The key to rapid development of internal combustion engine inlet ports and combustion chambers, both spark ignition and compression ignition, is the ability to gain an understanding of the in-cylinder flow field. This paper describes the design and development of a dynamic water flow analogy rig for rapid, low cost, characterisation of in-cylinder flow fields in standard production engines. The rig features a glass liner and glass piston crown. Piston and valves are driven by computer controlled stepper motors. Seeding particles are illuminated by a chopped laser sheet and still photographs, video and particle image velocimetry (PIV) are used to characterise the flow field. Flow characteristics determined under dynamic conditions in the water flow rig are compared with characteristics as determined by a traditional steady state airflow bench.