How 'bout this effort someone did on a Model T engine.
Brass was fitted to the crankshaft journal caps. The brass was literally screwed in place. Holes drilled thru the caps, and with brass pieces fitted, brass screws were put in the tapped holes.
Now all you can see is the brass heads, as they wore down like the brass inserts did.
Same methods used for the block too, brass inserts screwed in place. May have worked for a while, but lots of wear lines and crankshaft was making some knocks.
I'm surprised over all these years no one came up with a user friendly kit to replace the babbitt on Model T engines.
Ralph Zajicek experimented with bronze bearing caps. The front cap broke, and after it was repaired the crankshaft broke later on. Brass or bronze would certainly not be as forgiving as babbitt.
My Dad at a young age 14(about in 19and46) had split a piece of copper tube and installed it. He put many miles on it with no trouble. Things that you will try when you are young and broke.
looks like lack of oil did more harm than the material it's self did.
I have always wondered if anyone has come ac-cross leather in there? My grandfather was always telling of a shoe tongue getting him home many a time. My dads family lived in Charlotte and grandpal's job was in Charleston at a ship yard. He drove a 30 model A down on sunday evening ,came back home on Saturday morning.My dad as a kid would have the tools and such ready and after eating lunch on Saturday they would pull the head and do a valve job on the engine and take up the rods or whatever.
Cadillac used "brass backs" starting in 1904. In 1909 they then put a thin babbit coating with a pressurized oil system.
Nothing out of the ordinary for the time, steam engines, stationary and early combustion engines as well as pumps often used brass. Tin was just easier to work with and better as RPM's got faster.
Brass car guy:
Cadillac and several others used bronze backed Babbitt lined inserts in both rods and main bearings ...these engines had precision bores in the block and in rods and the inserts were "interchangeable"...most had shims to allow for "take up"...someone did a lot of work to bore the block and caps for the bronze (or brass) inserts ...would have to wonder if the marks on the insert is from galling or if they are tool marks from the boring operation ...I would guess that if the crankshaft looks the same then it is galling ...Dan, what does the crank journals look like ? always an optimist...gene french
I have seen these before. I believe that they were a period "accessory". I am sure that someone will be able to come up with the original advertising. If I remember correctly these also appeared in connecting rods.
I'm very familiar with the early Cadillacs, having owned a 1905 for a number of years. My nephew restored a 1913 Cadillac with the same brass back bearing shells, just a different adjusting system. On the single cylinder motors the reason there were no shims,the main bearing shells were adjustable from the outside of the crankcase. The rod was also adjustable but not from the outside. The rod was hinged and had an adjusting bolt opposite of the hinge pin.
With a bronze or brass back bearing it was imperative that there be sufficient oil not only to lubricate but more important, keep the bearing and shaft cool.
Dan, I wonder how long it took for those inserts to wear that much. Might not have been a bad fix, maybe. Dave
When I was about 10 or so I helped my dad and uncle put part of his belt in as a bearing on a T on the side of I75. He drove it home. My job was to soak it in oil.
The crankshaft was worn with the same lines around it too. Likely the debris in oil got caught and dug into the soft brass and stayed there causing the wear.
The block was fixed with new Babbitt, but the holes drilled into the block to hold those brass inserts had to have machine screws replaced in the tapped holes again, to keep the fresh pour of the Babbitt from running out!
New re-babbitted caps were fitted too.
No telling on the miles, but think rather low since the motor work. The motor was rebuilt as told by the 71 year old owners' dad! Don't know when, but the dad had build a pretty nice C-cab type panel body on the '26 chassis. The new owner son wants to drive the T, as he could not recall his dad ever driving it much.
Oh...the u-joint posted in another thread came out of this T. When pulling the motor, the slop was observed. So the rear end will come out to rebuild too. You can lift the driveshaft and feel the wobble, so the front driveshaft bushing is real bad too. Don't know what the rear end apart will tell either!
This adv. appears to offer pre- made bearings, Babbitt, for the rods. The ad says reamer and fixture to 'remove' old bearing, so maybe it preps the rod to place these as 'inserts'. Perhaps?
One of the desirable properties of early bearing materials such as babbit was how they handled impurities in the oil, inevitable in engines running without any filtration of any kind. To varying degrees, depending on the composition, they have the ability to allow impurities, dirt etc, in the oil to in-bed themselves into the bearing, that is, they are swallowed up by the soft material, where they can do no harm. Not so with brass, as these pics clearly show.
I worked with a machine shop years ago making new crank bearings for a two cylinder 1908 Holsman engine. This had a dry sump with manually set oil drippers and a open crankcase vent to the outside air. After much discussion I decided on lathed bronze bearings rather than Babbitt due to the cost. I spent so much money on this engine having one off gears made, pistons and rings fitted and beatings produced that I could have bought a restored brass era Model T instead. All in all the main bearings worked fine but even with great care to keep everything clean they started to have minor scratches on the surface even after a few hours of running. Sold the engine eventually to a fellow in New York who had a Holsman body in need of this motor. I was glad to get rid of it and the buyer was super glad to find it. This 12.5 hp engine had a 55 pound flywheel and I broke two fingers in 7 places by not having the timing set correctly!
Have never thought of Brass or Bronze, but I have used a piece of leather belt soaked in STP! put 10,000 mi on that motor and told the guy I sold it to that it was in there. Of course these days if I took that much off of my belt I probably could not buckle it again!
Here are some bearings from an Overland Model 91 engine I took apart. They are removable shells, oil hole in the bottom and 2 at the top. It oils similar to a T. The ring gear throws up oil that runs through a strainer (accessible from outside) then flows through passages in the block into the main bearings and the rods just splash.
The following link from "The Ford Garage" discusses insert bearings available for A and B engines. It includes some discussion on bearing properties (tri-metal vs Bi-metal) with a rather cryptic reference to the embedability I referred to above.
Hey Mack, I am surprised that you have missed all the threads on leather in T bearings in the past. I think it was Dean Yoder who used a leather bearing to get home on recently, but can not remember for sure. Bacon rind was another replacement bearing in a local story.
A friend had a 1902 Dyke automobile that I was able to see the innards of. It had a one cylinder horizontal engine. What I found of interest was the oiling system for the connecting rod bearings. There was a slot in the beam of the connecting rod with holes going to the crankshaft and the wrist pin. The oiler dripped into the slot and centrifical force as it ran pushed the oil to the bearing on each end.
I hadn't seen that before and thought it was an interesting arrangement.