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The developement of Rolls-Royce B Range engines


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This bit is particularly interesting: "The reliability at this final power was always being improved because of the military parallel development, mostly on the straight eight engine which had also been bored out to 3.750 inches. This engine was known as the B81 and one particular requirement was a continuous run at maximum power of 168 hours. No stop of any kind could be tolerated in spite of fuel containing 3.6 cc lead per gallon. Brightray exhaust valves and inserted exhaust valve seats were required in addition to considerable development of the pistons before a week's continuous running could be achieved. On lead-free fuel the same combination of pieces would run for 700 hours, this, regrettably, being only of academic interest."



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This bit must have had RR engineers weeping into their tea cups, it must have cost them a fortune chasing an engine fault that didn't exist, human error, human incompetence, or spiteful sabotage?


Until every improvement was included success was not achieved and only later was it discovered that at Aachen a restriction in the test bed coolant system had halved the flow and that the engine thermostat had been removed, thereby throwing to the winds a valuable 5 lb/in2 pressure with its higher boiling point.


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