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XKR Jaguar pistons

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Tony Gentilozzi is the sole engine builder for RSR Jaguar, running the combined GT class in American Le Mans Series (ALMS) competition. He's racing against other factory teams that have far more resources than he does and, in many instances, far more cars from which to learn. The Jaguar XKR engine is a 5 litre of about 500 hp, using a pair of air restrictors (29.92 mm) that keep his useable revs to 7000 rpm. Gentilozzi uses two different manufacturers' pistons as he zeroes in on the...

Tooling up

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The technology of the piston ring is evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Required to seal the gap between the piston and the cylinder wall, yet at the same time minimise the overall friction throughout the engine cycle at high temperatures and speeds of up to 4000 ft per second for long durations, if it works then don't fix it. Eventually, however, as engineers we will demand just that little bit extra - greater combustion pressures, smaller piston top lands, higher heat transfer...


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The use of aluminium in race engines is widespread; where it is allowed, it is generally used for structural castings and is also widely used for machined components. Pistons are also generally made from aluminium, and most race pistons are forged. Aluminium has a number of properties that make it an attractive material for use in race engines. For example, it has low density, and some alloys possess good specific strength (strength divided by density) and high thermal conductivity....

Non-running dynos and laser valve tracking

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In previous issues of RET-Monitor under this keyword, the focus has been on dynamometer systems designed for measuring running engines. This month the focus will be on systems that do not operate on a running engine, and specifically their use for monitoring movement in reciprocating components using laser measurement systems. The use of lasers to measure the movement of the valvetrain and other components is fairly well documented, however a brief summary is beneficial. In essence, a...

NASCAR and the gearbox of tomorrow

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It is hard to imagine that a current-generation racecar, in a leading race series, owes its gearbox design to a unit that first appeared in a roadcar in 1957. However, this is the case in NASCAR Cup, where the only approved gearbox designs still have to resemble the venerable Borg Warner ST10, first used by General Motors in the 1950s. The external appearance is where the similarity ends though, with the internals, provided by a number of manufacturers, bringing the design right up to...