Why I Love Straight Sixes

Chevy straight six 1

(first posted 4/24/2013)     Well, there’s a whole raft of reasons why I like straight sixes, like their intrinsic balance, better torque curve (per displacement) than a V8, and of course their distinctive sound. But here’s the best reason of all: they look so much better. One can readily see the whole engine; on both sides even. On a V8, too much is left to the imagination; for that matter, their undersides aren’t really interesting. But sixes have all their plumbing on full display, like this fine 1937 Chevy sporting a couple of Stromberg jugs posted at the Cohort by Bryce. Here’s a closer look, and then the other side too:

Chevy straight six close up(click for full size)

I’m so happy to live long enough to see sixes be cool again. When I was young, everyone yanked out the “stupid six” in their Chevy or whatever, and dropped in the inevitable V8. But who can bear to see another WalMart hot rod with a 350/350 in it? The world really is becoming a better place.

Chevy Straight six 2

Spark plugs lined up at attention, ready for inspection! Obviously, this engine has benefited from the house of Offenhauser. But its things like these side plates, that can be removed to expose the whole side of the block, that makes old sixes so endearing. Now to hear it running.