Maybe its just my bank holiday beer-clouded mind, or some other random thought process going on, but I have been thinking (and in the pub earlier, talking about) cylinder heads and cylinder head gaskets.
Now these cheeky little chappies (the gaskets I mean!) can be a wee bit troublesome. A couple of examples are the Renault Megane mk1 1.6 8v engine, Rover K-Series and I'm sure theres plenty more. One thing is for sure - those engines don't like them gaskets much!
OK, now I'm rambling on. The point I was trying to convey in the pub (and, err, now!) is why don't the car manufacturers produce a one piece engine? That is, head and block as a unit? Surely in this "day and age" it is possible? Theres no real reason for the two to be seperate is there? After all, the crank is bolted on from below, so the pistons could be introduced to the block from below. A clever machining, err, machine could both cut the bores and machine then the combustion chambers. The valve guides could be machined from above. Surely all feasible.
Unless I've missed some really obvious technical problems with this (quite quite possible, I know!) it seems like a really good idea. And the point to this ramble of course... No head gasket problems!
OK I've had my musing/rambling, maybe I should cart myself off to bed now and leave you all in peace. Thanks for reading if you have gotten this far!