...... a name in model engines that is synonymous with incredible
power, precision, robustness of construction and exquisite
quality. Rossi engines came into the world with a single purpose: to
excel in competition. Over the years the successes achieved have
made the name Rossi revered and legendary among connoisseurs of fine
To many hobby enthusiasts great success in competition may not seem important. What is important, though, is that the tremendous demands of top competition produce the best engines. Nowhere else but in the quest for maximum performance will the highest standards of power, precision and durability be achieved. Quite apart from the legendary power of Rossi engines, this translates to extremely long engine life, the best in reliability and the ability to stay together where other engines won't. Whatever your application, sport or the most serious competition, aircraft, helicopter, boat or car, Rossi offers the finest in model engine technology.
The engines offered by AXE Motor Rossi and RAL Micron today represent the continuation of a very proud tradition. Here follows a brief outline of the history that made the Rossi name what it is today.
The story begins in the 1950s, when the brothers Ugo and Cesare worked in the business of their father, Giovanni Rossi, a watchmaker. There can be little doubt that the very high standards of minutely intricate craftsmanship demanded by this work would have played no small part in the awareness of the need for great precision that developed in the minds of the two brothers. This awareness would have stood them in excellent stead in their quest to extract maximum performance from the SuperTigre G20/15 control line speed engines. The SuperTigre G20/15 glow engine became the class of the field in the FAI F2A class of control line speed when Amato Prati set a new world record for this class in 1954. Giovanni Rossi supported his two sons in their engine tuning work until they reached the stage where they were able to convert their great talent and flair into a viable livelihood.
In 1960 Ugo Rossi became world champion in the F2A Speed class with an unprecedented speed from his G20 powered New Devil design. 1960 was also the year in which Fratelli Rossi, the company founded by the two brothers, was set up in Cellatica. Apart from their engine tuning work, they offered custom made speed pans and aluminium spinners to suit the SuperTigre G20 and the New Devil design. It was not long before the first engine bearing the Rossi name was made. The story is not an uncommon one seen against the background of racing in Italy. Just as Enzo Ferrari came to prominence by showing his great drive and talent in the racing division of Alfa Romeo before going on to make legendary racing machines bearing his own name, just so did Ugo Rossi excel in his work with the finest Italian racing engines of his day before going on to write new chapters in the story of the power that could be extracted from model engines.
In 1970 Rossi offered the first .15 speed engine equipped with a tuned exhaust that anyone could buy. This changed the face of F2A speed flying forever. Up until then the event had been the preserve of a few factory employed designers having the facilities to make engines specially designed to run on a tuned exhaust pipe. Almost no-one else had access to these engines and the only way in which the rest could hope to try to compete was to conduct their own experiments with home-made tuned pipes and much modified existing open exhaust engines. With the arrival of the Rossi R15 engine the field had been leveled, and these magnificent engines shone in the hands of speed fliers from all over the world. That is the true Rossi legacy: to make the most advanced engine technology available to everyone.
As the years after 1970 rolled on, the successes of the Rossi R15 established the Rossi name as the creator of the finest in model engine technology available, and this was crowned by the list of world champions who won with Rossi engines and became legends in their own right. Names such as Ugo Dusi, Giancarlo Ricci, Emil Rumpel, Juergen Lenzen, Pietro Fontana, Luis Parramon and Sandor Szegedi are deservedly great names in international model flying. To view some archival photographs from this very special history, please visit our photo gallery.
Rossi's superb standards of precision, durability and power had been established and accepted by the world as the highest, but Ugo Rossi set himself other goals still. With the introduction of the first CNC machines, an investment involving millions of dollars, production could be increased not only with no loss of quality, but with a higher degree of precision than had been possible before. Where most engine manufacturers had employed injection moulded crankcases, which is a relatively cheap and easy method of making them, the very first Rossis had used sand cast cases. This is a much more expensive method, but it produced crankcases that were far stronger. In more recent years Rossi crankcases have been manufactured by means of an investment process, which produces cases that are as strong as the older sand cast ones, but without the slightest pin-holing. Rossis's commitment to producing the best from all points of view remains unchanged.
In 1982 Cesare Rossi left the company to begin his own, specialising in the manufacture of racing car engines. With the dissolving of the original partnership Ugo Rossi set up Rossi Elettromeccanica srl in an expanded factory building comprising 5000 square metres and employing the latest in CNC technology, including several Swiss working centres, Japanese lathes in addition to the finest precision grinding and milling machines.
After the death of Ugo Rossi on November 30th, 2002 the company was re-named AXE Motor Rossi, with Alessandro Rossi, who had managed and developed the company's expansion programme, at the helm. The proud tradition initiated by Ugo Rossi remains at the centre of the new company's aspirations and the commitment to the pursuit of excellence remains unchanged.
ROSSI ENGINES: PRECISION OF MANUFACTURE
Precision has often been listed as one of the main hallmarks of Rossi quality, but perhaps we should highlight a few of the key areas where our standards place our engines in a league that is head and shoulders above that of the competition.
The terrific power that has always been associated with Rossi engines would not be possible without the incredibly high standards of precision that we make it our business to maintain, but these standards are also responsible for the amazing reliability and long engine life that anyone buying a Rossi can expect with complete confidence. Every Rossi engine carries a 3-year warranty and this is a measure of our confidence that we gladly pass to you.
And now for a brief overview of the standards of quality control that are applied to make your Rossi engine the marvel of precision engineering that it is.
ABC PISTON & CYLINDER ASSEMBLIES:
Rossiâ€™s legendary achievements at the highest levels of international competition have included the use of superb ABC piston & cylinder metallurgy ever since the technology was first introduced. Consisting of a lapped aluminium piton running in a tapered brass cylinder whose inside face has been plated with hard chrome, this system was developed to allow racing engines to withstand the huge increases in rpm brought about by the introduction of the tuned exhaust pipe into the competition classes.
Although it was an innovation developed specifically for racing engines, it is yet another example where racing has provided the laboratory to develop technologies that would ultimately bring enormous benefits to all users. If operated with a reasonable degree of care an ABC piston & cylinder assembly should last almost forever. Minute re-growth of the piston as a result of expansion at operating temperature compensates for wear and the fit is maintained almost indefinitely under correct operating conditions. Attempts by several other manufacturers to replicate ABC technology have been less than successful, however, and many of these have resorted to metallurgies that are less durable and less expensive to manufacture.
Every Rossi user has the advantage of having an engine featuring a true ABC piston & cylinder assembly of the highest quality, but the story does not end there. As engine tuners have known for a very long time, the fit of the piston and cylinder is easily the larges factor in determining how well an engine is going to perform. At Rossi very expensive equipment is used to ensure that each piston is exactly matched to a corresponding sleeve. The tolerances that are employed during this selection process are measured in single microns. Similarly, the roundness of these components is checked to tolerances that are measurable by only the most precise measuring equipment. Cylinders are checked for parallelism using the same precise tolerances, thereby ensuring that there is zero distortion when they are eventually fitted to crankcases.
Each Rossi connecting rod is made from the finest ergal alloy available. The selection of this material and our design give you the best combination lightness for internal balance and strength possible. Connecting Rods are bushed with bronze alloy at both the big end and the small end to ensure the longest possible life, but equally important is the attention that we pay to correct crankpin and wrist pin clearances to prevent breakages and excessive wear. Ensuring that big end and small end holes are bored exactly parallel to within the minutest tolerances is undertaken with a degree of meticulousness that would astound anyone not familiar with practices at Rossi. Incredible precision in this area lies at the very heart of the power, reliability and long engine life that connoisseurs of fine machinery have come to expect from Rossi. Most engines produced for the mass market simply cannot even approach these standards and mediocre performance and short engine life are among the inevitable consequences of this.
Crankshafts are forged from the best materials possible using processes that ensure optimal grain flow and hardness. This results in crankshafts that are extremely resistant to bending and wear. They are then ground to the same tolerances described earlier. At no stage is anything left to chance. There are very well worked out procedures underlying each aspect of what we understand as Rossi quality!
For most engine manufacturers the manufacture of crankcases is a matter of employing a compatible aluminium alloy that makes for easy mass production by means of an injection moulding process. This may make good economic sense for the manufacturer, but the result is not the best for the engine concerned.
Injection moulded crankcases are not very strong or crash-resistant, but there are less obvious drawbacks associated with them too. Permanent expansion of the case after operating at running temperature for a while can affect the alignment of the internal components of the engine and undesirable consequences such as ball bearing failure and a sudden falling off in performance can result.
Rossi crankcases are cast from a special aluminium alloy having a high silicone content that makes them very strong and resistant to expansion. This unique alloy cannot be used in conventional mass production injection moulding processes and as a result Rossi crankcases are cast individually by hand using a specially developed gravity fed process. This is yet another case where our manufacturing costs are far higher than those of our competitors, but at no point in the manufacturing process is quality sacrificed in the interests of cutting costs. The decision to buy a Rossi engine is one that centres on value for money and not on price alone. However, as any long time Rossi user will tell you, by buying a Rossi you will score in every respect. It is to be hoped that our explanation of what goes into our engines will explain why this should be so. The best may cost a little bit more, but it is certainly worth considering what that little bit more buys in the case of Rossi engines!
The AXE engines are made for competition and are synonymous of incredible power, precision, robustness of construction, scrupulous assembling care, and exquisite quality.
The RAL engines are made to offer an economic line respecting the exquisite quality. Beginners can have an excellent, easy and reliability engine.