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Antique Gas Engine Discussion Meet collectors of hit and miss engines, ask questions about collecting, restoring and showing antique flywheel engines.

Antique Gas Engine Discussion

Cushman Model 44


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  #1  
Old 06-12-2019, 11:15:14 AM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Cushman Model 44

I'm looking at buying an old Cushman model 44 engine. It currently runs good and comes with a water and fuel tank. Most of the paint is gone and has surface rust. I'm relatively new to antique engines other than older Briggs, Tecumseh, and Kohler engines. The guy i'm buying it from is asking $400 for it and it also comes with a nice set of buzz coils in a wooden box. Currently the engine is just bolted to a wooden skid. I'd like to do a restoration on it, which mostly looks like it will need some paint and maybe a few other small things here and there. Are these engines hard to find parts for, or anything I should look for or at when buying this?


Thanks for your time and help!
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  #2  
Old 06-13-2019, 01:40:57 PM
Blackbeard Blackbeard is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I know the engine you bought. Leave it sweaty, it will only be original once.
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Old 06-13-2019, 09:32:37 PM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I probably will, however it seems like it could use new piston rings at least. It smokes a fair amount but does run good. Is their anyone who still has parts or makes parts for these engines? Would like to pick up a new set of rings at the very least. I would possibly put new pistons in as well if I could find some.
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Old 06-13-2019, 10:03:27 PM
Mike McKnight Mike McKnight is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I know Starbolt engine supplies has rings for a LOT of different engines, they might be a good place to start looking. (They have a website, google will pull them up quick.) Bill Starkey, the owner, is a great guy to deal with and usually will get the parts you order to you pronto. Can't recommend them enough.

I wouldn't worry about a new piston, even if the ring grooves are worn you can usually turn them out to a standard size and get ring spacers. These old engines are pretty forgiving.

Mike
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:15:56 AM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

Great, thanks for the advice. Do you have any tips for taking the engine apart? Looks like six bolts hold the piston bores to the engine block. They all look easy to get at except the middle one that faces the carburetor, behind the valve lifters. Is there anything special that needs to be done to get to it?
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:36:13 AM
Blackbeard Blackbeard is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkos115 View Post
I probably will, however it seems like it could use new piston rings at least. It smokes a fair amount but does run good. Is their anyone who still has parts or makes parts for these engines? Would like to pick up a new set of rings at the very least. I would possibly put new pistons in as well if I could find some.
Before you jump the gun and tear into a perfectly fine engine please understand these particular engines are very finicky as far as the fuel/air mixture. The slightest adjustment will alter the amount of smoke exiting the exhaust in a big way. I suggest running it often and fiddling with it to find that “sweet spot” before molesting it. I’d hate to see you get overzealous!
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:53:01 AM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I thought it was a mixture issue at first but as I ran it more, I could start to see raw oil coming out of the exhaust. I took the plugs out and looked down at the piston with a bore scope and its got a fair amount of oil sitting on the piston. The walls look good and the compression is awesome, but it seems like the oil rings are bad..
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Old 06-15-2019, 06:07:47 AM
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Thumbs up Re: Cushman Model 44

The rings are probably stuck and could well be in tapered ring grooves. Try using what's there before you buy new parts. Turning the ring grooves square and putting spacers in will most likely fix the problem. As to "oil rings", it probably has just plain iron rings in all grooves, as was the practice.

A sponsor of this site, "Otto", is the piston ring guru, call him up and ask your questions. He won't sell you what you don't need.
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Old 06-15-2019, 11:46:34 AM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

Thank you, I have gotten in contact with him. Do you have any recommendations for water pump kits for these engines? Mine pumps but leaks a little bit out of the left and right sides of it.
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Old 06-15-2019, 02:05:01 PM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I tore the motor down and found that the bore is a bit pitted. Possibly beyond being able to re-ring the pistons.. I'm assuming ill need to have some oversized pistons made for it with matching rings. I have access to a machine shop so boring it over won't be any cost to me, just parts.


I attached some pics of the bores and pistons, the rings all seemed free and pretty clean.
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Old 06-15-2019, 04:25:56 PM
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Joel Mosley Joel Mosley is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

Cushman engines are notorious for smoking and blowing oil out the exhaust. The cause of this is an over full crank case. They do not take much oil to lubricate them . I do not have a manual that indicates the appropriate oil level on the Model 44. Maybe somebody on the site does . Obviously it's your decision whether you do a full rebuild to factory or better specs, but I would start with just cleaning things up and checking the oil level as long as the compression is good. Good luck on your engine.
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Old 06-15-2019, 07:49:30 PM
Ed Bays Ed Bays is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

My thoughts were the same as Joel Mosley's when I first read your post. I have a couple of one cylinders and one twin. Until you get them dialed in, they can be a slobbering mess. If your machine has a tremendous amount of compression, starts and runs, It probably just needs the oiler leaned out. The manual for the one cylinders is easily available from SmokStak sponsors (the engines are about the same to run).. Incidentally, it can take up to an hour to clear the mess even after you shut down the oiler and drained some out. I've even had them bubble out of the valve cage. They are a super, and forgiving, engine.
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Old 06-15-2019, 08:55:14 PM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I'll try adjusting the oil level and putting it back together. I'm pretty sure this engine only uses splash lubrication though. While its apart would it be worth doing a light honing on the bores and continue using the old rings?
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:31:09 PM
Ed Bays Ed Bays is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

My twin has a splash system with two drip oilers on the cylinders. If the oilers are too rich it will overfill the crankcase and blow past the rings, causing oil oozing everywhere. Remember there's two ends to every stroke and these guys don't have PCV valves. These engines were made from around 1914 to a little after War II with many variances. Some had buzz coils, some mags. Some had screen coolers, some radiators. Around here, you see a lot of Cushmans.....Most not running and for sale. A lot of guys don't like them because of the tremendous amount of compression, however they usually start on the first or second rollover.
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Old 07-17-2019, 01:42:55 PM
tkos115 tkos115 is offline
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Default Re: Cushman Model 44

I know it's been awhile since I last replied to this post but.. I put some thicker oil in it, (20W-50) and corrected the level. It smokes a lot less, but once it's warmed up a little bit and I move the throttle up a little bit it will cough tons of smoke. It will stop for the most part once it reaches its speed again but any change in throttle speed will make it smoke a lot. The bores are pitted pretty bad towards the top of the cylinders, and i'm probably going to have to sleeve it. I was also wondering if anyone knew of someone who dealt a lot with Cushman engines and may have parts for sale for these?
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