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Willys Engine 101

This is and email posted to The FlatFenders emails list on August 8, 2007 from Ted Robinette (L134 Ted) from Melbourne Australia. He has long been a student of Willys history, majoring in Willys designed and produced engines. He graciously has allowed me to post this to my site. Thanks Ted.

Willys Overland Club of Victoria, Inc.

Need to nip this ""The L134 is also a "Continental"" myth in the bud before it becomes web based fact.

The Willys L134 engine is not and never was a Continental engine. The L134 that you play with in you Flatfenders evolved from the Willys 77 engine of 1933.

Sure there is a Continental 4 cylinder engine that shares the same 134 cube capacity but that is where the similarity ends, even the bore and stroke is different and no internal parts interchange. An easy way to tell the two engines apart is that the Continental engine has the distributor protruding vertically out of the cylinder head. The Willys engine has the distributor protruding out the side of the  lock on the starter motor side of the engine.

The 226 cube L6 engine that was used to power some later model Willys/Jeeps also has the distributor protruding up from the cylinder head denoting it as of 'Continental' design. A design purchased by Kaiser and subjected to Willys designed vehicles after his takeover of the company.

The post war 148 and 161 cube Willys six cylinder engines were Willys designs again with no relationship to Continental. These sixes share the side protruding distributor layout of the L134 [and F134] but are not just the 4 banger with two cylinders added. Their parentage predates the Willys 77 L134 engine and goes back to the late 20's six cylinder engine that later evolved to power International light trucks  from 1933 and then after the design was purchased by International  Harvester it was developed further to power their trucks up to around  1950.

Willys also marketed its engines for industrial use, including fork  lifts, fire pumps, generators etc. and this plus the use of the  Kaiser 226 L6 in Willys and the common 134 cube capacity of the 4 bangers often leads spectators to credit Continental for all Willys  engine designs.  As you would have noted by now I believe in credit where credit is due and that certainly applies in this case for what has been a great  engine design from a company founded by John North Willys nearly 100  years ago.

L134 Ted

Melbourne Australia.


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Last revised: August 12, 2007.