Throughout Fred’s engineering career in the aviation industry, he spent much of his free time in the design, development and production of model airplane engines. The best-known model engine he designed was his K-35 that he first produced in 1976. There was great interest in his K-35 and the demand grew rapidly, which lead him to manufacturing a total of 39 engines. The last five have finned heads instead of solid aluminum heads. He made the patterns for casting the crankcases, rear cover and timer assemblies and machined everything else from solid bar stock.

All of the K-35’s had two exhaust ports with both front and rear bypasses. All were 2-cycle and designed to burn methanol and castor oil on spark ignition.

Between the design and development of new engines he utilized his machine time to reproduce some of his old-time favorites. These included the Mighty Midget, Elf, Baby Cyclone and Husky Jr., all of which were produced in the earlier days of model aviation. Fred also designed and built a couple of two-stroke twins, one with side-port induction (displayed here) and one with rotary valve induction. His engineering and machining skills lead him to the construction of a few four-cycle, single-cylinder engines an eventually a 5-cylinder radial engine. Other than the reproduction engines and his K-35’s his custom-made engines were machine from bar stock with no castings used.

Exhibit added: October 1, 2012 - Last modified: January 12, 2023

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship