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The Curtiss OX-5 Aircraft Engine

The Curtiss OX-5 was the last engine designed by Glenn Curtiss and the first American aero-engine to enter production, although by European standards it was already an obsolete design when it entered production in 1917. The Curtiss OX-5 was a 105 hp water-cooled 90° V8 engine with two push-rod operated valves per cylinder.

Curtiss OX-5 Engine


Thee needs of WW1 resulted in 12,600 Curtiss OX-5 engines having been produced by 1919 when production ended, after the war ended there were a large amount cheaply available on the surplus market and many found their way into civilian aircraft especially trainers, not the best place for one as it had a reputation for poor reliability, in fairness much of the engines reliability was the result of many of the contactors that produced the engine having almost non-existent quality control. One interesting design feature of the Curtiss OX-5 were the valve pushrods, these were coaxial, the inlet push rod being located inside a tubular exhaust pushrod.

Curtiss OX-5 Power output:

  • 90 hp (67 kW) at 1,400 rpm
  • 105 hp (78 kW) at 1,800 rpm for brief periods
  • Specific power: 0.21 hp/in³ (9.5 kW/l)
  • Compression ratio: 4.9:1
  • Fuel consumption: 8.0 US gal/h (30.8 l/h) at 75% power
  • Oil consumption: 0.5 US gal/h (1.9 l/h) at 75% power
  • Power-to-weight ratio: 0.27 hp/lb (440 W/kg)

    Aircraft that used the Curtiss OX-5 aero-engine

    Curtiss JN-4D "Jenny" Curtiss A-1 amphibian Laird Swallow
    Travel Air 2000 Pitcairn PA-4 Fleetwing II Travel Air 2000
    Waco 9 Waco 10 American Eagle
    Buhl-Verville CW-3 Airster    

    Curtiss OX-5 Aircraft Engine

    Curtiss OX-5 Aircraft Engine

    Curtiss OX-5 Specifications:

    • Type: Water-cooled 90° V8 piston engine with two pushrod-actuated valves per head
    • Bore: 4.0 in (102 mm)
    • Stroke: 5.0 in (127 mm)
    • Displacement: 503 in³ (8.2 l)
    • Length: 56.75 in (1441.45 mm)
    • Width: 29.75 in (755.65 mm)
    • Height: 36.75 in (933.45 mm)
    • Dry weight: 390 lb (177 kg)
    • Fuel system: Duplex Zenith Carburettor
    • Oil system: Gear-pump operating at 40 to 60 psi with a 3-gallon oil sump
    • Cooling system: Water-cooled
    OX-5 Engine

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