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Early Holden racing


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#1201 Ray Bell

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 17:53

Originally posted by johnny yuma
.....The same source has 163 FX cars made in 1948.If their engines were not made in Australia,where did they
come from? What engine numbers do 1948 Holdens have? Or did the engine numbering really commence in time
for the 1948 models to have engine numbers within the system of 1001 and up?


These photos were sent to me today... or was it yesterday?

Posted Image

These are from Charlie McCarron's 1948 (yes, the first month of production) car as snapped at Gnoo Blas this weekend (thanks, Rod). Actually, this would have been the first week of production, would it not? Car number 46 off the line.

Posted Image

The engine number shows they started at 1000 in 1948.

This, of course is the 48/215 model, I don't know what happened with the FX models.

Edited by Ray Bell, 09 February 2013 - 17:54.


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#1202 DanTra2858

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 21:53

It seems to me that with 50+ years of racing in early model Holden,s with all using blocks built in Canada that there is virtually no more of these blocks to be found. In fact most of them would have gone to the Big Blown Up Motor Heaven. :rotfl: :rotfl:

I do know of blocks being bored then sleeved to obtain 3 1/4 + 30 as it was much safer to do it that way, regarding the cooling I believe that the Speedway guys coved that by introducing a special manifold that took water from the hot spots by drilling @ tapping the heads as well opening up the water ways in this area.

We're the Scottish forged cranks any better than the Australian cranks?

#1203 Ray Bell

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 22:14

I don't believe there were Scottish cranks anywhere...

Nobody who gives any references mentions them, they are a phurphy just like Canadian blocks.

#1204 Ian G

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 22:31

Read the Norm Darwin book. And actually 65 years!



I've read several books over the years on GMH Lee,since the Internet started there is heaps of Info. available but most of it has been sanitised with authors filling in the gaps with believable scenarios,the problems & dramas of the late 1940's were kept firmly inhouse by GMH & the Govt. to make sure(as i've already posted) the first Oz car was a success. I read a book,many years ago,on Harnett,i was interested from the Datsun perspective but i remember one of his major concerns was the amount of parts being imported(or budgeted for) from Canada with the Oz Govt. turning a blind eye.As you say thou. this was reduced over the following years and made good business sense as the Oz GMH suppliers tooled up.
I'm interested in peoples opinions on the subject but the discussion seems to just goes around in circles.

#1205 Ray Bell

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 22:36

One of my contacts this week says he has seen records from GM-H...

I will continue to work on this.

The very thought of cranks from Scotland seems to me to make little sense, however.

#1206 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 22:45

The history of the Holden since 1917. By Norm Darwin. Read it. Which confirms what I knew for even longer than I have had the book.And that is 83.
It may be wrong,, as often are Muttering Rotters. But this from a writer who had access to GMH archives. Making it more probable than most of the rubbish being talked here. From people who have not!
And Holden never started making engines until 49, and you dont start building cars in 48 without a backup supply of engines. That is plain manufacturing sense.
And apart from prototypes you do not get a contracter to build 20 engines, as i have said before it would probably be the same cost to build a thousand [as a nice round no] than 20-50 etc.
Talking to a chap last night, an old time FJ racer who also knows about Canadian blocks [wherever the hell they were cast] who said they were very rare in the late 60s. He never used them, always 3 1/8 motors.He liked FB EK engines. He also reckons [unconfirmed but probable] those early imported bits were assembled in Australia. In fact were probably machined here too.
It does make sense, GMH had the equipment but not yet the appropriate foundry to make engines and a lot cheaper to bring in a pile of bits than assembled engines. And remember the GMH prototypes were being made in April 48. How many cars? probably 20 or so for final development would be my guess, as well as learning how to streamline the assembly process

#1207 GMACKIE

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 22:52

... the discussion seems to just goes around in circles.

And guess where it could end up!

I think they knew what they were doing, when they decided on GREY for the engine colour.


#1208 Catalina Park

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 00:11

GMH had a foundry capable of mass producing engine blocks well before 1948.
The only possible reason I can see for importing blocks would be to cover a shortfall in production if it ever happened at all.

The photos that Ray has posted clearly show a GMH block in a 48 car with the correct sequence engine number.

Scotch cranks! :rotfl: The UK motor industry is full of stories about car manufacturers travelling north to get crankshafts.
I don't think they ever went past Wolverhampton though. (apart from maybe Albion)

#1209 275 GTB-4

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 00:50

GMH had a foundry capable of mass producing engine blocks well before 1948.
The only possible reason I can see for importing blocks would be to cover a shortfall in production if it ever happened at all.

The photos that Ray has posted clearly show a GMH block in a 48 car with the correct sequence engine number.

Scotch cranks! :rotfl: The UK motor industry is full of stories about car manufacturers travelling north to get crankshafts.
I don't think they ever went past Wolverhampton though. (apart from maybe Albion)


Maybe they should have looked at South Africa Mike :) ;)

But on a serious note, maybe the crank tail to flywheel key came from Scotland?

Edited by 275 GTB-4, 10 February 2013 - 01:07.


#1210 johnny yuma

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:02

GMH had a foundry capable of mass producing engine blocks well before 1948.
The only possible reason I can see for importing blocks would be to cover a shortfall in production if it ever happened at all.

The photos that Ray has posted clearly show a GMH block in a 48 car with the correct sequence engine number.

Scotch cranks! :rotfl: The UK motor industry is full of stories about car manufacturers travelling north to get crankshafts.
I don't think they ever went past Wolverhampton though. (apart from maybe Albion)

Spot on Cat Park.GMH had foundry operating from 1940,and churned out various engine castings for the war.

I refer Lee to page 284 of "She's a Beauty" by Don Loffler ,who QUOTES from Norm Darwin,who lists the year 1948 with
215 engines produced,the last being engine #1215 because the numbers start at 1001.This tallies nicely with 163 cars listed
as completed by the end of 1948.

I can't see there is any wriggle room for Scottish Cranks or Canadian Blocks,particularly with Ray Bell's posted photos of
a 1948 Model block, with GMH LOGO..nice work Ray.

Sorry Ray, I like calling my 48-215 "the FX" as I have for 40 years,not gonna stop now !! Mine is a Pagewood 1950 model
with only a passenger door keyhole/lock , and rear door lock buttons at the back.Damned bean counters !

#1211 DanTra2858

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 06:14

Lets forget the Motors, were all the early Gearbox's & Diff produced in Oz or did they come from Canada as well :clap:

#1212 GMACKIE

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 06:21

Geez, Dan....I thought I was a stirrer. :rolleyes:

Geez, Dan....I thought I was a stirrer. :wave:

#1213 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 06:23

GMH had a foundry capable of mass producing engine blocks well before 1948.
The only possible reason I can see for importing blocks would be to cover a shortfall in production if it ever happened at all.

The photos that Ray has posted clearly show a GMH block in a 48 car with the correct sequence engine number.

Scotch cranks! :rotfl: The UK motor industry is full of stories about car manufacturers travelling north to get crankshafts.
I don't think they ever went past Wolverhampton though. (apart from maybe Albion)

Where? They did not cast engines during the war. They had foundrys before the war for more simple castings, which were i am told [and read] used to produce things they normally would not. For arnamants, marine, aircraft etc. In times of war you can improvise, it does not have to be cost effective.
I am fairly sure GMH produced the first engines in Australia, or at least mass produced ones,,, from 1949.
And yes Dan I am fairly sure they did cast diff and gearbox cases here. They were simpler less involved castings than engine ones. Possibly even before the war.

Edited by Lee Nicolle, 10 February 2013 - 06:31.


#1214 johnny yuma

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 07:26

As a matter of interest those early cars did not have the local content of the later ones.As the years wore on they got more and more local content. Real early cars had imported glass, and most engine components!! electricals even trim material. By 56 it would have been mostly Australian, right through to the 90s when local content went down and down. Probably 50% these days. Really little more than assembly plants, Holden Ford and Toymota.
And seemingly the New Commodore of 2016 will be a front drive Euro or US sourced car assembled in Oz. Like the Cruze, a Daewoo pressed and assembled in Australia.

Lee: With your statements in part 1 ,I can't agree with any of them.

With your predictions in part 2,I would say if they are problems,
then the slagging that the self-appointed car experts and motoring
journalists have given Holden since Day 1 are signifigantly to blame
for demise of Australian-built cars.Yuppies thought to distance themselves
from the Aussie Bogan riff-raff by choosing fashionista company cars once
tarriffs dropped,and sadly that seems to spell the end of good cheap reliable
second hand Commodores,so in maybe 10 years time you will find situations,for
example,like now if you want to buy ONE new wheel for a 2011 Subaru Outback,it will
cost you $1000 (as my brother found out last week when he wanted to replace
the little emergency dinky wheel/tyre with a fullsize one , for an outback trip).


#1215 Dale Harvey

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 07:33

A Tiger Moth that I had a flight in had a plate on the engine that said it was produced by GMH. Now I am not sure but that may predate the humpy. Which would mean they had the facilities to build engines back then.
Dale.

#1216 GMACKIE

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 08:30

GM.......Gypsy Major? ;)

GM

#1217 Catalina Park

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 08:43

Holden was producing Gray Marine diesels and De Havilland Gipsy Major Aero Engines during the war.

#1218 GeoffR

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 08:46

An interesting link regarding the 'Canadian' blocks, and other components sourced from Canada .....

http://books.google....w...ada&f=false

Edited by GeoffR, 10 February 2013 - 08:47.


#1219 GMACKIE

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 09:17

Good work, GeoffR.....makes a lot of sense. :up:

Pleased to see my 55 year old memory of the Sekurit glass was 'real'.

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#1220 Ian G

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 11:04

I think they knew what they were doing, when they decided on GREY for the engine colour.


Yeah,i agree, but the only reason it was grey was because they couldn't agree on which shade of green to use and i think the paint(ex-WW11) came out of the States via Canada as well.

An interesting link regarding the 'Canadian' blocks, and other components sourced from Canada .....

http://books.google....w...ada&f=false


Yeah,interesting read,looks like a lot of the Info. was sourced from earlier books if it wasn't published until 1998.
I agree about GMH having the capacity to make blocks,Harnett was in charge of that side of things for the Govt. during WW11.

#1221 275 GTB-4

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 11:47

Lets forget the Motors, were all the early Gearbox's & Diff produced in Oz or did they come from Canada as well :clap:


What I want to know is why they used licorice metal for the gearbox linkages....PITA :down:

#1222 DanTra2858

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 19:28

Holden was producing Gray Marine diesels and De Havilland Gipsy Major Aero Engines during the war.


Catarina you got it right with your Statement " The only difference is the location of the propeller" :rotfl:

#1223 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 22:13

GM.......Gypsy Major?;)

GM

Radial air cooled?

#1224 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 22:37

Yeah,i agree, but the only reason it was grey was because they couldn't agree on which shade of green to use and i think the paint(ex-WW11) came out of the States via Canada as well.



Yeah,interesting read,looks like a lot of the Info. was sourced from earlier books if it wasn't published until 1998.
I agree about GMH having the capacity to make blocks,Harnett was in charge of that side of things for the Govt. during WW11.

Again this someones surmise. And he reckons Holden produced engines in 1948, where every other article says early 49!

The early cars never had the Australian content, that was worked up too over a few years. If they had they probably would not have started producing until about 1952, and GM would have canned the project.

By about 52, the update the cars had Oz manufactured, starters generators, wheels, engines, etc.That had gradually came on over the previous years. I feel sure some switches etc were still imported, they are the same as a Chev. If local they were a direct copy.

It was a large project to make the cars here, something near impossible to do from scratch.
Ford and the rest had it easier, several years later and the supplier chain was more advailable making it easier to start. And Ford engines were US made until 1972, both 6 and 8s. And to verify that read the XA parts book!

As for Holdens, read the 48-HR parts book, there is numerous changes on those early engines, from e/n such and such. So long since I have done it now I forget. But real early, early FE, FB were the major changes for various reasons. There was other minor changes and often a superseded no. In fact the real early parts books would even be better and then compare part numbers as by the 48-HR book most of the superseded numbers were already there. Though I ever only worked with the 48-HR as I am too young! Though chasing supersessions was then a daily part of the job in a GMH [and Ford] main parts dealer.

Again books written in the 60s, 70s 80s are far more factual than current ones, more fact less myth! As it is closer to the actual time.

#1225 Ian G

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 23:05

Again books written in the 60s, 70s 80s are far more factual than current ones, more fact less myth! As it is closer to the actual time.


I agree on that point Lee,they re-hash the same old with the author adding his bias or interpretations and quoting GMH archives,on that point, as i've already posted, many of the early problems & workarounds never made it to the paper records.The overheating of the early models was one such drama that was very much swept under the carpet and quietly fixed via the re-designed castings for the block and radiator specs.,Taxi's stopped in the middle of major cities with their bonnet up is not a good look for a new model car. I also agree that the Govt. turned blind eye to the 5% agreement for many years but Holden eventually got there.
As far as the imported block goes,who knows,but if they were around in any sort of numbers surely someone would have tracked them down by now with heaps of photos on the net,the GMH logo on the local production would be hard to miss. Assuming he wasn't bullsheeting us kids,i go back to Robin Orlando needing the engine no. to ID the blocks suitable for the racing engines,if they were cast O/S all he would have to do is see if they had CWC(or whatever) on the side.

#1226 275 GTB-4

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 05:24

Could some un-biased person please refresh my memory...I think it needs modern high capacity ROM and RAM and a total rewrite and refresh!

I thought I read that 5(?) prototypes were built either here (and shipped) or made in USA and that they underwent some sort of proving program on CONUS.

What drivetrain/engines would the protos have used?

Edited by 275 GTB-4, 11 February 2013 - 05:25.


#1227 Librules

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:27

If older books are to be treated as bibles, surely that defeats the purpose of forums such as TNF. Just because something was written closer to the time it occured doesn't make it right. Norm Darwin himself recently released a book on Toranas which adds to the known information and corrects some perpetuated myths.

#1228 DanTra2858

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:43

Radial air cooled?


Lee the Gypse Major was an inverted in line 6 cylinder motor, not an air cooled radial.

#1229 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:53

Originally posted by Librules
If older books are to be treated as bibles, surely that defeats the purpose of forums such as TNF. Just because something was written closer to the time it occured doesn't make it right. Norm Darwin himself recently released a book on Toranas which adds to the known information and corrects some perpetuated myths.


Precisely the case...

Hence I'm starting a thread to debunk all early Holden myths - as pronounced so regularly on this thread.

#1230 DJH

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 07:19

"Lee the Gypse Major was an inverted in line 6 cylinder motor, not an air cooled radial. "

The De Havilland Gypsy Major aero engine, has but 4 cylinders.





















[/quote]

Edited by DJH, 11 February 2013 - 07:27.


#1231 johnny yuma

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:52

Could some un-biased person please refresh my memory...I think it needs modern high capacity ROM and RAM and a total rewrite and refresh!

I thought I read that 5(?) prototypes were built either here (and shipped) or made in USA and that they underwent some sort of proving program on CONUS.

What drivetrain/engines would the protos have used?

Suggest you read David Hayward's "The Holden Project" and "She's a Beauty "by Don Loffler.We really must look into detailed research done by,dare
I say,those more capable,and try to seperate the chaff from the grain,not just recycle our personal beliefs.It's not a religion,or a matter of personal honour,
it's better than that...and here I realise how trivial it is...it's a (very small) quest for truth.Yes of course it's difficult...one has to confront one's beliefs,often built
on sand...holy hell I'm sounding rather Old Testament.Goodnight.

#1232 Graham Clayton

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Posted 14 August 2013 - 02:50

Phil Taylor's FB production sedan at Boulder Speedway, 1971:

Posted Image

Source: http://www.bouldersp...lor p/abeg1.jpg

#1233 275 GTB-4

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 21:48

Today in 1948 the first Holden rolled off the production line...then, they went racing :up:


Edited by 275 GTB-4, 28 November 2013 - 21:53.


#1234 DanTra2858

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 09:55

So where did the Production Line race ?

#1235 275 GTB-4

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 11:05

So where did the Production Line race ?

 

Ahhh the old trick question....resume normal programming :up:



#1236 Catalina Park

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 18:58

Fishermans Bend would be my answer.

#1237 DanTra2858

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:58

Today in 1948 the first Holden rolled off the production line...then, they went racing :up:


I was 4 years old then & that is why my memory is a little clouded !!!!!

#1238 Ray Bell

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:57

Well, it's not true...

 

They didn't race immediately at all. I think you'll find there were no Holdens racing until at least 1951. And then, not on this date.



#1239 D-Type

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:38

He didn't say " ~ then they went racing immediately" did he?  ;)



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#1240 275 GTB-4

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:58

He didn't say " ~ then they went racing immediately" did he?  ;)

 

or even, then they immediatelly went racing... neither :wink:


Edited by 275 GTB-4, 29 November 2013 - 22:06.


#1241 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 22:20

Well, it's not true...
 
They didn't race immediately at all. I think you'll find there were no Holdens racing until at least 1951. And then, not on this date.

I bet quite a few got street raced though. Nothing is new there. My father reckoned his 35 or so Ford V8 was faster than a new Holden. This well before I was born!

#1242 ken devine

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 04:26

So Ford drivers have always been dreamers.

#1243 275 GTB-4

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 10:16

So Ford drivers have always been dreamers.

 

I'm not so sure...if the 35 had a sports coil and diode, it might have been a force to be reckoned with :up:



#1244 SJ Lambert

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 09:31

Anyone recognize this valve (blank) as a Dufor one?

P1090505.jpg

#1245 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 12:13

Anyone recognize this valve (blank) as a Dufor one?

P1090505.jpg

Stating the obvious it is a Holden one. Dufor at one stage made Holden valves. They made valves for most things and for the rest there was blanks. Blank valves are still around in most sizes, both stem and head.

If that is what I think it is, a red motor valve I probably have some useable ones.



#1246 SJ Lambert

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 21:50

I've got enough for the job at hand - just interested in what their original intended use may have been.

 

P1090508ul.jpg
 



#1247 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 22:55

I've got enough for the job at hand - just interested in what their original intended use may have been.

 

P1090508ul.jpg
 

If they are for your Elfin go and buy some better valves. Some modern 1 piece stainless blanks will be far lighter and less likely to fail. You may find something that is totally suitable off the shelf these days anyway.

I have never seen valves like that, they are totally unfinished where the stem meets the head. The Dufor ones marked Dufor were finished. Turn the head down to desired size and finish to length for collets and rockers.

If you are going to turn the engine very hard with good springs use lash caps ideally. All 'finished' valves are heat treated on the ends for scuff resistance from rockers where as a blank is not. The valves may mushroom without especially with sliding type rockers. The lash caps can increase the area contacted too which helps with big cams.



#1248 SJ Lambert

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 10:36

They're 21-4N blanks, by the time we're finished with 'em they should do OK.

 

http://www.sbintl.co..._and_alloys.pdf



#1249 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 24 May 2014 - 01:50

They're 21-4N blanks, by the time we're finished with 'em they should do OK.

 

http://www.sbintl.co..._and_alloys.pdf

But a one piece swirl polished valve will be lighter and stronger. Two piece valves are ok for a [normally] low revving street engine where they are strong and generally trouble free. An engine running at sustained high RPM will benefit from a lighter valve and the strength of a one piece valve means it is unlikely to drop the head through the piston. A 'waisted' valve too is lighter again and flows a bit more air too. Though they should be lifed as they do stretch more. Measuring and recording lengths is very handy. A one piece valve usually stretches a couple of thou fairly early. A two piece valve stretches and pulls the head off!!  

Personally I have always found a med price valve replaced at a major overhaul is the safest way. IF they have had a big over rev maybe then too!  IF the tappets close up that will tell you.

I dont know what is available for those engines but since they have been raced for decades I feel sure something is available quite reasonably. And I am sure it will get turned quite hard! Ti is reputedly  the lightest but also by far the most expensive. 

Kauffmans article says they are comparable for life with stainless. I think most will disagree. 

One of the reasons why in many categorys Ti is banned as is berillieum. Cost and durability.

I bet those F1 engine builders are worried about both with the KM they are forced to do now.



#1250 Graham Clayton

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Posted 24 May 2014 - 04:12

Torquay Speedway, Victoria, early 1970's:

 

992685_orig.jpg

 

 

http://www.speedwaya...y-speedway.html