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New project

Posted by Rolly 
New project
May 04, 2017 04:09PM
Bryan steam tractor

About 15 years ago some of the SACA-NE members got hold of all that could be found at the Bryan factory of the tractor drawings. I had the job of sorting out the engine and boiler drawings from all the rest of the tractor drawings. Many revision to most of the parts.
Among the drawing was this small uniflow engine design to replace the long drive shaft and gearbox that drove the condenser fan and fuel and water pumps.

Among all the tractors out there on you-tube or of the ones I’ve seen in person have I not seen one with this auxiliary engine.

Over the years I have through of building it just to see how it runs. I find myself building more models now and as this engine is very small I have decided to build it. It’s not a model but a full size engine as designed. I can build it from off the shelf stock with out castings.

So far I have built the crank and have started the connecting rods.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/04/2017 04:14PM by Rolly.

Re: New project
May 05, 2017 08:28AM
Nice work, Rolly. It looks like you're off to a good start on an interesting project.

Re: New project
May 08, 2017 01:38PM
Bryan steam tractor

Today I finished the connecting rods there made from a bar of 954 Al Bronze bearing bar stock.

Re: New project
May 08, 2017 02:43PM
Re: New project
May 09, 2017 01:08PM
Thanks guys
Today I ordered from McMaster Carr a block of cast iron for the cylinder block
2-1/2 X 4 X 12 inches long.

Re: New project
May 10, 2017 09:49AM
Rolly, It's looking good.

Does that have bearing lined semicircle supports under the two inner crank discs? Something to support the downward force. Could be bolted in to the crankcase before the cover goes on. Could go all the way around the disc machining the other half in the upper portion of the crankcase where the camball resides.

Re: New project
May 10, 2017 03:20PM
Machining the cam grooves on the crank webs looks tricky Rolly - how did you do it?
The Bryant in the Youtube clip used to live near me but I never saw it run.

Re: New project
May 11, 2017 09:18AM
I machined the cams and grooves using my rotary table on the mill, with the horizontal arbor. My Mill is a universal machine. I set the depth and went into the cam moving the table and then rotated the cam and at the right angle moved the table back out again.
Yesterday I was drawing the machining drawing for the base holding the crankshaft and I decided I should add some thrust bearings on each end of the crankshaft. I had in stock some 932 bronze bearing stock I use for Stanley cylinder head packing glands. Not having much room I made them 1/32 thick.
The other thing I did, I had the Collet Chuck on the lathe so I cut the labyrinth groves in the ground 316 SS dowel pins. I had never used these before so I referred to my books for machining details. In K.N.Harris model Engineering book, he states they should be 1/32 wide and 0.010 deep. The pins will still have to be trimmed to length. I may have to change these out to real hard pins if them start to peen over. I thought about 440C SS pins but I’ve had 440C rust, will see.

Re: New project
May 13, 2017 09:11AM
Yesterday I received from UPS my 40 LB block of cast iron.


Re: New project
May 18, 2017 09:17AM
I finished the oil pan section of the engine except for some finishing touches and a drain plug and have started the cylinder block.
Also the exhaust manifold.

Re: New project
May 18, 2017 10:37AM
Absolutely beautiful work on something that may never have been built but an idea of Mr. Bryan and company. There are severa things that make it very unique; the round crankwebs b eing the valve guides and the free floating ball valves allowinga great deal of erosiion surface for what was probably a low self regulating low RPM engine to drive pumps and fan. The half inch mainshafts machined solid with the end webs secured a high torque value The shaft stress beeing 5.1 T/d3 could have at low speed handled a lot of torque being about 20'# at only 10.000psi torsional stress.
Look forward to its completion!
Re: New project
May 20, 2017 02:49PM
Rolly - you certainly don't waste any time - great progress - much better than golf!!!

Re: New project
May 20, 2017 04:26PM
Thanks Mike
I hope your well on the other side of the pond. What are you up to these days?
Re: New project
May 23, 2017 05:27PM
The cylinder block is bored for the pistons and valve rods. Today I’ve been honing the piston bores so there all the same. I’m not use to working with a blind hole. There now 0.7532
Today I received the bronze stock for the pistons.
I still have to remove 5/8 from most of each side of the block. Also it looks like I have to remove some stock on each of the piston rods on the outer edges of the bearing ends.

Re: New project
May 30, 2017 09:09AM
This past week I got a lot of metal chopped off. From 40 Lb I’m now down to 9.6 Lb.
I still have to make the pistons and modify the connecting rods. I may even have to remove some metal at the bottom of the piston bores for clearance as the rods rotate. I have to go back in the bores and clean up the area of the exhaust ports.
I made a drain plug and a combination fill vent plug.


Re: New project
May 30, 2017 10:14AM
Just fancy!
Re: New project
May 30, 2017 03:14PM
Rolly, Very interesting visual of your steam engine. If I had seen one of these laying in a junk yard, I wouldn't have easily identified it as a steam engine. I wonder how many people in the past have made that same mistake and passed on one? Nice work you do. smiling smiley
Re: New project
June 01, 2017 09:09AM
Yesterday I finished the pistons and fitting them to the connecting rods.
There a nice suction fit in the cylinder bores.

Next is to mill the ball seats for the valves and cut the valve rods to length.


Re: New project
June 05, 2017 09:17AM
This past weekend I started on the valve seats. I realized I had a problem. I had drilled the holes for the valve head screws two close together to use the balls I wanted to use. I could have used smaller balls; I have ¼, 5/16, 3/8 and 7/16 balls. But the original engine drawings showed two 1/16 holes from the valve seat into the cylinder bores. I wanted to use the 7/16 size balls. This closest matched the original drawing. There were no dimensions on the drawing I had only the literature stating the cylinder bore and stroke as being ¾ with a one-inch stroke. I had scanned the drawing into Auto Cad and scaled it to get the piston bore to ¾ of an inch, this lets me pick up the other dimensions as close as I could. Attached you can see the 7/16 ball is closest to the size I should use.
I plugged the existing holes and made a new valve head with new screw holes and machined the valve seats for the 7/16 size balls. I went a little deeper to 0.1100 not much valve seat after drilling two 1/16 holes for steam ports.
I then cut the valve push rods to length leaving 3 to 4 thousandths clearance.
The engine is now finished except for paint. A nice five-week project.

Sunday decided I’d steam up the Stanley to around 125 lb and try running the little engine off a saturated line I had available.
After it got hot and pushed out most of the oil it started and ran like and outboard motor. After about ten minutes it just stopped and would not turn over. I disconnected it from the car and went for a ride. When the engine cooled down I took it apart and found I had forgotten to pin one of the rod joints on the pressed crank, must be age related, I set the crank back in the lathe and realigned it and pinned the joint. If I had been back in my old shop I would have tig welded the ends. It’ now ready to run again.
The small two 1/16 holes for the steam kind of self regulate the speed. Although as tight as the engine is I was very surprised at the amount of water that bypassed the pistons and valve rods. It filled the crank base and pushed out the oil very fast. Once it was hot and started to run it ran very well.

I am going to try and do a video on it running.


Re: New project
June 05, 2017 10:23AM
What a nice little auxiliary engine and you've done a superb job on it.


Yes, anxious to see a video.
Re: New project
June 06, 2017 03:16PM
Nice!!! Rolly, would You tell how You machined spheric valves seats? How You got them tight? Are You planing investigate performance of this beauteful little steam engine to get some numbers? Oh, so much questions, sorry.
Re: New project
June 06, 2017 04:24PM
To machine the ball seats I bought a new four flute carbide ball mill. I think it was around $45.00 plus shipping cost. I then sacrificed one 440 C ball by rapping it in each hole.
So far I am not impressed with the blow by, the pistons and valve rods are very tight, so much so with the head off if I pull the piston out the vacuum will push the valve rods right out.
My next test I am going to try and warm the engine up first. It really sounded good for the short time it was running.
A friend of mine that bought my 35 foot steam boat is repowering it with a three cylinder Diter uniflow
I am waiting to see how it performs as the prime mover.
Re: New project
June 06, 2017 04:58PM

You probably know this and if those are standard ball bearings. Take one of those 7/16" balls and grind a flat on one side, then drill and ream a hole .2495" in the center of the ball. The balls are only case hardened. Insert a piece of 1/4" rod as a mandrel. Then put some lapping compound on the ball and lap the spherical seats with a drill running very slow.

In other words, you need to grind the valves smiling smiley


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/06/2017 05:00PM by IronChief.
Re: New project
June 07, 2017 10:05AM
I have a whole set of them all made up, from 1/16 to ½ I use them mostly for putting the fillets on my patterns.
On check valves I like to use a 90 degree seat. But this engine is a bit different. The only lapping compound I have is puma’s and some diamond lapping compound. When I moved to Florida I got rid of a lot of stuff.

Re: New project
June 10, 2017 12:06AM
I have become a fan of auxiliary engines.
The last car I built had a Salsbury variable speed drive to keep the auxiliaries going as much a constant speed as possible. One also went on Jim Crank's LSR car for the same reason. But an aux engine would both be more stable and would start up by itself when pressure was coming up and would then get everything cooking along without having to wait and rock back an forth.
Some others were found on some of Allen Staley's designs, on the Charles French design for IHC, his design for Coats, on the Endurance and on the Yuba tractor (but IC engine there).
I would be delighted to see how it loads up!

Karl Petersen
Re: New project
June 10, 2017 07:58AM
Upcoming Bulletins continuing the current "French & Associates" article will give some more information about the auxiliary engines and their attached systems as used in both the French-Coats and Endurance cars.

The use of an independantly driven auxiliary package (doctor engine to old paddle wheel steam boat fans) is certainly a "game changer". If we were to build a car today, I wonder if a radial inflow turbine such as that used on turbochargers wouldn't be the way to go. This could be driven from main engine exhaust steam and, therefore, provide a degree of compounding without all the mechanical complications of a pure compound. The main engine might even get by with a somewhat lower expansion ratio, simplifying operation a bit. When the main is not running, you could still tap some steam off the boiler, via a reducing valve, to keep the turbine in operation. I suspect the easiest way to manage all this would be to replace the aux. engine in other designs with a modern electric motor while connecting the turbine to an alternator to keep the battery topped off. This would give you simple electric start of the entire steam system and eliminate any kind of need to clutch between an electric starting motor and the auxiliary.
Re: New project
June 11, 2017 02:23AM
Нi Rolly.

Is lubrication of valve push rods and pistons of this engine goes from steam line? Looking at the cam opening angles it is not seem that selfstarting is of totally full proof. How do You found it?

Re: New project
June 11, 2017 11:59AM
YouTube video of Rolly's engine!

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/14/2017 08:11PM by frustrated.
Re: New project
June 12, 2017 09:14AM
Hi Serge
I would inject oil in the steam line if it were to be used but there is space for oil in the crank pan.
So far it has not self-started. I only have run it on saturated steam and it has been very wet. You can tell by the video Ken posted for me it is running a lot smoother and faster toward the end when the steam line and engine get hot. This engine does not impress me.

Thanks Ken for posting the video.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/12/2017 09:16AM by Rolly.
Re: New project
June 12, 2017 10:42AM
Quote: "This engine does not impress me."

Rolly, I'm impressed with your effort. You gave it a stellar try and we all learned from it.

Thanks, Ron
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Bryan Aux Engine.JPG 96.8 KB open | download Rolly 05/04/2017 Read message
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