Eventually working my way up to designing and building an inline 4 or v-twin liter engine. I don’t imagine a billet engine would be feasible, but I think casting one is just about possible.
Where do I start? I know the basic components and function of an engine but I know next to nothing about actually designing one. What books on engine design should I read first? I’ve heard that picrel is good.
probably the one in your pic is an excellent starting point.
what are you even asking?
I’m looking for relevant material on how to design and produce an engine at home. Anything from guides to producing high quality casts, to guides about machining, to guides about “engine theory”. Also, practical advice about doing such a project if anyone has experience.
This is how I started, did you previously ask this on here? Because I spent like 15 minutes looking for that book when somebody asked. Honestly just the first couple chapters will put you miles ahead of most hobbyist mechanics.
The PDF can be found free online btw
>I don’t imagine a billet engine would be feasible, but I think casting one is just about possible.
What would you even base this retarded idea on? Especially for a home build? Do you understand what it takes to cast a fucking engine block, or even cylinder heads? No, you don't, because you posted that idiotic, niave as fuck comment.
I get the goal, but stop thinking you know ANYTHING.
And, you'll need some pretty fucking heavy duty machining abilities to machine a cast block, or machine a blllet block.
Go watch Steve Morris on YouTube, he makes custom big blocks for drag racing, and is a master level engine designer. Go look at the kind of stuff he uses to make billet blocks. You'll need all that, for a cast block, too. I won't even touch casting and machining a crank, or cams.
The reality is make a block at home is simply out of the question, unless you win the lottery and have a few million to drop on a small machine shop.
Even casting motorcyle heads at home is pretty much unobtanium.
Where to start? All of it - the theory, the tools, machining, etc. And, understand that it's a rare person who can do all of it, which is why most specialize. And, understand that most of it will be theoretical for you, because of the cost/experience/training involved. Even modifying an existing block is going to be a steep as fuck hill to climb.
Kinda feel like manic bipolar types come here a lot to make these types of threads
>hi DIY how do I build my own air plane
I saw Steve Morris before posting, cool stuff.
Sand casting is the method of choice here. I even saw a company a few years ago that specialized in 3d printing and casting old/unique engine blocks that can’t be sourced otherwise. I think the prices were not too bad either, given the operation at hand. No idea if they’re still in business.
Not bipolar, retard. It’s a herculean task, certainly, but I only ask because it’s been done before.
a good starting point is to buy some aluminum scrap, make or buy a sand casting kit and cast a box with a hole clean through it. thats your homework, make the cast or fuck off.
Why would you need to cast anything? The only reason people cast engines is to shit them out at mass manufacturing scale.
Books on combustion engineering aren't really going to help either, those are for meeting performance goals and other things that are clearly beyond you.
If your goal is just to have a working engine then weld a box out of steel plate, weld some cylinders to it, make a basic crank shaft using bits of pipe and cut up plate and .. you know what I don't even know why I'm trying to explain this to you, you're too retarded to be able to even manage this much.
>It’s a herculean task
It's not a herculean task, rednecks do stupid shit like this all the time.
>but I think casting one is just about possible
either you're a master level DIY or a retard
Post blast furnace and the casting mold you have for this
You can make sterling engines and small scale engines using machine tools, it used to be pretty popular
While I too think its a dumb hobby, dont let other anons tell you its impossible or even hard.
Its just going to be expensive.
I had that ambition too. But everything from ground up is too much ambition.
Making an engine, even a single cylinder model is not easy. I hope you have a lathe/mill and all the measurement tools.
Billet stock is probably the most feasible for a prototyping because you don't have to worry about the stock's quality, in contrast making acceptable casting is not something you can do right on the first try on your own. Casting requires more skill and tools to be acquired and developed, so is the metallurgy and foundry works. And in the end castings still needs to be machined.
I suppose a billet engine would be easier in many ways, but I’m not sure where you’d even be able to buy a block of 6061 aluminum that large.
You have no idea of the magnitude of the task but it is doable given determination, money and many years effort.
Become a machinist. Simultaneously (not hard, they go together and the skills are complementary) become a motorcycle mechanic working on the size and style engines you wish to emulate.
Billets large enough for a head, block and crankcases motorbike style already exist. They're machined into the large billet custom wheels popular today.
Plenty of early motorcyclists built their own engines and those designs didn't need CNC which of course did not exist. You can build a non-unit engine then use it to drive an aftermarket gearbox. Harley six speeds are common and all the parts easy to work with.
Know and understand this will change your life in many good ways, but the reason is the journey not the destination. See Allen Millyard for inspiration. If you're just some helpless teenager who is not utterly determined to become a monster gearhead it ain't happening. If you're an implacably focused adult with a good job (this takes money, poorfags go home) it's doable.
You have enough time to figure out where to buy one just like those machine shops and engine builders.
Your leap should start with model sized engine in fewer cylinder to waste less material and machining times. Even Cosworth starts their new engine concept in single cylinder, then 3 or more. These model tell a lot more before you fully commit to full size and then found out.
The same applies to casting, there is no way you can jump to pouring a whole full size engine block, heavier than yourself, full of crevices before getting ingots and smaller engine cylinder engine.
Cavity are not trivial. Engine block are casted by sand. The cavity are made by patterns, which has to be removed before pouring, and there are geometry requirement like drag for a pattern to be removable, similarly sand cores has to be made for the water passage and cylinders. And you can fail easily by having too much or little moisture/binder in the sand, wrong geometry that leaves void when solidify, and pour awfully to entrap air bubble or other problem with how the liquid metal flow , fills and solidifies. There are so much things can go wrong. Investment/lost wax casting has to deal with wax and ceramics slurry. The easiest would be lost foam.
Die casting? Where do you get a thick piece of die bigger than the engine itself, split into multiple parts to get it out?
There are people making welded engine from thick sheet of steel, again the welder is not green.
>Cavity are not trivial. Engine block are casted by sand.
Perhaps where they shit in streets...
Serious race engines are all billet which avoids the painful limitations of sand casting.
Babby bike billet head:
Billet Donovan drag car block:
Dart billet blocks and heads:
I'm not op and I've said earlier than he should start from billet stocks.
if you need a book youll never be the greatest
just think and develop
So, I'm actually a mechanical development engineer specialized in engine blocks working for a major OEM in the energy industry. This book is a goldmine IF you are developing engines, and most of my colleagues have a copy but pretend to have read it, because its dry af. Don't think you can even try to get anything out of it if you are not actually developing engines or have a burning desire to understand the theory of ICEs. I'm actually reading it right now and it's taken me months of on-off reading and painstaking detail to understand the content AND I deal this this topic for my daily job AND have interest. To make it clear, I'm literally designing/developing new crankcases, which is something you don't do these days anymore so don't expect to get anything out of this book unless you know some background.
For you question, if you really want to get into designing engines or understanding engine design methodology (and you have the sufficient mechanical background) start with "Vehicular Engine Design" from Kevin Hoag and perhaps read the Mahle books "Cylinder components" and Piston and piston testing". If you want to get into casting, and cast your own block, get a good lad and get a job at your local foundary and git gud, because that shit is literally sourcery.
For further references, you can check the following books:
- R. van Basshyuen "Internal combustion engine handbook"
- G. P. Merker "Combustion Engines Development"
- W. W. Pulkrabek "Engineering Fundamentals of ICE"
You might also want to consider getting a M.Sc. in mechanical engineering and learning some FEA/CFD if you are serious about this. If you want to design stuff you want to take some CAD courses and live on GrabCAD until you can do something.
Like others posters have said, you probably have no idea of the magnitude of the task but it's interesting hobby if you have the background and the interest, but don't expect to be able to make anything at all.
>because that shit is literally sourcery.
Castings are just voids held together with bits of metal.
And words are just letters placed together with gaps between them. But most people don't understand them and make a shitty use of them.
Gotcha, thanks for the advice/resources. I’ve thought about going back to school (most likely part time) and getting a degree in mechanical engineering, but honestly I’m on the fence. I wish I had gone into mech e instead of a soience field, but it’s a little late for that.
so not fair why can't i have a job doing this even if i learned they'd never give me the authority unless i did years and dollars of bullshit first i'd even do it for free i just want to solve problems
Check these out, two totaly different approaches to engine making:
Lost foam aluminum sandcast. I have said too much.
Still requires finish machining. OTOH OP can do the CAD work then outsource the machining but this is firmly in the "you will never do it" since those who DO do it don't need to ask basic questions or most advanced questions.
study, in this order:
calculus and trigonometry
thermodynamics (any good textbook will have a chapter devoted to ICEs)
metallurgy and materials science
THEN you can get into engines specifically
Already familiar with all of that from my schooling and work. I need mechanical engineering knowledge and experience, machining knowledge and experience (can’t design an engine that can’t be built), and of course knowledge and experience in engine design.
>Already familiar with all of that from my schooling and work.
I didn't say "be familiar with it", I said STUDY. as in, MASTER it. if you were competent enough in those fields you'd already be designing engines instead of making this thread.
None of those fields tell you how to make an engine, you fucking retard.
>none of those fields tell you how to make an engine
retard confirmed. have fun being a fucking mong who never makes anything.
Go ahead and point out where you get even a basic rundown of how an engine works, much less how to design one, in any of these fields.
You won’t of course, you’ll just come up with some sort of cope, because none of these fields, though they are tangentially related, have anything to do with actually designing an engine.
for the making part, fire up youtube and binge watch all the vids you can find on Pajeets making shit in their tiny shitty shops, especially casting.
Also, you will not cast 200+ lb of iron in a garage, you need a dedicated shop for that.
Stay small and realistic.
Sand casting is old boomer tech. Ceramic shell and pla is where its at
>where do i start
You will never cast a functioning engine block without machining it afterward