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Kemp 1 cc models

The Kemp Engines company was established in 1946 at Gravesend in Kent, England. The founder of the business was Harold Kemp, a former employee of Short Brothers in nearby Rochester.

The company manufactured a surprising number of different models for such a small and relatively short-lived venture. Among these was a series of model diesels in the 1 cc displacement category. The initial design, whch appeared in mid 1947, was a crankshaft front rotary valve (FRV) model featuring a downdraft intake. It was followed in March 1948 by a completely re-designed 1 cc sideport model called the Eagle. This model featured very advanced cylinder porting for a sideport design, along with some other unusual design features. It appeared in two distinct variants, although the basic design remained unchanged. 

After the Kemp Engines business was taken over by a successor company, the K Model Engineering Co., in mid 1948, a further completely revised 1 cc design was introduced in December 1948 as the K Eagle Mk. II. This was an FRV design which used an updraft intake together with the "dog collar" cylinder attachment system which was a feature of the K 2 cc models and the 5 cc K Vulture which were also produced by the K Model Engineering Co. Unfortunately, the introduction of the K Eagle Mk. II coincided with the onset of severe financial problems for the company arising from the recognition of serious design flaws in the company's flagship model, the 5 cc K Vulture. The company never recovered from the fallout of this unhappy situation. As a result, the Eagle Mk. II only survived until May 1949, being withdrawn at that time after no more than perhaps 500 examples had been made. The K model engine range itself only survived for about a further year thereafter. 

The full story of the Kemp and K 1 cc models may be found in my earlier article on Ron Chernich's "Model Engine News" (MEN) web-site. An in-depth analysis and bench test of the initial variant from mid 1947 will appear in due course on this website.

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