I love big engines
Fri Aug 31, 2018 08:56

So we can put all that nonsense about heat engines behind us, right?

Well frankly yes and if that makes me a hypocrite so be it but I can easily hold two opposing views and frequently do!

Anyway back to big iron! My favourite engine is the Chevy small block - I love the irony of that name! Its ...ing vast and if thats small whats big like? Well I can tell you and you'll be surprised but one of the punchiest engines I ever enjoyed was in an AMC Ambassador which could push you back into the seat anytime you wanted.

It was a 72 model with a 6.6 litre V8 (I've never been comfortable with cubic inches) and I got it as a straight trade for my Norton Atlas which had been nothing but trouble from the first day I got it for nothing from the previous owner who'd had enough.

I also have had two Chrysler hemi powered cars, one was a hotrod Dodge Dart which was so overpowered for its size and weight that a dab on the gas would make it swing its arse out sideways. It had very loud Thrush headers and when idling the whole car shook and the top of the engine which emerged out of the hood could be seen moving side to side threatening to rip the bearers apart (again)

What I really like about all big engines and 'big' is relative because Dads Wolseley 6/110 had a big engine too, is the creamy smooth power delivery with the comforting assurance of lots more to come if required.

My all time favourite American car is the big Impalas or Olds 98 models before the downsizing began. You can drive all day in one of those and get out completely relaxed at journeys end - mountain, what mountain?

I'd have another like a shot even though I'd have to limit myself to one weekend per month and that would eat up most of my measly handout. Worth every cent though and the amazing thing is that they handle surprisingly well and I speak from experience and ten years worth of daily driving on narrow winding country roads which the Shore has in abundance.

I used to do my own maintenance too, well I was a lot younger then and the reliability of the small block meant top and bottom end, clutch and transmissions were never likely to enter the picture.

Chevy never seem to have quite got it right with the water pump though. If you're going to have a problem it will be with the cooling system and almost certainly require a rebuilt water pump. Actually most of my few troubles emanated from the front end ancillary equipment driven by the fan belt.

Its worth watching the bugger at idle to see if some clot dinged a pulley and caused the belt to wander a bit which probably knackers the bearings on the water pump, alternator and power steering pump.

Theres some magic non water coolant that Leno speaks well of and if I did win the lottery I never play, renewed my licence and bought me what I always wanted the last of the big jelly mould Impalas with the Corvette motor - oh boy thats some car let me tell you, handles as well as it goes and it can show a clean pair of heels to a lot of so called hot rods. I'd certainly consider that as going out in style automobile wise, it would be the creme de la creme for me.

Of all the British cars I've driven my Dads big Wolseley is firmly at the top by a long shot. Comfortable, powerful and classy as hell with its walnut dash and leather seats with the convenience trays in the back, walnut with nice little chrome tray and cup holder insets. What a ride!

Close second came Dads Triumph 2.5 PI which was quick and taut but not the cream puff that the big Wol was.

I could never afford a sportscar but if I could have I'd have wanted a Lotus Super 7 and if money was no object a 3 litre Bentley - a real one, or perhaps an E type Jaguar or an Alvis or Frazer-Nash if an immaculate example of either could be found.

Wouldn't want an Eyetie piece of eye candy at all but a Mercedes SS100 would be nice if we're dreaming.

  • I think I remember the adverts... - sarge, Thu Aug 30 13:53
    ...as WaxOyl. Tetroseal is another; wax treatments are still popular. I'll stick with what I said about musclecars and their place in the culture of my youth. That was a definer between the rich kids ... more
    • I love big engines - mike, Fri Aug 31 08:56
      • My list of ten... - sarge, Fri Aug 31 09:43
        actually are pretty inexpensive cars, with some surprising omissions. Neither inexpensive or on the list is an E-type. Its a car to be seen in, but not a car to drive, a gorgeous thing but absolutely ... more
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