A flame gulper is an old fashioned type of engine also known as a vacuum engine. According to the Wikipedia page, “A mixture of gas and air was drawn into the cylinder and ignited; the mixture expanded and part of it escaped through the exhaust valve; the valve then closed, the mixture cooled and contracted, and atmospheric pressure pushed the piston in.” [Thanks, Erik!]

8 thoughts on “Two-cylinder flame gulper

  1. PaperSydney says:

    I love these little engines. makes me wonder where they were when I was in school. shop class had nothing like that. I guess humanity truly can’t take the pure enjoyment of process seriously unless in a non-public education environment, and definitely not without a paycheck.

    Otherwise I would teach all about these things.
    I hope others enjoy this as much as I.

  2. Kirt says:

    Interesting little bit of machinery, but will it run under a load? It seemed to stop rather easily with applied pressure. So I wonder what use it would be for anything if there isn’t enough energy (force? torque? – I don’t know the term. I’m not an engineer) to run under load.

  3. mrmeval says:

    There are several listed, I like the solenoid one and want a pentaradial one in my car!

    1. PaperSydney says:

      I think it’d work too.. as long as you can get the sequence right. ^_^

Comments are closed.


My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal nerdage.net

View more articles by John Baichtal