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garethj last won the day on April 3 2022

garethj had the most liked content!


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Rank: Lancia Gamma

Rank: Lancia Gamma (8/12)



  1. I’m racking up the miles on this, it’s incredibly comfortable and looks good enough for my teenagers to approve. This is about peak economy, purely around the doors it’s doing about 45mpg so a mix of long commute and short trips gives about 48mpg. Obviously it’s up for sale tomorrow 🙄
  2. garethj

    Rozzer Shite

    I believe the thinking was that you had to have a Cooper to catch one.
  3. I didn’t know that Speedex was created by Jen Marsh. Speedex is about the coolest name for a car company though. A few pictures that popped up on my Facebook today. “For everyday use”😳
  4. Do you look at cars with 1 NCAP star and think they look too safe? Have you pretty much settled on aircraft engines being viable in road cars? If Scrapheap Challenge was made in 1928, would you be on it? If the answer is yes then don’t wait another minute - pick up the phone and get professional help immediately. Or buy this 12 litre supercharged V12. https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/268833615921801/
  5. garethj

    Air cooled

    Also the 2.5 V8 Tatra produced similar power to the Daimler 2.5 V8 and the Tatra 3.5 V8 made the same power as the Rover / Buick V8. It’s all to do with breathing, not how it’s cooled.
  6. garethj

    Air cooled

    That’s a slightly unfair comparison, I think. Plenty of water cooled cars didn’t have air blending heaters right into the 1980s. As far as I know, aircooled heaters do blend the air - the heat source is always on full and the control is how much cool air you mix with it. That’s what the VWs and Tatras do. The drawback is that the amount of heat isn’t very consistent; if you’re trundling along at 1500 revs the engine isn’t putting much heat into the exchanger and on many aircooled cars, because there was no booster fan, the airflow was poor too.
  7. garethj

    Air cooled

    Petrol heaters were a common option in colder climates but rare here, except on Type 4 cars when they were standard but the timer was an option. Lovely to see all the cars in the street covered in snow except for the Volkswagen which was completely clear and had steam coming off the roof 😀 My Tatra 603 had a petrol heater which worked well and the 613 had two of them, one for the cabin and one for the windscreen. That was like a fucking dragon’s breath.
  8. garethj

    Air cooled

    From the late 1960s, VW offered a booster fan for heaters on their aircooled engines. On Beetles and Type 3s, it was located in the scuttle distribution box and sucked warm air through when the engine fan was turning slowly. On Type 4s the fan was in the engine bay and pushed the air through. Both were very helpful and brought heaters almost to 1970s standards, but of course the heat source was still 10 feet from where it needed to be. Water cooled cars bury the heater matrix right inside the dashboard, with good reason.
  9. garethj

    Air cooled

    We had aircooled VWs as family cars in the ‘70s and they were serviced at the local VW garage using genuine parts. The heaters were always reasonable and they could easily cook your ankles if you had it on full blast. As ever, compare with other cars of the 1950s and early’60s and their heaters. Oh, that’s right, they didn’t have one, or it was an option and a feeble one. The problems with VWs heater design were that there was no fan assistance so if revs were low, heat output was low. Also the heat source from the exhaust is a looong way from the people, especially the windscreen and it’s not insulated so not much of the heat warms you up. Add to this that most people have only experienced aftermarket heat exchangers which were about half as efficient and it’s not great news. I’ve no experience of something like a Citroen where the aircooled engine is in the front but I imagine because the heat source is closer to the people, they should be ok. Add a booster fan plus quality heat exchangers and it should be effective. A slightly waffle way of saying that half the problem is that the engine is in the back, not the fact it’s aircooled.
  10. garethj

    Air cooled

    Oil cooling is very efficient, the thing that helps efficiency is the air to boil ratio. If ambient air is 30C and a water cooled car boils at 100C, that’s an air to boil ratio of 1:3ish. On an aircooled car, oil boils (or at least breaks down) at closer to 150C which for 30C ambient is an air to boil ratio of 1:5. That’s why a water cooled car has a massive radiator and an aircooled car has a relatively small oil cooler. Air does some of the cooling too (no shit?) but it can be efficient. Just not very precise.
  11. Excellent work! I visited suppliers for work in Korea in the late’90s or early 2000s and these things were everywhere. I did hundreds of miles in the back between hotels and various factories, one of them was the place that made bumpers for them. It was winter and they had the doors open for trucks to pick up finished parts, the snow was howling in and covered everything. A brilliant little car that just kept going.
  12. garethj

    Air cooled

    True, but it’s all relative. I don’t think the average car engine of the 1950s or early’60s was getting near that, without spending a lot more money.
  13. garethj

    Air cooled

    Good point, well made, but those are mostly aftermarket exhausts which don’t fit well and don’t do a very good job of silencing. If it fits well (and is fitted well), a standard VW engine is fairly quiet and unobtrusive. A but like judging all Cortinas by the jacked up rear suspension, wheels that were too wide and a furry steering wheel cover. Generally the manufacturer did a pretty good job of most things, aftermarket stuff and owners too thick to know the difference isn’t a fair comparison.
  14. garethj

    Air cooled

    Long time aircooled botherer here, 6 VWs, 2 Tatras and some motorbikes. As emissions get stricter, controlling the cylinder head temperature gets more important, you really need them all to be the same and stable over time so the combustion is just the size it should be. Take the head temperature across an aircooled engine and they’re all over the place. Not bad enough to cause a problem with it running but calibration for emissions is impossible. A shame though, the noise of an aircooled V8 through a throaty exhaust with the fan beating the shit out of the air is bloody lovely.
  15. Brochure photos that came up on Facebook today
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