experience to get the balance just right. In the meantime, a bit messy is the safer choice.

 

I love what I see of the car! Good luck, and have fun.

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2 hours ago, Dave Gray said:

Thank you for the responses. I removed the top cover from the engine

this afternoon and it is pretty much as you described.

I could see how the oil dripped on the camshaft and then on to the lower bearings. Quite a unique lube system.

My only question is, what becomes of

the oil that accumulates in the lower part of the block?

There doesn’t seem to be much. maybe 1/2 inch.

 

It is hard to say without seeing it.  What does the underside look like?

 

I'd imagine it is going to at least leak out around the bottom of the mains.  If there are any shafts or rods going through the case below that, it will leak there instead.  Some cars have a standpipe installed from the bottom with a drain valve and by opening that the excess oil can be drained off without removing more than is necessary.  

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We had a Cartercar that didn’t leak oil as quickly as the lubricator supplied it. On tours part of the daily maintenance was to open a petcock and get rid of the oil accumulation in the crankcase. We often talked about dumping that oil right back into the oiler but I do not believe this was ever done.... by us. 

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1 hour ago, nickelroadster said:

Depending on the year of your Cartercar (if a 1914 or 1915) they have an adjustment screw on top of the oil tank.  Screwing it in lowers the amount of oil.  loosening the screw increases the amount of oil.


‘07 with a very similar 2cyl setup to the OP’s vehicle. 

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