quote:Dick, the aluminum block 4 cyl from the Vega didn't morph into the Iron Duke. The only thing those two engines had in common was the number of cylinders. The Iron Duke dates back to the 60s. I had a friend in high school who drove a white Chevy II that had that engine in it. The concept of of a high silicon aluminum blocks without cylinder liners is viable if it's done correctly. Porsche's first V8 (introduced in the 928) used this technology, as did Mercedes-Benz's second generation V8 engines. I've personally seen a MB 5.0 liter engine with over 300,000 miles on it that was still running great. For those that don't know how you can run an aluminum block without iron cylinder liners, the technique involves infusing the aluminum with a very high amount silicon. The cylinders are precisely cast and then honed and the final step involves an etching process where the top few microns of aluminum are removed from the cylinder walls leaving nothing but the very hard silicon for the rings and pistons to run on.
Originally posted by dickwells: Gentlemen, I must point out the famous (infamous) Vega 4cyl engine with the high silicate block which was specially treated to have the rings run on its surface. It sure was a big success! but was morphed into the pontiac Iron Duke which did pretty well (it was the front 4 cylinders of a chevy 6) I worked in a plant that made millions of phenolic timing gears for these until the roller cam/high spring tension made them obsolete.