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Rotary Engines: Would it work in a boat?

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Old 10-09-2003, 11:50 PM
  #11
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Remember the little "beeper" that sounded on the early RX7's when you grossly overrevved it. We called it "the pull over and put the fanbelts back on" noise.

And what a cool little miniature Hitachi 4-barrel carb...
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Old 10-09-2003, 11:53 PM
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A few years ago at Team Scarab
Skunk works in Ventura CA. We had a project with Mazda and
rotory eng. to develop a motor
and install it in a Scarab 16ft Jet Sprint.
A lot of R&D work went on in
the ventura area during to
late 80s and thru mid 90s of
all kinds of boat designs.
The Rotory Motor was just one
of 14 motors tested in the
same 16ft JetBoat, I still own
that 1st boat.
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Old 10-10-2003, 12:06 AM
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Not enough torque for practical use. You would need many very large rotary’s to power an offshore boat. Not to mention they don't take kindly to detonation.

Roby
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Old 10-10-2003, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mcollinstn
Remember the little "beeper" that sounded on the early RX7's when you grossly overrevved it. We called it "the pull over and put the fanbelts back on" noise.

And what a cool little miniature Hitachi 4-barrel carb...
I remember it well. My father bought one new when I was 17. It took me about 3 days to hear that "Beeper." About 3 years later, my Dad was telling me about getting pissed off at someone in traffic, and he heard this "Beep" when he redlined the car passing the idiot. First time he ever heard it. Any idea how hard it was for me to keep a straight face?
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Old 10-10-2003, 12:27 AM
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There are some guys around here who run rotaries in their sand rails. Twin turbo charged, over 400 hp, and two guys can lift it into the frame without a cherry picker!! I was at Baker Engineering one afternoon a while back and they had one of these sitting on the floor. Pretty cool motor, really small, and according to him, really loud!! But he said the rail it went in was wicked fast.

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Old 10-10-2003, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mcollinstn
...We called it "the pull over and put the fanbelts back on" noise.
LMAO
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Old 10-10-2003, 08:20 AM
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I'm with mroffshore, They can take a beating but rotaries with turbos are a totally different beast. They respond unbelievably well to boost but do not hold up. personally I think the n/a 13b has a wider torque curve than a comparable 4 cyl. I think if you ran a dry exhaust though the sound would drive you nuts.
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Old 10-10-2003, 08:43 AM
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Default General Motors tried it:

Back in the days when GM was trying wankel (rotary) engines (mid 70's) before they abandoned them, they had a custom built Donzi 28 CC with two 4 rotor wankels tied to Mercruiser outdrives. The thing went like stink, the motors took up hardly any room, and used about the same amount of gas as v8's. I know, I drove the boat.

Then GM scrapped the wankel program and EVERY motor that was built was pulled in and scrapped. There may be one surviving block somewhere in Warren, mich.

They replaced the rotaries with twin Merc 188's based off of the 302 Ford v8. They had to increase the size of the engine cover hatch, lost 10 mph top speed (weight), and the 188's were a DOG of an engine (no response).

The boat was named the "pflueger fun", Pflueger made fishing tackle.

Rotaries are light weight and have great power/weight ratios. They are dirty from an emmissions standpoint and that's what killed them from the Automotive market. Mazda only produces the RX8 for it's unique marketing of the wankel. They are not practical and are expensive with the emmission requirements of today. Otherwise everyone would be building them.

The Wankel has the ability to be marinized and I think would be great in personal watercraft and lighter smaller boats. You can tune them to make the all the power that would be needed at 6000 rpm or less.

Wannabe in Motor City
(OSO's peudo automotive historian)
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Old 10-10-2003, 03:24 PM
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WOW.......some great info guys!
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Old 10-10-2003, 03:42 PM
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Puder is correct. The company is Rotary Power International. I posted this site in the same subject from months ago. They have an engine that is 1000hp, its just that they stack the rotaries. The HP/ wt was very impressive. It will work in a boat. RPI has built them for military applications.
Unfortunately their website is not up.
Stock symbol is RPIN.
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