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ENGINE RESTORATIONS

ENGINE RESTORATIONS

 

The Aero Telemetry team has worked on several engine restoration projects.  Each one of these historically significant engines presented their own unique technical challenges during restoration. Extreme care was taken at every step of the process to ensure that these incredible engines would provide fully operational examples of some of the best piston engines ever built.

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WRIGHT R-3350 ENGINE

 

Two-stage supercharger...fuel injected...turbocharged. No doubt one of the most powerful radial engines ever produced, the Turbo-Compound R-3350-93 built by the Wright Aeronautical Division produces over 3500 HP.  This particular engine came from a Lockheed L-1649 Super Constellation owned by Howard Hughes and TWA.

 

Everyone on the Aero Telemetry team was excited to work on this model R-3350 engine due to the fact that it was one of the last serial number engines to come off the Wright Aeronautical engine assembly line.  This engine represents the highest level of development of the radial piston engine before the switch to gas turbines for both military and commercial aerospace applications.

 

The Aero Telemetry team was able to bring to life this incredible and historically significant engine that had been sitting silent for almost 50 years.

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PRATT & WHITNEY R-4360

 

Another amazing radial piston engine restored by the Aero Telemetry team is the Pratt & Whitney R-4360-59B. This engine also represents the highest level of development of the piston engine by the Pratt & Whitney company prior to retiring their radial engine legacy for jet turbines. The R-4360 is one of the largest radial engines ever produced and has an incredible 28 cylinders to keep a four-blade, 17 foot diameter propeller turning at 2375 RPM.

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BRISTOL CENTAURUS

 

Another historically significant engine from the Bristol-Siddely Ltd from Great Britain, the vaunted Bristol Centaurus. This 18 cylinder engine features sleeve valves instead of overhead valves, a two-stage supercharger, and mechanical fuel injection. Capable of producing nearly 2700 HP the Centaurus engine was used in World War Two British Fighters and later in post war commercial propeller driven airliners.

 

Manufactured in the late 1950's this engine represents the high-water mark for the British radial engine development prior to the switch to gas turbines. The Aero Telemetry team took on the challenge of working on this incredibly complex and amazing English engine restoration. Complicating the restoration was the location of specific tools required to work on the engine due to the differences in tooling from US to British Standard Whitworth hardware.

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ALLISON V-1710

 

Joe Bok and his team took great pride in restoring this Allison V-1710-27 engine. This engine traces its history back to a starboard engine mount on a Lockheed P-38 Lightning during 1943. Previously removed from a P-38 during the war and shipped back to the United States for overhaul on December 31st, 1943. An incredible piece of American history that has survived the years to be brought back to life once again.

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ALLISON PT BOAT ENGINE

 

Here is a picture of our Allison V1710 Marine engines from a PT BOAT with the Factory Allison Transmission assembly and Factory water cooled exhaust.

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LAWRANCE RADIAL

 

The Lawrance L-5, 5-cylinder radial engine. A very rare and relatively unknown radial engine developed by Charles Lawrance, whose company Lawrance Aero Engines Ltd. was purchased by Wright Aeronautical in 1923. Lawrance then went on to develop the extremely successful Wright Whirlwind  for which was used by Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart on their record setting long distance flights.

 

This specific engine is unique in that it was designed to operate mounted vertical as a auxiliary power unit on airplanes designed to operate from remote locations or over the ocean. A  Martin PBM Mariner used during World War Two may have used this engine to provide enough 28VDC power to start one of the main engines while at some remote South Pacific island. Incredibly compact and smooth running, the L-5 produces about 35 HP.

 

After the War, airplane enthusiasts obtained a few L-5 engines as surplus and attempted to convert them for use on small ultralight airplanes. There were several issues that made the conversion problematic. The oiling system and sump were setup for vertical operation and there was no provision for mounting and driving a propeller (as in thrust bearings or splined prop shaft).

 

These issues added some complexity to the rebuild, however using a pusher type propeller in an "airplane-style" mount and some modification to the oiling system allowed the Aero Telemetry team to complete this rare radial restoration in less than a month...it is most likely the only reliable running example in the world.

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CONTINENTAL

R-670

 

The Continental R-670 or W-670 was one of the most successful radial engines ever built. Over 40,000 of these engines were built before and during World War 2. They  powered everything from  US Air Force Stearman Biplane trainers, to US Army Stuart tanks, and US Navy LVT Landing Craft. A truly versatile  engine that produces about 250 HP, it was a very reliable engine in the airplane application. Cooling problems and the fact that it runs on gasoline (vs diesel) fuel made it somewhat dangerous in the tank and landing craft applications.

 

The Aero Telemetry team is midway through the rebuild process on this Continental
R-670 engine restoration.

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