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Everything You Need To Know About Clutch and Its Main Components

A clutch is an important transmission part of the mechanical component of a car. It connects and disconnects the engine’s transmission system. It is secured between the transmission and the engine. The clutch can be considered a load-bearer because it aids the car’s power development and transfers that power to the wheels.

For the car to move on the road, the power generated inside the engine cylinder is ultimately intended to turn the wheels. A piston’s reciprocating motion rotates a crankshaft through the connecting rod and flywheel. The crankshaft is then connected to the transmission with a coupling or flexible disc, such as a flex plate or torque converter, which allows power to be transferred from the engine to the transmission. This flexible disc or coupling acts as a critical connection that ensures the energy generated in the engine can be utilised to drive the car forward.

What are the main parts of a Clutch?

The main components of a clutch are mainly divided into three groups:

  1. Driving Member
  2. Driven Members
  3. Operating Members

A detailed description of these transmission parts is mentioned below:

#1 – Driving Member:

  • The flywheel, mounted on the engine crankshaft, is one of the driving members.
  • A cover that houses a pressure plate, pressure springs, and releasing levers is bolted to the flywheel.
  • Since the flywheel and cover assembly are bolted together, the flywheel and cover rotate continuously.
  • The clutch housing and cover have openings so that heat generated during operation can quickly dissipate.

#2 – Driven Members:

  • The clutch plate, a disc or plate, is one of the driven members. On the splines of the clutch shaft, the clutch can freely slide.
  • On both of its surfaces, it has materials that increase friction.
  • The clutch shaft rotates through splines when the clutch plate is engaged between the flywheel and the pressure plate.

#3 – Operating Members:

  • A foot pedal, linkage, release, or throw-out bearings make up the operating members.

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How does Clutch Work?

car clutch plate

The clutch is the first component of a car’s manual transmission. It transfers engine power to the gearbox and interrupts the transmission when a gear is chosen to start the vehicle moving from a stop or when a gear is changed while the car is moving.

Most automobiles employ a friction clutch typically controlled by a cable or fluid (hydraulic). The clutch is engaged when a car is moving with engine power. Using a diaphragm spring, a pressure plate attached to the flywheel applies constant pressure to the driven plate. Earlier cars had coil springs instead of a diaphragm spring at the back of the pressure plate.

The power is transmitted to the gearbox through the driven (or friction) plate, which is mounted on a splined input shaft. The plate has friction linings on both faces that resemble brake linings. This enables the clutch to be engaged smoothly and the drive to begin. An arm pushes a release bearing against the centre of the diaphragm spring when the clutch is disengaged (the pedal is depressed), releasing the clamping pressure. The driven plate is then no longer clamped to the flywheel by the pressure plate’s outer, larger friction surface, interrupting power transmission and allowing for gear changes.

5 Different Types of Clutches:

The clutch is part of the automobile that links the engine with the drivetrain. They do, however, come in various shapes:

#1 – Fiction Clutch:

The most fundamental and widely used clutch design is this one. The clutch comprises a pressure plate, release bearing, and clutch plate. The flywheel and transmission are engaged or disengaged using the bearing. Most automobiles use single-plate clutches, but those with powerful engines frequently use multi-plate attractions.

Types of clutches

#2 – Dry and Wet Clutches:

Dry clutches receive oil to keep them cool and lubricate their internal parts. Most machines that have high torque figures use these clutches. On the other hand, wet clutches frequently have multiple plates, which is why engine performance can be significantly reduced when the clutch slips.

#3 – Multiplate Clutch:

Friction is produced much larger when a clutch has several friction plates stacked. As a result, it can handle an output of much greater torque without being damaged. The Formula series and the World Rally Championship use these clutches for high-performance motorsports.

#4 – Dual Clutch Mechanisms:

Most vehicles in the premium auto market segment come with dual-clutch transmissions. The mechanisms involve using one large clutch for odd gears and a small clutch for even gears. Quick shifts are made possible because one clutch is always engaged while the other waits for input.

#5 – Electromagnetic and Electro-Hydraulic Clutches:

Electromagnetic clutches are based on the idea that the clutch can be engaged with just the push of a button or by proximity sensors on the shifter. A clutch is not required in an environment produced by an electromagnetic clutch. Most automobiles with paddle shifter systems use these clutch systems.

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Wrapping It Up:

The clutch system in your car is a crucial component of the transmission system. The clutch uses a complicated mechanism to transmit power from the car’s engine to the transmission system. Buying a good quality clutch for your vehicle is very important, and we at Leicester Motor Spares have a large variety of these transmission parts that will fit your car best.