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Skirt wear on drag boat pistons

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Wayne Gaskamp, of Long Beach, California, builds drag boat engines for driver Mike DeClark's National Jet Boat Association (NJBA) boat, F Bomb, which set the records of 7.15 s Elapsed Time at 144.46 mph on the water at Bakersfield, California, in April 2011. The boat runs in two classes of this series, the seven-second class and the unblown fuel jet class. It's leading the latter in points after three events and is in second place in the former category. The engine powering the boat...

Titanium nitride coatings

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The first decade of the 21st century will probably be remembered for when the benefits of surface coating technology really took off in the wider automotive industry. Although it's something we have known in the performance engine world for a long time, the increased interest will no doubt spur companies into looking for even lower levels of friction and higher levels of durability, all in the name of improved carbon dioxide emissions. While the technological push may be for the more...


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There are a great number of components in the race engine that need a hard, wear-resistant surface. Crankshafts, camshafts, cam followers, gears, sprockets, spindles and pump shafts are some example of components that are regularly treated in some way to increase the hardness of the surface. In some cases, there is a requirement that the part has a high level of strength throughout, and such components which are through-hardened. Camshafts, and cam followers are commonly produced in both...

Weighty matters

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In these financially straitened times, the fuel consumption of engines has taken on a new level of importance - not, I hasten to add, to minimise the production of carbon dioxide and its environmental impact on the world but, within motorsport, the simple realisation that every unnecessary litre of fuel weighing 0.75 kg, is 0.75 kg too much. Irrespective of the current financial climate therefore, minimising fuel usage seems to make so much more sense. That being the case, in any engine...

WRC rally transmissions

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With the exception of off-road racers competing in events such as the Dakar Rally, it is unlikely that any type of competition vehicle is required to deal with as varied a range of conditions as a WRC rally car. Ten years or so ago, WRC cars were far removed from any other type of current rally machinery, but with introduction of new rules in 2006 and Super 2000-based regulations in 2011, the complexity of the designs manufacturers can employ has been greatly reduced. In relation to...