Engine failures are much better experienced as a spectator sport. Between the potential for wreckage and the financial injury, the only engine most hot rodders don’t mind seeing fail is one that they don’t own. The video you’ll see below is an awesome exploration of a 1980s era Formula One Cosworth DFV motor that has failed in spectacular fashion after sucking a valve at somewhere around 10,000 RPM The footage is excerpted from an English TV show in the early 1980s. It seems that the topic of conversation is revolving around the Cosworth engine and the emergence of the small displacement turbo engines that would ultimately dominate for a period. Engineers were apparently working on methods to boost power (Or, “Pahhhhh” as one of the engineers says).
It doesn’t take a master mechanic to figure out what goes down when pistons and valves start running into each other at 10,000 rpm, but it’s pretty neat when a guy who designs the motors walks you through it. The illustration of how a valve spring fails by using a slinky is ingenious and cool. Look for the awesomely destroyed piston and rod assembly and how cool the cylinder head looks with the four valve arrangement as well. Ok, it is a three valve arrangement in this case because one valve walked off the job, but you get what we are saying.