Category: Flathead straight eight

Flathead straight eight

The Ford Flathead V8 wasn't the first V8, but when it debuted in the Model 18, it brought this brilliant engine configuration to the American masses.

With a simple design featuring a flat cylinder head hence the name that placed intake and exhaust valves next to the cylinder, this V8 was incredibly cheap to mass produce. And it was this same cylinder head design that forced it out of production in Using a 3D-printed model of a Flathead V8, Engineering Explained's Jason Fenske goes through why this engine was perfect for its day, and what led to its downfall.

The last American straight-eight engine had a life fully lived

Ultimately, its big problem was airflow. By placing the valves next to the cylinder, air has to make two degree turns in a complete cycle.

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Making things worse, intake and exhaust airflow are in opposite directions in a Flathead V8, further impeding efficiency. The Flathead was also a very low compression engine, with Fenske noting the earliest hp 3.

Increasing compression could help boost power, but the flat cylinder head design meant doing so would restrict airflow further. In the s, the Flathead's low power and lack of efficiency weren't huge issues, but the rise of the overhead valve V8 after the war quickly magnified those problems. But, credit the Flathead for kickstarting America's love affair with the V8, leading Chevy to design the next great version, the legendary small block. Type keyword s to search.

Today's Top Stories. We Don't Know Kyle Larson. Advertisement - Continue Reading Below. More From Vintage.The Chrysler flathead engine is a flathead automotive engine manufactured by the Chrysler Corporation from through the s. Chrysler introduced a straight-four derivative of their new Flathead straight-six in Initially used by Chrysler, the straight-four was fitted to Plymouth and Dodge light trucks beginning inlasting in production through The original version displaced This was only produced inwith displacement reduced to After the introduction of the Plymouth brand inthe base engine was enlarged to It also equipped Dodge light trucks in — It was enlarged again to A small-bore version was developed for export markets inwith a narrower bore which brought the RAC rating down from 21 to For the bore was made a little slimmer yet, bringing the tax horsepower rating to just under There were essentially two lines of flathead inline-sixes made by the Chrysler Corporation.

There is one exception to this: when Chrysler established an engine foundry in Windsor, Canada init was decided to only use the long block for all Canadian-built engines. These engines received a trailing "C" in their designation, becoming P8C for example.

Thanks to judicious dimensioning, the Canadian and cubic inch engines had nearly identical displacement to their American cousins. The last automotive use of the Chrysler flathead inline-six was in It was replaced by the much more efficient OHV slant-6 the following year, which appeared in most Dodge trucks starting in The flathead remained in production until the early s for industrial and agricultural use.

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Namespaces Article Talk.The pages sent to me did not identify the magazine, but I expect it was printed in the early '60s. After reading it, I want to take apart my straight 8 and "improve" it!

Your right! It would make a good boat anchor. But there's still life in this long tall chunk of iron. For a smooth street rod, how about one of these engines warmed up on the inside, chromed and clean on the outside, in conjunction with a Dynaflow trans?

But that's only an idea. Let's find out a little about the engine. There were three engine sizes all similar construction. The largest and the smallest first saw life inthe middle-sized in All will take up to.

Increasing the stroke is not recommended, stay stock here. Original compression ratios were quite low, from 6. It is possible to mill the head. On an early 6. For any ratio over 8.

Stock pistons have insufficient strength under the crown and collapsed crowns may result. Stock wrist pins are satisfactory, should be an easy push fit through the pin bore at room temperature. Combination chamber surfaces should be ground and polished to eliminate hot spots.

There are two head gaskets available, one of. While either may be used with a milled head, the maximum for city driving would seem to be the thin casket in conjunction with.

There are reground cams available. Two of the suppliers include Iskenderian and Howard with assorted stages of timing.

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Howard has a half-dozen cams ranging in lift from. Isky's are comparable. This will supply about 15 pounds increase when the valve is seated. Worn valve stem tips should be ground square with the valve stem, while rocker arm bushings and shafts should be checked for wear, replaced if worn.Search or browse our extensive archive of Buick literature, reference materials, photos and memorabilia.

High resolution reproductions of reference materials held by the BHA are available at reasonable costs. Buick employed Straight-8 engines in all models from through and in the Specials in when the nailhead V-8 was introduced in the Super and Roadmaster models. These engines were rugged and established Buick's lasting reputation for engines which produce gobs of low-end torque.

Torque became a design imperative which guided Buick engineers ever after. These engines had some commonalities throughout this year period, but development and refinement was continuous.

flathead straight eight

In the beginning, there were 3 variations, cubic inch CI with a compression ratio CR of 4. The engines had a crank with 5 main bearings, mechanical valve lifters, and updraft carburetors.

It is interesting to note that Red Shafer used a modified CI engine in a racer which started 23rd and finished in 12th place in the Indianapolis race. The small engine was increased to CI in and the others were replaced with a CI engine in Continued change in the dimensions of the small engine continued throughbut the big engine's basic dimensions remained until the last was installed in The small engine was increased to CI in and to CI in The CI engine is physically longer than the small engine, but the small engine has the same external dimensions, regardless of displacement, leading to a popular substitution of the CI engine in models dating back to The small engine evolved from one producing 77 BHP in to BHP in the configuration used in the and models equipped with Dynaflow automatic transmission.

The performance increases were in part due to changing internal engine dimensions and compression ratios. Carburetion, valve operations, combustion chamber design and other refinements added to the improved performance. The early engines had no interchangeable parts between engine sizes. That is not true for the small engine introduced in and the large engine introduced in The apparent commonalities in the later engines has both advantages and disadvantages for Buick restorers.

It makes possible replacing some components in early engines with late model counterparts. Yet, there are external changes which detract from authenticity if blocks are swapped.

Some of the more significant improvements to the basic straight-8 design incorporated during the year period follow. The engines also included a control which enabled changing the distributor timing by the driver from inside the car. A downdraft carburetor was first applied on the small engines replacing the updraft models which were used from Stromberg replaced Marvel as the carburetor supplier. A Buick Century was officially clocked at mph. Buick also begin using a "assembly balancing" technique which tested each engine complete with clutch to eliminate unwarranted vibrations before installation.

This year 10 mm spark plugs were also used and the forerunner of a PVC positive crankcase ventilation system was pioneered which vented the oil vapors to the carburetor through a small tube from the top of the valve cover to the air cleaner.

Compound carburetion continued through the limited production, but was discontinued after World War II. This year also marked the first use of the Dynaflow automatic transmission. A camshaft different from that used with solid valve lifters was used with all engines equipped with hydraulic lifters. In proper working order, there should be no problems with engine cooling with the Straight-8 engine, except for the model which is starved for air flow due to the grille design.

Block deposits or partially plugged radiators can cause overheating.Cars by name Trucks and Jeeps. In a flathead motor, the head is a flat piece of cast iron that is bolted down on top of the block.

The valves and the entire valve train are in the block itself; the head is relieved to allow for compression and for valve clearance, but it contains no moving parts except the thermostat. The head is partially hollow to allow coolant to pass through to assist in cooling the engine. As late as [Keith Windsor], this engine was being produced for industrial uses such as stationary pumps, arc welders, forklifts, and farm equipment such as harvesters and combines.

Because of this, parts are still available on the shelves of better auto parts stores. I have purchased water pumps, fuel pumps, and tune up parts off the shelf for my The flathead, because of its design limitations, was destined for doom as the fabulous fifties began to roar [though it may have been the best design in its early days].

flathead straight eight

The Hemi powered Chrysler in was the most powerful and fastest production car in America that year, averaging What made the flathead so versatile was its dependability and torque. The largest flathead six Chrysler used in its automobiles was So, at just off idle, this engine produced maximum torque, making it ideal for industrial use.


In comparison, the last flathead 8produced inwith Although the 8 was more powerful, most people found the smooth power produced by the six was sufficient and far more economicaland so a vast majority of older Chryslers found today are equipped with sixes. The flathead eight-cylinder engine was used in a large variety of vehicles.

Because it was a straight-eight not a V8 design, the revolutionary Airflow models had to be lengthened to accommodate it. After World War II, the The hollow exhaust valve stems were filled with metallic sodium metal which would liquefy at operating temperature and transmit the heat up the stem and through the valve guide to the water jacket.

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Because of the long stroke, heaps of torque were available at low rpm. My dad ran them in his propane delivery trucks. These old engines were dogs on power but would run forever, especially when fueled with LPG. Getting one started on a zero degree morning in January was an exercise in patience.Amazing new technology in cylinder heads by Flathead City, nothing in the market compares to them.

Check it out in our Parts Department link. Order yours today, lots of inventory. After the 60 hp engine was disassembled Mike and I decided it would be better to go with a 59AB to insure better reliability and to generate hp. Stock and high performance on all :. Lots of other tricks but that is my secret! Brief Flathead Engine Hisory:. The Flathead was the first independently designed and built V8 engine produced by the Ford Motor Company for mass production and ranks as one of the company's most important developments.

Before the introduction of this engine and the accompanying Ford V-8 automobilealmost all production cars aimed at the average consumer used straight-4 and straight-6 engines.

The Flathead was licensed to other producers, including car and truck manufacturers in the Soviet Union. It was used by Simca in France until for cars and even later on the Simca V8 military truck. Two passes have to be made in order to break the record. Jim's trick Flatty. I bet you have never seen a tractor like this, one of our Flathead Engines. Prev Play Pause Stop Next.

flathead straight eight

She Thinks My Tractors Sexy. Complete Source for Flathead Engines. A trick Flathead I just completed, watch from start to finish! Jim's trick Flatty I bet you have never seen a tractor like this, one of our Flathead Engines.Mine had logged more thanmiles and was due for a major overhaul.

But engines are complicated things and require expertise to assemble properly.

flathead straight eight

Luckily, I'm an auto journalist, and I know lots of people who've built engines. And with the Detroit Auto Show coming up, I figured a lot of these guys would be in town. So I sent out a few invitations and called in some favors. Word spread, and soon I had an engine-building party on my hands.

Assembling a short block is the closest thing to a sacrament we car guys have. It's the heart of the engine—the block, crankshaft, bearings, and pistons. That's a minute job in the factory, but we'd need to take our time.

And crude old behemoths require a delicate touch. The sedan had rusted-through panels, a thread-bare interior, and a rotted gas tank. I'd walked away from it the first time, but the owner called me back and told me he'd scrap it if I didn't take it. Despite its looks, it drove well and kept pace with traffic on the way home. The day before the auto show was sunny and warm for January.

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As people arrived for the build, I cleaned the shop spotless. That's important when assembling an engine—a metal shaving in the wrong place can ruin a bearing. The experience level of this motley crew varied, but everyone shared a desire to help resurrect my rare masterpiece.

Plus, it would be a chance for us to share years of accumulated wisdom.

Chrysler flathead engine

We gathered around the engine block with bagels and coffee, marveling at the pound slab of hardware while also figuring out where to begin. McCraw, who has seen his share of builds, set about sorting the parts with such neatness that the shop resembled an operating room. Truett arranged the tools. I prepped the block with brake cleaner and compressed air. We started on the crankshaft bearings and progressed to the rear main bearing, which serves two functions: controlling forces from the crankshaft and the transmission, and keeping the oil in the crankcase.

It's fitted with a graphite-impregnated rope that seals the crankshaft—old but reliable technology. The factory service manual specifies pressing the rope into place with a round wooden block. We didn't have one, so I plucked a Coke bottle that looked to be the right size from the trash. The idea of using garbage to finesse the seal drew incredulous snickers, but it worked.

It didn't fit. Since there's no elegant way to jam an ill-fitting part into place without breaking something, we carefully removed it for examination. A micrometer revealed that the faces of the thrust bearing were oversize.

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