Last updated:-
7 September, 2011

IC Engines 

Internal Combustion engines (IC Engines),

These types of engines are not so popular amongst model engineers as are stationary steam engines and locomotives for example.
So why do we make them?
Maybe to power a model - boats, aircraft, land vehicles, even locomotives.
Maybe as a challenge, to prove that we can actually make something that works.
Maybe just as a change from other projects.
Possibly a combination of all.

In general, IC engines require rather more accurate work in order to get them working well than do steam engines. The sense of achievement when one bursts into life for the first time is wonderful. Of course once that initial euphoria is over, the detail adjustments and modifications needed to get it running really well can be quite time consuming and even disheartening. But the next one will be better, won't it!

All sorts are made - from simple single cylinder aero engines to complex scale models.

Some folk like to design their own engines but rather more go for established designs - these have been available from the 1930's. Some are intended to be built using castings whilst others are designed to be machined from the solid.

One of the most prolific designers was Edgar Westbury who wrote for the Model Engineer magazine from the 1930's until the 60's during which time he produced over 30 IC engine designs all of them requiring castings which at that time were readily available. These days, the drawings are still available, but castings are commercially available for only 7 or 8 of the more popular designs.