Guiberson Diesel A-1020 Engine

The Guiberson Diesel A-1020 is a radial engine tested in 1930 for use in military aircraft. In 1929, Dallas-based Guiberson expanded their petroleum business by establishing the Guiberson Diesel Engine Company. Their idea of building radial diesel engines for military aircraft came closer to reality when the popular aviator Art Goebel flew a successful test flight with the Guiberson Diesel Engine in 1930. Goebel gained fame when he won the prestigious 1927 Oakland to Honolulu “Dole Derby” in 1927. 

In 1940, Guiberson fitted a Stinson SR-9 “Reliant” with a diesel to demonstrate to the US Army in anticipation of an upcoming wartime need for more aircraft engines. The Army did not acquire the engines for their aircraft since the diesel engines weighed more than gasoline engines developing the same amount of power.

Did you know?

The US Army equipped thousands of tanks with Guiberson diesel engines.

About this engine 

This Guiberson diesel A-1020 engine is on loan from the History of Aviation Collection, The University of Texas at Dallas, where it was donated by Hugh B. Williams. Portions of the engine are cutaway to show internal details, arrangement of intake and exhaust valves, valve springs, and size of pistons. Strongly rooted in Dallas, Texas aviation history, the engine is prominently displayed in the Museum’s Golden Age Gallery.
Guiberson Diesel Engine - front view
Engine Specifications: 320 hp, four stroke, 9-cylinder radial air cooled engine
Diameter: 46" over valve covers
Length: 34" including propeller hub and spinner
Left: Art Goebel with Waco aircraft after successful test flight of Guiberson Diesel, 1930
Right: Fred A. Thaheld, radial diesel engineer designer (L) and Samuel A. Guiberson, III (R) with Stinson SR-9 "Reliant" powered by Guiberson Diesel A-1020 in 1940. Image credit: DeGolyer Library, Southern Methodist University