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Shaver's winning World of Outlaw pistons

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Shaver Engine Specialties of Torrance, California, is the official engine builder for Tony Stewart Racing's World of Outlaws sprint car team. Recently inducted into the Sprint Car Hall of Fame, Ron Shaver has a team of builders dedicated to producing 410 cu in engines for Stewart's cars, an enterprise that can take as long as 60 hours for a single engine. Shaver specifies a box-style piston made of 2618 alloy for these engines, and works with two piston manufacturers - one for...

Feeling the tension

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It is an undisputed fact that the greatest source of friction in a reciprocating internal combustion engine lies in its ring pack. But the forces necessary to maintain the seal between piston and bore are precisely those that create the parasitic drag, so it is little wonder that engine researchers/designers throughout history have placed an ever-important emphasis in this area. Precise estimates of this friction vary. Some have reported up to 38% of total losses in a V10 Formula One...

Low-pressure carburising

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The case hardening process, also known as carburising is very old, and pre-dates controlled nitriding processes by some decades; I have seen drawings of racing crankshafts from the 1920s that were hardened by this method. Other race engine parts that are commonly carburised are camshafts, piston pins and gears. The case hardening of highly stressed gears has been the most popular surface hardening process for decades, not only for racing gears but for highly loaded gears in general. The...

The chassis dyno

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Chassis dynamometers are one of the most common methods for assessing the power output of race engines, thanks to the ease with which testing can be conducted. However, because the entire vehicle package is under test there are a large number of factors that can affect the accuracy and repeatability of the testing process. To recap, there are two main types of chassis dynamometers (dynos) in widespread use these days - inertia and eddy current. Previous issues of RET-Monitor have covered...

WSB quick shifters

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The regulations governing transmissions in the World Superbike Championship require engineers to stick relatively closely to the design of the homologated units, on the production machine. Materials and ratios can be changed but the layout of the main components must remain the same, ruling out the possibility of using systems such as a seamless shift. The addition of quick shifters is allowed, however, and their operation and functionality can be a key factor in a bike's overall...