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Internal Fire and Diesel's Engine


If you want to understand how the engine in your favorite machine came to exist, this two-book combo is a critical addition to your library! 


Internal Fire a bronze winner of a 2022 IPPY (Independent Publisher Book Award) in Reference!

Internal Fire is the captivating history of the internal combustion engine and the creative individuals who brought it to life. From gunpowder to diesel, the development of these early powerhouses has been recorded from all sides. The influences of new technologies, patents, and obtainable fuels, as well as a growing understanding of the very nature of heat itself are all explored. 

Internal Fire is not intended as a textbook, but as the well-researched and readable chronicle of a mechanical servant that has greatly influenced life in the 20th century and beyond.

You will find in this comprehensive book:
■          Gunpowder and Steam
■          Air Engines
■          Thermodynamics: Carnot Charts a Course
■          Patents: Origin and Influence
■          Internal-Combustion Engines: 1791-1813
■          Searching and Perfecting: 1820-1860
■          The Genesis of an Industry
■          Otto and Langen
■          Otto's Four-Stroke Cycle
■          Brayton and His "Ready Motor"
■          The Two-Stroke Cycle
■          Gas and Gasoline Engines to 1900
■          Oil Engines: An Interim Solution
■          Rudolf Diesel: The End of the Beginning

"This new and well-researched work by Lyle Cummins has at last provided a readable account of the work and people concerned in the search for a more efficient heat engine cycle."
– The Newcomen Society Bulletin

"Thoroughly researched and eminently readable."
– The Institute of Mechanical Engineers

"Fascinating tour through the early efforts to design a practical internal-combustion engine."
– Road & Track


C. Lyle Cummins Jr. continues his series on the internal combustion engine's heritage in Diesel's Engine. This engaging book is a fascinating and comprehensive history of the diesel engine, written by the son of Cummins Engine Co. founder, Clessie Cummins.

This is a companion book to Internal Fire: The Internal Combustion Engine 1673-1900 and covers in dramatic detail the entire sweep of Rudolf Diesel's original ideas: the struggles to perfect the diesel engine, and the creation of an international industry that brought the world's most efficient motor to market. Illustrated with black and white photos and period line drawings, this is a must-read for any serious enthusiast for engine and transportation technology. 

Cummins is uniquely qualified to tell the diesel story. Raised in the family of America's automotive diesel pioneer, his career as a mechanical engineer includes the design, development and marketing of diesel engine retarders and fuel systems for which he was granted five US patents. He has received several notable awards for his writings on I-C engine history. Cummins has devoted over two decades exhaustively researching his subject in corporate and museum archives throughout Europe and the United States to provide this definitive history of the diesel.

“ ... eminently readable, even by the mechanically innocent, treating his sub­ject with humor, understanding and affec­tion." –Road & Track

"This new book is an enjoyable and informative . . . treatment of the subject, from its conception in the mind of Rudolf Diesel . . . until 1918. The author is eminently qualified to write on this subject."­–Waterways Journal

[It's] 'user­-friendly,' and well worth the time spent for the sheer volume of information included."– Gas Engine Magazine

"It's a treasure trove of information . . . In short, the world will owe a big round of thanks to Lyle Cummins . . . for completing this very impressive work." Wheels of Time, American Truck Historical Society

Product details

Title: Internal Fire and Diesel's Engine
Octane Press
Publication date:
Monday, October 17, 2022
6 × 9 × 3 in
Retail Price: