THE B&S TYPE PB ENGINE


B&S Type PBCliff Ingold purchased his Briggs & Stratton Type PB engine in 2014 from Jim Smith, a collector who was downsizing his collection of engines and garden tractors. It remained untouched until 2015, when Cliff got around to examining it more closely and researching its background. It was then that he realized what a really interesting engine he had. Cliff’s Type PB is Serial # 19520, manufactured in August, 1927.

There was a happy convergence of talent and resources in 1908 when Stephen F. Briggs and Harold M. Stratton formed the partnership that eventually became the largest manufacturer of gasoline engines in the world. The Briggs & Stratton Corporation achieved early success with automotive products such as igniter switches, coil boxes and locks and keys.

In 1919, the company acquired the A.O. Smith Motor Wheel. This was a motorized wheel which could be attached to the back of a bicycle or a cart. Briggs & Stratton developed the Flyer, which was basically a platform of wooden slats on four wheels with a steering apparatus and backrests for two slender individuals. The Motor Wheel was attached to the back of the Flyer to produce a simple vehicle which was marketed from 1919 to 1924 with some success.

The engine on the Motor Wheel led to the development of the Briggs & Stratton Type P Engine, which revolutionized the four-cycle gas engine industry. Within a short period of time, the Type P “Portable” Engine was used in a wide variety of applications such as washing machines, garden tractors,  cultivators, generators, etc. Variations of Type P engines continued to be used as late as World War II.

The Briggs & Stratton Type P engine was a four-cycle, one-horsepower, F-head, single cylinder engine with a 2.5-inch bore and a 2.5-inch stroke. There was no blower housing and it had an external cooling fan.

The Briggs & Stratton Type PB engine was derived from the Motor-Wheel engine and was a variation of the Type P engine. The Type PB had four large threaded holes on the side of the crankcase for mounting and the cylinder could be detached from the crankcase. The power-take-off was taken from the camshaft; this design acted as a reduction gear. Moving parts were lubricated by an oil pump and a splash system and the engine had a Tillotson carburetor. The Type PB was produced from 1923 to 1935.