Have you heard of flywheels, but always wondered what they are? Their name is super cool, and as it turns out, so are they! Without flywheels, our most useful engines and machines would not work.
Here’s a look at what flywheels are, how they work, and why aluminum flywheels are an excellent choice for engineers.
What Is a Flywheel?
A flywheel is a device that helps store energy and distributes it evenly while a machine part rotates. Flywheels are larger flat disks made of cast iron or another metal. They sit on a crankshaft and help it continue to turn smoothly, in between pushes from a motor.
In a car, the flywheel is near the back of the engine. On a motorcycle, it sits next to the crankshaft and the clutch.
How Long Have Flywheels Been Around?
Flywheels have been around since ancient times, when ancient Egyptian craftspeople used them to make pottery. Over the years they have been part of the design of everything from steam engines to spacecraft.
What Is the Flywheel Effect?
The flywheel effect means that a crankshaft continues to rotate even when it’s not actively pushed by a motor. Thanks to the flywheel’s energy storage, the crankshaft can continue to spin uninterrupted. In a car, this results in better performance of the engine and a smooth ride.
How Do Technicians Work on Flywheels?
If you ever tried to start your car while it was running and heard that awful grinding sound, you heard your car’s flywheel. The starter in your car interacts with the flywheel, and if you start your car twice, you can damage it.
Since flywheels have teeth, they’re susceptible to breaking off under stress. Broken teeth are probably the #1 reason why they have to get replaced. To fix a flywheel, technicians use a flywheel puller to loosen it from the crankshaft. Then they can remove and replace it.
The Aluminum vs Steel Flywheel Question
Should you choose an aluminum flywheel design or steel? Since flywheels come in different types of metal, you may wonder which one is the best.
One of aluminum’s greatest assets is that it weighs less. If you’re into racing and concerned about how much your car weighs, choosing aluminum may be your best option. Many cars use steel flywheels, but aluminum flywheels also offer great strength.
For further research, the internet will be your best friend. To learn more about aluminum flywheels, check out the Fidanza Flywheel website.
Buying Aluminum Flywheels for Your Project
So that’s a wrap! We hope we’ve helped you see why engineers use flywheels in their best designs. Flywheels store energy and release it at a controlled rate, so the flow never stops.
Aluminum flywheels are unique because they are strong, yet lightweight. Other options include cast iron and steel. But if you want a perfect combination of strength and efficiency, choose an aluminum design.
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