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Con Rod Bearing Bores

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The big end bearing is critical to the operation and reliability of the four-stroke racing engine. At lower levels of racing, it is possible to run with standard road-going shells of good quality (provided of course that they are rated highly enough to cope with the service loads). After this, special uprated bearings are required. On the RET Monitor website, Anne Proffit has written several articles which discuss the construction and materials of bearing shells. The reliability, function...

Connecting Rods: Material Choices (4)

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Last month, we looked further into the use of titanium for con rods and this month we look briefly into the use of steel, which remains in many cases the material of choice for con rods. There are far more manufacturers of con rods who offer steel rods than any other material. Titanium is definitely on the increase, and possibly the time will come where steel becomes a ‘minority’ material choice. Some of the reason for steel remaining popular is the price of the raw material...

Material choices - part 3

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This month, we continue to examine material choices. In last month’s article, we looked at some of the reasons why people choose titanium as a con rod material. This month we shall carry on discussing titanium and some more closely allied materials. One point that was covered last month was the effect that the use of titanium has on the proportion of the externally applied loads that the con rod bolts experience. This is affected not only by the magnitude of the external loads (in...

Material Choices

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Last month, we started to look at materials which are being used for con rods. The article looked at the use of aluminium, which finds widespread use in drag-racing. This month we shall turn our attention to engines with less than 5000 hp and con rods in another low-density material: titanium. Titanium has long been used as a con rod material for racing, and its benefits have been slowly taken up by road car and motorcycle manufacturers in the last couple of decades, although this has only...

Material Choices

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There are several types of materials which are currently used for con rods – some for reasons of manufacturing, some for reasons of quality, but most have been specifically chosen owing to their particular combination of mechanical properties. This month we shall begin to look at con rod materials and, in those cases where they are chosen for reasons of properties alone, what makes each suitable for the particular application. In terms of circuit racing, the main types of materials...