View Full Version : Old Alky and Stock racing engine designations by manufacturer . . . ??

12-30-2017, 04:00 PM
With racingfan1 putting up those fascinating articles from the mid-Fifties boating magazines, a question arises.

I would like to see one of the old guys make a class M through F listing of the old opposed-cylinder OMC racing engines. 4-60s I know about, and the class C Speeditwins. But when I hear references to KRs and POs and such, I'm lost. I'd like to see these listed, including any oddballs (Bob Gilliam once showed me what I recall, maybe incorrectly, as a 4-cylinder Johnson for Class B. And when I say I "know about" 4-60s, I am dimly aware that there might have been some variants, "Big Fours," or something like that.

Most of us, I assume, know about the more modern of the Merc racing models, from the KG4s and Mk15s, through the Mks 20H/30H/55H/and 75H. In the Sixties you'd also see alky motors based on the Mk58, and even the Merc 350 (Class C) and 650 (Class F), with the 4-cylinder 850s sometimes used a little later on. And some here probably go far enough back to have raced KG7s or KG9s.

Anyway, I think it might be a good reference thread, a sticky, listing all of the racing engines by class and by manufacturer. Obviously I'm not the guy who can do this off the top of his head, but maybe one of you can . . ???

Master Oil Racing Team
12-30-2017, 09:45 PM
I'm kind of like you Smitty. I have heard 460's, pumpers, etc. but never really knew what was what. When we first started racing in 1966 the only C Service racing was in the national events. Locally we didn't have them except for when we raced up in northeastern Texas around Arkansas. An old time racer and Pit man for Louis Williams named Roddy called them "Growlers". Jerry Waldman didn't like them much because he thought they slowed the program down too much. He wrote such an article and was responded to by Big time name in C Service...Bud Cowdery. I suppose there were several classes of these old time motors, but the 500cc class was the one chosen to represent the older class of racing before, and just after World War II before the Mercs took over. One thing I did learn in reading some history was that OMC built many, many motors that were used on ships to fight fires. They pumped massive amounts of seawater to put out fires from hits by opposing ships, Kamakazie, or other fires from planes, etc. After the war, these motors were very cheap, and I think they were the size of the C Service motors. Some of the guys that raced this class can give a lot more info. Bernie Van Osdale's book is a good reference.

12-31-2017, 06:20 AM

Here are a couple great reference books on the history of old racing and stock motors. In these books he has chapters based solely on the Evinrude and Johnson motors from their beginning. The author , Peter Hunn , has written many books on the subject. They are available on Amazon and I believe on E-Bay.