Watch YouTuber’s four-cylinder engine that weighs 3 pounds function perfectly

It’s time to make your own.
Ameya Paleja
Four-cylinder engine.JohnnyQ90/YouTube
  • A DIY kit lets you assemble a miniature flathead engine.
  • The kit carries the tiniest of details needed for the design.
  • When done right, it can produce 17.5cc displacement.

Youtuber JohnnyQ90 has brought us some interesting videos in the past. This time around, he shows us how to assemble a tiny four-cylinder engine and spring it into action and pump out just a little over one unit cubic inch of displacement after fueling it with gasoline.

Thanks to microelectronics, the world is getting smaller by the day. Last month, we reported how printed circuit boards could be used to make tiny actuators. One might argue that although mechanical engineering can build huge structures, it doesn't bring out the same privileges when it comes to building smaller ones.

Hong-Kong-based Stirling kit is breaking such notions as it works to supply miniature working models of some of the most widely used engines. What's more, these engines come in a complete DIY mode. So, if you are looking for a fun project, here's what you can expect.

The flathead combustion engine

As can be seen in the video above, the engine parts that come out of the box are of a flathead engine. If you have grown up looking at the combustion engines in most modern cars, then this might seem a bit different.

Modern-day engines put the valves above the cylinders, which gives them the look we are all used to. However, older engines put the valves on the side, giving a flathead appearance. Some even called this engine design a "sidevalve."

Although the modern-day design is much more efficient, Stirling kit wants to recreate the magic of the old era of automobiles. And with this DIY kit, you could feel like a 19th-century mechanic assembling a flathead engine, just that all parts are much smaller.

Assembling your engine

As JonnyQ90 experienced, the assembly of the engine is not as easy as it sounds. Though smaller, the makers of the kit have included even the tiniest of details, such as piston rings. Given the scale of the engine, they become really small.

The valvetrain build takes the difficulty level of the build-up a notch or two, and you might need to know a little bit about the tolerances of valve lifters to get it right. If you do not know what that means, it is likely that you will need a lot of help getting this right.

However, that's not all. You also need to get the fuel, coolant, and oil lines into place before you put the gasoline in and fire up the engine.

If this sounds like a fun challenge, then you can get your hands on it by spending a grand ($1,000) on it. Hurrying up now could get you a discount of $200. However, there is also a starter kit that you need to purchase that costs $150. So, do check the website for all the requirements before you complete your purchase.

When done right, the kit can help you make your own four-cylinder tiny engine that produces a displacement of 1.06 cubic inches (17.5 cubic centimeters). Weighing just a little over three pounds (1.5 kg), the engine makes for a great driving force for your RC models.

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