Panhard crankcase front oil drilling modifications

The original engines had this oil feed visible above the camshaft bore at the very front of the crankcase, which is shown below. As the camshaft rotates this drilling is filled two times per camshaft revolution, and after this it passes in a trough that is underneath the bearing and the oil jumps into the slingers. Some oil splashes back and passes through the main bearing, but the rest is accelerated by the slingers at the crank web, and passes through the big end bearing via a drilling in the crank web before exiting and splash lubricating the little end.


Unfortunately this hole is too small, and it is the cause of a 50% reduction in flow rate over the rear pro rata. There is an added complication that this hole is also 50% smaller than the rear oil feed, so there is quite a bit of reduction in potential flow rate assuming the pressures were the same. As you might have read there is a pressure difference, because of the secondary drilling that fed the camshaft timing gear on the early engines which compounded the problem , and led to reliability issues, which eventually forced an engine redesign to this area.

This can be negated by carrying out a few modifications, all of which will be documented here.


It might not be obviously apparent from this picture, but the hole size is now 6mm diameter, whereas the one above is just 4mm. This new oil feed now matches the camshaft aperture, so all openings, front and rear are timed equally. The 4mm diameter hole in the middle that is drilled presently, will have to be enlarged to 5mm to match the rear oil feed that is fed from the common camshaft oil gallery. At first it is more important to get the hole in the right position, and work from this, which is why it is now at 5mm diameter, as shown below.


This now means both front and rear oil galleries are equally phased and have the same pressure variations, as there is no mismatched timing gear oil feed anymore affecting the front oil supply. However that still leaves the task of creating a new oil feed to do this, because you didn’t think the gear was going to lubricate itself from the plain bearing leaking, but that’ll be another update.
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