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Corrosion caused by fasteners

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When we talk about fasteners and corrosion, we are normally worried about the effect of the latter on the former, and how much the corrosion degrades the fastener’s performance, especially in terms of strength and particularly in terms of fatigue strength. Fastener corrosion is much more of a problem in other industries though, as many of the critical fasteners in a race engine operate in a pretty benign environment, especially those that are constantly bathed in oil. However, there...

Radial engagement

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When we talk about the engagement of a male and female threaded fastener, it is commonly in the context of the length of engagement, which is often specified in order to prevent damage to the female thread by stripping or fatigue. However, there is usually no discussion of radial thread engagement. The amount of radial thread engagement is referenced to the pitch of the thread and the nominal diameter, and is controlled by varying the inner diameter of the female thread. It is usual to...

Fastening to composite components

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Composite materials are becoming ever more common. While fibre-reinforced polymer matrix composites have made limited progress in the sphere of powertrain design and development, despite the efforts of some pioneers, they haven’t achieved the type of success they have enjoyed for almost 30 years in racing chassis. The era of the (very expensive) roadcar with carbon-reinforced polymer composites, however, is with us. Compared to an engine block, a chassis is a relatively...

Fasteners for high-voltage applications

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The rise of the electric hybrid system has been rapid of late, though whether it is a lasting technology or simply a precursor to a widespread take-up of fully electric passenger cars is not yet clear. Electric motorsport has already established a firm footing though. For example, TT Zero gets faster each year, and although it remains a single lap it is close to half a conventional motorcycle Grand Prix distance. Endurance racing has had hybrids for 15 years, and 2013 is the fourth season...

The perils of fastening thin components

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There is very often a need to fasten thinwall parts to other components. In the case of engines and transmissions, this might be cosmetic covers, airboxes, airhorns, electrical enclosures or any number of other items. The fastening of thin components is not technically difficult to achieve: we can use the same type of fasteners that we use in normal circumstances, but we need to be aware of the difference in behaviour of threaded fasteners, which can tend to lead to fastener loosening or...