Here at Grandpa’s Gizmos, my intention is to show you the multitude of interesting designs of small engines I’ve had a hankering for over the years.
I’ve always been fascinated by how engines work, especially the very old ones from before I was born, like Stirling engines, hot air engines, vacuum engines, and the likes of small live-steam engines.
Now steam engines were around when I was a kid so I concentrated on them to start with, but now I’m getting on a bit I tend to be looking at smaller engines to build and play with, like desktop models that don’t take up much room, rather than a big workshop, where tooling is at a minimum and cost comes in at no more than two or three coffees for a starter kit along with small hand tools most of us already own.
The spirit-fired one pictured above is the type of thing I’m talking about, where they can be fired up and running in ten or so minutes without too much trouble and don’t cost an arm and leg to run when the urge takes me.
NOTE: The one above is in short supply right now owing to supply issues and may not be available, but there are plenty of others to choose from.
Heck, half of these models I want to show you weren’t even invented when I was in short pants, but now you can build these powered models that run by using gas/propane, spirit, hot air, candles, steam, wind and sunshine, battery-power, and whatever else you can think of quite easily, and what I want to do is show you how engines like this are built from start to finish using video, as well as testing ready-built versions to see how they perform.
And make no mistakes, I’ll give you the good and bad results of each one as I find them so you don’t need to make mistakes if you decide to buy one.