Speed Equipment

Braje Availability

iamrustless Mar 3, 2002 10:17:22 PM

Is there a source of Braje speed parts for the Crosleys out there? Are they still produced (or reproduced?) I have a cast iron motor with a very well made home-made oil pan. It extends out to the sides in each direction, and looks to hold a lot of oil. The motor turns, and looks good under the valve cover. I would like to take it down, inspect, and put back together with period speed parts to give it some more snap. There's this irritating little British car in the neighborhood...:) Thanks, Hal

cacracer Mar 4, 2002 4:08:00 PM

I have posted the entire Braje Catalog under our photos - Parts & Services.


Aibel Speed Equipment

chuckhk@enter.net Nov 21, 2002 6:30:09 PM

What is so special about AIBEL water jackets that makes them worth $180.00 Did I miss something???

Jim@Bollman.com Nov 21, 2002 8:31:08 PM

They are rare. John Aibel founder of Crosley Auto Club, and possibly his brother Fred owned the Braje molds for awhile and had a few side plates and cam covers made with their name on them. Does that make them worth $180? Not to me, but they are much rarer than Braje side plates.



50 Streetable HP

voxnut@hotmail.com Sep 18, 2002 6:24:15 PM

Just having returned from the West Coast Crosley meet, it is interesting to know that of the Crosleyits I polled, the opinion was split if a 44 C.I. Crosley motor could be made to churn out 50 reliable street horsepower. My idea was to go with a steel crank, strapped mains, shot-peened rods and a Bearcat oil pump (which obviously aren't for HP, but for reliability) the add a header and 1 1/2" exhaust system, reground 3/4 race cam from Schnider, raised compression (9:1?) and a braje manifold. I haven't figured out if twin carbs are too much for the street, so that is open. This also includes careful assembly, balancing of the rotating assembly and port matching of the manifolds. I was also going to convert to 12v with an alternator, and run a pertronix electronic ignition, as well as a subaru water pump.

So, if this set-up won't yield 50 HP, what is a reasonable expectation? 40?

Inquiring minds want to know!



CROSLEY19 Sep 18, 2002 6:49:04 PM

Why go thru all that expense, and trying to find exotic, and costly Braje parts. Just build a Homelite 55hp. with all the torque of the longer stroke.


Jim_Bollman Sep 18, 2002 7:37:05 PM

Dean, Since Barry built his Farm-O-Boat street rod he wants to convert every Crosley to Bearcat power. :-)

You can push the compression higher running high test or an alcohol injector. Crosley sold a special motor with 10:1 compression and the race people when even higher. I would think with 10:1 and all the other things you were going to do, you would be in the 45-50hp range.

The other big trick to get more is a Supercharger.

I would guess 45-50hp would still be streetable, I have heard number from 65-100hp that I would not consider streetable.

Having said all this, there are several on this list, including Barry, that should have a better guess, having built engines similar to what you want to build.


speedoo51 Sep 19, 2002 10:08:00 PM

I don't think that 50 hp is out of reach but it certainly won't be at 5400 rpm; more like 6500-7000...too high for car especially with stock trans...now a supercharger would make that happen at pretty close to stock hp area....Fageol did it with his outboard and made [claimed] 45 hp at 5500 and graph was still climing..See Crosley engine family tree, post crosley. Seb.

voxnut Sep 20, 2002 11:00:55 PM

Thanks to all who responded- the Bearcat engine conversion sounds intriguing, although I know there's a fair bit of crank work to do, plus aren't the intake/exhaust on the opposite side of the crosley block? If so, doesn't this create issues with fouling the steering gear? (especially if a custom header were used?) and there's the issue of finding a Bearcat motor...

Regarding supercharging, do folks adopt the old Judson supercharger? McCulloch/Paxton? I would imagine a blower motor would respond better to the stock ratio.

Regardless, the caveat is also that I don't want to spend $5000 on a "built" motor, and I'm probably looking for things that will increase acceleration more than top speed. I don't really know if I want to go 70mph in a CC wagon anyways! Maybe when I was 18, but you know...

Crosleydc Sep 20, 2002 11:26:39 PM

An engine is just an air pump,and the Crosley does suck all of it's mixture through a tiny little hole & blow all it's exhaust through a similar tiny hole , doing this all the while at at a pretty fast rate even by today's standards. So why not let it breathe a little easier?

A little blower takes care of the intake and a nice header will certainly let it breathe out better. Or try a different carb set up if you don't want the blower. You should get a good bit better acceleration with those. Maybe a cam change? Exhaust system might be the best place to start if you are going about it in stages.

CROSLEY19 Sep 21, 2002 7:42:52 AM

The exhaust and intake are on the same side as the Crosley. It only cost $75.00 to have my crank machined at the local machine shop. I have about $1250 in my engine including the cost of the Homelite, and having to have hardened valve seats installed. (I had an early Homelite)



What are Mods Worth in HP

wyye Sep 21, 2002 3:10:39 PM

In last Thurs nights chat, I asked if a list had been made that included individual mods for incremental hp increases ( or something to that effect), such as shaving the head / dual exhaust headers / etc. Got silkytwo feedback that he had understood that changing headers may increase hp up 5hp.

Now seeing additional interesting comments / ideas from crosley19, dccrosley, and others, it is my hope that these along with others, (and with examples, details, and pictures,) may be accumulated and entered in "Files" here, for future reference by those (self-included), who have interests in undertaking one or more of such mods to gain the additional 3, 5, 10, 17, 45, hp etc. as may be attractive to the individual.



Ed Buck Sep 22, 2002 11:31:27 AM

Shaving the bottom of the block for added horsepower has been warned against because of weakening to the flange that holds block to crankcase. Instead, I was told to consider shaving the crankcase.


CROSLEY19 Sep 23, 2002 6:44:57 AM

You guys are listening to old wives tales. You can easily shave 1/8th inch off the bottom of the block assy, with out weakening it. This will raise your compression ratio to 9.2:1 with stock pistons. I have some had much experience with this, and have seen some race engines with 3/16th cut off, and have talked to guys that raced Crosleys, and they told me they went as far as 1/4 inch with high dome pistons, running alcohol, and never blew a block off the crankcase.


Crosleydc Sep 22, 2002 12:48:05 PM

Check out msg.# 315 over on yahoo group HMOD.Some of the Crosley guys from here are over there and race them in SCCA vintage events. They are very knowledgeable.An interesting project being pursued by Nat Sherrill over on HMOD is the production of new crankcase studs of stronger steel.If you're going to spend money,in my opinion you might want to get a set of these,especially if you plan to run any faster than stock or boost the hp.All of our engines are running on 50 + yr.old studs of questionable condition,and since they tie the whole block/crankcase/bottom end together,the results are disastrous when one breaks.Time is running out if you want a set...


x779 Sep 22, 2002 3:35:30 PM

The easiest way is to open the exhaust up with a larger-diameter pipe and a straight-through muffler. The original-style mufflers have too many baffles, and the exhaust/tail pipes are way too small.

That's especially true with the 2-cylinder models.

Visit a good exhaust shop with pipe-bending equipment to talk things over with someone knowledgeable.

You'll be pleasantly surprised at the power increase.



CROSLEY19 Sep 23, 2002 7:19:13 PM

I have been playing with Crosleys since I was 10 years old. We used them as go-karts. We had 6 of them and all of the local kids would come to our farm on a Saturday afternoon (after the farm work was done) and race them on a 1/0th mile oval dirt track my Grandfather had made for us. I was lucky to have a local sprint car racer who had gotten his start in Crosley powered midgets, and when I turned 14 I had him help me build up some big horse engines for our cars. I learned a lot from him. I have probably blown more Crosley engines and blown them ever way known. I have learned what can be done, and what cannot. I know that the stock Crosley cast crank can barely handle the 26 hp. With strapping the main bearing caps it can handle about 35 hp, but cannot handle high rpm's with a stock generator, and water pump. It will snap the front of the crank off flush with the pulley at anything over 7000. We used to run the Aerojet water pumps, and no generator. Maybe with a small Mitsubishi alternator, and Aerojet water pump it might handle it. My one engine used to run out at 8500 constantly in first gear around the track. I still have the 6 volt Sun Tach that I had in that car.

Every one of the cars had 1/8th inch shaved off the block, and one had high compression pistons that were notched for valve clearance, and never blew the block mounting, but it did put quite a few valves thru the pistons.

The best way to get about 35 hp is to shave 1/8th off the bottom of the block, use stock pistons, a larger intake (like a Braje log style), and most importantly larger exhaust. You have to get rid of the exhaust with minimal back pressure. A stock crank can handle this If you don't over rev the engine, (anything above 6000) a dual intake will not do much of anything without the right cam to help take the gas into the engine. It's kinda like trying to upgrade an old 386 computer with a Pentium IV chip, It just ain't gonna work any better than the old chip, cause the rest of the puter cannot keep up with it. With a dual intake, porting, and polishing the intake, and exhaust ports, 3/4 cam, shaving the block,.060 overbore, larger exhaust you will end up with 40 h.p. But do not act up with it!!!!!

I guarantee the crank, and the rods will find themselves on the outside of the crankcase all by themselves. I have thrown a rod thru at least every portion of a Crosley motor. If you want to build a racer you must use a Military crankcase with flat strapped main caps, an Aluminum pan to help reinforce the crankcase from twisting under torque. (This is what cause the cranks to break, the crankcase flexes throwing the line bore off, and the mains start to seize) and most important of all a steel crank. The steel crank is much stronger as it can flex, where the cast cannot, in the same respect the steel crank journals are softer, and rod journal wear is greater than that of the cast. 50 streetable hp out of a Crosley engine is all but impossible, without getting rid of the siamese intake ports. You can get 50 hp, don't get me wrong, but it will be a rough idling,and no low rpm torque, this to me is not streetable. That is why I like the Homelite conversion, I'm getting at least 50 with a stock Crosley intake, exhaust, and carb.

I hope I haven't confused you all again.


speedoo51 Sep 23, 2002 9:59:11 PM

Milling the block 1/8 would raise an 8:1 compression ratio to somewheres around 12:1; combined with other mods that you did [as long as a bigger-dual carbs were used] probably netted you more power than you thought...why the blocks held is like why did the cast cranks [pretty sure by Jim's crank list] in two of my engines stay together when they were constantly run at over 7000? One had strapped rib-type caps, one didn't...other things took leave of absince like tower shaft gears [at crank], shelled the babbit out of rod and main bearings, wrist pin plugs, rod wrist pin bushings; and last but not least those pesky little valve lash shims...never lost a 6" clutch, ...stuff happens; or not !!

50 HP from Homlite conversion with stock Crosley carb and manifolds? Ever try two carbs? Can't accept one being enough.!

I am wondering what you did to the suspension to get corning ability..I would run mine on about 1/10 dirt too but didn't like to as in corners left rear wheel would unload and peg rpm and actually slow down if kept floored. Also would break right front hub [twice] causing right front wheel to depart from spindle and seek less harsh environment. I tried to keep to gentler road course..loosing wheel[s] was too rude for me!!! Seb.

CROSLEY19 Sep 23, 2002 10:17:25 PM

According to the man that used to race, and help me build my engines, shaving the 1/8th off the block only raised it to 9.4 compression ratio. a 9:1 Crosley piston is .118 inch higher than a stock one just a little less than .125 (1/8th inch) He used to use a bubblier, and compression gauge to check this.

I wanted to keep stock appearance on the FOR, that's why I went with single carb, plus I didn't want the hasle of the dual carbs. (they can be a real pain when they are not synched right or one of them decide to screw up)