A new nitro engine coming soon (some say I am mad for doing this!)

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Ricky Neal

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Dec 5, 2020
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Hi All

I have been working on a project for a while now and didn't want to say anything until I had more of the fine detail completed and was closer to something that I could present to the community but as we are pretty much now finalised on the CAD drawings I wanted to share what we have.

We are building a new 3.5cc nitro engine to be used in RC boats as well as tethered hydro's and tethered cars. The need for this came from tethered models primarily but to make a venture like this viable I needed to expand the market to RC boats as well. This means there will be variants of this engine available for RC and tethered use with some differences, an obvious difference, for example, would be the tethered variant will have a venturi and the RC version will have a carb but there will be more subtle differences as well.

We are just finalising component productions costs and timelines then we will be able to start testing pre-production engines and I felt that this process would be something that the community would enjoy watching unfold and see the results of our labour.

I am new to this forum but I have been part of the modelling community for a long time and worked in it directly for a number of years as well. In general, I would consider myself a knowledgable person when it came to model engines but when I started to explore the possibilities of producing a new engine, designed completely from the ground up, I realised just how complex and difficult an undertaking like this really is.

I'm not too proud to admit that to make something like this competitive and even partially viable I needed to enlist some help. For this help, I turned to what many would consider being the best in absolute performance model engines, Profi engines.

Many probably do not know who Profi engines are but they are a Ukraine based model engine manufacturer, They mainly make engines for the extreme speed models like F2A (Control line speed) or F3D (Pylon racing) - Their F2A 2.5cc engines has some very interesting innovations, like doing away with the inner race of the main bearing and using the crankshaft as the inner race, this enabled a larger bore crankshaft and a more efficient bearing.

They also produce the Metkemeijer MB40 Pylon race engine, if you know these engines then you know why I am working with Profi on the development of this new 3.5cc engine, if you don't, then I suggest you do some searching on the internet for information, you won't be disappointed.

Here is a picture of our engine to whet some appetites...

Screenshot 2021-01-26 at 17.54.58.png

As I said, this is a ground-up design of a new engine, we have incorporated a Zimmerman disk drive induction as we believe this is the best for overall performance. As we start testing I will share more information, pictures and videos.

Some of my friends accused me of being mad for financing the development and production of a new model engine to what they believe is an ever-shrinking market. The only way I can explain this is that while the overall numbers of nitro users may be shrinking, those that stay or indeed start with nitro models are serious about the hobby and are committed to performance and want to push the hobby forward. I'm the same and really love this hobby.

The issue is, engine manufacturers will focus on the biggest markets to survive, that's why Picco stopped making marine engines and also why there are so few options when it comes to marine nitro engines.

I decided to put my money where my mouth is and this is where I am at. (let's hope I don't lose too much money!)

Hopefully, the community will be as excited about a new engine option as I am to be bringing it to market but I am not naive, I know that we need to make this engine competitive to a be a commercially viable venture.

If we can make a success of this engine we will look at producing more engines for different classes but before we attempt that we need to make this a success first.

Sorry for the essay!

Ricky
 

Ricky Neal

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Dec 5, 2020
Messages
143
Hello Ricky, Will you be able to match the current bolt pattern for the mounting to Nova and CMB motors?
Hi Bradly, yeah. We have stuck to the normal .21 bolt pattern to ensure that is viable for as many people as possible. We have also integrated mounts at the front bearing as well. This is what a lot of the tether guys prefer as it is generally a more rigid mounting solution. If you can incorporate them then its a benefit but if not you can use the normal mounting holes
 

Terry Keeley

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Fantastic! You are very brave to go down this path, may before you have tried and failed.

I think you should re-consider a needle bearing bottom end like the CMB's, it's a fantastic improvement over a bushing. I have many, many gallons through their motors and the wear on the rod bores and cranks pins are negligible, just keep an eye on the needles and when they get a couple tenths worn replace them. Would be fantastic to have that system in a 3.5, especially with the rpm's they turn.

I didn't know Profi made the MB40, very impressive. Here's some video of one doing 225+ mph in the straights:

 
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Bill Gibson

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Mar 7, 2007
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Mr. Neal, this is very exciting news for sure! I wish you nothing but the best of luck, and I will certainly be among those who will have an interest in purchasing your product(or products!) when they are ready for the market........ I still hold very high hope and optimisim that nitro numbers will increase with time and products that are offered for the nitro marine hobby!
 

Ricky Neal

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Dec 5, 2020
Messages
143
Fantastic! You are very brave to go down this path, may before you have tried and failed.

I think you should re-consider a needle bearing bottom end like the CMB's, it's a fantastic improvement over a bushing. I have many, many gallons through their motors and the wear on the rod bores and cranks pins are negligible, just keep an eye on the needles and when they get a couple tenths worn replace them. Would be fantastic to have that system in a 3.5, especially with the rpm's they turn.

I didn't know Profi made the MB40, very impressive. Here's some video of one doing 225+ mph in the straights:



Thanks Terry, now you know why i have been so interested in your dyno project.

re needle roller rod bearings, we did look at it but it proved difficult if not impossible to fit this within a standard .21 bolt pattern. Then there are more issues related to the balance ratio with the rotating assembly. Im not saying it’s impossible but the amount of development required is just too much for our first engine.

As an alternative we are looking at DLC coatings to ensure crank service life as well as reduced friction
 

Wasted wages

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Parts availability
Parts availability
Parts availability

Without the ability to buy parts after the purchase of a motor for several years this will just be another unmitigated failure. Planned obsolescence is not what we are looking for.

The only companies left selling motors are the ones that continue to support their customers with parts for older motors as well as current ones.
 

Ricky Neal

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Joined
Dec 5, 2020
Messages
143
Parts availability
Parts availability
Parts availability

Without the ability to buy parts after the purchase of a motor for several years this will just be another unmitigated failure. Planned obsolescence is not what we are looking for.

The only companies left selling motors are the ones that continue to support their customers with parts for older motors as well as current ones.

I hear you and i agree 100%

There will parts availability from day one and this isn't just a one off run of engines.

I run a successful business completely separate of modelling that has enabled me to properly commit to this and i wouldn't even consider doing something like this without being able to do it properly.

Anyway, with things like this talk is cheap. Give us an opportunity to bring the product to market and we can prove the commitment
 

RaceMechaniX

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Apr 27, 2007
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Producing ones own engine design definitely takes some moxy. As other have mentioned parts availability is king. Are you considering using someone else's piston/sleeve/rod combo so you can focus on the crank/case/induction system?
 

Terry Keeley

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Thanks Terry, now you know why i have been so interested in your dyno project.

re needle roller rod bearings, we did look at it but it proved difficult if not impossible to fit this within a standard .21 bolt pattern. Then there are more issues related to the balance ratio with the rotating assembly. Im not saying it’s impossible but the amount of development required is just too much for our first engine.

As an alternative we are looking at DLC coatings to ensure crank service life as well as reduced friction


We made a 45 size Ti rod years ago with 1 mm rollers on the 6 mm crank pin, would be perfect for today's powerful 21's. This is the same arrangement OPS used on some of their 67/80's back then. You could probably fit these needles around a smaller crank pin as well but would have to do the engineering.

You could use an aluminum rod with a pressed in bushing (like OPS) or better yet make the whole rod steel like CMB.

It would be a huge advantage and great selling point.

I could send you some needles if you'd like to explore that option.


full
 
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Ricky Neal

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Joined
Dec 5, 2020
Messages
143
Producing ones own engine design definitely takes some moxy. As other have mentioned parts availability is king. Are you considering using someone else's piston/sleeve/rod combo so you can focus on the crank/case/induction system?

Its a fresh engine design and we are not using parts from other manufacturers, thats not to say that other manufacturers developments have not influenced the design in some areas though.

Of course, there are no guarantees that i can give that parts supply will be there for the next 10 or 20 years but neither can any model engine manufacturers, any of them could go to the wall in the next year but what I can say is that parts supply has been factored in and will be available from day one.
 

Ricky Neal

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2020
Messages
143
We made a 45 size Ti rod years ago with 1 mm rollers on the 6 mm crank pin, would be perfect for today's powerful 21's. This is the same arrangement OPS used on some of their 67/80's back then. You could probably fit these needles around a smaller crank pin as well but would have to do the engineering.

You could use an aluminum rod with a pressed in bushing (like OPS) or better yet make the whole rod steel like CMB.

It would be a huge advantage and great selling point.

I could send you some needles if you'd like to explore that option.


full

I will definitely look into it in more detail to see if we can make it work but i feel that if we try to implement this in our first engine, we may be biting off more than we can chew.

Other than space limitations there was also an issue with the balance factor. We looked at solving this by having a keyed flywheel with additional counter weights but it added quite a bit more complication and ultimately expense so we moved away from the whole idea pretty quickly.

Once we have a finalised product we are happy with using a conventional con rod I will look into a prototype that we can rigorously test so we can actually measure the benefit.
 

Carl Van Houten

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The timing is good for this venture. If you plan to offer an outboard powerhead the timing numbers will need be slightly lower than engines intended for hydros because most outboards are raced on tunnel boats and tunnelboats have a high degree of wetted surface drag to overcome in the turns. The Nova Rossi had the best out of the box numbers you could ask for and would be worth looking at if your plans include an outboard version of your engine.

Good Luck with your venture!!!
-Carl
 
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