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The steel liner

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When it comes to liner technology, the temptation is always to think in terms of cast iron - whether it be grey cast iron or one of the more recent ductile - or aluminium. Each takes its lead from the cylinder block supporting them and therefore, for reasons of thermal expansion, sound engineering sense seems to suggest that we stick to the same generic material. There are exceptions though. Hypereutectic aluminium alloys (aluminium alloys containing more than 12 % silicon) for instance...

The water pump seal

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Time was when the application of the white of a single egg - be that free range or battery, it didn't seem to matter which - was enough to cure that annoying little water leak. Dropped into the top of the radiator, the action of the engine being progressively warmed was sufficient to denature the protein in the albumin and form a thick white mass, sealing the leak or at least sealing it enough to get you home. But with modern critically cooled engines, narrow cooling passageways using...

Superstock and Superbike

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I recently spoke to Emmanuele Nicali of Lesto Racing at the Monza World Superbike races about the company's motorcycle race products. Lesto supplies both road and race motorcycle exhausts to a number of teams involved in various Italian national championships, including CIV (Italian Superbike championship) and the Superstock 600 and 1000cc series. It also plans to have its exhaust systems on race machines at the Isle of Man TT races in 2011. Fig. 1 shows a race system fitted to a race...

Composite Materials

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The use of composite materials in racecars is not new; nor does it represent a particular novelty for race engines. The strength, stiffness and low density make them ideal for many components, both structural and decorative. It is now pretty rare to find a race engine airbox, certainly on 'formula' cars, made from anything other than carbon-fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) composites. It has also been used to good effect for plenums on turbocharged engines, on structural covers for...

Fuel economy

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To many, the words 'fuel' and 'economy' have no real place in the motorsports world. After all, and as everyone knows, to save fuel the driver has to be delicate on the throttle, avoid braking and keep in as high a gear as he (or she) can. And with these actions seemingly totally at odds with the concept of travelling quickly, I might find it hard to do anything other than agree. Nevertheless, there are times when race organisers wish to restrict the amount of fuel carried on...