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Old 07-08-2017, 11:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Kantanka engine manufacture in Ghana (& more)

Kantanka Automobile Company (Ghana in West Africa)

Here is how you might build an engine in contemporary West Africa... I find this beautiful: molten aluminium hand-poured into sand castings, 20th Century machine tools, hand fitting of pistons, and more:


Anyone able to name the machine tools and hand tools in use with specificity? The processes in casting the block?

Seventy five percent of materials reportedly come from within Ghana: wood for dashboards and such.

Here is the K71 model:



Some technical specifications for the k71 model (not much power):
An Exclusive Review of Kantanka K71 SUV car - TechGenez

The star on the badge is a reference to the main symbol of national independence. Seems like that emblem is destined to become the seal on a quixotic vision, though I would like to think it still possible for such an enterprise to succeed.

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Old 07-09-2017, 10:41 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Very cool. Definitely reminds me of my trip to Africa. There are more people than jobs, so always lots of people doing one thing (the scene where they have about 4 people putting the connecting rod bolts in). Then you still have people standing around watching.

The machine tools they were using that I could identify were variations of lathes and mills.
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Old 07-09-2017, 12:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Where in Africa did you go, Daox? I was in Ghana with a study group in January 2016. Seeking a grant to return in January 2018.

The sand casting is astonishing to me. I made candles this way as a kid, but an engine? I wonder about longterm durability. The engines' power and efficiency seems kinda low in some reports, though some efficiency claims I saw were higher (even 40mpg for the little k71). Such a difficult task! Intrepid people.

And I totally recognized that labor dynamic you mentioned. It was everywhere. People eager for work, almost any work.
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Old 07-09-2017, 01:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by California98Civic View Post

The sand casting is astonishing to me. I made candles this way as a kid, but an engine? I wonder about longterm durability.

Machining a block is common today, but for example a lot of older stationary engines were often sand-cast.

here's a Finnish BMV engine, Björneborg Motor Verkstad aka Björneborg's Engine Shop
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Old 07-11-2017, 03:56 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Nothing wrong with sand casting.

Sand casting is still a common manufacturing method. Using sand limits your detail size and how thin the walls can get, but otherwise is well understood and quite reliable.

Raw cast aluminum strength and durability is primarily based on the metallurgy, cooldown time, plus any thermal conditioning, not the method of containing the molten metal in the desired shape until it solidifies.

For high-end turbocharged engines, you can get some metallurgical improvements in your casting by using semi-permanent molds where the bulk exterior of the casting is formed by a metal mold. The more rapid chilling that the metal surface causes in the melt has an effect at the grain level in the metal as it crystallizes/solidifies, and that can give you higher mechanical properties.

For a normally-aspirated aluminum block gasoline engine, no trouble at all with sand castings.

Same for pistons, iron rods, iron cranks, etc. All the parts end up a bit bigger and less detailed than is possible with more precise methods, but you can make a perfectly serviceable engine with sand castings.

Most of your reliability will be based on the cleaning, inspection and secondary machining processes. If sand is left in, that will grind stuff up. If there's porosity not found, it could crack or leak. If the machining is done poorly, etc.

The rest of the plant could be a CKD factory, not sure, no way to verify:Jalopnik

CKD has been used in many places to bootstrap a manufacturing base. Sometimes you have to get the money flowing and get used to procedures before you invest in tooling, etc. to get equivalent local capacity.
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Old 07-11-2017, 07:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The guy's been busy:

Photos: Kantanka Equipment / Machine – made in Ghana by Apostle Dr. Kwadwo Safo ( Star of Africa ) – Click to view more — Africa Redemption Magazine

The theory that Ghanian materials are shipped to China for pre-processing suggests why the fit and finish of the SUV are light-years ahead of the armored car and robot army.
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Flathead Fords had sand-cast blocks. It works if you get all the sand out of the cooling passages.
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Old 07-11-2017, 10:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by freebeard View Post
The guy's been busy:

Photos: Kantanka Equipment / Machine – made in Ghana by Apostle Dr. Kwadwo Safo ( Star of Africa ) – Click to view more — Africa Redemption Magazine

The theory that Ghanian materials are shipped to China for pre-processing suggests why the fit and finish of the SUV are light-years ahead of the armored car and robot army.
________

Flathead Fords had sand-cast blocks. It works if you get all the sand out of the cooling passages.
That's a great link, hey. Dude has been busy. Kantanka "toilet roll dispenser"! The man is a FORCE! Clearly. Lol. But I think these pics you found exhibit a long development of his enterprises. There is one shot featuring a sign from a tech fest in 2002. And the wooden motorcycle (so whimsical).

Maybe his manufacturing capability has been improving in fit and finish, too.

EDIT:
CHECK THIS OUT!



And this wild bio piece:
http://africarm.org/publications/apostle-safo/
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See my car's mod & maintenance thread and my electric bicycle's thread for ongoing projects. I will rebuild Black and Green over decades as parts die, until it becomes a different car of roughly the same shape and color. My minimum fuel economy goal is 55 mpg while averaging posted speed limits. I generally top 60 mpg. See also my Honda manual transmission specs thread.




Last edited by California98Civic; 07-11-2017 at 10:27 PM..
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Old 02-24-2019, 01:48 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Just another obscure Chinese vehicle assembled from CKD kits with a handful of locally-sourced components in order to qualify for some local content rule and be deemed a national car. But the effort behind the making of the engine, even though it's in such way, must be recognised.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fingie View Post
Machining a block is common today, but for example a lot of older stationary engines were often sand-cast.
Sand-cast might still justify for low-volume production. In the end, making its own engine is still a matter of pride for smaller automakers, so that may explain why it had a locally sand-cast engine instead of simply getting one shipped along the CKD kit.
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Old 02-25-2019, 04:35 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Anyone able to name the machine tools and hand tools in use with specificity? The processes in casting the block?
'Cincinatti'.

Blocks are easy, I wanted to see them make that crankshaft. Warning: If you turn on the highly entertaining subtitles, wait until after 0:28.
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Old 02-28-2019, 12:09 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Blocks are easy, I wanted to see them make that crankshaft.
A crankshaft can also be cast instead of forged.

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