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DLC coatings

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There has been mention of coatings and other surface treatments for con rods in previous RET Monitor articles, and in the articles on con rods in Race Engine Technology magazine (see issues 40 and 58). At the recent Autosport Engineering show in Birmingham, England, I discussed the matter of rod coatings with a supplier, who showed me a couple of con rods he had to hand. The supplier explained to me that the con rods were coated with diamond-like carbon (DLC) with the aim of reducing...

Nose feed

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The use of nose-feed crankshafts has been mentioned before, both in these RET-Monitor articles and in Race Engine Technology magazine issue 49. It is certainly not a new concept, having been used in the Rolls-Royce Merlin engines* with great success, nor is their use limited to the highest level of motor racing, having been used with success in LM P1 and LM P2 sportscar racing as well as some production motorcycle engines. The idea behind them is simple: the oil is introduced to the...

Fuel flow measurement

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Controversial it may be, but the FIA's push to make Formula One more relevant to the roadcar world does seem to be having an impact. Take KERS for instance. Introduced in 2009, outlawed in 2010 and reintroduced for 2011, there must be hardly an OEM vehicle manufacturer anywhere who doesn't have some form of energy recovery programme of one form or another. Likewise, the rules for 2014 stipulating not the maximum amount of fuel to be used during a race (as has hitherto been the norm)...

Error, and trial and error?

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"One Man's Dream - The Britten Bike Story!" is the title of the DVD that goes alongside the biography of John Britten, the inventor of the Britten V1000, the legendary self-build race bike from the early 1990s that was able to threat the major manufacturers' superbikes for the podium. In this article I would like to show the inventiveness that small/low-level racing teams need for them to progress in their racing classes. Professional teams, with professional-level budgets,...

Liner wear

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As in all mechanical systems when adjacent parts in contact move relative to each other, wear will inevitably take place. Even in the best designs, lubrication only serves to delay the onset of damage, and failure of one form or another will always occur. The interface between piston/piston ring and the cylinder bore is a perfect example. In reviewing wear therefore it is perhaps necessary to distinguish between what might be termed normal and abnormal events. Abnormal wear might be...