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HelicopterOff Topics › pistonless rotary engine
09-11-2007 07:34 AM  10 years agoPost 1
Gearhead

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Vt

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09-11-2007 08:24 AM  10 years agoPost 2
jadams

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East coast USA

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Wankel invented that a long time ago and Mazda still uses the Rotary in the RX-8. great idea but highly inefficient.

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09-11-2007 01:40 PM  10 years agoPost 3
SSN Pru

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Taxachusetts

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highly inefficient
less efficient than a typical piston powered reciprocating engine but highly efficient is a stretch, especially with the newer rotaries. In some aspects, power-to-weight, mechanical simplicity, and smooth running, it beats the crap out of a typical engine.

I recently got an OS Wankel engine and took it apart. It is absolutely amazing how simple the damned thing is.

Stupidity can be cured. Ignorance is for life!

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09-11-2007 01:55 PM  10 years agoPost 4
SSN Pru

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Taxachusetts

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This is the coolest engine Ive ever seen.

Its a swashplate engine. Its most notable uses are on the MK-48 Torpedo used by the US Navy.

Stupidity can be cured. Ignorance is for life!

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09-11-2007 08:53 PM  10 years agoPost 5
Topher

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Rochester, Michigan

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mechanical simplicity
Not really. Maybe in terms of number of parts but not in actual design. Wankel engines can get extraordinarily complicated in their geometry and physics. Ever try a vector loop summation on a wankel engine? Then compare that to typical piston engine crank and you see the complexities really quick. Wankels also suffer from shorter life spans and blow-by, a major cause of inefficiency. Theres a lot of other really cool volumetric displacement devices out there. Google gerotor(I know these VERY well), quasi-turbine, and trochoidal gear pump. The picture of a pump you posted is rather popular, the company I work for make a very similar design for AC compressors.

One more thing, the military never uses engines or devices because they are practical. They use them because of politics. The turbine engine in the M1 Abrams tank is a perfect example.

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09-11-2007 08:56 PM  10 years agoPost 6
SSN Pru

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Taxachusetts

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Topher,

Yeap, I was refering to the rotating parts count not mechanical design.

Any engine is complicated with respect to design.

EDIT:

What the hell is a vector loop summation haha?
You must design internal combustion engines or have a lot of free time on your hands.

Stupidity can be cured. Ignorance is for life!

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09-11-2007 11:20 PM  10 years agoPost 7
Tommy Z

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Lubbock, Texas

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Hey, isn't that the engine they had in RX-7's?? I thought they stopped using them in the RX-8's...

EDIT: I'll be darned...you're right jadams

-Tommy Boy

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09-12-2007 10:09 AM  10 years agoPost 8
jadams

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East coast USA

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Mazda has been using the rotary in cars and trucks since the '70's and still use it for the turbo RX-8. Simple by design compared to a piston engine. But they do suffer apex seal failures at low mileage compared to piston ring failure. I believe that lubrication and seal size plays a large role in the Apex failures.

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09-12-2007 01:29 PM  10 years agoPost 9
SSN Pru

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Taxachusetts

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turbo RX-8
I think you meant to say RX7, the RX8 doesnt come stock with a turbo because the boost wreaked havoc with the rotor apex seals. The problem became worse with the higher boost of tuned cars too.

Stupidity can be cured. Ignorance is for life!

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09-12-2007 08:34 PM  10 years agoPost 10
jadams

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yes thanks, turbo rx7.

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09-12-2007 11:18 PM  10 years agoPost 11
rc3heli

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Kirkland, WA

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Perhaps with some of the older wankels. My '87 with a 13B has over 200,000 miles.

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09-13-2007 02:15 AM  10 years agoPost 12
SSN Pru

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Taxachusetts

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bring that car to Mass or Cali and try and keep driving it. I had a nephew with a mid 80's rx7 and he couldnt get an inspection sticker for it. the thing needed a larger oil tank than gas tank haha

Stupidity can be cured. Ignorance is for life!

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09-13-2007 02:44 AM  10 years agoPost 13
helimatt

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Lafayette, IN

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Then nice thing about the Mazda rotaries is that they are easy to rebuild (comparatively few parts) and replacing the apex seals and getting a reworked case puts you back in business for another 100K miles.

Many have been converted to aircraft engines for use in homebuilts because they are small and light, few parts, reliable, and have a small-ish frontal area (less drag). Many of these aircraft conversions are turbo-normalized.

And, I hear tell that even if you blow the engine (basically blown apex seal) it will keep on running albeit at reduced power. Pretty good deal for an airplane.

Never, ever, ever, ever give up.

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09-13-2007 08:30 AM  10 years agoPost 14
nheather

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Horsham, West Sussex, UK

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The RX-8 is still using a rotary engine - their latest development of the Wankel is called the RENESIS.

See this Wiki entry for more details.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mazda_Wankel_engine

Cheers,

Nigel

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