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Hit & Miss Gas Engine Discussion

Brayton Cycle Engines


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  #361  
Old 06-13-2016, 04:11:34 PM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton cycle engines

I've been wanting to reducing the load / displacement on the compressor and was toying with the idea of making a smaller compressor cylinder but that seemed like a lot of work so today I installed a 5/8" spacer to create some dead space which decreases the effective work performed by the compressor. (Most of Brayton's later engines had a compressor about 1/2 the displacement of the expander) His earlier engines (which often shared the back side of the expander piston) had a dead space in the compressor cylinder thus reducing the effective displacement and also preventing over pressurization of the receiver tank. Anyhow the result was good... now the idle fuel economy is improved, the compressor outlet temperature is lower, the exhaust is much quieter and cooler, and it seems that the expander is doing less work to drive the compressor.


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  #362  
Old 06-15-2016, 07:29:56 PM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

I removed the head / cylinder to replace a leaking base gasket... after running for about 5 hours there is no evidence of any carbon at all.



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  #363  
Old 06-16-2016, 12:07:20 AM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Here is a video showing the temperature of different parts of the engine. I also removed a plug from one of my other engines and ran it for about 15 minutes... on both gasoline and diesel... the result was a perfectly cleaned spark plug.. I should also mention is runs great on diesel with no visible smoke or odor. Here's the video running on Diesel... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzlatGGoxoE

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  #364  
Old 06-16-2016, 03:42:12 PM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Brayton and Clerk cycles
I wonder if you could send me to a site or explain the differences between these two engine cycles. I would really like to see a graph showing degrees of rotation versus engine events. You seem pretty knowledgeable in the subject so perhaps you could deal with this in a thread.

Thanks,

jkirkes (Jim)

Hi Jim, I received your private message but I thought I'd post this here since others might be interested or would like to comment...?

I'm no expert on the history and most of what I know I've learned from this thread and my experiments over the last couple of years... Also much thanks to the folks who have participated here and shared their information and knowledge..

The early Clerk engine was very much a Brayton with the exception that fuel / air entered the expander / power cylinder but combustion was delayed until after the admission valve was closed unlike the Brayton which burned the air / fuel as the charge passed through the burner. I've experimented with both versions and can say there's not really much difference between the two from a performance prospective. It does seem that delaying the combustion allows a bit more air to enter under less back pressure. In the early Clerk no (or very little) compression took place in the expander cylinder. Later versions like the Reid and Baldwin engines used another piston or the back side of the piston to transfer fuel and air into the power cylinder at or near the bottom of the stroke where it was compressed before ignition. Back on page 10 there was some discussion about this topic. I hope this answers your question?

http://www.smokstak.com/forum/showth...115633&page=10

Although well acquainted with what had been done by his predecessors, and their theories, Brayton could not break away from his steam engine experience, and all of his efforts were directed to producing a motor that would reproduce the expansive action of steam in the cylinder, and he strongly condemned anything that resembled an explosion. His first engine was rather a small affair giving about 2 H.P., of the vertical type with an overhead walking beam. The base on which the engine was mounted was a cast iron pedestal in the form of a truncated cone that served as a reservoir for the compressed air which he used in operating the motor.
This engine was single acting on the two-stroke cycle, an impulse being given the piston on every up stroke, and although it was occasionally operated with illuminating gas the regular fuel used was naphtha. The vaporizer used was a little round box-like affair having an internal diameter of about 2^2 inches, in which was a disc of felt. A small pump, provided with a by-pass so that the quantity of liquid delivered could be accurately regulated, fed a constant supply of naptha into the bottom of the box, and kept the felt at a constant degree of saturation, and the gas mixture was formed by air from the base reservoir at about forty pounds pressure blowing across the naptha saturated pad. It will be recognized that this contrivance was in effect a surface carbureter, and it certainly appeared to be quite efficient. The working cylinder also acted as an air pump, being closed at both ends,- drawing in air on the down stroke of the piston and forcing it into the reservoir on the up, or working, stroke.
Having an air pressure in the reservoir, the engine was started and operated as follows: A small quantity of naptha was run into the vaporizer by means of a small hand pump, and, the ignition torch being lighted, the air valve was opened and the flywheel turned over, when the engine started off smoothly and ran at about 125 revolutions a minute. The gas was admitted to the cylinder by a slide valve that admitted the mixture for about half stroke, the gas being ignited and burning as it entered, when the admission valve closed and the stroke was finished by the expansion of the hot gases; the engine working on the expansive principle, similar to steam.
Brayton tried a number of devices before he perfected the above described vaporizer, and he also had a great deal of trouble in securing satisfactory ignition. This ignition was by a flame constantly burning in a pocket just within the induction valve, and it had to resist the strong blast of the incoming charge, and what was worse, the rush of the exhaust. Many forms of burners were tried, and I can recollect Brayton sitting for hours beating his burners with a piece of belting in his effort to devise a torch that could not be extinguished by any possible disturbance. The torch finally adopted was a blast lamp in the nature of a Bunsen burner that used a mixture similar to that in the cylinder, and supplied with pressure from the main reservoir.

While Brayton's experiments were most interesting, and although he certainly produced a motor that was fairly practical for its time, it is doubtful if any great permanent value resulted, as his work was directed toward developing a motor on the expansive principle, as against the more rapid and economical ignition of compressed gases; still, such success as he did attain undoubtedly attracted the attention of investigators in this country to the possibilities of the internal combustion motor, and his work tended to clear the trail for subsequent investigators.







Quote:
Off-topic but interesting is that conventional 2-strokes are sometimes called the "Clerk cycle" but Clerk's first engines weren't the same cycle as our conventional 2-strokes, (Reid style engines included). Clerk’s earlier engines used two cylinders; a charging pump (for intake & compression) & a power (expander) piston (for expansion & exhaust). Note that the power cylinder exhausted about the whole stroke towards TDC (little, if any compression took place). All compression of the charge was done in the compression or charging cylinder.

Later he did patent an engine with a cycle like conventional 2-strokes but by that time there were others that had already thought up the cycle & had running engines. Clerk lectured & wrote the books so he got the fame, although he did give credit to an over-looked first at one point.

I've never spent much time studying Clerk's early work; I've only looked at it so if anyone has a correction or info to add to the above please post. His US patent is #230,470 if someone wants to read it.

-Nick
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  #365  
Old 06-17-2016, 09:53:32 AM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Here's some more history about the 2 stroke... Joseph Day was the first to use the back of the piston as a compressor. Fredric Cock introduced the transfer port. Interesting that there is no mention of Brayton who in reality was the first guy to make a viable engine that produced power on every revolution... To be fair Brayton likely got some ideas from the study of others engines... The Perry engine of 1846 operation was similar to a Brayton. (thanks to Nick for pointing this out). But it was Brayton who made the first viable internal combustion engine that was used in Boats, a rail car, a bus, and even powered 2 submarines...

The man who invented the two-stroke engine
April 1, 2001Ridesinventor, Joseph Day, two-stroke
Forgotten Hero – The man who invented the two-stroke engine

By David Boothroyd

You would think that the man responsible for a world changing invention would at least have his name in the encyclopedia. In certain areas of motor sport, his invention is so widely used that he would have statues in his honor in every boat club, his picture in every bikers’ bar, and yet I’ll bet you have never heard of him.

Perhaps you have never realized how all pervasive the two-stroke engine is, and what a clever and radical development it was. Here are a few examples. In the motorcycle world all three Grand Prix Classes have been won by two-strokes for as long as most people can remember. Motocross and Trials riders never consider anything else if they are serious about winning. Certainly throughout Europe most people’s first experience of motorcycling is powered by a two-stroke engine, In four wheeled racing, nearly all of our Formula One drivers learned their craft driving two-stroke Karts, and on the water the majority of outboard powered boats and personal water craft are still cruised or raced under two-stroke power.

The earliest internal combustion engine used a system that came to be known as the four-stroke cycle. In engineering circles it is called the Otto Cycle since it was invented by Karl Otto. A four-stroke engine needs to have valves, and a mechanism for opening and closing them at the correct time, and it produces power only once every two rotations of the crank. A well built two-stroke halves the number of components and doubles the power.

Some people reading this will have books on the history of bikes or boats and will be able to explain that the two-stroke engine was invented by Sir Dugald Clark in 1881. Sir Dugald was an interesting character in his own right, but the engine he designed was not the sort of two-stroke that became such a world-beater. An engine operating on the Clark cycle uses valves like a four stroke and requires a compressor to blow air, possibly mixed with fuel, into the cylinder. Some very fine Clark cycle engines were made, by the Detroit Diesel Company for example, but they were for ships or big trucks or locomotives. They never made an impact on the mass market.

The everyday two-stroke, which we find in everything from chainsaws to two hundred horsepower V8 outboards, is a much simpler and cleverer design. It uses the pressure in the crankcase below the piston to force fuel and air into the combustion chamber and simultaneously push out the spent gases. Using only three moving parts, the highest specific power output ever was recorded by a tiny two stroke Suzuki which produced an astonishing 395BHP per liter. Imagine if you had nearly eight hundred horsepower from your two-liter car engine

When I first started researching into the early development of two strokes, I was astounded to discover that not one of the standard works on the subject even gave the name of the inventor of “our” sort of two stroke. Then at last I found a book that stated that the crankcase compression two stroke was invented by “Day”. It was two more years before I found that his first name was Joseph. This is a brief outline of his story.

Joseph Day was born in London in 1855 and trained as an engineer at the School of Practical Engineering at Crystal Palace in London. On graduation he became a trainee at an engineering firm in Bath. In 1878 he started his own business, an iron foundry making cranes, mortar mills and compressors amongst other things. Interestingly he advertised a new design of “valveless air compressor” which he made on license from the patentee, Edmund Edwards. By 1889, he was working on an engine design that would not infringe the patents that Otto had on the four-stroke. This is what eventually came to be called Valve less Two-Stroke Engine.

In fact there were two flap valves in Joseph Day’s original design, one in the inlet port, where you would probably find a reed valve on a modern two stroke, and one in the crown of the piston, because he did not come up with the idea of the transfer ports until a couple of years later. He made about 250 of these first two-port motors, fitting them to small generating sets, which won a prize at the International Electrical Exhibition in 1892.

It was one of Joseph Day’s workmen, Frederick Cock, who made the modification which allowed the skirt of the piston to control the inlet port and do away with valves altogether, giving rise to the classic piston ported two stroke. Only two of these original engines have survived, one in the Deutsches Museum in Munich, the other in the Science Museum in London.

The first American patent was taken out in 1894, and by 1906, a dozen American companies had taken licenses. One of these, Palmers of Connecticut, had produced over 60000 two-stroke engines before 1912. Many of these early engines found their way into motorcycles, or onto the back of boats.

So what happened to Joseph Day?

His company in Bath was a general engineering one, and his engines were a sideline. Much of his money came from the manufacture of bread making machinery, and the prices of wheat were very turbulent around the turn of the 19th Century. The profitability of Day’s factory fluctuated just as wildly. These were early days for the idea of the limited company, and shareholders, then as now, could panic and bring down a company that they thought to be under threat. The problem is made worse, (also then as now) by the publication of rumours, or the deliberate orchestration of publicity campaigns in the press.

This happened to Joseph Day, with the result that his firm was driven into bankruptcy. A flurry of lawsuits followed, with Day as both plaintiff and defendant. The Treasury Solicitor even tried to have him extradited from the USA where he had gone to try to sell his US patents in order to raise money. The case was eventually settled when the jury found that Day had no case to answer, but it all came too late, and he went into virtual retirement by the seaside. The development of his engine then passed to his license holders in America, whose royalties restored his finances sufficiently to allow him to launch a spectacular new venture after the First World War.

This new enterprise was the exploration for oil. Unfortunately he was looking for it in Norfolk in the east of England. A second financial disaster was the last straw, and Joseph Day disappeared from public view between 1925 and his death in 1946. His obscurity was so complete that a mere five years after his death, the Science Museum made a public appeal for biographical information about him – with no apparent result.

I hope that everyone who has enjoyed two-stroke power will agree that this is a man who deserves to be famous. He should be in every engineering hall of fame alongside Otto, Diesel and Benz. It’s time to give Joseph Day his place in history.

I am deeply indebted in this article to the research of Hugh Torrens of Keele University, and for anyone wishing to read the full story there is a booklet by Hugh entitled “Joseph Day” The book is published by and obtainable from the Bath Industrial Heritage Trust.


http://www.the-vu.com/2001/04/the-ma...stroke-engine/

https://www.google.com/patents/US543...ACAwwQ6AEIHjAA

https://www.google.com/patents/US544210

Last edited by imotorhead64; 06-17-2016 at 10:35:13 AM.
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  #366  
Old 06-17-2016, 02:57:57 PM
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Recent improvements are electronic ignition and today tried some E85 fuel. The 85% ethanol blend seems to really makes a difference in performance with dramatically improved throttle response. The exhaust also runs about 75 degrees cooler and the compressor pressure has jumped to 30-40 psi at idle. I also experienced a blow out of the rubber hose.. When setting up the timing I got it a little too far advanced which causes the combustion to propagate back to the reserve tank and compressor. Normally there is just a pressure spike ( maybe a few hundred psi) but today the hose gave up and let loose with a bang. Wayne Timms brought up the idea of using a rubber diaphragm back in post # 294 and it got me to thinking I should provide some form of escape which proved to be a good idea... Anyhow I'm really happy with the progress and performance the little engine is giving and I can't help but think there may be some future commercial application for it. Viva le Brayton cycle!




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  #367  
Old 06-18-2016, 05:49:27 AM
Wayne Timms Wayne Timms is offline
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by imotorhead64 View Post
Interesting that there is no mention of Brayton who in reality was the first guy to make a viable engine that produced power on every revolution...

Only two of these original engines have survived, one in the Deutsches Museum in Munich, the other in the Science Museum in London.

Hi,

Something to consider is the Bisschop engine that was built before the Brayton, and may have been still being manufactured after Brayton manufacturing had ceased. The Bisschop was a 2 stroke and was commercial successful.

To my knowledge there are 4 examples of early Days engines surviving - the Science Museum in London has 2 engines, 1 of which is not on display. The 4th is in a private collection.

The engine was also built under license in England, see picture below, there are 4 surviving examples of the licensed engines that I am aware of.

Completely agree that there is not enough information or recognition of Days.

Regards,
Wayne

www.bluefuel-whitesmoke.com
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  #368  
Old 06-18-2016, 08:52:03 AM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Thanks Wayne, Yes the Bisschop and Sombart engines should be remembered. I thought they were flame ignition Lenoir cycle similar to the Forrest engine? I looked but couldn't find any pictures of the Day engines... do you know of any?

I did find this write up which talks about Griffin making the early Day engines.

http://www.bwcw.org/griffin2.htm

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  #369  
Old 06-18-2016, 09:10:23 PM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

It looks like there is a transfer port & hot tube on this engine. That is significantly different from the flame ignition Bisschop engines. Can you provide more info on this design Wayne?
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Old 06-18-2016, 09:24:24 PM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Hi Mike,
Here is a link to Wayne Grennings description of the Bisschop and Sombart engines... I know it looks like it has a hot tube but it's really sucking the flame into the cylinder through a check valve and igniting the gas charge. I believe Bisschop and Sombart are the same engine.

http://www.gasenginemagazine.com/gas...p-sombart.aspx

Wayne's video provides a little better view of the ignition system

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Old 06-18-2016, 09:31:03 PM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

I've been fortunate enough to spin the flywheel on the Sombart engine in the link the past two days. It is a totally different engine from the one in the engraving posted by Wayne T. The Sombart is non-compression with flame injection. The Bisschop engine in the picture is a two cycle that fires under compression.
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  #372  
Old 06-18-2016, 09:39:43 PM
imotorhead64
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

I believe the engine on the engraving is the original piston ported Joseph Day engine. The first 2 stroke to use the back of the piston to get the air / fuel into the cylinder. I don't think Bisschop or Sombart ever made a compression 2 stroke.

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  #373  
Old 06-18-2016, 11:34:25 PM
Wayne Timms Wayne Timms is offline
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by imotorhead64 View Post
Interesting that there is no mention of Brayton who in reality was the first guy to make a viable engine that produced power on every revolution...
Hi,

Apologies if I have confused the topic. I mention Bisschop as they were building a viable 2 stroke as I understand it before the Brayton engine, and continued production after the Brayton engine ceased to be built.

The Bisschop/Sombart engine was flame ignition. Whether they were using the Lenoir cycle is still debatable as the engines have a greater piston travel than crankshaft throw. This is not a characteristic of the Lenior cycle.

I have attached 3 pictures - the first photo shows the Days engine, with a solid flywheel in the London Science Museum. The second photo with the spoked flywheel is the Days engine in the Munich Museum, which is also very much the same style as the example which is in a private collection. The third photo is a Paragon Oil Engine which was built in England to the Days design. I know of 4 Paragon engines which survive.

Regards,
Wayne

www.bluefuel-whitesmoke.com
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  #374  
Old 06-19-2016, 01:58:21 AM
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Quote:
Apologies if I have confused the topic. I mention Bisschop as they were building a viable 2 stroke as I understand it before the Brayton engine, and continued production after the Brayton engine ceased to be built.

The Bisschop/Sombart engine was flame ignition. Whether they were using the Lenoir cycle is still debatable as the engines have a greater piston travel than crankshaft throw. This is not a characteristic of the Lenior cycle.
Hi Wayne... thanks for those pictures and BTW no apologies necessary... this is how we learn stuff... I see your point about the piston travel and until you pointed it out I had not considered it. My understanding is the Bisschop type engines were very reliable and maybe reliability sometimes trumps power output and efficiency. Also they ran on town gas so maybe that combination was enough to keep them selling after the Brayton was gone?

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Old 06-19-2016, 09:53:24 PM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

I think the American inventor Lewis Nash may have preceded Day. My understanding is Day's engine hit the market in 1889. Nash's design was available a year previous. In his engine the downward motion of the piston pushed an air/fuel mixture from inside the crankcase through a port into the combustion chamber. Also it utilized a flame ignition spool valve sharing some characteristics with the one used on his more commonly known non-compression Crown pumping engine. Although as ugly as a tree stump, one of these engines made an appearance at the Coolspring Flame Ignition Expo Last year. An advertisement for the engine follows:
.
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  #376  
Old 06-20-2016, 01:21:58 AM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Thanks Wayne G. I found this information in an ALAM (The Association of Licensed Automobile Manufacturers) book which talks about 2 stroke engine development. Interesting that it mentions Perry and others but neglects to mention Brayton.








https://books.google.com/books?id=u4...patent&f=false
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Old 06-20-2016, 01:36:27 AM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

I also found this in "The Horseless Age"

It appears there were some patent battles going on regarding the piston charged 2 stroke.







Patent #381211 is not correct... here are the links to the Nash patents

http://pdfpiw.uspto.gov/.piw?PageNum...3DPN%2F0386208

http://pdfpiw.uspto.gov/.piw?PageNum...3DPN%2F0386210

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Old 06-20-2016, 10:57:12 AM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines

Quote:
Brayton and Clerk cycles
I wonder if you could send me to a site or explain the differences between these two engine cycles. I would really like to see a graph showing degrees of rotation versus engine events. You seem pretty knowledgeable in the subject so perhaps you could deal with this in a thread.
A little more information about the Clerk engine.. it seems his early engine did not compress in the power cylinder however his engine design of 1881 had exhaust ports at the bottom of the stroke. The second piston was for charging and scavenging the cylinder. In this version the air / fuel was compressed in the power cylinder. I think it's interesting that Clerk describes his original engine as a piston charged Lenoir cycle... I've often thought of my own Brayton / Clerk engines as a supercahrged Lenoir cycle.








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  #379  
Old 06-20-2016, 07:05:14 PM
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Old 06-20-2016, 07:08:58 PM
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Default Re: Brayton Cycle Engines



here's the link if someone would like to read more about the Clerk engine...

https://play.google.com/books/reader...=en&pg=GBS.PP1

In later years (about 1907) Ricardo produced the Dolphin engine (the Two Stroke Motor Company) which was a high speed version of the Clerk engine. It was said to be economical and smooth running and was used in boats and a car. This engine would not have had the wet / oily exhaust normally associated with piston ported 2 stroke engines.

"Having read Clerk's classic book, The Gas and Oil Engine, probably in 1903, he
was considering the possibilities of the two-cycle engine using a separate pumping
cylinder. One of the difficulties encountered with engines at this time was their inability
to idle, and he set out to overcome this failing. By employing end-to-end
`scavenging' of the cylinder, and by the use of a `bulb' in the cylinder head through
which the ingoing mixture from the pumping cylinder would pass, and which incorporated
an atmospheric or `automatic' inlet valve, through which a charge of air
would immediately afterwards be drawn by the downward stroke of the piston, he
hoped to obtain sufficient stratification to provide good idling"

http://sias2.pastfinder.org.uk/sih_1...08/02-1971.pdf


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