At the antique engine show and motorcycle collection at Tom’s house in Las Lunas was an old guy from Wagonmound who showed up with a couple of engines he had built himself, as in made from scratch! Wow! Amazing!
I am blown away that someone could build something like this in their home shop in their spare time, incredible. Look at the craftsmanship of these pieces, you can still see all of the machining marks in the aluminum. Not all of the pieces are exactly the same I noticed. If you look at the surface above the spark plug in this picture you’ll see that its not perfectly flat and has 2 surfaces while all the others are one plane. I saw another detail elsewhere like this, as though he was making refinements along the way, not something you would see in a kit.
The builder is quite an engineer, this thing is so well balanced and idles so smoothly. Listen to her run!
In the video it looks like the guy is about to get his hand whacked off but hes actually standing a ways back from the blades. Still too close for me though, you’ll notice that as he starts to rev it up I start backing away along with a dozen or so people off screen hehehe.
This is just an amazing piece of engineering to do by yourself, probably with no computers judging by his age.
A closeup of the rear of the engine. You can see the fuel and exhaust lines are just crudely welded tubing.
Some spare components and cylinders he had laying around to show how stuff was constructed.
One of the homemade heads with the valve seats pressed in.
Another view of the same head showing the exhaust and intake ports. Look at the fins just below that have been notched to follow the exhaust clamps (look at the pic of the back of the engine), a manufacturer probably would have whacked that off or just cut them straight across at the lowest one to save time.
Heres the other engine he showed up with, a hand made V8! This must have been one of his earlier attempts at a running engine judging by the fit and finish. I’m impressed that this one is water cooled and looks like its been ran a lot, others you see on YouTube are not water cooled and probably only run for short periods.
It looks like the crankcase is just a barrel of aluminum with the valves and piston blocks stuck to it, crazy.
Here it is running, not quite as smooth as the radial but it runs and thats way more than I’d ever be able to MacGyver together.
Heres a view of the top with the open headers and crudely welded water lines, whatever works. Those valve covers are just simple boxes welded together.
All of this reminded me of this Indian engineering student I was following a while back who built a V Twin Royal Enfield motor out of two singles over the course of 5 years. I’m just amazed that there are people like this out there that can still produce impressive machines out of their garages, although this guy did all the machining at his workplace.
Heres a slideshow and overview of what all went into building that engine and the bike he put it in. I think the bike sounds better than a Harley.