I’d bought here a model engine via Amazon , one which came with good reviews and subsequent to purchase an endorsement from Top Gear. There is an Airfix which doesn’t get quite the same reviews. The Haynes model comes with its own Haynes manual (of course) which apart from the addendum to cover some mistakes with the distributer / cylinder number seems pretty accurate.
Whilst I don’t think that anyone will have a problem with the kit, even engine novices, it may be harder for those who don’t know the difference between their camshafts and crankshafts.
The model is a good size, the plastic quality is good and it is assembled using good (metal) self-tapping screws. There is a screwdriver provided but its a bit small, so having a smaller cross-head screwdriver will allow you to get some of the screws in further and better seated. You’ll also want to have a good DIY or model knife (like a stanley knife) to cut the pieces from the sprags and tidy them up. My 10 year-old daughter kept me in line and ensure that I read the instructions.
It took me around 2.5 hours to build, which wasn’t bad and I didn’t rush. Daughter attention span was variable due to the Wii being used in the other room. Its a good model and seems to run and work well and does provide an insight to the uninitiated on the workings of a 4-stroke petrol engine. Shame most of the stuff in the shed is 2-stroke !
Couple of things to watch for:
– there are spare screws and getting them to start as self tappers can be fiddly. The supplied screwdriver is magnetic but not that beefy. There are no spare springs
– when assembling the lower cylinder head, make sure the two plates are located correctly otherwise you’ll find the valve stems don’t line up correctly and will not run freely.
– the two metal rods are of different lengths. The shorter one is for the rockers and the longer one, with the flat on it, is for the cam / camshaft.
Really enjoyable fun to build and is pretty representative. Now to get down the shed and fix the real things.