Gas and Petroleum Engines {Free eBook}

Here is one for older students interested in internal combustion engines: Gas and Petroleum Engines edited by A. G. Elliott. This free public domain work was part of the Whittaker’s Electro-Mechanical Series, so it takes a hands-on practical viewpoint of gasoline engines. Because it was published in 1898, there are limits to its usefulness when it comes to today’s car engines. However there is plenty of history and basic knowledge about how internal combustion engines work to keep most students interested.

The editor hoped that this volume would be:

…especially welcome to non-technical readers who like to keep ahead of the times in matters of such universal importance.

One chapter deals exclusively with the theory of the gas engine, but the non-technical mind should have no fear, for mathematics have been as far as possible avoided. It may also serve to dispel wrongful notions concerning the practical limits of the efficiency of gas engines which, we are sorry to say, exist even among persons living in a scientific atmosphere.

Topics covered include:

  • The history of the gas engine.
  • How a gas engine works.
  • Engines with carburetors
  • Maintenance of gas engines.
  • Several others.

One of the great features of this free book is the illustrations! Many of the 52 illustrations are of what would now be considered historical engines. However, if you are looking to understand the history of internal combustion engines, you will find help here.

We have added this title to our Internal Combustion Engine unit study.

Free eBook

Additional Resources

Internal Combustion Engines
Free course at MIT.

Internal Combustion Engine: A Unit Study
Printables, activities, and more!

Don’t Miss a Thing!

Subscribe to receive updates and additions.

Learn to Write. Write.:

Write Something Every Day

Tools for the Homeschool Handy-Mom

At DIY Homeschooler we provide encouragement and resources to those homeschool handy-moms paving their own way — solutions to help you “do-it-yourself” when it comes to tutoring your children. Learn more.

The Latest

Affiliate Disclosure

Throughout this site you will find affiliate links to items that we trust and enthusiastically recommend. If you decide to use these links to make a purchase, we do receive a small compensation that helps support this site. Thank you! Read our full affiliate disclosure to learn more.

Keep Reading

Create a website or blog at