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Thread: What is Babbit?

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    Yoda vping's Avatar
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    What is Babbit?

    Doing a little research and figured this is the best place to start. So...what is Babbit?
    1952 MG TD, 1963 MGB x 2, 1967 MG B/GT Special, 1972 MG Midget, 1972 MG B 1974 MGB


    There are things known and there are things unknown and in between are the Doors

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    Great Pumpkin JPSmit's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Oooh Oooh, I know

    1. What is a cross between a bear and a rabbit Alex.

    I'm sorry that's incorrect. Try again

    Babbit for $200 Alex

    What is a Soft, white metal, an alloy of tin, lead, copper, and antimony, used to reduce friction in bearings, developed by the US inventor Isaac Babbit in 1839.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babbit_metal
    John-Peter Smit
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    Luke Skywalker 14dna's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    I liked your first answer. Maybe that's the trouble with having to be correct.

    Dave
    Dave Graves
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    Yoda AngliaGT's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    I believe that they were bearings - poured in.
    Someone else could give a better explanation - please.

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    Luke Skywalker Roger's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Babbit metal = white metal = bearing metal. Originally poured, but not today.
    There are many different blends today, depending on application.
    Called Babbit in tribute to original inventor - see JPSmit above.
    Roger
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Rain Man.
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6, Victor TF, '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Yoda vping's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    So it's not the thin flaky lead type of metal I found when I pulled the caps off of the rods in my TD?
    1952 MG TD, 1963 MGB x 2, 1967 MG B/GT Special, 1972 MG Midget, 1972 MG B 1974 MGB


    There are things known and there are things unknown and in between are the Doors

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    Yoda PAUL161's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    When babbitt is melted, it looks like lead. It doesn't take a whole lot more heat to melt than lead. Babbitt is still used today in large rotating shafts such as used in industrial applications where replacing a fixed bearing possibly weighing 100 lbs or more is not practical. My dad was an expert on pouring babbitt bearings. He used to rebuild old steam engines and that's what they used. Believe it or not, it is a fairly dangerous job, as the melted babbitt can explode in your face if it hits a drop of moisture or overly cold surface. I still have his old bearing scrapers and pouring ladles, but definitely have no intension of using them!

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    Yoda vping's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    So I guess Babbit has nothing to do with the bearings "Flakiness" in my TD engine.
    1952 MG TD, 1963 MGB x 2, 1967 MG B/GT Special, 1972 MG Midget, 1972 MG B 1974 MGB


    There are things known and there are things unknown and in between are the Doors

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    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    What is flaking would indeed be called the babbitt of the bearing, Vince. It just ain't lead anymore.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
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    Obi Wan coldplugs's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Working with babbitt is not a completely lost art - most prewar American cars used babbitt bearings (Chevy sixes used babbitt until 1948) and most old stationary engines used them. Next time you see a make n' break engine at a county fair, ask the guy tending it about babbitt &amp; I guarantee he'll go on for at least 5 minutes.

    Unless they've been "upgraded" to to use modern shell type bearing inserts, all Model T and Model A Fords have babbitt bearings &amp; there are ~lots~ of those still running. Lots of guys here still pour the stuff.

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    Yoda vping's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    So since this is falaking off, it's cheap insurance to replace right?
    I think I got away pretty goodlyish with this engine. Rod bearings and a few gaskets and it's OK.
    1952 MG TD, 1963 MGB x 2, 1967 MG B/GT Special, 1972 MG Midget, 1972 MG B 1974 MGB


    There are things known and there are things unknown and in between are the Doors

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    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Of course! I'd be for taking micrometers and PlastiGauge to it before final assembly, too. Just for peace of mind.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
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    Obi Wan WhatsThatNoise's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    In big engines they would pour it, blue the journals and set the crank.
    Then they would remove the crank and scrape the bearing.
    This would sometimes go on all day.
    (We still have a bunch of old folks in this town that did this or saw it done)

    Cooper Energy engines ran 3 years between minor services and up to 12 years between rebuilds (constant opperation)
    That old technology worked.

    There are several accounts of engine service life exceeding 80 years w/o a single rebuild.

    BTW...They refer to lead hammers as Babbit hammers.


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    Yoda vping's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Already on the hunt for new Rod Bearings doc. Not taking any chances. I checked the clearance on the Mains and it was .0015" with the PlastiGage.
    1952 MG TD, 1963 MGB x 2, 1967 MG B/GT Special, 1972 MG Midget, 1972 MG B 1974 MGB


    There are things known and there are things unknown and in between are the Doors

  16. #16
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Quote Originally Posted by vping
    Doing a little research and figured this is the best place to start. So...what is Babbit?
    That's what Mush Mouth from Fat Albert grandmother fried for Sunday dinner.

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    Yoda
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    vping, these are all great explanations for "babbit" however there remains a most important question,... whit way did e go?

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    Yoda Banjo's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    "Heeeyyy Babbit!!!" I mean, "Abbot!!!!!"
    Current fleet:'70 VW Type 3 Fastback (Abby Normal),'74 VW Westfalia "pop-top" Bus (Clementine)'05 Scion XB (The flyin' Fridge)
    '08 VW Passat Turbo Wagon.no British goodies just now........
    Wanna know what's up at Banjo's? check out http://obscuramobilia.blogspot.com/

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    Great Pumpkin JPSmit's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    who's on first?
    John-Peter Smit
    1976 MG Midget
    1969 Vauxhall Viva GT
    1958 Fiat Multipla (Barn art)

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    Yoda Banjo's Avatar
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    Re: What is Babbit?

    Quote Originally Posted by JPSmit
    who's on first?
    No... They were on at halftime.
    Current fleet:'70 VW Type 3 Fastback (Abby Normal),'74 VW Westfalia "pop-top" Bus (Clementine)'05 Scion XB (The flyin' Fridge)
    '08 VW Passat Turbo Wagon.no British goodies just now........
    Wanna know what's up at Banjo's? check out http://obscuramobilia.blogspot.com/

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