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Small end design features

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The con rod has a number of important design features and many of these are associated with the design of the small end. The primary function of the con rod is, of course, to transmit the power of the reciprocating motion of the piston to the rotating crankshaft. In this article we shall consider some of the design features of the small end of a modern four-stroke racing con rod and the different solutions to the various problems which must be overcome. The small end must provide...

Tribology and Vibration

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The crankshaft is perhaps one of the most critical components in the modern Formula One engine; its design is full of compromises and its manufacture is complicated and time-consuming.The ongoing fight to reduce friction leads the designer to ever smaller bearings, but for each engine there is a point at which friction begins to increase again as crankshaft flexibility causes edge loading on bearings. There are a couple of options for bearings, namely the almost ubiquitous plain journal...

Engine electronics

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Although an activity that is supposed to ‘improve the breed,’ motorsport has usually lagged behind road cars on engine management technology. There was a time when factory electronic injection systems on production-based cars were junked in favour of carburettors during preparation for racing. Even now, most of the capabilities of modern systems including traction and stability control are expressly forbidden by most rulebooks.To be fair, motor manufacturers have never had any...

Biofuel results

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Trelleborg Sealing Solutions, a leading multi-national manufacturer of gaskets and seals, has published research into the interaction of sealing compounds with biofuels which will cause fuel system designers to rethink material selection for sealing gaskets and o-rings.Trelleborg evaluated the compatibility of typical automotive biofuels for both gasoline and diesel engines with a variety of fuel system sealing compounds, focusing on hardness, stress-strain and volume swelling.Initially...

Kalitta insight

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Kalitta Racing has been around for 50 years in NHRA Top Fuel racing. As with every team in this category it uses a Hemi-patterned, 500 cid, 90-degree V8 engine with forged aluminium block (solid; with no water passages). The sleeves (cylinder liners) are made of centrifugal cast ductile iron of special formulation (ASTM 536-84) and are ‘slip fit’ into the aluminium block with 100 percent cylindrical contact.Each sleeve is held at the top by a flange and has a stainless steel wire...