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Hit & Miss Gas Engine Discussion

Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless


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  #1  
Old 02-12-2012, 05:06:13 PM
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Default Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

I thought I would create a thread detailing the mechanical restoration my dad and I are in the progress of. The engine is a fairly early (1912) 8 HP headless Witte. The engine came out of central North Dakota and was used to run the leg of a small grain elevator.

Being an early engine, it has several different features than the later 8 HP engines.
1. The water hoper is about the physical size of a later 6 HP engine.
2. The stroke is only 8" which is the stroke of a later 6 HP engine.
3. The exhaust port is 1.5" which is the size of a later 4 HP engine.
4. The carburator/mixer is the early snorkle style that is threaded into the valve cage instead of bolted on.
5. The bore (6.5") and flywheel diameter (36") is the same size of a later 8 HP engine.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:10:22 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Fortunately the original battery box was still with the engine. After a little work I was able to get it looking pretty good.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:24:23 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

The main and rod bearings were in bad shape. The babbitt mains were loose in the block. The bearings had been tightened up many times as there were no more shims left. Getting the gibb keys out not the easiest as the last time they were installed they had been coated in white lead. In addition, they were driven so far in, that they were cutting into the main bearings.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:28:39 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

The crank needed to be reground as the round bearing surface was in very bad shape. The mains were alright but since we had the crank in the grinder we ground the whole thing.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:31:04 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Just for fun, I took the following picture. This shows the size difference of the 8 HP crank versus a 30 HP headless Witte crank.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:38:10 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Next, the camshaft gear and shaft had to be fixed so that they could be used to set the height of the crankshaft when the new bearings were poured.

We honed out the cam/cam gear in the pin fitting machine Which I have included some pictures of. This is the handiest machine but you need a lot of arbors to make use of it.

I also included a close-up of an old tooth repair on the cam gear.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:45:35 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Here is the new shaft for the cam gear.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:51:18 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Here shows the setup we used to pour the bottom half of the mains.

They turned out fair considering we poured them to size versus pouring them undersize and boring them to size.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:53:21 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Then we poured to top halfs.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:56:18 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

We decided to make a reusable jig to pour the rods as we plan on doing a lot more of this type of work.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:01:20 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

The rod had a crack on the wrist pin end as someone had over-tightened it trying to tighten the wrist pin bushing which was completely worn out. We decided to braze it up and put in a solid bushing instead of a split one to give it a little more strength.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:07:29 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Next we made new rode bearing shims. Not a very exciting part of the restoration, but I thought I would share a few pictures of the jig we use to punch the holes in the press.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:10:14 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Lastly we made new rod bolts and machined the rob bearing in the milling machine.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:19:35 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Next we remachined the piston ring groves. For this project we were able to buy off the shelf rings (2 per groove) and then used one ring spacer to account for what was removed by truing up the ring grooves.

We then honed the block a little. The bore was in pretty good shape except for a small groove where the wrist pin had come loose at one time. The groove was pretty small so we weren't too concerned about it. If it turns out there is any blow by because of this samll groove, we will take the cylinder off and bore and sleeve it.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:35:55 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Next a new oversized wrist pin was made and the walking beam was rebuilt. The cam roller was in bad shape. The oil hole was plugged solid so the pin was badly worn. In addition the roller had a very large flat spot.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:37:57 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

A few more pictures of the walking beam.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:47:14 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

The next thing to tackle was the valve cage. It needed a fairly large crack repaired. I decided to peg it versus welding because I wanted to preserve what paint remained and the original pitina. This would have all been lost though the preheating process required to weld it.

We used the Stick-N-Lock system versus tappered pegs as tappered pegs would have just pushed the material out versus pulling it together. If you haven't heard of Stick-N-Lock it is a very clever system that uses a special thread that doesn't have a traditional thread that pushed the material apart when tightened. It has a back angle on the thread that will pull the material together. It is a pretty expensive repair versus traditional pegs but it is very strong.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:50:40 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

All was going well until I broke off the expensive tap in the very last hole. We have used the tap on several projects and I could tell it was getting dull. I should have got out the new tap - I guess that is a leason learned.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:54:30 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

This is the almost finished product. I ground off the pegs with a die grinder and then did a little blending work with a porting stone. The stone leaves a little roughness and removed all the grinding marks. Unfortunately I don't have a closeup picture of the actual finished product.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:59:49 PM
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Default Re: Witte Restoration - 1912 8 HP Headless

Next was the seat and guide work. On the exhaust, I simply bored out the guide and put in an oversized stem. We didn't do the same on the intake as we wanted to keep the valve the same weight so that we didn't have to monkey around finding the right spring tension since the intake doesn't have a rocker arm. Therefore we put in a guide liner.
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