1914 Waterman B-2 marine engine

Waterman magic

| September 2009

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    The circa-1914 Waterman B-2 marine engine, which Tom Stranko bought at a longtime friend’s auction, with the repaired exhaust manifold.
    Tom Stranko
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    An image from a 1914 Waterman marine catalog.
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    The CAD blueprint Keith Billet made for the manifold.
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    Tubes from the manifold to the engine stubs were not straight but curved, which Dick cut from a circular turning he made.
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    Tom could clearly see the engine was missing the exhaust manifold when he got the engine home.
    Tom Stranko
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    Another complication to keep in mind is that the core had to be cast in two precise mirrored sections, glued together and the edges trimmed before it could be part of the mold.
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    Dick began by turning the wooden patterns starting with the shape of the outer tube.
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    The patterns had to be made in two parts in order to allow placement into each half of the mold. 
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    The finshed manifold casting.
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    The pattern for the mold.

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The following could be called, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus,” or, better yet, “I Can Now State Unequivocally That There Are Still Magicians!” No, I have not been smoking any illegal substances. Here is the whole story behind my 1914 Waterman B-2 marine engine:

In September 2008, I got a nice color auction flyer telling me that my longtime friend Howard was having the sale I’d been waiting for. All the antique hit-and-miss gas engines and accessories from his wonderful museum were going on the block.

When the day came I did not have to rush down early because I had already scouted everything. I had taken time to look it all over, take many pictures, etc. I did all the tire kicking and hood lifting (or what passes for it on old iron). I was ready. My brain thought there were two possible “apples of my eye” but my heart knew there was only one. It was a Waterman model B-2, copper-jacketed, magneto-sparked, twin-cylinder, 2-cycle inboard marine engine circa 1914. WOW!

I had never seen the B-2 in the flesh. I know that GEM is strictly G rated but there are so many, well, let’s say “earthy” references I could make about how I “lusted” after such a beauty. Now was my chance to possess one of my very own. I just had to be sure my arm stayed up long enough.



Anyway, I won the bid, loaded up my prize and headed home to really look it over and take photos.

Analyzing the Waterman
Now, I knew that some kind of exhaust manifold that connected the two flanged pipe stubs out of the cylinders was missing but, what, me worry?