Which oil pump for a Triumph Spitfire? Angled or Straight?
There are a couple of choices for Triumph Spitfire/Herald oil pumps if we ignore the very early small bodied pumps.
The difference between the two is related to the oil pickup pipe. The majority of Spitfires up until the 1500 version had a straight oil pickup like this :
Whilst at around commission number FM59900 the pump changed to look like this :
There has been a bit of debate on this over the years, people say that the angled pump goes deeper into the sump and is therefore better. Also, that it is a later development and therefore an improvement.
However, I’m pretty sure they’re wrong.. The angled pump points to the rear left-hand corner of the sump, which is just where you don’t expect oil to be when braking or turning left.
The straight pump is more central, it’s not perfect as it’s still over on the left a bit, but it’s better. When fitting one be sure to adjust the pickup pipe to be as deep as possible (with the mesh just about touching the bottom of the sump), this can be fiddly with the engine in and involves trial fitting the sump multiple times but it’s easier and cheaper than regrinding a crank.
I’m pretty sure the switch to the angled pump was more to do with parts standardisation than an engineering improvement, so if you get the choice I’d go with the straight pickup to help prevent oil surge under heavy braking/cornering.
They’re also cheaper…