Want to get the most out of your transmission upgrade? […]
Want to get the most out of your transmission upgrade? Then you need to select a China clutch that will meet your driving style and performance needs. This article will help you understand the purpose of the main components in your clutch and how they can affect the performance of your car.
There are several components to a clutch system. These include the pilot bearing or bushing, flywheel, clutch disc, pressure plate, throw out (clutch release) bearing, clutch release fork and the pivot ball.
The pilot bearing provides support to the transmission input shaft. It is typically made of a sintered bronze or brass material, but most modern transmissions require the use of a roller-bearing style pilot bearing. This is due to tighter manufacturing tolerances in modern transmissions. Roller bearings also produce less drag and provide increased longevity. They do not become egg-shaped over time, which can happen in the sintered bronze or brass style pilot bushings.
The flywheel is the energy storage unit for the clutch system. It provides the mounting location for the ring gear, which the starter motor engages when you turn the key. It also provides the inertia to maintain rotation when the clutch pedal is depressed, and allows for a more even and controlled clutch engagement.
Most flywheels are made of billet steel, for longevity and easy clutch engagement. Aluminum flywheels are used more in drag racing applications where smooth engagement is not of primary concern.
The pressure plate is the workhorse of the clutch system. It provides the clamping force necessary to prevent clutch slippage. When you depress the clutch pedal (disengage the clutch), springs in the pressure plate open, and relieve the pressure on the clutch disc, allowing it (and the transmission to coast, independent of the engine RPM. As you raise the clutch pedal (engage the clutch) these springs close and clamp the clutch disc against the flywheel, transferring engine power to the input shaft.
Pressure plates come in 2 basic styles, diaphragm style in most modern clutch setups and 3-finger (also called "Long-style" or "Borg and Beck" style). SST uses the diaphragm style, exclusively, to provide you with easier clutch action, smoother engagement and longer clutch life.
The clutch disc gets the most abuse of any component. It gets the most wear and is the reason for most clutch system issues. There are 2 basic types of clutch disc construction: sprung hub and solid hub.
The solid hub is used primarily in high horsepower all-out racing applications, while the sprung hub system is used in practically every other application. The sprung hub design helps to absorb the shock during initial engagement of the clutch, and allows that shock to be dissipated before it can cause damage to the drivetrain. Performance clutch discs use heavier-weight springs to absorb more of the load caused by higher horsepower engines, and extreme-performance discs can have a polyurethane cover over the spring for increased life and higher spring rates.