FOOD FOR CRITICAL THOUGHT IS ALL AROUND US.
A look at a newer engine from China now on the assembly line.
I have been getting calls from a certain off girder who has become obsessed with the idea of fitting a large flywheel to a small gas engine and optimizing it for about 250-500 watts of slower speed output. Is he right to consider this machine? Maybe we discuss the merits here?
As much as slow speeders might be attracted to the idea, should we willy-nilly make one before we make use of paper and pencil, and apply a little critical thought, maybe explore what has been common knowledge since Diesel’s engine first?
Isn’t this everyone’s goal? To get more work done for less expense? We don’t all have 300 days a year of sunshine, hydro, magic beans, nor do we all believe that the present politician will save us all.. if only we vote to take from the guy who has a dollar more and share with us. Of course fools will always vote for such a thing, and soon they find they are among the rich guys according to the measure. Should anyone have a house before all have an apartment? Remember, they say..you didn’t build it yourself.. no matter what you built, no matter how modest, or how meek you might be.
That idea of adding mass to the flywheel in order to make more efficient use of the energy. Is that the way the world is going, and why not? There is a documented case of an off grider using a small stock honda OHV horizontal shaft engine for 10,000 real hours of off grid battery charging, yes, he did use an inefficient alternator designed for an auto, but most of us with real experience know that 10,000 hours of running is a LOT of service, about three times what the majority of commercial users demand of a small engine.
But the idea of adding a flywheel to this design and running slower? Consider the stock crank pin, and that short stroke, the piston speed all too slow, and this gases burning and unable to push the piston forward at a reasonable speed, the gases attempting to cut their way through the ring gap, and the load applied to the ring lands, and what about the load on the pin, and the crank pin bush itself? Yes, it does seem that slow speed engine have long strokes, and for good reason I think.
We also need consider how popular those new inverter generators are. I remember this catching Professor Vijay Modi’s attention long ago, (Engineering Department Columbia) the idea of running variable speed, and producing the power required, same as large grids do, we meet the demand, and we might find a use for super caps or batteries in our scheme to produce a dead silent power, or a way of utilizing other forms of energy into our system.. like PV or micro hydro.
I favor a power plant that can handle multiple inputs, and I see no reason we can’t design a simple interface and switch out or divert that source to perform other work when it overwhelms our storage bank.. Some systems do that today..
Let’s look at China as an example, they are no wiser than anyone else, they make tons of mistakes, and those who are in office live in fear every day of failing the people and being moved out of office. They rely on millions of small engines to pump water, grind grain, power fishing boats and more. Part of critical thought is to ask.. what are they doing in the small engine industry for domestic consumption? Are they gearing up to make a move to lighter and higher speed engines, or do they build them only for the rest of the world?
A key may be seen in the engine that Lee took on the factory floor in China yesterday,and maybe I remind you that Lee is a DIYer first, and he’s spending time with David this week…. they are attempting to find the golden nuggets for themselves and other DIYers.
Do look at that flywheel, and how it’s been adapted for the domestic drive system. Yes, that’s a popular Asian Standard,and it’s there only because it will be deployed into the Asian market. I think there’s a good chance these engines WILL replace the old and expensive to move cast iron engines. We need recognize that the weight advantage will save a great deal of fuel over the lifetime of the engine in a two-wheel tractor, or small cart used to take produce or similar out of the field towards the collection or distribution point.
As you might know, Lee and David have earned my trust, they believe in delivering the highest quality they can find. They know there’s all kinds of junk to be had, and this reminds me.. more news from Noel Douglas and the ultimate off grid sight.. an Island Paradise. Noel imported some 1115s and found they ran for 1000 hours before they came apart. Yes, he bought the version designed to sell, not to go the long run. We Western minds seem unable to comprehend that not all engines are created equal.. Yes, I’ll tell that story, and maybe you subscribe here so you don’t miss it..
Thank you for the pictures Lee, I will share more.. I wish I could be with you and David this week. Readers, do note, this engine is on the assembly line, that means the engine IS being built in quantity.
One thing we can expect, this water cooled twin solves some problems for the ‘Cult Like Diesel Motorcycle movement, they will experiment with it soon as they get their hands on it! If you haven’t done a few google searches, you’re missing some good entertainment and perhaps a learning experience. The past air cooled models need the fan, taking it off looks cool, but the fins are not adequate and over heating happens in a hurry. NO we need to see if this engine was designed with the care the Japanese generally apply, and if the quality of parts, and assembly is generally acceptable as well.
Oh… and a reward for those who read this last line.. this little engine IS EPA certified..