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Ronaldson and Tippett Type N Compression


Hi Guys,
I have a Ronaldson and Tippett Type N Engine that I'm trying to get going again.
It has sat for a very long time in someone's shed but I think it has faired fairly well.


It still turns freely and I'm thinking I can avoid pulling every last nut and bolt apart on it.

There wasn't anything in the sump when I got it but it wasn't dry as a chip either.

I squirted some old around the place and let it sit for a few weeks while I worked on mounting the magneto.

I put a compression tester on it and cranked the handle around half a dozen times and the needle on the gurage reads about 50 psi. I squirted some more oil down the spark plug hole and the reading didn't change.

What should I expect a reasonable reading to be to get this engine going?

What should I expect a reasonable reading to be if I expect it to put out some "horses power" and actually do something?

I don't have a load planned yet but I'll probably want to run a water pump or a 12v generator.

I couldn't find any original specification for this value.

Thanks in advance


Hello David,
The Ronnie N series are nice little motors.Yours would have been tank cooled, but should be OK to test run a few minutes without water.
You will be able to assess its condition easily if you can get it to run, so give it fuel oil and spark and see what happens. 50 psi should be enough to make it run, as often they get e bit of carbon or grit under valve seats, and a short run will clear it out and restore full compression, probably over 100 psi at a guess. Someone here will have an accurate figure I am sure, but if it starts and runs reliably then you are good to go. Think most of them rated between 2 and 3 hp round 800 to 1200 rpm. Play with spark and fuel settings till it sounds happy.
Plough Book Sales probably have handbooks for sale. Enjoy your li'l Ronnie.
Kind regards,

Scotty 2

Hello David
Your engine seems to be in great original condition. A good find. Do you have the hopper or the cooling tank flanges? I see the hard to get brass nuts there.

The Ronny N played big part in Australian rural life and many a collection has started with one. It also amases me as to the number of variations the good old Ronny N has. They may all look the same until you really look at them.

What HP rating is it?
The good old Ronny doesn't need much compression to run and I wouldn't be too concerned about 50 psi. She'll run fine on it. To do a compression test I'd slip the carby off.
As Combustor has said, the compression may get better with a good run. Get her running first to see how things go. If our want to do something, give the valves a clean and maybe a valve grind or lap.
I've never actually tested how much compression a Ronny N has. I might have to do that one day. It couldn't be too high. The crank handles aren't too long in their swing and there's no magic start button to press.

I also wouldn't worry too much about maximum power. Running a pump as a display doesn't need much power at all.

Cheers Scott
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Give it a start up once you have the maggy timed and cleaned the carby out and some good oil in his guts. Run it slowly at first and then keep altering the revs once at running temp. Obviously you will need to keep it cool somehow, even if it is just a garden hose on slowly putting water through the system. So long as there is water at the top opening you have enough water inside as if it got too hot it would push the hot water out but the cool water from the hose should replace it.


Hi Guys,
Sorry I'm slow to reply here. At first I thought this post didn't upload and I have been buys solving magneto problems on another thread.
I have sorted out the magneto problems and I now have a spark.

I do have the cooling tank. I don't think it is an original as someone has told me they were cast iron although the drain plug is the same as the drain on the fuel tank so it may be original.
Mine is made from tin and has rusted out with a hole in the side and the bottom was completely rusted out. I have taken it off and patched it up with a new base. Seeing as how you asked I may as well show the before and after photos :) These were new skills for me and I think it came out all right for a beginner.


Ronnies dont need much compression to run but they need the inlet valve to seat pretty well and the little non return valve in the fuel pick up tube needs to be nice and free
if these are ok and the timing is fairly close add fuel and away it will go