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More on grinding and polishing

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In the previous article, the subject of crankshaft grinding was discussed. In addition to the perils of grinding incorrectly in terms of ‘grinding cracks’, there is evidence to suggest that the direction of travel of the workpiece relative to the grinding wheel is also significant. When cylindrical grinding takes place, the grinding wheel, which is usually much larger than the journal or crankpin being ground, rotates at a much higher speed than the workpiece. The ratio of...

High tension

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Those of you who enjoy historic motorsport as well as more modern automotive activities will appreciate that engine spark-ignition systems have come a long way over the years. From the inefficient magneto systems of the early years – which were fine so long as you could generate sufficient energy at cranking speeds – through single-coil battery systems to multiple coil-on-plug devices, the principles involved in generating a high voltage to the spark plug may not have changed,...

Active cylinder?

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In this issue’s article on Engine Structure I want to look more closely at the cylinder liner and its ability to play a significant role in the overall cooling system in race engines. Despite its passive role historically, this rather simple component has grown in significance in the engine’s cooling system – especially the liner’s exterior, rather than its interior, since guiding the piston requires a more or less round shape there. Where the influence on the cooling...

Rally exhausts

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Motorsport is generally a harsh environment compared to the normal drive cycle of a passenger car, motorcycle, aeroplane or boat. The loads and stresses are higher, as are the speeds involved and (normally) the duty cycle too. If you subject a normally reliable passenger vehicle to the rigours of a motorsport environment, you can expect it to fail in very short order. Of course, the motorsport environment is a graduated scale of harshness, and close to the top of this scale must be...

Bolts and studs with slender shanks

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For design engineers working on bespoke engines, the job of designing special-purpose fasteners is a familiar task. There is often a need for a very long and thin fastener, for example to pull together the stages in a multi-stage pump, or possibly bolts that run right through the engine from top to bottom (anyone who has designed upgrades for the four-cylinder Rover K-series engine will be familiar with the through-bolt concept). In terms of their tightening, slender bolts and studs behave...