What Is Multi Plate Clutch? – Types, Working, Parts, Diagram

Discover What is Ulti Plate Clutch? Unlike single-plate clutches, our multi-plate clutches use multiple friction plates to transmit power from the engine to the transmission. Ideal for high-performance and heavy-duty vehicles, so let’s see the Working of Multi Plate Clutch.

What Is Multi Plate Clutch?

What Is Multi Plate Clutch
What Is Multi Plate Clutch?

The multi plate clutch uses multiple clutch plates to make contact with the engine flywheel to transfer power between the engine shaft and the transmission shaft. A multi-plate clutch used in automobiles and machinery where high torque output is required.

Multi-plate clutches are used in heavy vehicles with racing cars and motorcycles for transmitting high torque. As compared to single plate clutches, these are smooth and easy to operate due to their assembly of friction surface’s contact. It may be used where the space is very limited.

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Construction Of Multi Plate Clutch

The multi-plate clutch construction is similar to a single-plate clutch except for the number of clutch plates. The total number of clutch plates divides into two sets in which one from each set is alternatively arranged.

One set of the plate slides in grooves on the flywheel and the other one slides on splines on the pressure plate hub. These plates are reliably pressed by a strong coil spring and assembled in a drum. A Multi-Plate clutch works in the same way as a single-plate clutch by operating the clutch pedal.

As the number of clutch plates increases, the friction surfaces will also be increases. The increase in friction surface increases the capacity of the clutch to transmit more torque for the same size. The multi-plate clutch of small size transmits approximately the same torque as a single plate clutch of twice the diameter.

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Parts Of Multi Plate Clutch

Multi Plate Clutch Video

1. Pressure Plate – A plate attached to the splined sleeves which are further connected to the pedal fulcrum. That when the clutch pedal is pressed, the sleeves attached to the pedal fulcrum move outward, which in turn drives the pressure plate attached with this splined sleeve.

2. Clutch Plate – It is a metallic plate having frictional lines at its outer surfaces. It uses frictional contact with the flywheel to transmit power between the engine shaft and the transmission shaft.

3. Thrust Springs – These are springs used behind the pressure plate, and the stiffness of these springs is used by the pressure plate to maintain frictional contact with clutch plates, which in turn supports the clutch engagement.

4. Clutch Pedal – A clutch pedal operated by the driver of the vehicle used to control the engagement and disengagement of the clutch.

5. Splined Shaft & Inner Splined Sleeves – An outer splined transmission input shaft over which the complete clutch assembly is. That includes clutch plates, pressure plates, inner splined sleeves, and the clutch casing placed and rotates with it.

6. Flywheel – It is part of the engine. We can also consider it as part of the clutch system as the transmission of power from the engine output shaft to the transmission shaft is obtained by the frictional contact between a clutch and the flywheel of an engine.

7. Diaphragm Spring – In the diaphragm-type clutch system, the thrust springs used in the spring-type clutch replace with a single diaphragm-type spring.

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Types Of Multi Plate Clutch

1. Spring Multi Plate Clutch

In the clutch, a cover attaches with a flywheel of engine use inside which the multiple clutch plates, pressure plate, thrust bearing, etc. packed. The clutch plates place over each other and mount over a splined shaft.

2. Diaphragm Multi Plate Clutch

It is the modified version of the spring-type multi-plate clutch. In which the thrust springs places circularly from the spring-type clutch and replace with a special crown-shaped finger-type spring called a diaphragm spring.

3. Hydraulic Multi Plate Clutch

It is the modern type of clutch used in vehicles fitted with automatic transmission, in this type of clutch a hydraulic device having highly compress fluid operates with the accelerator pedal coupled with the multi-plate clutch.

The engagement and disengagement of the clutch obtained by the output given by the hydraulic device, which controls with the acceleration pedal.

4. Wet Multi Plate Clutch

A wet multi-plate clutch is a type of multi-plate clutch that uses a liquid, typically oil, to cool and lubricate the clutch plates. In this type of clutch, the friction plates and the pressure plate are immersed in oil, which helps to dissipate heat, reduce friction, and prolong the life of the clutch.

Wet multi-plate clutches are typically used in high-performance and high-torque applications, such as in motorcycles, racing cars, and heavy-duty vehicles. The oil also helps to prevent the clutch plates from warping or sticking together, which can lead to clutch failure. They are also more durable than dry multi-plate clutches as the oil helps to keep the clutch cool and reduces wear on the plates.

5. Dry Multi Plate Clutch

A dry multi-plate clutch is a type of multi-plate clutch that does not use any lubricating oil to cool and lubricate the clutch plates. Instead, the friction plates and pressure plates are not in contact with any liquid. This type of clutch is typically found in passenger cars, light commercial vehicles, and some motorcycles.

A dry clutch uses friction material that is typically made of organic or ceramic materials, which have a higher coefficient of friction and can withstand high temperatures, which makes them more durable than wet clutches. These materials have a high wear resistance and a longer life than wet clutch plates.

Dry multi-plate clutches are generally lighter and more compact than wet multi-plate clutches, making them suitable for vehicles with limited space, such as cars and light trucks. They also do not require any additional oil or lubrication, which can reduce maintenance costs. However, they are typically less efficient at dissipating heat and can be less durable in high-performance or heavy-duty applications.

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Working Of Multi Plate Clutch

1. Engagement of Clutch

During the engaged position of the clutch, i.e., when the clutch pedal is not pressed. The thrust springs do not move due to which the stiffness provided by these springs maintains the pressure over the pressure, the plate having friction lines on its inner surface.

Due to this pressure over the pressure surface, the frictional contact between the friction lines of the pressure plate and the friction lines of multiple clutch plates is maintained due to which frictional force is applied over the flywheel

Due to this frictional force, the frictional contact between the various clutch plates and the wheel is supported, which in turn finally provides clutch engagement.

2. Disengagement of Clutch

When the clutch pedal is pressed, the fulcrum attached at its inner end rotates due to which the inner splined sleeve through which the pressure plate connects moves outward, which in turn applies pressure over the thrust springs.

Due to this force, the thrust springs move, which in turn releases the tension over the pressure plate, and finally, the frictional force between the pressure plate, clutch plate, and the flywheel is removed.

For the reason that the removal of the frictional force, frictional contact between the pressure plate, clutch plate, and flywheel breaks and finally the disengagement of the clutch obtained.

Advantages Of Multi Plate Clutch

  1. Decrease the weight of the clutch.
  2. It has a very compact size.
  3. Increase the amount of torque transmits.
  4. Decrease the moment of inertia of the clutch.

Disadvantages Of Multi Plate Clutch

  1. They heat up quickly.
  2. Multi-plate clutches are heavy.
  3. Multi-plate clutches are too expensive.

Application Of Multi Plate Clutch

  • Multi-plate clutches are commonly used in high-performance vehicles, such as sports cars and motorcycles because they can handle a large amount of power and torque
  • They are also used in heavy-duty industrial machineries, such as construction equipment and tractors
  • Multi-plate clutches are preferred in racing and high-performance applications because they offer a high level of adjustability and fine-tuning for optimal performance
  • They can also be used in vehicles with multiple engines or electric motors, such as hybrid and electric cars, to control the power distribution between the different power sources
  • In aircraft, a multi-plate clutch used to transfer power from the engine to the propeller
  • In marine applications, a multi-plate clutch can be used to transfer power from the engine to the propeller shaft.

Difference Between Multi Plate Clutch And Single Plate Clutch

Single plate clutchMulti plate clutch
A single plate clutch has one clutch plateThe multi clutch consists of more than one clutch plate
Torque transmitting capacity is lessHigh torque transmitting capacity
Single plate clutch is bigger than the multi plate clutchMulti plate clutch is smaller than the single plate clutch
Heat generation is lessHeat generation is more
It does not ensure smooth engagementIt ensures a smooth and gradual engagement
There is no need for a cooling mediumIt needs a cooling medium
It is also called Dry ClutchesIt is also called Wet Clutches
The coefficient of friction is highThe coefficient of friction is low
Frictional power loss is lessFrictional power loss is more
Single Plate Clutch requires more spaceMulti Plate Clutch requires less space
Single plate clutches are used in cars, buses and trucksMulti plate clutches are used in Motorcycles, Scooters


What is Multi Plate Clutch?
The Multi Plate Clutch uses multiple clutch plates to make contact with the engine flywheel to transfer power between the engine shaft and the transmission shaft.
Multi-plate clutch used in which vehicle?
The multi-plate clutch use in some heavy commercial vehicles to transmit high torque.
Why are multi plate clutches used in motorcycles?
The multi-plate clutch is very compact, takes up less space and transmits more torque. Also in motorcycles, the space available for the clutch is small. Therefore, multi-plate clutch is used in motorcycles.
Why are multi plate clutches called wet clutches?
In multi plate clutch heat generation is more due to more frictional surface. So it needs a cooling medium, therefore, multi plate clutches are also called “wet clutches.”
What are the parts of a multi plate clutch?
1. Pressure Plate
2. Clutch Plate
3. Thrust Springs
4. Clutch Pedal
5. Splined Shaft & Inner Splined Sleeves
6. Flywheel
7. Diaphragm Spring
What are the types of multi plate clutch?
1. Spring Multi Plate Clutch
2. Diaphragm Multi Plate Clutch
3. Hydraulic Multi Plate Clutch
4. Wet Multi Plate Clutch And Dry Multi Plate Clutch

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