Silver Swallow engines

Silver Swallow 2.47 cc - later un-numbered model - left front view

I’m working on an article about the Silver Swallow engines from China. There has been some correspondence on this blog site under other headings, but it seems that it might be helpful to create a thread specifically for those engines. Does anyone out there have any knowledge of these unexpectedly nice little engines? In particular, information regarding serial numbers and the glow-plug models would be much appreciated!

32 thoughts on “Silver Swallow engines

  1. 4 engines 1 without serial number – the others are
    0830 671
    0704 671
    0837 8612 – this engine has no anodizing and appears original in this …
    all are good runners except maybe the first which has a large venturi insert – one day will make a smaller one. It actually makes more revs but is a little cantankerous to start cold.

  2. I always hear about the Silver Swallow diesels, of which I have a few. I also have Silver Swallow glow racing engines in .40, .15 and .09 size and have never heard of anyone else mention them. Does anyone have any info?

    1. Hi:
      Silver swallow is the nick name for jet fighter in that period in china.(Both Mig 15,Mig 17,Mig 19 have silver surface then).So ,Actually, the name silver swallow is not a certain brand but a series model engine developed for national aeroplane model sports.Yes they indeed have up to 40 sized engine but for .09?I’ve never seen one.
      But I’m quite sure that some factories producing silver swallow have .09 sized engine.Chineses industrial production at that age are assigned mission. not organized by comany .So ,there’s no definite link between factories to products


      1. So the same engine could be produced by a number of different factories? Interesting!! Many thanks for the information!



  3. Hi
    first time here. I have a silver swallow given to me years ago from Dave Brown when he worked at World Engines. It is NIB with wrench and spare venturi and mounting bolts. also has a very detailedinstruction manualin english and chinese. muff is anodised gold. disp is 2.47.It is of the same quality and fit as the Webra and taifun diesels I hve in my collection.

    1. Thanks, Tom! Does your engine have a serial number? Usually in two parts, split between the mounting lugs.



      1. Adrian
        Engine has no numbers anywhere Iwent over it with a magnifier.I also had the 1.5 but it moved on. I suspect these engines were at world engines as samples.I kept the 2.5 because that is the displacement I was collecting at the time. a lot of my super-tigres came from there.
        I also miss our friend Ron

  4. Hmmmm,

    Guess no one has info on the Silver Swallow racing glows. Front intake rear exhaust and screamers. Bummer! This was the only other place to look. Tried all the forums and no one knows anything about them. Is anyone interested in them? I can send pics.


  5. Well, I for one would be interested, Max! I could certainly add a photo or two to the existing Silver Swallow article in which I mentioned the Silver Swallow glows. I’ll be in touch.



  6. The Chinese Magazine “Model Airplane” sponsored by Chinese Society of Aeronautics and Astronautics (CSAA) had some good information on the history of the Yin Yan and related engines. The engine’s hisotry is covered Jan 2012, May 2012, Oct 2013, March 2015 and Apr 2015 in particular.

  7. Hi Adrian

    I have a silver swallow 2.47 moter .Came in the red and black box .Has an inspection certificate and gold pressed spanner , the engine with pressed lock bar ,flat galvinised prop washer, two venture inserts and needle come in a thick sealed plastic bag , no anodizing ,0852 and 8612 or 6612 stamped under the lugs half stamped over the holes. Has old style Chinese and English instruction .
    Not sure box and engine match up though. What do you reckon ,still in the bag

    Regards Alan

  8. Hi Adrian,

    I’ve got a Silver Swallow with a rather interesting copper colour anodised cooling jacket, turned locking lever and 5.5 choke. Serial No. 0252 68-2. After reading your in-depth article on this engine I wondered if a domestic oven gets hot enough to normalise the crankshaft? I thought the required temperature was between 850 and 900 C or is it not necessary to get it this hot to achieve the desired result? I’ve heard the MARZ diesels also benefit from this treatment

    1. Thanks for writing in, Chris! Yes, a domestic oven definitely gets hot enough to normalize shafts. 900 deg. C is way too hot – you’ll anneal it at that temperature! Between 500 and 550 degrees F (well within the range of the normal domestic oven( is all that it takes. Start with the shaft in a closed cold oven, warm it up to 550 degrees F (280 deg. C), leave it there for 2 hours and then switch off and allow it to cool at the pace of the still-closed oven. It will be blued by this treatment, but that’s what you want.

      The MARZ shafts do indeed benefit from this treatment also. I have yet to break a shaft which has been normalized in this way. However, there are no guarantees – just improved odds!



  9. Hi Adrian

    I’ve got a Silver Swallow with copper colour anodised cooling fins, turned alloy comp. locking lever and 5.5 mm choke. Serial No. 0252 68-2. Having read your article re nomalising the crankshaft, does it get hot enough in a domestic oven to do the job or is it stress relieving rather than full-on normalising? I’ve heard that the MARZ diesels also benefit from this.

  10. Attachment


    Little late in getting back to you, but here are some pics of the Silver Swallow racing glows. 1.5,2.5 and 6.5. I’ll try to get some better pics individually.

    Max T

    1. In my case, not a lack of interest at all – simply a matter of time. Yours was one of over 20 communications which were “active” at the time, and I simply don’t have time to respond in a timely manner. Keeping this whole effort going takes far more time, effort and money than you’d believe.

      Sorry about the impression of no interest ……………not true.

      1. Adrian

        I have what I believe to be an as new 1963 solid intake Yin Yan. No Venturi insert and top of the ‘flare’ is milled.It has the plain port side case and Yin Yan enscripted (English and Mandarin pictograph) starboard flank.

        Fits and limits are first class.

        Photo’s available if required to round out images of the production history in your excellent article.


  11. Attachment

    Yin Yan 2.47 c.c. circa 1963 or 1964.

    Die cast intake without alloy insert.

    All fits and limits executed to best model engineering standards.

  12. I recently purchased a Yin Yan 2.47 off Ebay not knowing anything about the line or maker. The ID marks are 65-12 & 284. I don’t believe it had ever been ran, so with some 30% castor oil break-in fuel I changed that ran it on a bench block. I’ve never seen an engine exhaust black oil before like this one. A good addition to my diesel collection.

  13. Attachment

    Under Yinyan this brand there are at least 6 or maybe more models of engine. Including glow racing. Some of them are well made . The one modified from diesel 1.5,2.5 to glow is meant to meet the US market need.They are not fully tested. Exclude this two and some reproduction right after cultural revolution,early produced yinyan are always suprise.
    I’ll paste a photos of Yinyan glow not commonly seen.

    1. Thanks for this, Yuancao! Do you have dates for the production of these models?

      Stay safe!!



      1. It would be a long list for all silver swallow Adrian ,I’ll try to find some information and get back. Also considering it’s produced in at least 3 factories in Shanghai and maybe more modified version in Chongqing and other cities, Also 2 large batches are made ,First in 1960s ,disturbed by riot,and then in 1980s , So it’s really hard to tell.
        At the very beginning Yinyan the most common model 2.5cc diesel model is called Shanghai No.1 engine produced in very small amount ,Then given a new brand and put to mass production,later the 1.5cc diesel . Stopped all production from late 1960s and restart with some of the worn or rusted mold stored for more than10 years,That’s part of the reason why their casting quality is so different.

        Thanks Andrian ,You take care as well

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *