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Study of Optimization of Reciprocating Parts for General-purpose Engine with Aluminum-alloy Connecting Rods

Article of Honda R&D Technical Review Vol.26 No.2


The connecting rods employed in the reciprocating parts of general-purpose engines are manufactured from aluminum alloy, and therefore display lower material strength than steel connecting rods. In terms of operating conditions, general-purpose engines are frequently operated under high load while being held at a comparatively low engine speed, necessitating strength and durability in relation to combustion pressure. Realizing a balance between the rigidity of each part is an important factor in reconciling the achievement of weight reduction in the reciprocating parts while also maintaining strength. The research discussed in this paper developed a structure optimization system to examine shape parameters for reciprocating parts, and studied shapes that would balance the reduction of weight with the maintaining of strength. It was shown from calculation results that the annular stress of a connecting rod originates in piston pin displacement, and in order to achieve both weight reduction and strength retention, results confirmed that reducing the diameter of the piston pin and the formation of thick walls of connecting rod small-end annular sections are effective. This realizes a combination of shapes in which the stress generated on each part is equivalent to or lower than the stress generated on the mass-production shape, while reducing the mass of the piston pins by 20%. Tests were conducted on the reduced-weight shapes, and the effectiveness of this optimization system was verified.


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Author (organization or company)

Masami OKUBO(Power Products R&D Center)、Masato SUZUKI(Power Products R&D Center)

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