Whereas studying concerning the historical past of supplies for jet engine shafts I got here throughout a pleasant sentence that recognized many widespread stress-raisers—options which by concentrating stress in small areas make fatigue failure extra prone to happen there.
It recognized “…keyways, steps, shoulders, collars, threads, holes, snap-ring grooves, and shaft floor harm.”
Many individuals have much more engine-build and servicing expertise than I’ve, however I’ve seen these traditional failures loads of instances.
Keyways are lower into ignition/alternator shaft tapers as a method of holding the rotor correctly timed to the shaft in order that ignition timing doesn’t differ. Years in the past I used to be advised by old-timers that keys have been pointless offered the rotor and shaft have been lapped into “intimate contact” with abrasive powder. Simply place the rotor on the desired timing and “give ‘er a wise rap with a mushy hammer.” My expertise has been in any other case, having seen such keyless mounting slip greater than as soon as.
However the strategy of slicing a keyway does focus stress at sharp angles, and I’ve seen the ends of ignition shafts break off with the failure originating on the keyway. A frequent response by producers has been to only make the shaft a few millimeters greater to scale back general stress.
It was as soon as widespread within the design of pressed-together curler crankshafts to offer the crankpin two diameters—one for the big-end bearing’s rollers to bear upon, and barely smaller diameters the place the crankpin presses into the flywheels. This simplified meeting by permitting the flywheels to be pressed on till they made contact with the bigger diameter a part of the pin.
Sadly, until the step the place one diameter joins the opposite is rigorously radiused and given a easy end, stress focus there causes a crack to type over time, ensuing within the damaged crankpins I’ve seen. I’ve by no means, ever seen breakage in straight, stepless crankpins. I imagine Harley-Davidson adopted straight pins after a few years of constructing pins with floor options resembling steps, keyways, threads, et al. Straight crankpins haven’t any stress-concentrating floor options!
The aim of a collar is to place both the shaft (by abutting towards a bearing) or a component put in on it. They’re a particular case of a step, in that they’re typically designed with a small or nonexistent radius the place the collar joins the shaft. That’s the place bother can dwell.
Many instances you will note bolts or studs break on the root of the primary thread. That is the place the “strains of stress” that textbooks enjoyment of speaking about should funnel down from the complete diameter of the fastener’s shank to the smaller thread root diameter. That concentrates the stress at that time. One widespread approach to take away this focus is to scale back the diameter of the fastener’s shank to barely smaller than the thread root diameter. With my coronary heart in my mouth, I stood on the lathe doing this to the cylinder studs of my 1970 Kawasaki H1R race engine, hoping it will work. It did—we by no means had one other failure and Kawasaki later provided alternative studs that appeared like mine—it had reached for a similar textbooks I had.
One other supply of bother in threads is floor end (the smoother the higher—cracks like to type at scratches and dings) and root radius (sharp corners should all the time be prevented in high-stress components).
Lastly, roll-formed threads are greatest at resisting fatigue as a result of the stress of the super-hard rolls that type them place the fabric’s floor in compression. Stress is required to provide cracking, however to create any stress in any respect, utilized stress should first overcome this floor compression.
There may be now a roll-forming course of for inner threads as nicely.
The crankshaft design crew is aware of that every one its good work in avoiding sharp edges (resembling offering easily radiused fillets the place crankpins flare out at their ends to grow to be the crank webs) could be for nothing if the holes supplying oil to the crankpins are wealthy in floor defects.
Wright Aero offered its massive plane radial piston engines with multipiece solid metal crankcases however when the corporate tried to up-rate the 18-cylinder engines on the B-29 bomber of World Conflict II, fatigue cracks unfold from stress equalization holes in essential bearing webs throughout take a look at operation at 2,600 take-off horsepower—a 25 p.c enhance over normal. Fatigue loves holes and discontinuities! Why do you suppose tree trunks flare gracefully on the base to type the foundation system? A billion years of trial and error.
Snap rings are handy for finding gears on gearbox shafts, however the sharp corners of such grooves type a dotted line saying “fail right here.” Normally, within the center parts of substances shafts, the grooves are lower solely into the projecting shaft splines and don’t give bother. However I’ve seen shafts break at such grooves. As with ignition tapers, the straightforward remedy is to extend shaft diameter a bit.
Splines themselves, if not rigorously designed, could be carried out with sharp corners. Quite a lot of proprietary shapes exist for connecting components with easy, steady shapes fairly than sharp-edged ones. Google “Curvic Couplings.”
Shaft Floor Harm
After I tried to rebuild a buyer’s 50,000-mile H1 crank I practically pinned the gauge on my hydraulic press—the power required to press mainshafts out of crank wheels was a lot greater than regular. As soon as the crank was aside I might see what had occurred. All these quick miles up and down the Maine Turnpike had brought on ever-so-slight relative motions between mainshafts and webs, domestically creating welds that took plenty of power to interrupt. When the items did separate I might see they have been too broken for reuse.
In different cranks I noticed that course of—referred to as frettage—at an earlier stage, and in a single case a fatigue crack had unfold from the floor harm to end in a mainshaft breakage.
Why not weld the components collectively because the drag racers do? It just about makes your crank into what the late rider/engineer Hurley Wilvert referred to as “one-use kind”—not rebuildable.
Like many others who’ve achieved this work, I’ve saved a wide range of failed components—a “museum of failure”—for the instruction and understanding they supply.