Learn everything you need to know about What Is Semi Centrifugal Clutch?, including how it works and its benefits. Read our informational guide on what is semi-centrifugal clutch to find out more.
What Is Semi Centrifugal Clutch?
The Semi Centrifugal Clutch used in high-powered engines and racing car engines where clutch disengagements require appreciable and tiresome drivers’ effort. The clutch transmits power partly through its springs and partly through the centrifugal action of an extra weight provided in the system. The springs are specifically design to transmit torque at lower engine speeds, while the centrifugal force assists in torque transmission at higher engine speeds.
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Construction of Semi Centrifugal Clutch
- The pressure plate features three hinged and weighted levers and three clutch springs.
- These are alternately arranged at equal intervals, as shown in the figure (only one lever and clutch spring are shown in the figure).
- The flywheel is fitted to the engine crankshaft.
- The clutch plate is mounted on the splines of the clutch shaft.
- The pressure plate is freely supported on the clutch shaft.
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Working of Semi Centrifugal Clutch
When the engine is at low speed the spring keeps the clutch engaged to transmit power, the weighted levers do not have any pressure on the pressure plate. When the engine is at high speed the weights fly off and levers exert pressure on the pressure plate which keeps the clutch firmly engaged to transmit high torque.
Thus, instead of designing stiffer springs to keep the clutch engaged firmly at high speeds, manufacturers use less stiff springs that rely on the centrifugal forces of weighted levers. This design ensures that the driver doesn’t experience any strain when operating the clutch. As a result, when the engine speed decreases, the weights fall, and the weighted levers stop exerting pressure on the pressure plate. Subsequently, the clutch remains engaged only by spring pressure.
At low engine speeds, clutch springs exert pressure on the pressure plate to transmit power. At high speeds, the centrifugal force developed by the rotation of weighted levers exerts pressure. This pressure is exerted on the pressure plate instead.
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Advantages of Semi Centrifugal Clutch
- Smooth engagement and disengagement.
- Gradual increase in torque as engine speed increases.
- Simple and reliable design.
- Low maintenance.
- Suitable for small and medium-sized internal combustion engines.
- Cost-effective compared to other types of clutches.
- Can handle higher loads and speeds than other types of clutches of similar size.
- Notably, semi-centrifugal clutches is use in a wide range of applications, including lawnmowers, go-karts, small tractors, power tools, and other small machinery.
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Disadvantages of Semi Centrifugal Clutch
- Notably, the semi-centrifugal clutch automatically disengages at low engine speeds.
- It’s important to note that only at high speeds is the centrifugal force sufficient to keep the clutch in the engaged position.
- As previously mentioned, the clutch springs are designed to transmit torque at low engine speeds.
- Conversely, centrifugal forces only come into play at high engine speeds to transmit torque.
Application of Semi Centrifugal Clutch
- Small and medium-sized internal combustion engines commonly use semi-centrifugal clutches. Moreover, applications such as lawnmowers, go-karts, and small tractors typically feature them.
- Additionally, some power tools and other small machinery also use semi-centrifugal clutches. The semi-centrifugal clutch design allows for smooth engagement and disengagement of the engine and transmission. It provides a gradual increase in torque as the engine speed increases.
It is the most important part of the engine in an automobile. A clutch uses to transfer rotating motion or torque from one shaft to another shaft when requires. The torque developed by the engine at the initial speed is very low. Therefore it is impossible to start the engine under load.
A CENTRIFUGAL CLUTCH is a type of clutch that uses centrifugal force to connect two concentric shafts, with the driving shaft nested inside the driven shaft. In contrast, the fully centrifugal type of clutches eliminate the springs altogether, relying solely on the centrifugal force to apply the required pressure for keeping the clutch in the engaged position.
The SEMI CENTRIFUGAL CLUTCH used in high-powered engines and racing car engines where CLUTCH disengagements require appreciable and tiresome drivers’ effort. The clutch transmits power partly through its springs and partly through the centrifugal action of an extra weight provided in the system. The springs are specifically design to transmit torque at lower engine speeds, while the centrifugal force assists in torque transmission at higher engine speeds.
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