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Old 05-03-2009, 02:12 AM
Strife's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: KY USA
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In Europe, the taxes on displacement were, and are, extremely high, so they have always had to get a lot out of a certain number of CC's, and because they already had the high compression, they went to higher RPM's. But the small-block Chevy engine really was an engineering marvel in its day, in that it was very reliable, and it was also very inexpensive to manufacture with not much machining and not-very-high tolerances (hydraulic lifters helped). One of the many innovations was the stamped rockers, which no one in their right mind thought would possibly work, until someone actually did it. The block was also extremely light due to better casting techniques and design that let them use a big stamped steel oil pan instead of the cast-in block area that acted as a "block girdle".

Better engineered drivetrain parts (=more expensive) keep the design competitive - you can still see a lot of the original design in a modern GM V8.

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Old 05-03-2009, 08:45 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,017
My Pontiac van 3.1L ran 200k with zero engine problems by the time I sold it.

My 2000 Cavalier 2.4L DOHC is running strong at 180K, no engine problems.

My 4.0L SOHC Ford Explorer is running fine at 123K.

My 3.0L DOHC Duratech Ford powered Sable is a great engine. Only 80K on that one.

And of course my 1993 OM602 has 135K, not even broken in!

I think if you take care of an engine you are not going to have too many problems with it. Today's fluids are far superior to the ones when some of these engines where built too.
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Old 05-03-2009, 08:57 AM
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Location: Long Island, NY
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it's all been said, almost

Fuel ecomony has been touched on. The pushrod engines do have a hard time meeting the ever tightening fuel economy standards.

Reliability has been touched on. Mercedes engines might well be some of the greatest, but only when properly maintained. That means replacing the oilers, the timing chain, it's tensioner and it's guides at stated maintenance intervals. Correct oil and coolant as well as change intervals are necessary. All that means a different attitude and wallet thickness when compared to an old Olds rocket 350 bolted into a Cutlass (my wife's college car way back when).

Simplicity has been shown to favor the pushrod engine (though the wankle beats them by a mile). One odd benefit is that they run "just great", or so the PO always says, even when they need a headgasket, new lifters and have a couple of flat spots on the cam.

Give me an old straight 6 pulling a ton of steel, wood and leather while the stereo's playing and I'll drive anywhere. Of course, I'll take air suspension and a v8 if its available.

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Old 05-03-2009, 02:47 PM
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Location: Dublin, Ireland
Posts: 385
Of course the OHC developed into VTEC so you could have the best of both worlds, low down torque and high end power. Even my "modern" volvo has variable cam timing.
In terms of my own ownership I'd rate the BMW straight 6 as the best and the Alfa V6 as having the most character.

Last edited by GaryF; 05-03-2009 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 05-03-2009, 03:03 PM
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<--- The famed Diesel-8
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: El Dorado, KS
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Originally Posted by berfinroy View Post
at least until designers started commonly using 4 valves per cylinder heads (more jazz) which would be pretty hard to do using pushrods!
4V per cylinder operated by pushrods are out there...

Duramax 6.6L diesel (Pictured)
6.0L and 6.4L International/Ford
Cummins 24V I-6's

Not as complicated as in may seem, theres rocker bridges that link the valves togather, operated by one rocker per valve set.

Arao enginering makes a 24V head for small block chevys too....

As for Hi-rpm pushrod motors, i can vouch for that as a long time drag racer. I have seen plenty of pushrod V-8s rev north of 10,000rpm!

Our 8.3L ARIAS Pro-Mod Hemi would rev north of 11K crossing the 1/4 mile mark! Thats alot of engine to rev that high!

I concour though, OHC is better for Hi-rpm, just sayin pushrod motors can do it too

One other consideration is, parasitic/frictional losses, more part=more loss.
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Last edited by mytmousemalibu; 05-03-2009 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 05-03-2009, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by berfinroy View Post
best engines in the world?
IMO, it would be a toss-up between the straight 4-cyl. or 5-cylinder MB diesel engines.

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