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'Canadian blocks' and other early Holden myths


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#1 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 07:05

This thread is required because the 'Early Holden racing' thread has become so contaminated with these subjects...

There are many myths (or even true stories about the earliest times with the Holden, in particular as were propogated (or discovered) due to the need to get more power out of them in the days up to the end of Appendix J (1964).

The list, which may require addition, is as follows:

1. Some early Holdens had blocks cast in Canada. These had thicker cylinder walls.

2. Some had crankshafts forged in Scotland.

3. Books on the subject in more recent times have become contaminated with misinformation due to the writers being too remote from the subject. Books of earlier times, being written much more closely to the time of the event, are more accurate.

4. The Canadian blocks were required because GM-H didn't have the foundry expertise and/or capacity to get under way in time for the production cars to be released.

5. Holdens did not meet the 95% local content requirement in the beginning by a big margin, it was many years before they achieved this.

6. Perhaps stuff wasn't from Canada, but shipped or invoiced from Canada to avoid import duty and other potential taxes.

7. The Australian Government 'turned a blind eye' to these major infringements.

8. The early Holdens were carried the model identity 'FX'.

9. A contract would not have been let to cast a small number of blocks for prototypes.

I will post reasons for all of these to be debunked over the next day or two. You may mutter among yourselves for now...

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#2 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 09:42

A foundation for fixing these things is knowing the source of the knowledge... or knowing how and where to source accurate information...

For that reason, I am attacking point No 3 first.

3. Books on the subject in more recent times have become contaminated with misinformation due to the writers being too remote from the subject. Books of earlier times, being written much more closely to the time of the event, are more accurate.

I'm tempted to ask outright, "What books?" However, I'll raise a couple of points that have been given to me that might help with this quest.

1. Even GM-H's publicity people got some things wrong. Historically inaccurate. In the sixties they stated that Ben Chifley was present when the first car rolled off the production line.

Truth: The first completed car (after the ten US-built prototypes) came off the end of the line in October, 1948. Ben Chifley was there when the announcement of the first car being completed (and production en masse beginning) at the end of November.

2. During the early 1980s a vast amount of resource material became available directly from GM-H's own records.

In a 'clean-out' of papers dating back into the forties, a lot of material was discarded. Then someone came up with the bright idea of making it publicly available, so the State Library of South Australia became the home for this resource and many have benefitted from poring over the pages. Among those who have is Don Loffler, whose books were referred to (and actually linked) on the other thread.

3. Much of the material on offer during the fifties and sixties was more for publicity than for research or knowledge. Therefore, facts sometimes got overlooked in the quest for readability and general consumption.

It is really point 2 that is most pertinent, however...

#3 GeoffR

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 10:30

3. Books on the subject in more recent times have become contaminated with misinformation due to the writers being too remote from the subject. Books of earlier times, being written much more closely to the time of the event, are more accurate.

Can only agree with Ray's view in regard to this . For example, I have an interest in military history, particularly WW2. The books that have been published in recent times, given access now to WW2 records that weren't available in the post war period (for whatever reason), are far more accurate than a lot of previous publications dealing with WW2 events. Does this also apply to the automotive world?


#4 Ian G

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 11:44

I find the discussion interesting but i haven't seen anything posted in threads here or in the links provided that differ from the books and general Info. that was around when i was at school in the 1960's,the arguments and personal opinions expressed just seem to go around in circles.

The news on Holden no.2 seems to have faded.

http://www.gminsiden...-garage-103109/


http://smh.drive.com...0521-1ey2x.html

Edited by Ian G, 12 February 2013 - 04:52.


#5 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 12:15

And this whole 2013 thread is trying to debunk articles written 30-40-50? years ago. About very early engines with Canadian. or very least US cast engines with also imported cranks.
What is so bloody hard to accept what has been the story for decades.Written by peole in the period.
As I have said before read Norm Darwins 1983 book that was written with access to GMH archives.There is other older ones mentioning the exact same storys, the Scottish cranks and Canadian blocks.
Most of the theorys mentioned actually mention Norm Darwin, then go off on their own tangent. Talk about inconsistency.
And the fact is that GMH always intended to be high Australian content but that does not happen overnight. In the commercial market where they have to make a profit.
Forget all the war effort, it was made with out reference to making a profit and things can be done the [very] hard way to get it done. Not in a commercial market.
And guess what, the opposition cars made in Australia did not have local engines until far later, or never.
Ford Zephyr, imported engines. Vauxhall, the same.Vanguard imported, Valiant the same until about 67 and then a full Us design. Ford 1972 and again full US designs. And ALL the other cars at least in part made or assembled here.
So what is the crap about local content. The opposition did not have it for decades, or ever.
Toyota, Nissan, AMI never made engines, all imported.Still are. As were Simcas, Hillmans, Cortinas Escorts Galants, most Sigmas, And anything GMH made that was not mainstream. Chev engines, Torana 4s and similar models.
I suggest you doubters actually go find all the old Holden, or Aussie motoring history books and learn.
With the Chev engines I have had people trying to tell me there were made in Australia. Ofcourse they never were, the Pontiac design based engine was. The Holden 253 304 308 engines were. And no Gen 3s!
Or with Ford Aussie built Y blocks, Windsors. Anything before 72!

Though very soon it seems we will be expected to drive front drive shitboxes assembled,, maybe in Oz. With Chinese, Indian or Korean built engines.
Though many are already. Cruze, Camry and the like.



#6 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 19:11

Lee, this thread is about the early Holdens and nothing more...

And it's about presenting facts.

So it's not about Zephyrs, Vauxhalls or Customlines. It's not about 'accepting stories' that have been around for decades. It's not about perpetuating conspiracy theories.

If you have something factual, please present it. One thing you might mention is the 'older' books to which you've referred... ie. pre-Norm Darwin.

#7 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 20:46

GM-H's readiness to go into production has a bearing on points 1, 2 & 5...

Under Larry Hartnett (not 'Harnett'...) GM had been pointing in the total production of a local car direction from the late pre-war years. This is pointed out in almost any story of Holden history, along with actual wartime planning of the Holden as we came to know it in 1948.

The Fishermens Bend plant was up and running and made over 1000 Gipsy Major engines - a 4-cylinder inline engine of 130bhp used in training aircraft - during the war. According to the Museum Victoria website they also made trucks and artillery.

One story is related that from drawings to production, GM-H created a piece of heavy artillery in just seven months. Patterns made, castings poured, machining completed to some fine tolerances and assembly to push it out the door.

The Gipsy Major engine is an important part of this story. It was a British design (from De Havilland) but had to be made here in its entirety because British production capacity was well used up fighting Herr Hitler and shipping was at the very least difficult.

Allied with the knowledge that the first Australian-cast Holden block was machined in July 1948, does this not point to the fact that GM-H's Fishermens Bend plant was capable of turning out the required blocks, heads, cranks etc to meet the needs of early production of the Holden?

The MV website states that the three prototypes which were shipped to Australia for final testing arrived in December, 1946... well ahead of the production schedule. And still the launch of the car was put off several times in 1948 due to Australian sources of some components being slow to come on line.

That these components were from outside suppliers is evidenced by the fact that the engine was already being built in July and GM-H were well-experienced with making the engine components needed. The first Australian-built Holden engine was started up on September 25, 1948 (P54 She's a Beauty! by Don Loffler) and it was one of a pilot run of ten engines assembled in the days leading up to that time.

It had an Australian-built transmission attached, too. The telegram from James Holden to the team that built these is evidence of the local production of the parts, the wording of that telegram is on the same page of the book.

The readiness and capacity of outside suppliers was tested in the beginning, but at that time the problems encountered merely led to delays in getting started. Later, however, it became necessary to overcome such problems by finding other suppliers and one case in point is the Belgian Sekurit glass used.

This happened, according to the Don Loffler's book, around June and July of 1952. The point here is that it is well after initial production began, it was undoubtedly a result of the ever-growing public acceptance of the Holden at a time when the Australian economy was just beginning to boom after the shortages of the early post-war years.

Where we are aiming with all of this, of course, is to the fact that there is evidence of Australian production of the complete Holden engine, while there is no evidence of any production-car use of the Muskegan-manufactured castings.

Edited by Ray Bell, 11 February 2013 - 20:49.


#8 Ian G

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 23:11

Heaps of threads on the subject since the Internet became popular in Oz the last 15 years or so but nothing new in the way of information to my way of thinking but certainly interesting to read and see the way people justify their PoV 50+ years later.
The one thing that has remained constant since the "Canadian Block" thing surfaced in the 1950's is no one(AFAIK) has ever produced one in the flesh,all blocks ,although the no. & size of welsch plugs & ribbing changed as they developed,have the GMH logo on the side. If 150 CWC blocks were imported in 1947,where are they?,surely some would have survived.

Not the thread i was trying to find but continues the debate;

http://fefcholden.or...pic,2605.0.html

#9 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 00:08

Coming up for ten years since that thread was last posted on, so let's see what we have there...

A whole bunch of Holden enthusiasts visited and posted there, they were all told that the CWC casting mark would mean they had a useful or valuable block, and that it meant the thing was cast in Muskegon, Michigan. They learned that, despite some old racer's assertion that it was true, there would be no maple leaf cast onto the block.

In particular they learned that variation in castings came about because of changes made to the dies on the one hand and actual core placement in the foundry on the other. Even that EJ blocks were usually better because they'd refined the foundry processes more by then.

And with all of that, and so many of them owning a collection of old Holden blocks, nobody has come up with a CWC casting yet!

#10 johnny yuma

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 03:20

1.If someone can charm their way behind the gold rope at the National Museum in Canberra get a photo
of the prototype Engine Block,especially the CWC logo if it has one.
2.I think we mostly all know the 48-215 was never officially the FX,but the shorter nickname serves well.
3.Ray,you are very patient,but consider the words of Paul Simon in "The Boxer" :

"..but a man hears,
what he wants to hear,
and disregards the rest .."

Some will take the Canadian Block to the grave,and never know why.

#11 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 03:56

Johnny, I will have questions asked in high places before this is over...

I assume Muskegon is high. High lattitudes that is.

In the meantime, yes, it would be nice to see a photo the prototype engines' CWC casting. We'll get one from somewhere.

#12 johnny yuma

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:26

Johnny, I will have questions asked in high places before this is over...

I assume Muskegon is high. High lattitudes that is.

In the meantime, yes, it would be nice to see a photo the prototype engines' CWC casting. We'll get one from somewhere.

Perhaps magoo has knowledge of the Muskegon/CWC activities ?

#13 Ian G

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:45

There is a brief look at the top of the motor in the "No.2" video,starts after Santa Fe add.

http://media.smh.dri...ed-2374851.html


I've been wasting my time trying to find a thread that runs for about 20 pages on one of the early Oz(2001) Motoring Forums,in it David Hayward is quoted as saying(via a Chevy Forum he posted on) that the early models ran CWC blocks but if so how many,and where are they now?.

#14 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:52

Lee, this thread is about the early Holdens and nothing more...

And it's about presenting facts.

So it's not about Zephyrs, Vauxhalls or Customlines. It's not about 'accepting stories' that have been around for decades. It's not about perpetuating conspiracy theories.

If you have something factual, please present it. One thing you might mention is the 'older' books to which you've referred... ie. pre-Norm Darwin.

Ray every thing is in the context of this. And the 95% content defenitly is.
Early books, i have read them, borrowed them from the library, friends etc. The Norm Darwin book I own, and another i cannot find.But the whole Canadian block Scottish cranks storys have been around since the 50s. In the era the cars were sold!! Then 'experts' 60 years on come along and say it has not happened! Against all period documentation and facts.

As for casting marks there is no reason they would not have had the customers name cast in them,, GMH. They may not have either. It is many decades since I have played with grey motors, as far as I know the early desirable blocks were identified by engine no alone and I have forgotten all the prefixes. And the other identifiers.

The engine reconditioners of the period knew the good blocks, again undeniable facts, as did the bucks up racers.

Really where those early blocks were cast is irrelevant, they were not cast in Oz. They were cast in the Detroit area, whichever side of the lakes, and would have been invoiced out of Canada.

As for the prototypes they are not in this discussion, they were hand built prototypes built for evaluation,,, in 1946. Did they even use the Holden motor? They were really for chassis testing and evaluation.
Nothing to do with pre production cars built in the 2nd half of 1948, and actually production cars started late 48.

And as for aircraft engines built in small numbers, again not as a commercial enterprise they too are not part of the discussion. There was a heap of foundrys before the war, more were adapted to war production. But not as a profit making venture. Speaking briefly to my metalurgist cousin Sunday, 'in a decent facility you can do one offs, though sometimes by trial and error. If you are making hi volume sophisticated castings you need the proper facility and equipment'.. He started work in 1971.

#15 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 05:05

Lee, we know the prototypes all had Holden engines and that the engines were built on blocks sourced from CWC in Muskegon...

Just how likely it is that CWC still have records going back that far, I don't know. But I will find out.

And yes, they did have GM-H cast on them too.

And, as Rod showed us the other day, Charlie McCarron's very original car, the 46th one off the line, didn't have CWC on its block.

Posted Image

This car is a 1948 build.

1948... that's the year (and Don Loffler's detail is quite good on this, it shows he's seen records) that they cast blocks and machined them at Fishermens Bend (July) and completed the assembly of the first production car (October 1) and then released the model (November 29) and sent 163 on their way out the front door.

#16 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 06:44

9. A contract would not have been let to cast a small number of blocks for prototypes.

Really, posting this photo says a lot:

Posted Image

#17 Catalina Park

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 06:56

Looking at Trove, Holden was advertising for foundry workers in the Melbourne Argus in 1948.

#18 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:23

What month was that, Michael?

#19 johnny yuma

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:36

There is a brief look at the top of the motor in the "No.2" video,starts after Santa Fe add.

http://media.smh.dri...ed-2374851.html


I've been wasting my time trying to find a thread that runs for about 20 pages on one of the early Oz(2001) Motoring Forums,in it David Hayward is quoted as saying(via a Chevy Forum he posted on) that the early models ran CWC blocks but if so how many,and where are they now?.

As I have posted several times in last week,just google "David Hayward,The Holden Car Project", press go and there is the 38 pages.The stuff we're discussing is all near the end.CWC,PROTOTYPES,THE LOT. Enjoy !

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#20 275 GTB-4

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:41

And yes, they did have GM-H cast on them too.


Posted Image


Without the hyphen :)

#21 GMACKIE

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:05

9. A contract would not have been let to cast a small number of blocks for prototypes.

Really, posting this photo says a lot:

Posted Image

I know a picture is supposedly worth a thousand words, however this has lost me. :confused: Please explain.


#22 Ian G

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:50

As I have posted several times in last week,just google "David Hayward,The Holden Car Project", press go and there is the 38 pages.The stuff we're discussing is all near the end.CWC,PROTOTYPES,THE LOT. Enjoy !


I give up,i know your well intentioned but one of us is completely missing the point.

Edited by Ian G, 12 February 2013 - 10:53.


#23 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 12:10

Originally posted by GMACKIE
I know a picture is supposedly worth a thousand words, however this has lost me. Please explain.


Like the original Holden 6, this is an engine that was prototyped and originally developed in America, never sold there and was put into production in Australia only.

The point is, in relation to small numbers of castings, that this particular prototype has the distributor in a different place to where it was located in all production versions. In other words, the only castings that could possibly have been made in the US foundries were the prototypes. And I suspect the distributor was probably moved before the last of the prototypes were built.

The engine should be recognisable, it's the Hemi 6. I'm sure Lee would have recognised the difference at a glance.

#24 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 13:15

Posted Image

#25 GMACKIE

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 20:02

The engine should be recognisable, it's the Hemi 6. I'm sure Lee would have recognised the difference at a glance.

Ohhh, silly me....I thought "this thread is about about the early Holdens and nothing more..."


#26 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 21:03

9. A contract would not have been let to cast a small number of blocks for prototypes.

Really, posting this photo says a lot:

Posted Image

What the hell has a prototype 1968 Valiant Hemi got to do with grey Holdens? Apart from being a one off [or 3-4] experimental engine. AFAIK cast at Lonsdale, a very few years after Chrysler got their engine plant, and before Ford got theirs!

And yes there is several differences on that engine to what the production engine had, both internal and external. Dissy, oil pump and gallerys, intake bolt pattern and several others. Some people at Chrysler reckoned that engine was better than the production ones. Reputedly harder to make.
On display at Birdwood Mill for about 25 years.

Edited by Lee Nicolle, 12 February 2013 - 21:10.


#27 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 21:45

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
What the hell has a prototype 1968 Valiant Hemi got to do with grey Holdens? Apart from being a one off [or 3-4] experimental engine.....


Well, that is exactly the point...

And yes there is several differences on that engine to what the production engine had, both internal and external. Dissy, oil pump and gallerys, intake bolt pattern and several others. Some people at Chrysler reckoned that engine was better than the production ones. Reputedly harder to make.....


Well, that's interesting too...

One, that there were so many changes in the castings; two, that the changes were for production convenience.

However, the main point is this:

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
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.


You were debunking the thought that CWC might have made just ten blocks, yet here you say someone might reasonably make three or four!

This myth is busted!

Edited by Ray Bell, 12 February 2013 - 21:46.


#28 Ian G

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:52

A point,that was mentioned by some of the early Holden1950/60's researchers, but has largely been forgotten these days is the state of the US auto industry post war,lots of upheavals as they adjusted from war production and the push from the UAW to take control of the industry. I just did a quick Google and CWC had major Union problems post 1945 including a 80 day strike in 1948 that shut their plants and put 50,000+ auto workers out of work,so just getting a handful of blocks from them would have been an ask. If the the prototype/early blocks had CWC misread as CWO its hard to believe that any were cast with the GMH logo.


Edit...Ray this is not the main page i found,it said 80 day strike and culmination of months of UAW actions against CWC,i'll try and find it again when i get the time,it was 7 or 8 pages into a Google search.I think the UAW guy that led the strike was Walter Reuther,the same fellow that put GM out of business for 113 days in 1945/46.

Scroll down towards end of article.

http://blog.mlive.co...garrett_co.html

Edited by Ian G, 13 February 2013 - 04:19.


#29 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 00:22

We'll have to get a photo then...

People who've seen the prototype engines say they did indeed have the CWC as well as GM-H on them. I've asked my sources if they have a photo, but if they don't I'll arrange one somehow.

Would you mind linking the website that gives the detail on CWC's big strike?

Of course, 1948 would matter for production Holden engines, but the prototypes were all done by the end of 1946.

Edited by Ray Bell, 13 February 2013 - 00:26.


#30 DanTra2858

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 06:47

Ohhh, silly me....I thought "this thread is about about the early Holdens and nothing more..."


And you have the hide to call me a STIRRER :wave:

#31 DanTra2858

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 06:53

Are any of the Prototype motors in Australia, if not what happened to them ???

#32 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 08:23

Well, that is exactly the point...



Well, that's interesting too...

One, that there were so many changes in the castings; two, that the changes were for production convenience.

However, the main point is this:



You were debunking the thought that CWC might have made just ten blocks, yet here you say someone might reasonably make three or four!

This myth is busted!

Ray, really wake up. Effectivly hand built prototype engines, presuming the 1946 cars even used a Holden engine for what would have been mainly chassis testing. Which I have said before. The cost for a prototype is FAR higher than a production engine. Which is what this is all about. nothing to do with prototypes but early PRODUCTION cars and their engines.There would have been prototype engines, they were based on existing GM designs, There was a 4 cyl and a 6 cyl evaluated. The 6 won.

The above Valiant was a prototype too. prototype VHs used slant 6s for chassis testing. And some export models used them as production engines.

#33 johnny yuma

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 09:33

Ray, really wake up. Effectivly hand built prototype engines, presuming the 1946 cars even used a Holden engine for what would have been mainly chassis testing. Which I have said before. The cost for a prototype is FAR higher than a production engine. Which is what this is all about. nothing to do with prototypes but early PRODUCTION cars and their engines.There would have been prototype engines, they were based on existing GM designs, There was a 4 cyl and a 6 cyl evaluated. The 6 won.

The above Valiant was a prototype too. prototype VHs used slant 6s for chassis testing. And some export models used them as production engines.

Lee have you even looked at the David Hayward research ? The 1946 prototypes used C-W-C engine castings made in Michigan,by Campbell,Wyant and Cannon,for General Motors and were fitted in the bodies
made at Fisher Body Works in Flint,Michigan. Just where are you coming from Lee (or should I say nicko,a stirrer from earlier forums)

#34 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:11

Nicko?

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
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!


You have kept throwing this at us, Lee (this is from the other thread, but you've done it here too...)... why?

Don Loffler even expresses his thanks to Norm Darwin - that's on P268 of the second printing of She's a Beauty... he writes:

"Because all three aspects of the myth are still in circulation, I shall attempt to expose each one. I am indebted to Holden historians Norm Darwin and Terry Bebbington, and early Holden researchers, Stan Bennett and Barry Black, and many other interested people including racing drivers and engine reconditioners for their help with my research on this subject."

I'm also told that on P164 of Darwin's History of Holden Since 1917 there is a photo of an engine with both the GM-H logo on it and the CWC mark too.

Do you think you could post that photo for us?

.....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


So this is countered by the information that they were casting huge guns and aircraft engines during the war...

Are you happy to accept this?

#35 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:38

Nicko?



You have kept throwing this at us, Lee (this is from the other thread, but you've done it here too...)... why?

Don Loffler even expresses his thanks to Norm Darwin - that's on P268 of the second printing of She's a Beauty... he writes:

"Because all three aspects of the myth are still in circulation, I shall attempt to expose each one. I am indebted to Holden historians Norm Darwin and Terry Bebbington, and early Holden researchers, Stan Bennett and Barry Black, and many other interested people including racing drivers and engine reconditioners for their help with my research on this subject."

I'm also told that on P164 of Darwin's History of Holden Since 1917 there is a photo of an engine with both the GM-H logo on it and the CWC mark too.

Do you think you could post that photo for us?



So this is countered by the information that they were casting huge guns and aircraft engines during the war...

Are you happy to accept this?

HOW MANY TIMES DO I HAVE TO SAY THIS. The war effort was not a commercial enterprise. It is FACT that GMH did not cast grey engines until 1949, so the first cars had IMPORTED, reputedly from Canada engine components. As Holden were involved in a COMMERCIAL profit making enterprise.
This is confirmed by Norm Darwins book. And other sources too. Written in the 70s and 80s and probably before.
And since they did not cast engines until 1949 all the first 3-4 months of production must have been sold without engines!!
So denying this fact is plain stupid.
I am giving up on this thread as the pig headedness of denying well known facts is just DUMB

#36 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:58

Lee, to the supplying companies, the 'war effort' was indeed a commercial enterprise...

And we posted a photo of one of the very first cars and it didn't have the CWC logo on the block.

#37 Welby

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 15:57

by the by, Terry B is over on a local Aus forum, regular contributor.

#38 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 21:12

Can you point me in his direction?

Maybe he can add more...

#39 Ian G

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 23:39

It probaly doesn't relate to what we're discussing but for future reference now that i found it the CWC strike started on June 16th 1948 and ran for 79 days,major Union drama's at Ford & GM at the same time,i read where the UAW used the disruption the war caused to take control of the Auto industry and force other Unions out,it was a serious game,Reuther survived a close range murder attempt with a shotgun in 1948 and Union officials were regulary intimidated & beaten up by Ford & GM "Service Personnel".

..scroll down to near bottom of page:"Settlement plan before CWC workers",you don't have to pay or register to view single pages.

http://newspaperarch...news/1948-07-19

Edited by Ian G, 16 February 2013 - 22:11.


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#40 275 GTB-4

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 00:47

It probaly doesn't relate to what we're discussing but for future reference now that i found it the CWC strike started on June 16th 1948 and ran for 79 days,major Union drama's at Ford & GM at the same time,i read where the UAW used the disruption the war caused to take control of the Auto industry and force other Unions out,it was a serious game,Reuther survived a close range murder attempt with a shotgun in 1948 and Union officials were regulary intimidated & beaten up by Ford & GM "Service Personnel".

http://newspaperarch...news/1948-07-19


Tough times Ian!

This article on the Chevy Cadet paints a different picture, from the money available for development purposes post-war aspect. For example, Brookpark OH, million square feet factory...article by Karl Ludvigsen:

http://blog.hemmings...ashiered-cadet/


Project 2200 (48/215) - snippet from Trove:
Before the end of the war a GMH team led by Managing Director, Larry J. Hartnett visited GMÂs headquarters in the USA to push plans to build a car in Australia. The team was encouraged to go ahead, but capital would not be provided by the parent-company. However, good news came from the Australian Government with the backing of two bank loans, £2.5 million from the Commonwealth Bank and £500 000 from the Bank of Adelaide. Meanwhile, a GM Chevrolet research group in the United States had been experimenting with a number of light car projects, including a 4-cylinder model designated 195Y13 and a 6-cylinder model designated 195Y15, both with a wheelbase of 117 inches (2970 mm). The reports indicated that the 6-cylinder engine was superior, in spite of the fact that the two cars had the same capacity, torque and weight. This car showed a strong similarity to the car specified in Project 2200, and Hartnett decided to accept the 195Y15 model, after some modifications, including stretching the wheel base 1 inch (25.4 mm), reducing the tread 2 inches (50.8 mm), changing the rear axle ratio from 4.125 to 3.889 and increasing the curb weight by 160 lbs (72.6 kg). The first body of the model 48-215 was made at the Woodville plant in South Australia in July 1948, and the first engine was completed at Fishermans Bend in Victoria in September 1948. On 29 November 1948 1200 official guests, headed by Prime Minister Ben Chifley, watched the launch of the first Holden model 48/​215, while 26 000 GMH employees and family members previewed the new model at GMH factories nationwide. The original idea was to name the Holden models by the year of production and body style number. The 48/​215 meant that it was made in 1948 and the 215 referred to the body style of the particular model (the Standard Sedan was assigned the number 215, the business sedan was assigned 217). There are numerous theories about where the later unofficial model designation FX came from. This emerged among Holden owners and enthusiasts well after the 48/​215 (also known as the FX model Holden) had been replaced by the FJ and subsequent models, the FE, FC and FB. Perhaps the FX designation was chosen because of its association with the unknown or unspecified. It is also possible that it was first used as a reference for spare parts.

So...deep breath...can we say that the genesis for the Holden 6 was 195Y15 (with a flywheel at either end!) ?



#41 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 00:59

Yes, strictly speaking, the reference to 'an FJ' is not right...

An FJ-215 is a Standard sedan (fewer bits of chrome, more basic trim etc), the FJ-217 is the Business sedan with a chromed rail behind the front seat etc, the FJ-225 is the Special sedan. FJ-2106 is the utility, FJ-2104 is the panel van, while in the pre-FJ days the utilities were designated 50-2106 as they were put into production in 1950 for release in January 1951.


#42 Ian G

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 04:29

I notice on some Forums and it was mentioned in one book that i read that the term FX did originate from Holden(not officially) and it was in relation to cars previous to the front X-member re-design/revision and it stuck because it fitted in nicely with the FJ name instead of the more unappealing 48-215. Now before anyone bites my head off i don't know(or care) and the father of one of my school friends worked for Holden in Melbourne(later ended up at Pagewood in the export side of things) at the time and he didn't know where the term FX came from either.

On the trivia side of things,Len Evans,the Oz wine buff,worked(for a short time) for GMH in Melbourne after emigrating from NZ and his job was welding front X-members for the FJ.,he didn't have any welding experience or qualifications,just applied for the job,was shown what to do and how many an hour he had to complete and that was how things were done at GMH in Melb. in the early 1950's.

Edited by Ian G, 14 February 2013 - 04:35.


#43 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 04:43

That's a Don Loffler belief... and reasonable, too...

Yeah, there's no telling how roughly the average car is built.

#44 johnny yuma

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 13:00

Ray Terry Bebbington is ,or was, at bebco@bigpond.com
he has a workshop at Auburn and has written at least
two books on Holdens,at the 50th and 60th anniversaries.
Haven't read either myself,must do so.

Meanwhile here's a myth (or not) the reason a 6 cylinder
2.2 litre motor was chosen over a 2.2 4 cylinder was
the 4 would require a heavier duty drivetrain, especially
the diff,because of the torque characteristics of the
larger cylinders.

Could be true,and 4 cylinder engines in touring cars were over
about 1800cc were rare until counter-rotating balance shafts
smoothed the vibes out in the 1970s/8os,so all things considered
you were better of with a longer engine.

Edited by johnny yuma, 14 February 2013 - 13:08.


#45 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 02:51

Thanks for that...

I would expect that the sales prospects for a six were better simply because it was a six. Remembering that at the time the biggest selling cars in Australia were all sixes and eights... Chev, some Vauxhall, Pontiac, Buick, Ford V8 (both English and Australian... the Zephyr was still years away), Dodge, Plymouth, De Soto, Chrysler. They would have comprised at least 70% of the market here I'd reckon.

The Vanguard was yet to establish itself with its big four, but the torque of that car certainly did make a name for it. The A70 was 2.2 litres as well. I guess it just broke axles?

#46 DanTra2858

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 06:53

Again I will ask, what has happened to the original pro type motors ???


#47 wagons46

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 08:43

Asking that sort of question may ruin this thread. You must stick with the topic 'MYTH'



#48 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 08:44

Some were fitted to prototype cars for testing, the others undoubtedly used for bench testing, dyno running etc...

They would have worked a couple of them to death, no doubt.

#49 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 12:03

A further nail in the coffins...

Terry Bebbington is named by Don Loffler as one of the people who contributed to the debunking of the myth in his book. Terry is a man of great experience with Holdens and Holden engines, his father having been a mechanic before him.

Terry was involved in drag racing and had engines balanced by Graham Waggott at Ken Waggott's shop on Canterbury Road. When he started hearing the stories about 'Canadian blocks' he systematically asked all he knew what they knew about them.

And he got consistent replies from them all:

"The blocks before engine number 37832 generally had thicker cylinder walls, but boring them out to over three and a quarter was still a matter of luck."

They all referred to irregularity in the placement of the cores in casting, the fact that a great many engines were bored off-centre to the location of the cast iron that made up the cylinder walls.

His point was that the consistency of this response, and he talked to engine builders and machinists all over the place, showed that there were no special blocks at all.

Terry is the author of 60 Years of Holden and other books in that series and he says that if he needed to build a big-bore grey motor now he would choose an EJ block because of the improved foundry techniques that had developed between 1948 and 1962.

He also has some views on the Scottish crankshafts...

Some people did stroke their grey motors using a Vauxhall crank that almost fitted in. "I think they had to offset bore two of the cylinders to make it work," he told me. These cranks did have slightly bigger main bearings and so required modifications to the block to make them fit.

"I believe there were two different cranks that were supplied in the Vauxhalls," he said, "and one of those was said to have been forged in Scotland."

This, of course, is a long way from any idea of a production Holden crank having been made in Scotland... very close to another myth busted!

#50 BMH Comic

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 15:35

A further nail in the coffins...

Terry Bebbington is named by Don Loffler as one of the people who contributed to the debunking of the myth in his book. Terry is a man of great experience with Holdens and Holden engines, his father having been a mechanic before him.

Terry was involved in drag racing and had engines balanced by Graham Waggott at Ken Waggott's shop on Canterbury Road. When he started hearing the stories about 'Canadian blocks' he systematically asked all he knew what they knew about them.

And he got consistent replies from them all:

"The blocks before engine number 37832 generally had thicker cylinder walls, but boring them out to over three and a quarter was still a matter of luck."

They all referred to irregularity in the placement of the cores in casting, the fact that a great many engines were bored off-centre to the location of the cast iron that made up the cylinder walls.

His point was that the consistency of this response, and he talked to engine builders and machinists all over the place, showed that there were no special blocks at all.

Terry is the author of 60 Years of Holden and other books in that series and he says that if he needed to build a big-bore grey motor now he would choose an EJ block because of the improved foundry techniques that had developed between 1948 and 1962.

He also has some views on the Scottish crankshafts...

Some people did stroke their grey motors using a Vauxhall crank that almost fitted in. "I think they had to offset bore two of the cylinders to make it work," he told me. These cranks did have slightly bigger main bearings and so required modifications to the block to make them fit.

"I believe there were two different cranks that were supplied in the Vauxhalls," he said, "and one of those was said to have been forged in Scotland."

This, of course, is a long way from any idea of a production Holden crank having been made in Scotland... very close to another myth busted!



Myth!

Firstly with regard to the FX-FJ model designations.

FA through FH had been used up already with 1930's Chevrolet production, ie. FC is 1936 Chevrolet Standard model designation for example, FJ was the next unallocated group and it was correct for the 1955 production as I believe. FI was never used to avoid confusion with F1. So Holden decided on the year capacity designation for its first run. Retrospectively someone went back and found a designation that did not get confused with others in the parts system and probably picked on the biggest failing of the car and thats the weak X member, the new cross member went into late FX models though. 3 types used in production. Early rounded one, round one with reinforcement and the square section one.

All correct about the blocks, EJ block is much more robust and has better casting, cylinder head after about FC is a better proposition and there are several differences in both components notwithstanding that they had better casting practices. Oiling for the distributer drive is a whole lot better in EJ block and I think earlier FB block too. Try opening out the ports on an early cylinder head to incline the ports and they turn very ugly. Just have to look out the window and have a look at my donations to the GOD of speed to answer that. Water jackets are quite different in both block and cylinder head. You can near on take the hump out of the EJ intake port.

I never quite get the 3 1/4" argument either, I was always led to believe that most Grey motors in competition were supposed to be under 150 cubic inch? Too young to know myself! So 3 1/4" or a stroked crank must have been off limits to most? In my humble opinion the square engine is better, doesn’t boil, isn’t prone to cylinder failure and pistons easier to come by? You still get to 11-1 and much more in a grey and the HP goes backwards from my experience?

Then again what would I know? I’m only a boy compared with many.