Thursday, October 16, 2014

BTE Racing Transmissions: Tips from the builders

When building your own racing transmission, there are some absolute rules and tools for a successful assembly.
  • The right parts.
    • Strong, reliable components that are designed for high performance applications by companies like BTE. Always research the company's history and experience with racing transmission design and manufacturing.
  • The right process.
  • The right tools.
    •  Snap ring pliers, torque wrenches, sockets and a good hammer should always be in arm's reach at a building table.

We asked our veteran transmission builders what are some of the tricks that fit between these three foundations that make their jobs easier and the results more successful:
  1. Cleanliness counts! A clean work area and clean parts should be the priority. Any amount of dust, grime, metal shavings, or even hair can cause a moving valve to stick or drag. At BTE, we wash parts in a hot steam pressure washer and also uses solvents and media blasters when required.  
  2. Design a workspace that is comfortable and accessible. A work table that requires you to bend over or reach too far can be a headache (or a backache).  Good, clean lighting is also a must for seeing details on component parts and for making difficult part installations go more smoothly.
  3. The "right" tools for the job are critical, but having a few *extra* tools doesn't hurt.  A lathe for machining pistons, seal installers, ring compressors, an air compressor for testing seals, and a dyno testing machine for trouble shooting are used by our builders every day to help with the perfect assembly. 
  4. Don't forget the assembly lube! A small amount of grease is required for many seal and other component installs. We like Life Automotive's Trans Prep
  5. Think outside the "box."  When troubleshooting, always consider the external forces at work on the automatic transmission. From the electronics to the differential and tires, the automatic gearbox is affected by any out of the ordinary operation from its mated component systems. 
We encourage more racers to manage their own transmission building and service. It's a rewarding (and potentially money saving) experience. Have any suggestions of your own? Please post them to our blog! 

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