Digging back through The Kneeslider, I found the article with the first CAD drawings and patterns for this engine, a turbocharged 14 cylinder, two row, radial engine using the cylinders and heads from a Yamaha XV1700 Warrior. That was 10 years ago. It gives you some indication of the time, effort and perseverance necessary to bring a project like this from idea to running engine while making your way through the world events of the last several years.
One thing Russell makes very clear was the important assistance provided by the design and engineering work of Ian Drysdale. Most of you here are familiar with many of Ian’s projects and when Russell met him in 2007 and Ian saw Russell’s first 9 cylinder radial crankcase with Honda cylinders he was happy to offer his expertise going forward.
Raj Kumarsid (Ians employee) also very enthusiastic about the project, spent many hours CAD drawing the components required for the engine. The Crank (a masterpiece) Rods, Camplates designed by Ian’s imaginative talent. Believe me when I say they were keen to see what happened when I pressed the starter button.
Designing, building and assembling the mechanical parts is difficult enough, but then you have to come up with an ignition system to literally provide the spark and Motec support was the crucial element here and they’ll continue helping as the engine tuning process moves ahead.
I have to say, it makes me feel good to see this engine fire up after all of this time. All too often grand projects falter as years pass and they get pushed to the back of the shop, but this one wasn’t one of those. This one runs and everyone involved deserves a big thumbs up. There’s still much tuning work to be done, but getting it to this point means it’s on the home stretch.
The first video below provides a lot of technical detail, the second is the first startup with lots of smoke and mis-wired injectors, and in the third it runs better and provides a baseline for tuning.