Barney Navarro Rambler turbo six parts bought at auction

On 14 July 2005 the remaining contents of Navarro Engineering's shop in Los Angeles (Glendale) was auctioned off, almost all of it reasonably ordinary machine shop equipment, plus his twin-turbo Rambler six, a bunch of Rambler engine parts, and a few scattered pieces of what may be the Indy car.

The indy motor went to a private collector for $15,000; pictures of it are here.

I haven't inventoried the lot yet, but I did get: one "R&D" numbered head, with obviously monstrous flow with matching cast stainless turbo/tuned-port injection manifold; three or four TE06 turbos (used, but taped up and clean); a new-sealed TE06 rotor assembly; many FI parts; a nice-looking block (used) with matching wet-sump pan (so it's not a spare Indy block); Navarro timing covers, balancers, oil pumps (wet and dry sump), plus a few hundred pounds of unsorted, dusty miscellany. All for the Rambler six.

Nearly none of it is junk; it looks like "keeper" stuff set aside. Most of it is boxed, bagged, oiled, labelled, sealed, marked, etc for reuse. A bunch of forged pistons, used, but nearly new, barely scuffed. A nice-looking crank that ran dry, journals all scored, but probably .005" or so, like rough sandpaper, all wrapped up oiled and stored.

There are two heads; one looks like a heavily ported stock part, it's got a Rambler part number. The other is very special, with monstrous ports. It's a very pretty casting, a lot of care went into making it. However, it is not identical to the Indy motor; that head has little decorative cast dots in the webbing between the ports on the top of the head; this one does not. Unfortunately the casting numbers are under the valve cover so I'll never know what's in the Indy motor.

Another buyer got the other lot, which had a lot of race-car goodies in it; he gave me a box of Rambler gaskets (thanks!). He has another "R&D"-numbered head, I forgot to photo it, but I'll get the numbers from him when I talk to him. Maybe he'll part with the con rods and pistons...

Yet another buyer got the Hallibrand rear, which was presumably from the Indy car; the motor still has the multi-plate clutch driven side (the grooved bucket), more on this below.

I paid $500 for my lot, with tax and fee just under $600 total; the other went for $500 also, I stopped bidding at $400, since I'm already basically spending next month's rent money or something. But in the lot of Rambler stuff were, it turns out, a lot of Hallibrand gears, half-shafts, etc. I sold them all to the buyer of the Hallibrand for $250 -- practically free. Eh. In theory I could eBay then or whatever but the value is really as a complete rear (both as "parts" and Rambler history), a bunch of Rambler Indy disk plates, gear sets, etc too obscure. I also sold him a box of used Aeroquip fittings for $20, so my total outlay for all my historic Rambler turbo six parts totalled $330 -- an unbelievable bargain.

In the next few weeks I'll have it at least partially sorted out. It looks like I'm going to be building a turbo motor in the near future...



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