George Herbert Skinner (also known as Bert) and Thomas Carlyle Skinner (also known as Carl) created the Skinners Union (SU) brand. Experimenting with fuel mixtures in the early 1900s they made their first carburetor in 1904 and went on to form The SU Company in 1910. Carl Skinner had two children, Barbara (1911) and Peter (1914), both would become avid motorsport fans and drivers in their own right, but it was Barbara who had the talent to be naturally competitive at a time when women racing drivers had only recently been permitted to compete against men.
When it comes to our classic British cars, SU carburetors are one of the common denominators. Sure there are Zenith Strombergs, Amals, and others plus fuel injection, but the SU is the norm. And when it comes to SU carburetor experts, Joe Curto is the man. Joe Curto provides carburetor rebuilding. He also provides a full range of replacement and repair parts. and now, thankfully, he is making much of his knowledge available to us via videos on YouTube. Our video this week is a great introductory one with Joe discussing the different varieties of SU carburetors. After watching this you will not be able to stop yourself from going out to look at your car to make sure of what is bolted up to that manifold. Joe also now offers float bowl koozies. The koozies are used to prevent […]
Abingdon Spares will be hosting British Carburetor expert Joe Curto on Saturday, March 31, 2018. Joe is known nationally as well as internationally as an authority on SU carburetors. Joe will be at the Abingdon Spares shop in Deep River, Connecticut, for an informal presentation on SU carbs of all types. There will be a particular emphasis on the SU carburetors used on post-war MGs. Joe will explain the how’s and why’s of British carburetion. He will also provide tips on carburetor maintenance and tuning, as well as information on the do’s and don’ts of modifying your current setup. There will, of course, be lots of time for questions and answers from the audience. Joe is well known for his guidance and advice to both the expert and the bewildered MG owner on the subject of SUs. Mark your calendars now for […]
Burlen Ltd, the world’s only manufacturer of genuine SU (Skinner’s Union), AMAL and Zenith carburetors, is celebrating a hugely successful promotion of the flagship race of the 2017 Brands Hatch Mini Festival. Earlier in July, the Salisbury-based company promoted the Historic Mini Races – named ‘The SU Carburetters Cup for Pre-66 Minis’ – and pulled out all the stops to create an event that will live long in the memory.
Burlen Ltd, the world’s only manufacturer of genuine SU (Skinners Union), AMAL and Zenith carburetors, fuel pumps and spares, is celebrating a record-breaking 2016 and continuing to demonstrate remarkable growth. The Salisbury-based company enjoyed a hugely impressive annual turnover of £5.2 million in 2016 – smashing its previous best records and its own start-of-year target in the process. Burlen has an incredibly rich history with products dating back over one hundred years and a stellar reputation to uphold, which is of the utmost importance to the Burnett brothers.
Burlen Ltd, the world’s only manufacturer of genuine SU (Skinner’s Union), AMAL and Zenith carburetors, is gearing up for an exciting 2017, with an innovative and truly ground-breaking product set to roll out of the workshop. This game-changing launch from Burlen will be an all-new and complete fuelling system that includes a fuel injection device working inside an SU carburetor, and it’s set to completely shake up the market when it’s released in the summer.
Congratulations to Mike Harvey who has been awarded the Pre-War Car Michael Sedgwick Award 2016 for his publication ‘Skinners Union – A History of the skinner family and S.U Company‘. The award, that takes the form of a plaque and £250 given by the Michael Sedgwick Memorial Trust, hopes to ‘encourage new research into motoring history and to make the finding available to the public’. The winner has to demonstrate excellence in research, presentation, readability and novelty, that will materially further our understanding of the subject. A short list of nominated books were assessed by a panel of judges, who are themselves respected authors and highly knowledgeable enthusiasts. The panel was headed by chairman Guy Loveridge, motoring author and broadcaster and Deputy Chairman of the Guild of Motoring Writers. ‘Skinner’s Union – A history of the Skinner family and the […]
For our Video of the Week this go round I want to go back to something that gives folks a lot of headaches – tuning a dual S.U. carburetor setup. We are also going back to an old friend for this, John Twist of University Motors. While this video specifically addresses the HIF4 carbs of the MGB, the same basic principals of tuning and balancing apply to all dual SU setups. We covered the basic theory and operation of the S.U. side drafts in the past, but this video is more specific to their actual tuning. [Corrected, see below] By the way, do you know what the “I” in the “HIF” stands for? It means “integrated”, as in the float bowl is in-line with the carburetor itself, in this case directly under it. If the float bowl is to the side […]
Maybe it is the fact that I have been playing with a lot of carburetors recently – both SU and Zenith-Stromberg. Or perhaps it is the fact that I had a friend ask how such a simple design could work. They literally stared at me in dumbfounded amazement when I explained the basic principles by which our carbs work. But, whatever the case, there are a lot of people who consider carburetors a bit of black magic, and I thought this video from Moss might help sort that out. To that end, our Video of the Week (VotW) is “Side Draft Carburetors and How They Work” from Moss Motors. Now in addition to providing a wealth of great parts, Moss also does its part (get it?) to keep our cars on the road by producing a series of videos on […]
Burlen Ltd, maintainers of the S.U. brand, are happy to announce the release of ‘Skinner’s Union – A History of the Skinner Family and the S.U Company‘, a book which gives a comprehensive history of the S.U. Company and the members of the Skinner family involved. This new book by Mike Harvey comprises over 300 pages with copious photographs, drawings & illustrations (many not previously published). The book focuses on the period from 1908 when the leather bellow carburetter was introduced, through to Carl Skinner’s retirement in 1947 when the S.U. carburetter company became part of the Nuffield Organisation. The book also covers Barbara and Peter Skinner’s hill-climbing and other racing activities and gives details on the skinner specials, as well as the companies contributions during WW2 manufacturing carburetters used on Rolls-Royce Merlin engines for the RAF. This book is available […]
Burlen Ltd has been awarded the status of ‘Credibly Green’ by an Environmental Consultancy going by the same name. Burlen Ltd is responsible for the manufacture and distribution of all SU and Amal Carburetters Worldwide, under the names of The SU and Amal Carburetter Companies. “We wanted to see if we could make improvements to our ‘Green Credentials’ without sacrificing our business objectives” said Mark Burnett, Burlen’s Managing Director, “In the automotive sector it is very difficult to see how you can achieve this as it is not usually recognised as being a particularly green industry”. Mark continued, “We wanted to find someone to advise us who could take a simple approach to a complex subject without baffling us with science and that is where Credibly Green came in”. Credibly Green offer a tailored Environmental Reporting Service focusing on Energy, […]