Letters & Miscellanies

Notes and Responses From Readers


| October/November 2002



Crown engine

Crown Motor Works Update

For those of you who missed it, in our last issue Doug Nash wrote to report the finding of a Crown engine. Doug wrote an article on the history of Crown Motor Works (see GEM, April 2002).

Doug tried to get a photo to us last issue, but wasn't able to get it off to us in time. This issue, however, we have a photo, and it's of the HP Crown engine belonging to Chuck Werntz of St. Peters, Mo.

As the photos show, Chuck's engine is nearly identical to a HP engine shown in surviving Crown Motor Works literature. With the discovery of Chuck's engine, a total of three Crown engines are now known to have survived.

Shimming Bearings

I appreciated the recent thread on shimming gas engine bearings (see GEM, July 2002,) and would like to add my two cents.

Some of the old-time California engine builders used a thick card stock for main bearings. I know this because I was fortunate enough to find a 5 HP Samson in like-new condition. The main bearing caps had never been disturbed, and when I removed them I found the shims had been coated with white lead. When the white lead hardens it bonds itself to the shims, bearing caps and frame, creating rigidity in the bearing assembly.

You can use lock washers on main bearing bolts, but only if the bolts are torqued tight. If the bolts only partially crush the lock washers the bearing cap will 'walk' and the crankshaft journals will eventually wear out of round.