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Bruce's recent post on 8 and 16 cylinder engines made me think of Hans Mezger's 1972 Institute of Mechanical Engineers paper on "The Development of the Porsche Type 917 Car by Han Mezger, Dipl Ing". But I couldn't find it as a single pdf without having to join the Institute's library! However I did found it in amongst a whole lot of other 917 magazine articles from the time. For those that see the 917 as one of the coolest cars ever, I think it's worth downloading this pdf, even if just to read Mezger's paper: http://porschecarshistory.com/wp-content/old/biblio/17/Porsche-917.PDF
For all their engineering greatness, Porsche still managed to give many "WTF what was going through their head?" moments. Probably one of their greatest fumbles were the cam chain tensioners in the pre '84 flat sixes. This is surprising on two counts: Others car companies managed to deliver reliable hydraulic actuated tensioners, why did it take Porsche so long? Were they too proud to admit there was a problem?Surely the profitable sales of retro fit kits through their parts section should have triggered a fix on the production line before 1984? Did they despise their 911 buyers that much? I don't think the expectation that the 928 would take over from the 911 excuses their lack of action at all. The following Peter Morgan YouTube video explains Mezger's cam chain tensioner original design and the eventual solution quite nicely. Solution for pre '84 cars? Retrofitting a Carrera 3.2 tensioner kit seems to be the proven approach.