Book reviews, September 1958, September 1958

“The Ford Ten Competition Engine”, by Philip H. Smith, A.M.I. Mech.E. 136 pp., 8 11/16 in. by 5 3/8 in. (G. T. Foulis & Co. Ltd., 7, Milford Lane, Strand, London, W.C.2. 18s. 6d.)

From the reliable pen of Philip Smith comes this comprehensive tuning manual relating to the Ford Ten engines. It covers a description of the basic engine, elementary tuning principles, dismantling and checking, reassembly, modifications, special tuning items like h.c. heads, alloy heads, induction system alterations, special exhaust manifolds, stronger valve springs, etc., special manifolds and twin carburetter layouts, valve timing, carburation, including individual carburetter tuning (S.U.s, Solex, Zenith), the lubrication system, supercharging, ignition. etc., etc. The book is thus comprehensive, aided by comprehensive illustrations.

There are useful appendices, detailing technical data, nut tightening, torque data, approximate percentage of power increases with various basic modifications, a directory of suppliers and the 1,172 Formula in full.

So this is a book very worthwhile to owners of Fords and Ford engine’s who require more than the 30,1-h.p. (we like that 0,1) arranged for by the manufacturer.—W. B.

“The Vanwall Story,” by Louis Klemantaski and Michael Frostick. 63 pp., 10 1/8 in. by 7 1/8 in. (Hamish Hamilton Ltd., 90, Great Russell Street, London, W.C.1. 18s.)

This account of Tony Vandervell’s courageous entry into modern motor-racing, which bore full fruit by 1957—as it continues to do this year—covers little new ground and is, in places, told rather childishly. The book, therefore, relies on the interesting pictures of Thin Wall and Vanwall achievements to carry it along. It is a convenient and quick “refresher course” rather than a serious work of reference.

“Secret Bomber,” by W/Cdr. H. P. “Sandy” Powell. 215 pp. 7 1/2 n. by 5 in. (Allan Wingate (Publishers) Ltd., 12, Beauchamps Place, London, S.W.3. 13s. 6d.)

After giving us two very good non-fiction flying books, “Sandy” Powell has turned novelist. It is unique for a famous test pilot to write successfully, and a novel at that. Yet, if “Secret Bomber” hasn’t quite the polish of a book by a professional novelist it is a cracking good, quite feasible story that holds the reader from beginning to end. The characters live, there is the excitement of suspense and while reading this lively story the reader gets an accurate insight into almost every aspect of modern test-flying procedure, even to what it feels like to demonstrate a new aeroplane at the Farnborough Show and to play against the R.A.F. in your firm’s cricket team. Because “Sandy” Powell is a test pilot before he is a writer all this rings very true.

Bentley enthusiasts in particular, and vintage car advocates in general, are likely to be vastly amused by this story, in which, too the love interest is not neglected, while Esso and Horlicks should be eternally grateful to the author!—W. B.

“M.G. Cars,” by C. P. Davidson. 196 pp. 7 1/2 in. by 5 in. (C. Arthur Pearson Ltd., Tower House, Southampton Street, London, W.C.2.10s. 6d.)

This book covers the servicing and repair of all M.G. models from 1934 onwards. It is copiously illustrated with over 119 pictures and diagrams, including wiring charts.

“Who’s Who in the Motor Industry,” Third Edition. Edited by F. J. Findon. 544 pp. Dy, 8vo. (Temple Press Ltd., Bowling Green Lane, E.C.1. 42s.)

This completed revised edition of the motoring “Who’s Who” is a useful and comprehensive guide to the Industry, its, personalities, subsidiary companies, its Press, its journalists, societies, trade organisations and Government departments. There are some 1,250 biographies of motoring celebrities.