The flywheel was developed by James Watt during his work on steam engines. A flywheel is found in the internal area of the engine's combustion system. It is a heavy-rimmed rotating wheel made of metal that is located at the crankshaft of a truck engine where most of its weight is concentrated at the circumference. Its main function is to deliver smoothly the power from the motor to the energy needed by the machine. Its main function is to resist should there be any change of speed and help to steady the rotation of the shaft when a power source such as the piston engine gives out a torque that is not even on the shaft or where the load is not constant and stable, like in punches or piston pumps. A flywheel also functions as energy storage for the truck engine. It stores excess energy and releases readily the stored power when the engine starts to exert and consume more energy for slopes, uphill or when the engine accelerates its speed.
Other Important Functions of a Flywheel
The use of the flywheel is largely applied in physics, in clocks, and of course to automotive engines. Apart from the different areas where the flywheel is applied, a flywheel plays an important role in truck engines and in terms of maintaining balance and engine control on off road and rough surfaces. Its basic functions include the following:
- Minimize the effects of engine fluctuation due to speed variation on a rough road surface
- Enhance precession when the engine experiences lateral momentum especially when the truck is passing a hill or the bottom of a valley. In this situation, two counter-rotating flywheels are required to normalize the speed and eliminate lateral momentum.
- Create engine resistance or inertia on surfaces where engine stopping is difficult
- Maintain a constant angular velocity of the crankshaft
- Moderate the effects of speed fluctuations
- Smoothes out the pulses of energy provided by the combustion in the cylinders
- Provide energy for the compression stroke of the pistons
- Prevent turning over during sharp turns and can therefore reduce the risk of truck accidents
The Flywheel Maintenance
Flywheel maintenance is relatively easy compared to other engine parts. All you have to do when the flywheel was already taken from main engine is to clean the flywheel with dry cleaning solvent and let it dry naturally. You must be careful however because the solvent used for cleaning flywheel could be moderately toxic and may be harmful to the skin, the respiratory tract, and eyes. Avoid prolonged exposure to the chemicals and make sure that there is good ventilation when you are about to clean a flywheel. For your safety, use skin and eye protection and do not clean the flywheel near an open flame or excessive heat. Inspect for cracks or damages on the flywheel to ensure optimum performance. If there is a damage or crack, remove the fan and have it replaced. Get your parts replacement only from reliable engine parts makers.
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