Clutch release systems
In terms of driving comfort, a driver evaluates the entire clutch and actuation system according to smooth disengagement behavior, the user-friendly force-travel characteristics on the clutch pedal, silent and vibration-free actuation as well as good modulation behavior during startup and gearshift operations. The entire system, from pedal to clutch, must function in all operating conditions and ensure smooth interaction with other vehicle components. Consideration of the entire chain of functions requires sub-functions in the clutch system to be carefully matched to each other. When the clutch pedal is activated, the driver senses the clutch system's response. To satisfy the requirements placed on the clutch pedal, clutch system components must be matched in terms of friction, rigidity and mechanical advantage. The LuK product range comprises all elements for actuating manual transmissions including master and slave cylinders, mechanical lever systems with release bearings, hydraulic clutch release systems for hybrid drives, and engagement systems for wet and dry double clutch actuation systems.
A Brief History of Clutch Release Bearings
The first clutch release bearings were simply bronze or carbon cartridges mounted in a cast iron or forged trunnion. Prevalent in the early 1900’s, this type of arragement was subject to a high degree of wear resulting in frequent replacements.
In the early 1930’s, anti-friction ball bearings began to replace the carbon and bronze cartridges, but by the mid to late 1930’s, a change in the appearance of clutch release bearings became noticeable. The introduction of a fixed guiding tube, necessitated a larger bearing but achieved a much more stable system.
Through 1940’s and 50’s, the majority of advancements made in clutch release systems were from the stand point of reducing size while increasing reliability. Great developments were made with regard to grease quality and seal materials. All of these factors combined, contributed to a much more predictable bearing life.
Efforts toward weight and cost reduction continued into the 1960’s. Then in 1967, a patent was granted for a self-centering clutch release bearing. This new feature enabled the bearing to find its own rotational center with the clutch diaphragm spring. This innovation helped reduce bearing operating temperatures by 25%, while increasing service life by 400%.
By the 1970’s, plastic carriers came on the scene as a means to further reduce weight and cost. From that point on, improvements in processes and new materials development continued to extend the service life as well as improving overall performance of the clutch release system.
Tensioner & Idler Bearing
Automotive bearings are part of the industrial bearings, automotive bearings in addition to some general bearings, there are some special bearings