The engines were pulled apart and disassembled so that each part could be tested and a plan was developed for re-manufacturing any weak or metallurgically defective parts. The heads were soda blasted and then coated and re-bored and re-honed. New valves and springs were purchased. New brass radiators were custom made. The water pumps were re-engineered using ceramic seals and modern bearings, and then they were bench tested under pressure for five weeks to simulate the race duration. The crankshafts were re-engineered and balanced with counterweights and drilled for a more efficient oiling system. The main bearings were re-babbited and then, once in the block, were line bored to ensure exact clearances and a perfectly straight bearing surface. The blocks and oil pans were cleaned of their coating of 100 year old oil and grit and then re-coated with fresh primer. The transmissions (4) were dismantled and cleaned. All the gears where examined and enough good parts were found to build two race-worthy units.
Pistons and Connecting Rods
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This is such an exciting project. I had the awesome opportunity to view the 1925 American La France last weekend and I must say she is spectacularly beautiful from the inside out. For owner/driver of the 1915 American La France, Steve Trafton, his wife Katherine, driver/team manager of 1925 American La France, Tim Taylor and Dwight Trafton to participate in such a wonderfully grand adventure this summer means hell yeah, they are “in the arena”!!! I can’t wait to follow their progress and hear their stories.