Commer/Rootes TS3 - TS4??

I have had correspondence from a gentleman in Kiwi land about the TS3 and its design origins, and now he has mentioned a batch of prototype
TS4's:
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Thank you for your reply Peter. I hope that my email didn't offend you - it was meant to inform, not complain - it was written late at night so I hope it didn't come across too grumbly. I produce a number of webpages for various community groups and I know how hard it is to keep this sort of stuff up to date. I didn't expect to hear from you, and I certainly didn't expect to hear from you so soon! In return for your prompt reply, I have included another page from our newsletter, which I hope will stimulate your interest? This one is about the TS4 - a 4 cylinder version of the Commer motor which was being developed when they were ordered destroyed by Chryslers as they took over Commer in 1967. Did you know of the existence of this engine? It is an absolute shame that this engine was not developed further as it had so much potential. Even looking at it, you can see how far ahead of its time it was, compared to contemporary engines, let alone its performance, which the New Zealander importer describes. There were 14 prototypes built and only 4 survive. I know one is at the Leyland Motors collection (not sure where?). Mark knew four had survived and had given up trying to find it (he was actually trying to track down a prototype turbocharged version of the TS3 that is out there somewhere?) when he tracked this TS4 down in a barn in Ireland. He has imported it to New Zealand, and unlike the others, intends to have it running in a truck, rather than on display. Since the article, he has had the Fuel Injection pump rebuilt (incidentally by someone who started their apprenticeship in 1956 working on TS3 type injector pumps!) and is gradually getting it ready to run. He has also found out that the prototype he has ended up with was developed as a multi-fuel version, with blanked off holes for spark plugs, etc. A version of the TS 3 motor was also developed as a multi-fuel version for the army, with the intention they could run on anything handy - diesel, aviation fuel, petrol, peanut oil, melted butter, even Scotch whisky (I'd never do this myself!!!). A prototype 4x4 VC Commer with multi-fuel TS 3 motor (one of 2 built) has recently been restored by John Morris and Brian Male in Leicester. Hope you find this of interest. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Peter -- Peter A Forbes Prepair Ltd, Luton, UK snipped-for-privacy@easynet.co.uk http://www.prepair.co.uk
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Peter, Very interesting. As someone who started out working on these engines after my apprenticeship I was very intrigued. I thought these engines developed a reputation far outweighed by their true worth. True they used to explode with spectacular results but as they were fitting these in vehicles far greater than they were usefully designed for what do you expect.
We had one fitted to a 6 x 4 with Eaton two speed axles and running at 26 Tons. Can you imagine the strain required just to run he drive train with a close couples set of twin driving axles ?
Then ask someone do go on site and fetch 26 tons in his 3.8 Jaguar, What's the difference ? In fact the Jag would be bigger than the TS3.
Any pictures available of the TS4 ?
-- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 15 Dec 2004 10:00:03 +0000, John Stevenson

Sign of a sad mind replying to ones own post but I forgot to mention the chapter in LJK Setrights book Unusual Engines, that some University, Bristol ?, had one setup with supercharger and turbo where the power from the turbo axle was fed back into the supercharger by a differential gear. They found out the turbo was putting out more Hp than the crank. Is this the engine they were tracking down ?
-- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 15 Dec 2004 10:10:05 +0000, John Stevenson

Don't know, but I have asked our man to get onto the newsgroup if at all possible so he can answer questions etc directly.
Peter -- Peter A Forbes Prepair Ltd, Luton, UK snipped-for-privacy@easynet.co.uk http://www.prepair.co.uk
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Stevenson wrote:

Bath University of Technology. They used a TS3 engine.
Sulzer had been playing around with this since the 40s, but with bigger OP engines.
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 15 Dec 2004 10:10:05 +0000, John Stevenson

Look at aero-engines of the late '40s. The Wright turbo-compound did this with three exhaust turbines adding an extra 600hp for no extra fuel burn and a total of about 3500hp. It was also one of the main ideas behind the Napier Nomad.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Prepair Ltd wrote:

The book entitled 'The Commer Story' by Geoff Carverhill has some photographs of a TS4 prototype. Initial spec. was an engine of 287 cu. in, developing 200 bhp at 2600 rpm. Projected life between overhauls was 250,000 miles. Sadly Chrysler, who took over the Rootes Group in 1967 had no interest in spending money to deveop the engine when they already had other, convetional designs that would do the job. We won't even mention the later, unmitigated disaster that was the Cummins V8 VALE engine!
Regards
Philip T-E
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

True Philip, that one is best forgotten. It's a pity they never used the York engine as a starter motor for it. That way it would have paired the junk up
-- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
ClaraNET wrote:

Cummins V8 VALE engine & V6s were surely fitted to the Dodge series of trucks?
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yes Dodge and Commers were one and the same at this time. That V8 was also fitted into the Ford D series of the same time but this was later replaced by Fords own V8 which was a Perkins with Ford on the rocker boxes and Ford's patent oil leaks from the oil cooler.
-- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 15 Dec 2004 11:19:44 +0000, John Stevenson

Horrendously noisy as well, but nice self-bleeding fuel systems!
I think Bedford played with them for a while for the TM series before going for the Detroit engine, which was almost as much of a bad choice.
Peter
Peter -- Peter A Forbes Prepair Ltd, Luton, UK snipped-for-privacy@easynet.co.uk http://www.prepair.co.uk
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Prepair Ltd wrote:

Ford used a real mickey mouse exhaust system, I used to get mufflers made internally identical to MB ones and that quietened them down.
Nothing wrong with Detroits, we had them from V6s to V12s, it all depended on what you wrapped them in, Bedfords were like fish n chip paper...
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You mean bitter and smelly ? -- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Stevenson wrote:

No, about as ephemeral..
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Prepair Ltd wrote:

this
the
Hello folks, about 40 odd years ago I worked in the transport industry,for 17 years as a diesel fitter,overhauling engines,Rolls Royce,Gardener,Leyland,etc.During the last few years of my time in that job,I was then in the Test Bench,setting up the engines on the Dynamometer over the running in test period for B.H.P. e/t/c/. The Commer TS3,strangely enough,was the one and only engine that I did not work very much on,as only one man worked on it full time. In saying that I still had to TEST the engine after it was built,do all the adjs/and settings during its running in peroid,usually over 8 hours in a timed run up to final B/h/p check. Correct me if I am wrong,if my memory serves me well,the top revs.were somewhere about 36,000 r/p/m,and it had a supercharger,IT SCARED THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS out of me.Really scary noisy animal. The guy who usually built the engine ,would sometimes dander in to watch the TEST and would occasionally mark an ''X'' with chalk on the crankcase,remarking to watch this spot,THATS WHEN THE BU**** BLEW UP. Most of the time they would behave themselves,but I never liked testing them. All the best for now,and have a good Christmas, john.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@btopenworld.com wrote:

36,000 r/p/m???????????????????
I'd be apprehensive too! :-)
Early ones revved to 2400 rpm, later to 2800 rpm iirc..
Sympathies for working on the RRs & Leylands! :-)
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
3,600rpm seems a bit more in the realms of possibility - and that's high for a compression-ignition engine of its era and capacity.
I remember reading about one of Whittles early GT's that ran away and as the rev counter needle tried to get back to where it had started the long way round, Whittle had it upon his toes out the door. The senior test engineer held the door open for him and said to his retreating back "It's no good running, sir, it'll get you if it wants."
Regards,
Kim Siddorn

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Stevenson wrote:

Interesting, never saw a Commer with a Cummins. The GM 6v53 was a common engine implant to replace the Rootes diesel. We had about 10 D series Fords with Cummins V8s in shorter haul trucks and apart from upgrading the radiators from new, because of overheating, the engines' TBO was on a par with the larger Cummins NH series engines in the fleet. Pinion wear was always a problem due to the 6 : 43 diff ratios due to the Cummins 3300 rpm top end and the local topograghy.
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Speaking of these unusual devices, I was much taken by the "monosopache" two-stroke Diesel in SEM last month. I was trying to get my head around the firing order and the description lead me to think that it might be 1-2-3-4 as it said no piston could be at TDC at the same time as another. Being a two stroke, I can see that.
Is my assumption correct?
BTW, I took some photos of a cutaway TS3 at the Welland show a couple of years ago. Still on Webshots at
http://community.webshots.com/photo/45471790/45475450rmFlzg
Regards,
Kim Siddorn
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 17 Dec 2004 00:48:56 -0000, "Kim Siddorn"

Very nice Kim, One of my first jobs working on one of these was to tow one in with a bloody great hole in the side. We feared the worst and they were a pig to change, the engine in the Commer came out thru the passengers door - just, it was that tight you had to take the grab handle off <g> We stripped the side off in situ and all it was, was one of the big nuts holding the rocker shaft had vibrated off and the rocker had elbowed it thru the side. Fitted a new nut and side cover and sent it out but to no avail. It was soon back in with overheating problems as the big rocker studs kept the engine together and this letting go had obviously cracked the block some place so it was engine out time again.
Another weak point was the rear timing cover and engine mountings. These used to vibrate loose at a remarkable rate, crack and piss oil all over. Must have been a common known fault as the quite large and complex cover was only 20 odd quid, probably subsidised by Rootes group to stop you moaning too much about having the rip the box out - yet again. And these were the good old days ????????
As a side note when we packed the garage up I sorted all the workshop manuals out, and we had a good stack of old ones, and gave these to people who were restoring that particular make. We had the full workshop book on the TS3, about 2" thick and I put that on one side to keep but somewhere along the line it vanished, I regret loosing this book, it was like an old friend <g> -- Regards,
John Stevenson Nottingham, England.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.