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Tony, I like your suggestion of stove string.  My brother, who owns two examples of the marque, let me have some spare exhaust gaskets. The hole is just too big (but would probably do) so I may take up the gap with stove string or paste.

There is no timing mark visible when the engine is assembled so I took the oportunity of marking the front face of the fly wheel while I had the chance.

For the bigger gaskets, Mike Smith kindly sent me some copper gaskets that will do the job.

This week's exercise is to find a metal spinner to help in the making of the new fan. Pictures to follow.


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The perils of typing while trying not to disturb others watching television are that you can miss words out.

When I said that my brother owned two examples of the marque, I should have added "Autovia".

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I have now solved the problem of the gaskets for the core plugs at the top of the cylinders.  I went to Newcomb's, a well known motor bike shop in Chelmsford, and they supplied me with asbestos based gaskets, which fir beautifully.

In the course of conversation they told me that they used to make motor bikes, were still in the family and the oldest one they could show me in a picture was dated 1903.  So I know of two motor industry concerns in Chelmsford, them and Clarkson's who made steam busses.

Coreplug gaskets.jpg

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Those seals are a good find Alastair. It’s the best feeling when a search for an obscure part results in the discovery of dedicated and helpful people, and Newcombe’s sounds exactly that. One thought, if the plugs hold the spark plugs would the thickness of the new seals affect the reach of the spark plugs? Or is there enough turbulence in a combustion chamber of that era to render that degree of accuracy pointless?

I’ve managed to mix and lay about 5 tons of floor this week and inhaled enough lime dust to kill any virus around. I wish I had my Kegresse running to haul stuff around. But seeing the bits you are making reminded me of someone who inspires any rebuild project, and there’s a metal spinning lathe,


Power to your elbow

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Actually the seals are for the four core plugs at the tops pf the bores and are 25mm I/D.  These core plugs sit in the water jacket and each one provides a fixing to hold the top water manifold down.  The other seals (that Mike Smith kindly supplied) are for the caps over the side valves.  They are 66mm I/D and the spark plugs are in the centres of these caps.

I am very impressed with your concrete mixing efforts.  I have never mixed 5 tons of anything but maybe some of my colleagues in the defence electronics business may have said that some of my work reminded them of 5 tons of something.

I am a bit overawed by the link you gave.  the standard of the workmanship is awesome.  Mine will never be up to that standard so do not look too closely.

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Aha, that explains the threaded tube inserts. I thought they might be dummy spark plugs or something to protect or prevent stuff falling into the head. And, of course, why they are called core plugs, which I only know as tap in blanks. Each little job completed progresses the final project, I’m looking forward to your post of the engine’s first run up. I suspect Mr Malenik would enjoy what people on this site do in their home workshops, have a look at the Czech bikes he built from photos.

Meanwhile I did only 4 tons of floor this week. After losing my voice last weekend I’m taking lime powder more seriously than ever. And EP 90 doesn’t work as a hand cream. I’ve been learning about side thrust on bearings in track mechanisms and sacrificial balls. Ouch.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Things are going to move slowly on this project for a while as the upholsterer for my 1934 Riley Lynx has given me the hurry up.  The problem is that I am only part way through building the new wooden body frame (the car had nothing rearwards of the front doors) and this is a job that is proving to be almost beyond me.

However, with the kind help of Mike Smith I had the makings of the gaskets for the valve caps.  All I needed to do was solder the four together, turn the inside and outside diameters to the correct values, unsolder them and fit them.  Note to self: do not wear shorts when you sweep the surplus molten solder off with a rag as it inevitably lands on your thighs.

I then decided to clear the bench of the Renault engine so I dug my way through the undergrowth and de-cocooned the chassis.  I dragged it into the garage using various blocks and tackles, into the garage.  I dropped the engine in OK.  I will post a picture when I have removed a ton of tut that is still residing on the chassis.

Work in progress includes making a new fan. On this model it comprised a spun metal band to fit the profile of the flywheel to which are rivetted 24 pressed steel blades.  I have had the band spun and the blades are being laser cut. A year or so later the problem was greater as the fan was cast aluminium.  In both cases the fan suffers greatly unless great care is taken the chock the engine once it is taken out of the chassis.





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  • 2 months later...
On 6/28/2020 at 12:48 AM, Alastair said:

I can not answer your question definitively but I do know that the French calculation of horse power was different to ours.  The capacity of the engine is about 1.68L so would be anything up to 14HP in the UK.

According to "The Renault File"  the 6 wheel 10CV Sahara car of 1923 everything is similar except for the fact that it is 5027cc capacity (100 bore x 160 stroke).  Interestingly it had rack and pinion steering, which must be an early example of that form.  The designation MH is not mentioned but a 20CV version of 1927 was designated the Type OX.

1923 is quite late for Rack and Pinion steering.  The 1905 Rover had Rack and pinion steering. 

The Rover 6 was a small two-seater 6-horsepower car and only the second car model made by the British Rover car company. Announced in January 1905 a 6-horsepower car remained available from Rover until 1912. This new smaller car employed a conventional steel reinforced with fitch plates wooden chassis with half elliptic leaf springs front and rear supporting the car on rigid axles. The forward end of the springs are fixed rigidly to the chassis frame, the rear ends slide within brackets.[1]

The right pedal applies iron-lined external bands on the rear brake drums through levers and horizontal shafts. The left pedal first releases the clutch then when moved further the same pedal to ease the gear change applies the brake on the propeller shaft drum behind the gearbox. Steering is by rack and pinion. 


Edited by lynx42 Rick Cove
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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, as I said previously, other commitments bar me from working on the Renault for the time being.  That said, it sits alongside the Riley I am supposed to be progressing so I have strayed from time to time.

You will have seen in the Peerless thread the splendid work that Andy Pugh did on my exhaust manifold.

The first thing is that I have always been bothered that the back axle ratio is more suited to a commercial vehicle than to a car.  I calculate that the top speed will be 21mph on a ratio of 5.7:1 whereas the cars are more likely to have a ratio of 4:1.  I then came across a factory publication that showed that indeed commercial vehicles had been produced on this chassis.

I also noticed that the toe board support brackets (the only bodywork that survived apart from the bonnet) placed the floor much higher than is the case for the contemporary cars.  This has persuaded me that I should rebuild it as a commercial vehicle and would like to make a WWI ambulance.  Searches on the web show that Renault ambulances were indeed used in WWI (it would be astounding if they were not) and some of them are on light chassis (pneumatic tyres, single wheels at the rear, long overhang at the back.

I will get the Renault Freres club to sanction this but would be interested in any advice as to how one approaches the DVLA when it comes to registering the finished vehicle for road use.

Progress on the rebuild so far has been limited mainly to the steering. This is of the worm and sector type (as opposed to what it says in at least one official Renault publication) and the steering box is in two halves.  I was missing the bearings but they were available off the shelf needing little machining from Simply Bearings.  The bottom half of the box has been used brutally at some stage and the mounting feet on both sides had broken off.  These had been welded on but at the wrong angle.  This gave the column a sporty rake back but misaligned the fixing to the fire wall.  So the next job was to make two new toe board support brackets and a dummy fire wall to determine the correct angle and hence the required packing under the rear feet.

The steering box has only one thrust bearing.  This is above the worm wheel,  Below the worm wheel there is a peg of about 18mm diameter that sits in a plain bearing in the lower half of the steering box.  There is a threaded hole below this that, at the very least needs to be closed but I decided that some sort of thrust bearing was required here as well.  I turned a special bolt 16mm by 1.5mm pitch and then silver soldered a ball bearing in the end.  This bears on the bottom end of the steering column and allows adjustment of the free play.  I would have liked to have used a more effective thrust bearing at this lower end but there was no room.




BK van 1912.pdf

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