Still Life with Rusty Timing Chain

While I prefer to display gorgeous vintage engines with polished aluminum or turned finishes, occasionally I show the other end of the continuum. Oxidation is the eventual fate of all of man’s automotive engineering efforts as rust indeed never sleeps, while man too often does.

I found this tired old engine in a field off Burn Road here in Arlington. A man there has accumulated a cache of two makes, one European, and one domestic, and a buddy of mine was picking over them for parts. I tagged along to get some photos and knowing that my Jaguar shares an air filter with one model of one of the makes thought I might just fine a canister for it if I was lucky. I wasn’t, but I did see a lot of rust.

Can you name the make and model of this vehicle based on the photo?

Since we’ve seen nary a guess, here’s a hint:

Car Photo of the Day: Still Life with Exhaust Manifold and Polished Head.

Speaking of the ABFM at Van Duesen Gardens in BC and looking at engines… This one, an AC Ace, was one of the best seen that day. (No guessing games today as the placard identifies the car!) Gorgeous.

Perhaps the car spotters here can get some exercise naming the car in the background.

Car Photo of the Day: Still Life with Bonnet Prop

As a “Car Guy” I love looking under hoods and bonnets. It is always fun to see something unusual, which here in America means something OTHER than a pushrod V-8. Or these days, ANYTHING other than a plastic engine cover. I delight in finding straight sixes, vee-fours, and flat-anythings. Bonus points accrue for side-draft carbs, dual overhead cams, slanted engines, and wild manifolds. This car is a dog’s breakfast of almost all the above (the less said about the bonnet prop the better however!) I could spend an hour staring at it, and in fact did so when I snapped this photo.

This car belongs to an occasional commentator of on this website, so he’s ineligible to ID it, but do any of you other reprobates know what car this is?

Still Life with Cranks

What turns yours?

Unlike previous “still life” engine porn shots this one is something of a snuff film…

…and also a bit personal.

That pair of cranks you see are from my engine. The one at the bottom came out, and the one at the top went in. This was several years ago when I had Geoff Pickard of Chilliwack, British Columbia open up my engine. It started with a knock that seemed to be coming from the #5 cylinder wrist pin bushing. Once the engine was open a veritable house of horrors was discovered, including this badly worn crank.

I’m still angry, so many years later. Angry that my father paid so much money to a restorer who did nothing but botch and bungle this job. Literally everywhere we looked in this engine we found just plain shoddy workmanship. It wasn’t confined to the engine either, as I’ve spent the past several years rebuilding or replacing a lot of other parts of the car too, suspension, brakes, etc. The car ran. It just didn’t run for long. Maybe someday I’ll get over it.

I’m not holding my breath though.

Still Life with Hemi.

This is not a Mopar engine. It is the same Ferrari 4-cam V-12 from yesterday’s bit of engine porn. As much as the Detroit Muscle Heads would like to think the “Hemi” was invented by Chrysler Corporation it just isn’t so. The hemispherical heads have existed almost as long as the internal combustion engine itself. Even my Jaguar, with its XK engine which originated just after WWII uses the design. Yeah, its gotta Hemi.

Still Life with Four Cams, Twelve Cylinders, Twentyfour Valves.

More photos from that finest source of engine pR0n, RPM, the Markowski’s shop in Vermont. Pictured here are the cylinder heads of a Four Cam V-12 engine. Those readers who have turned a wrench in anger will likely have a suspicion why this engine is being rebuilt just by looking at it. Share your armchair diagnosis in the comments.