"Do a Google search, there is alot of information on the Ford 3.8
all their variations."
Little compared to the 5.0 V8 and other "desireable" (to hot rodders)
engines. Many 3.8s get scrapped even in good running shape. Homebuilt
airplanes are the purpose I am interested in, but I suppose they would
be good for other things too.
What I wanted to know, are the supercharged engines common and do they
turn up in wrecking yards still?
I imagine they turn up at the wreckers.... with a cast iron block and higher
rpm, I can't see them being of interest to anyone with aviation in mind. Add
the weight of the cooling system and the absolute lack of inverted fuel and
oil systems.... I'm not saying it can't be done but there comes a time when
we need to ask "why would I try...?".
Dave Blanton of Javelin Aircraft in Augusta, KS sold plans, reduction
drives and accessories to put the 3.8 V6 in experimentla aircraft for
nearly a decade. Quite a few flew.
Most aircraft engines including ALL turbojet and turboprop engines do
NOT have continuous full inverted operating capability. Only one or two
specially certificated Lycomings and some specifically modified other
Lycs, Continentals, radials, and European inlines-used in competition
and airshow aerobatic aircraft-have this capability. Neither the
Thunderbirds, Blue Angels, Snowbirds, Red Arrows or any other military
jet team have seen it necessary to install full inverted systems. Ten
to thirty seconds inverted is their limit.
Normally-inverted Rangers are sometimes modified to run upright and
the Wittman Tailwind used a 215 Olds aluminum V8 turned upside down.
They don't count, they then need to stay that way.
No one except makers of overpriced yuppie junk, Harley Davidson and
Lycoming, build air cooled engines anymore.
I actually wasn't interested in the blower per se, I thought it would
have a beefed crank and lower end and be good to run normally aspirated
Man... what is this??? Pick on Harley riders week??? (Another thread in
Please don't confuse me with those white collar, two hours to put on the
biker dud wannabes.... If you wish to express scorn, please direct it at
white collar poseurs rather than fat old guys that ride for the ride rather
than for the "image".
As far as the engine is concerned... I would think that the power to weight
ratio would be one of the first considerations. I would also think that the
rpm where peak torque occurs would be a major consideration.... I might be a
high school dropout but I can understand what happens when a prop tip
approaches the speed of sound.
The roots type blower helps the bottom end on these motors, even though I
recall boost being limited to about 7 psi (easily changed, I imagine with
pulley selection and wastegate mods) but they are designed as a relatively
(for aviation purposes, I think) high rpm ramge as far as power production
I can't speak for the Olds engine... Introduced in the 60s, it didn't work
well for Oldsmobile.... AFAIK, the rights were sold to the Rover car company
in England and it didn't work well there, either....Naturally, in an
airplane the motor will get treated quite differently from a car engine....
this will probably have a great impact on the reliability aspect.
I'm sure that we can agree that you need a light motor capable of producing
lot's of torque at low rpm... hmmm, maybe that Harley ain't so bad after
all. You might check out S&S or RevTech motors.... Vee twin, lightweight
aircooled motors... Dry sump systems and, AFAIK, fairly low rpm ranges for
peak torque production. Not sure of numbers bu these motors can be had in
displacements well over 100 CI.
The H-D engines are also used in aircraft, although not as many. I
have more respect for H-D than for the cheesy Japanese imitation
Harleys, but still you have to admit the price is arbitrarily high. The
old motorcycle that's _really_ well engineered is the Vincent, but
that's another story.
Do a search for "Hog Air". He is flying a current production H-D
engine. A FWF kit is like $8K, wihich is outrageous IMO, but, "he's got
it you want it".....
Jim, over 600 3.8 Fords either flying today or have flown - none
inverted that I know of.
As for 3.8 SCs being common?? No. Quite rare in fact, at least here in
Ontario Canada. Thunderbird SC was, I believe, the only application.
May have seen a Cougar XR app as well. I've seen 2 in scrap yards up
here - both with engines blown and over 300,00KM on the clock.
Most Javelin Fords went in non-aerobatic types but Dave's son David
Lee had his ownn "Sport Trainer" aircraft which was aerobatic. No one
went to the trouble of full inverted systems though that I know of.
Thanks for the info... when I was much younger, airplanes were my consuming
interest... that was before girls and recreational pharmacology happened.
All the same, I still think that these engines would be heavy and operate at
a restrictive rpm range.... But, I'm not a plane builder. I'm not sure of
what studies have been done regarding powerplant selection.... it just sems
odd that, in this day and age, someone would bolt a lump of cast iron on the
front of a plane...
But.... that's just me....
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