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Bored&Stroked 07-17-2020 08:46 AM

Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

RE: The 1951 Chrysler Firepower . . . a Copy of the Ardun???

It is common to hear folks ponder that Chrysler must have copied the Ardun heads when they came out with their Hemi in 1951. The original blue-prints that George Kudasch created for the Ardun are dated 12/30/1947 - less than 2 years before Chrysler had the Firepower Hemi engine heavily into production and available for sale. Even if Chrysler actually had a copy of the blueprints available when George completed them (long before Duntov actually had patterns made, created the raw castings, machined them and showed the world), they would have only had about 1 1/2 years to design, test, rework and bring their Hemi into volume production. This is far too little time for a big company to create and deliver on a new powerplant platform. Giving the timing/dates - there is no possible way that Chrysler got "the idea" due to seeing an Ardun that Duntov produced, though the initial thought comes to mind quite easily. ;)

What a lot of folks don't realize is that the "Hemi" cylinder head concept had been around for at least a few decades before Ardun or anybody in the Americas created a new one -- it had been used in Europe quite successfully by a variety of different manufacturers - including BMW and Peugeot (both Duntov and Kurdasch came from Europe).

Also, Chrysler had been experimenting with many different engine designs since the late 30's - and built some extremely impressive prototype Hemi engines during WWII for the P-47 test program. Chrysler had extensive Hemi knowledge and had built, extensively tested and produced working engines, long before Duntov decided to create the Ardun for our beloved Flathead Fords.

Here is a link to a good article that Ron San Giovanni was a contributor on about George Kurdasch - it is worth a read:

https://www.hotrod.com/articles/0804sr-ardun-heads/

V8COOPMAN 07-17-2020 10:59 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked (Post 1910054)
RE: The 1951 Chrysler Firepower . . . a Copy of the Ardun???

It is common to hear folks ponder that Chrysler must have copied the Ardun heads when they came out with their Hemi in 1951. The original blue-prints that George Kudasch created for the Ardun are dated 12/30/1947 - less than 2 years before Chrysler had the Firepower Hemi engine heavily into production and available for sale. Even if Chrysler actually had a copy of the blueprints available when George completed them (long before Duntov actually had patterns made, created the raw castings, machined them and showed the world), they would have only had about 1 1/2 years to design, test, rework and bring their Hemi into volume production. This is far too little time for a big company to create and deliver on a new powerplant platform. Giving the timing/dates - there is no possible way that Chrysler got "the idea" due to seeing an Ardun that Duntov produced, though the initial thought comes to mind quite easily. ;)

What a lot of folks don't realize is that the "Hemi" cylinder head concept had been around for at least a few decades before Ardun or anybody in the Americas created a new one -- it had been used in Europe quite successfully by a variety of different manufacturers - including BMW and Peugeot (both Duntov and Kurdasch came from Europe).

Also, Chrysler had been experimenting with many different engine designs since the late 30's - and built some extremely impressive prototype Hemi engines during WWII for the P-47 test program. Chrysler had extensive Hemi knowledge and had built, extensively tested and produced working engines, long before Duntov decided to create the Ardun for our beloved Flathead Fords.

Here is a link to a good article that Ron San Giovanni was a contributor on about George Kurdasch - it is worth a read:

https://www.hotrod.com/articles/0804sr-ardun-heads/

Dale....I had seen all of this in the past, as I've had a keen interest in the Ardun heads for the last nearly sixty years, and with my Corvette involvement and shenanigans going back some fifty-five years or so, Zora is a household name around here for my wife and I. In fact, I've had the privilege of meeting Zora and Elfie on two different occasions. But thanks for putting this stuff out there in hopes of possibly clearing-up some common misconceptions, especially with regard to Chrysler's extensive background involving 'hemispherical' development in aviation powerplants, long before Zora (and George) jumped-in with the Ardun idea. DD

Tim Ayers 07-17-2020 11:09 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

For any of you who like to geek out on this type of thing, Griffith Borrgeson's book The Golden Age of the American Racing Car is essential reading.

Ronnieroadster 07-17-2020 01:56 PM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Heres a short video taken back in the 90's of Geroge Kudasch. Sorry its not the best video but it is the only film documentation I know of with George on camera. My time spent with George learning about the development of the Ardun conversion was absolutely incredible. Getting to know George and having him ride in our Ardun powered roadster so he could feel the power this conversion produced was priceless. George never realized how important his design work was and about the history which he was a huge part of. This was Georges first design project when he arrived in the US from a refugee camp in Switzerland after World War 2. After working at the Ardun mechanical company in New York city George continued designing items. George had a number of patented designs for various helicopter systems for Sikorsky Aircraft where he worked until his retirement.

Thanks Dale for giving me the inspiration to add to your post.
Ronnieroadster


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NF_J...ature=youtu.be

40 Deluxe 07-17-2020 02:02 PM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked (Post 1910054)
RE: The 1951 Chrysler Firepower . . . a Copy of the Ardun???
It is common to hear folks ponder that Chrysler must have copied the Ardun heads when they came out with their Hemi in 1951. The original blue-prints that George Kudasch created for the Ardun are dated 12/30/1947 - less than 2 years before Chrysler had the Firepower Hemi engine heavily into production and available for sale. Even if Chrysler actually had a copy of the blueprints available when George completed them (long before Duntov actually had patterns made, created the raw castings, machined them and showed the world), they would have only had about 1 1/2 years to design, test, rework and bring their Hemi into volume production. This is far too little time for a big company to create and deliver on a new powerplant platform. Giving the timing/dates - there is no possible way that Chrysler got "the idea" due to seeing an Ardun that Duntov produced, though the initial thought comes to mind quite easily. ;)

What a lot of folks don't realize is that the "Hemi" cylinder head concept had been around for at least a few decades before Ardun or anybody in the Americas created a new one -- it had been used in Europe quite successfully by a variety of different manufacturers - including BMW and Peugeot (both Duntov and Kurdasch came from Europe).

Also, Chrysler had been experimenting with many different engine designs since the late 30's - and built some extremely impressive prototype Hemi engines during WWII for the P-47 test program. Chrysler had extensive Hemi knowledge and had built, extensively tested and produced working engines, long before Duntov decided to create the Ardun for our beloved Flathead Fords.

Here is a link to a good article that Ron San Giovanni was a contributor on about George Kurdasch - it is worth a read:

https://www.hotrod.com/articles/0804sr-ardun-heads/




Thanks for repeating these facts. It's amazing how someone long ago noticed the similarity in valve covers and then concocted the story that Chrysler copied from Duntov! Even more amazing is how many people repeat such stories to each other without even thinking about the timeline!

russcc 07-17-2020 06:44 PM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

As Tim Ayers suggested, if you want a perspective of the "hemi" engine concept, read the book he suggested, The Golden Age of the American Racing Car. Ettore Buggatti purchased 2 American race cars somewhere back in the early 20's, and copied the hemi engine head design. The shop that did my 59L had a 1923 Buggati engine in the shop with the Offy type integral block & head, which was a hemi design.

glennpm 07-18-2020 05:58 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

DD,


"In fact, I've had the privilege of meeting Zora and Elfie on two different occasions."


That must have been a treat!



Glenn

Bored&Stroked 07-18-2020 11:02 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

To take it even further . . . how many folks that drool over Arduns have any clue as to what Duntov did later in his career? Many of our younger folks don't know about his important contributions to the GM Corvette legacy and to the GM Performance program.

Anybody here ever run 265/283/327 Chevy SBC with a 'Duntov 30-30' solid lifter cam? I ran one in my 65 Vette - was a great cam "back in the day".

Yep . . . same guy, Zora Arkus-Duntov . . .

Lanny 07-18-2020 11:37 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

A friend of mine had a Duntov 30 30 in his '64 Chevelle, and it sounded
cool with that distinct solid lifter sound. Sounded mean back in the day. ;)




.

glennpm 07-18-2020 11:55 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Yes, I ran one too. It worked great with my Holley 785 double pumper, 365/375 camel hump fuely heads, Jahns pistons, etc. Great when I was always "on the gas" but on my next build I went everything the same except use the Duntov "8-18" or 097 cam and a smaller carb. Way better for the street!

From https://www.enginelabs.com/engine-te...lock-camshaft/

"The “Duntov Cam”, aptly named after the budding engineer that spearheaded much of Chevrolet’s performance efforts through the ’50s and for two decades afterward, was actually known within GM as part number 3736097. Many times, it would simply be referred to by Zora’s last name, or as the “097 cam” over many GM parts counters for expediency’s sake. Keeping in mind that the performance-minded, solid-lifter cam was introduced only two years after the small-block Chevrolet engine began production, it’s easy to see Zora’s influence in laying an early foundation of the small-block Chevy’s dominating force in performance.

Beyond “097”
As engine size and horsepower was steadily increasing in 1964, Chevrolet replaced the Duntov cam with a newer version, dubbed the “30-30” camshaft to achieve 365 and 375 horsepower from the 327. This was a replacement and is not an iteration of the Duntov cam, although some have joined the two monikers and refer to it as a “Duntov 30-30”"


Quote:

Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked (Post 1910443)
To take it even further . . . how many folks that drool over Arduns have any clue as to what Duntov did later in his career? Many of our younger folks don't know about his important contributions to the GM Corvette legacy and to the GM Performance program.

Anybody here ever run 265/283/327 Chevy SBC with a 'Duntov 30-30' solid lifter cam? I ran one in my 65 Vette - was a great cam "back in the day".

Yep . . . same guy, Zora Arkus-Duntov . . .


V8COOPMAN 07-18-2020 02:29 PM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked (Post 1910443)
To take it even further . . . how many folks that drool over Arduns have any clue as to what Duntov did later in his career? Many of our younger folks don't know about his important contributions to the GM Corvette legacy and to the GM Performance program.

Anybody here ever run 265/283/327 Chevy SBC with a 'Duntov 30-30' solid lifter cam? I ran one in my 65 Vette - was a great cam "back in the day".

Yep . . . same guy, Zora Arkus-Duntov . . .


Dale....I've got the 'REAL deal'! In fact, two of 'em. We've owned an "L76" 365 horsepower '65 Corvette coupe for almost 34 years now. Noisy ol' rattlin'-liftered, 'ja-doop ja-doop' cam and a 2818 Holley from the factory. And this one is pretty rare in that it's got factory A/C...only 227 of that combination built with 365-horse AND factory air. Imagine spinning that A/C compressor up to the 6,500 rpm redline. That's why the compressor has a ridiculously huge L76-only drive pulley, as well as an oversized pulley on the alternator, too. I also have an identical 365-horse engine that I built for our '40 coupe. That cam is the famous "30-30", part number 3849346. They pull hard once you wind 'em up past 4 grand or so. DD

A bones 07-18-2020 03:58 PM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Thank you all, for the info you provided.

Frank Miller 07-19-2020 08:12 AM

Re: Ardun Heads and the Chrysler Firepower - Some Perspectives
 

Harley Knuckles were hemi design going back t the 30s.


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