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Old 08-16-2013, 03:26 PM   #1
Russ Gaylord Fontana
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Default Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Before I start, I think it only fair to say hello to fellow 'barners'. I'm not good at following rules and although I read endless posts on here have never posted much, so in anticipation of asking a question I'd like to thank anyone who might answer.
So, what I want to know is, has anyone built a flathead with a flatplane crank? The only ones I've seen for sale are from Flathead Jack: http://flatheadjack.com/126.html
It's not cheap and possibly pointless but it seems at times that if I had any sense I wouldn't bother with any flathead at all.
I've read that they're really for race engines, that they vibrate badly, that they pull well out of the bends if you're in a sprint car and if there was a point to them, everyone would have one, etc, etc. Lastly they sound terrible?
Anyone out there who's got any experience on what I could expect, cam, best stroke, how long they'll hold together before a rebuild, tuned exhaust, I could but I probably shouldn't go on and on, so hopefully someone 'll have some personal experience.
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Old 08-16-2013, 06:49 PM   #2
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

I had one from an air compressor 3 3/4 strole Howard F-11 cam Single 2GC carb. Couldn't make it run right. Found out later that it needed a differen open plem intake manifold. I also think you can make one fron a Farmall model M crank. You can make a cross fire Fires 2 cyls at the same time. Cams have to be costum made. Pete here could probably help there.
Good luck
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Thanks for the reply Ol' Ron, I'd like something different to run in a light roadster for hill climbing, generally a max of 500 yards. Thought it might be the engine to do the job and confuse the Flathead crowd.
It seems that a lot of racing engines are flat plane, but seem to run balance shafts to alleviate the vibration...Ferrari, Ford DFV, etc.
So is there anyone else out there with any info on these?
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:26 PM   #4
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

This should show a pic of that Farmall M crankshaft... http://www.ebay.com/itm/Farmall-M-MV...-/321186222071
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:42 PM   #5
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Thanks for the link, starting to get more excited.
Ol' Ron have you seen one used at the track?
If Pete, JWL , Walt Dupont or any others have anything more to ad, I'd really appreciate some of your hard earned knowledge.
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:30 PM   #6
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

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Russ, Try this. http://midstateantiquestockcarclub.com/flat_heads5.html

This sounds a bit like a boat, = "A hole in the water that you pour money into"

Enjoy.

Last edited by Bluebell; 08-17-2013 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:33 PM   #7
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

The crank I had was from an ols air compressor converted flathead. Can'y remember the name. Don't forget you need a special cam. A 399jr grind wouk=ld work good for hill climb and a 500 cfm 4bl open plem intake.
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Old 08-18-2013, 03:37 AM   #8
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Thanks for the link Bluebell, yep does sound a bit spendy but at some point I'm not sure I'm going to be able to help myself. If it has the possibility of being a pointless waste of time them I'm usually first in the queue.
Does anyone know of ones that were raced and won, or were they a dead end in flathead history, a bit like a three legged chicken?
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Old 08-18-2013, 05:06 AM   #9
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Russ, from that page you can go to the home page. there is a lot of info in there. If you one of those staunch masochistic British engineering types, you should be able to build it with a file.
Keep it fun!, and good luck!
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Old 08-18-2013, 06:44 AM   #10
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

I know of a couple of old stock cars that ran flat cranks in stadium races (Think High School football stadium) with a track bairly wide enough for 2 side by side - These tracks had short straights and tight turns - The flat track ran great at these races but didn't do well at the larger area tracks - You could tell when they were running by there distinct sound - It was like a bad running 4 cyl with an echo
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Old 08-18-2013, 07:54 AM   #11
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluebell View Post
If you one of those staunch masochistic British engineering types, you should be able to build it with a file.
Keep it fun!, and good luck!
Chiselled out of a block of unobtainium: (In engineering, fiction, and thought experiments, unobtainium is any fictional, extremely rare, costly, or impossible material, or (less commonly) device needed to fulfill a given design for a given application).

Seriously, if I were ever to go ahead with this I think it'd be better to find a good engine builder your side of the pond.

Anyone got one now or built one and why is Flathead Jack selling the crank? I'll try and get in contact with him and post the answer.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:28 AM   #12
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Many racing V8 engines had flat cranks, The Novi for one comes to mind. Early European engines had flat cranks. The most popular were the Ford 60, These used a different intake manifold because of the different firing order. They ran well and won many races, known as Offy killers.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:07 AM   #13
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Russ G. F. you are one crazy MotherF****r.

Lots of love.

Mart.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:23 AM   #14
Russ Gaylord Fontana
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

That's the joy of it Mart, if in doubt plough on regardless!!!

Ron you're the font of all knowledge, especially as I had to buy your book again due to, well I don't really want to go into it, suffice to say it wasn't pretty.

So if one was to go for a build, what spec would be a starting point. I don't know about the Farmall, but the Flathead Jack one goes up to 4.5", maybe a French block and a Pete1 cam?

Last edited by Russ Gaylord Fontana; 08-18-2013 at 10:30 AM. Reason: Adding stuff
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Old 08-18-2013, 12:40 PM   #15
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Bruce Crower "Crower Cams" ran some 180 degree cranks in his Bonneville stuff. Don't remember if he ever did a flathead. He did run some other unusual engines.
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:58 PM   #16
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Quote:
Originally Posted by redo32 View Post
Bruce Crower "Crower Cams" ran some 180 degree cranks in his Bonneville stuff. Don't remember if he ever did a flathead. He did run some other unusual engines.
Any more info on this?? Or any other Cross fire's at the salt?
Not sure if I dreamed it but didn't the Rolling Bones crew run a cross fire at some point?
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Old 08-18-2013, 02:09 PM   #17
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Yes the bones did, but it didn't run very well and finalu broke?? I wouldn't know where to begin, I'd talk to Pete. I'd also try to find an open plemn 4bl intake to make tuning easier. I wouldn't go big 4" is enough stroke. A French block out to 3 3/8 would give 286ci. Find a dyno for some tuning experience. Not many people around that have run them.
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Old 08-18-2013, 02:43 PM   #18
Russ Gaylord Fontana
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Ol' Ron you're doing me proud!!
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:57 PM   #19
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

Russ, Are you changing direction a bit (post#14) away from the flat crank?
If you can buy the crank from FHJ's you can probably get a cam there as well. (which might only be a basis for what you need) If you are planing to do the lot your self, then, I think to go that way will be an absolutely expensive labour of love. You might get a better result (maybe not the sound or shake) with a conventional layout, and spend your time and money fine tuning that (I know you want something different) From that article, some of the famous names in camshafts were right into it. Maybe you could seek some of those guys out?
Maybe you could seek a bit of advise from the likes of Pete, who is obviously actively racing, and has experience in the areas of H.P. and reliability.
Just my thoughts.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:39 AM   #20
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Default Re: Flatplane/Norden/Cross Fire Crank????

We had one fellow around here that ran a 180 crank in his dirt car and it WENT! I met him years later and he showed me the crank, it rang like a bell, he ran it in a 33/4 3w cpe and his name was Paul Goose, he was from Morristown, TN. Those engine parts were in Johnson City, TN with an EV8 Club member the last I heard about them. If I remember right that was a 3 3/8 engine. Maby some upper ET posters will chime in.
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