Special Information on Sleeve Valve Engines, how do they work, this is a special engine

Sleeve Valve Engines.

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Letters from our readers about Sleeve Valve Engines.

These are letters from our readers about Sleeve Valve Engines in aircraft.

I've looked at some web sites about sleeve valve engines, but after reading about them, I couldn't really understand how they worked.  Here's some letters that talk about sleeve valve engines and their advantages.  They sound like they work so well that I can't understand why we don't see them in the aircraft today.  If you have any info, please send it to me and I will past it on this page.

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6-15-02 Ralph Lindsay
The straight in and out air-flow through the s/v engine is responsible for a portion of the [apparent] improved efficiency over the conventional poppet valve ohv engine. But not all the difference. As  s/v porting allows for a true hemispherical combustion chamber with centrally located spark plug and a very efficient pumping and  combustion process. As you noted. 
However, there are other very significant reasons why the s/v engine does so well. .
All internal combustion engines have  "inertia loss". The energy used  to put a weight in motion and an equal amount to stop it, and reverse its direction. (Takes the same to stop it as it does to start it). The  valve train with its cam followers, tappets, push-rods, rocker arms, valves, adjusting. & locking nuts and especially the valve springs [that take considerable energy] to compress. Together these items account for a considerable inertia power loss. All power comes from the fuel tank...
The s/v engine eliminates this inertia loss, as the motion of the sleeve does NOT go up and down. It is driven by a geared crank driving the sleeve through a ball and socket  and  the motion of the sleeve is of a circular path. 
However there is another much more significant reason for overall fuel savings that "appears" to be improved engine efficiency. It is because the s/v valve engine with its intake and exhaust ports on the sides of the cylinders instead of on top, as a poppet valve engine is configured and it allows for a reduction in over-all engine diameter. From 68 to 58 inches. from 3630 sq" to 2640 sq". Nearly a 30% reduction in cross sectional area.  The aerodynamic drag penalty for boring such a big hole in the sky is enormous. Especially at high speed.   This accounts for the major difference. 
When I get some time I will dig up some more related info. and send it
on.   I like your eMail handle. I soloed Yellow Taylor Cub in 1938
Another Link for Sleeve Valve Engines used in the Hawker Hurricane
Dear Webmaster, 

Love your stuff.  Herschell Smith published an aeroengine book with the sleeve & cylinder drawn "developed", as if folded   out flat, to illustrate the motion of the sleeve.  It's a great read; so too is Graham White's book, but it's quite technical.  My guess as to why  sleeve valves aren't more widespread is that because one of the ports acts as both an intake and an exhaust, emissions are a factor.  Oil  consumption may also be an issue, remembering that aircraft like the Sea Fury had a 40 gallon oil tank.  I wonder also whether sleeve valves  limit the compression ration of an engine, and hence are fine for supercharged jobs, with typical static compression rations around 6 to 1, but  not automotive applications.  
Ian Rienks
Brisbane, Australia

Sleeve Valve Engine Links

Cutaway Photo of a Sleve Valve Engine
Sleeve valve engine, 4 valves vs. 2 valves, dohc, rotary valves development
Some Good pictures of a Sleeve Valve engine
Skua Dive Bomber using Sleeve Valve Engines
A great link for Sleeve Valve Engine Operation from Gary Frisbie
Another great link about Sleeve Valve engines by Ralph lindsay



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