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Help with engine identification please

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I’ve just come across this engine which was made by a family friend. He has asked me to try and find the identification of this model as he can’t remember and has lost the documents. I believe it was from a engineering in miniature magazine issue.

Any help would be appreciated.image.jpg.a5d8d06c4680ad340a3be6f6884ef9c0.jpgimage.jpg.92150763a787aa822907247e2101b116.jpg

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It appears to be a 3 cylinder radial engine. The radial engine is a reciprocating type internal combustion engine configuration in which the cylinders "radiate" outward from a central crankcase like the spokes of a wheel. It resembles a stylized star when viewed from the front. They're also known as 'Star Engines'. The radial configuration was commonly used for aircraft engines before gas turbine engines became predominant. They are always configured to have an odd number of cylinders, i.e. 3, 5, 7, 9 etc.


Follow the link - How do radial engines work ? – MechStuff



Edited by Davey
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I think it’s an air-powered radial, operating like a compressor in reverse.


I can’t find a model 3 cylinder one on-line, but here is a 5 cylinder 

Trying to fathom how the OP’s one works, I think it must use the crankcase as the exhaust chamber, and probably has a slot milled part-way up the bore, so that the cylinder is exhausted a bit like a two-stroke, but I’m not totally sure. Also, I think there must be a ported rotary valve on the crankshaft to deal with inlet.


Edit: here’s one that uses flats machined on the crankshaft as rotary valves https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/three-cylinder-radial-steam-engine-brian-swan I don’t think the OP’s is quite the same in its workings, but it may be.



Edited by Nearholmer
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