Wednesday, October 1, 2014

What Goes Into the Design and Manufacturing of a BTE Torque Converter?

As we mentioned before, every racing torque converter built today (even the $8,000.00 billet aluminum lock ups used in Pro Mods) has its designs rooted in an OEM torque converter.

The popular 8" torque converter is based on design from Opel that is more than 30 years old, and the popular 10" 258mm and 265mm billet converters are based on designs used by Cadillac for its Northstar series vehicles. 

Using these platforms as a core, we build upgraded component parts that increase strength and modify the torque multiplication and stall speeds. 

How do we do that?
  • CNC machined covers or fronts are made from 8620 steel or 6061-T6 aluminum. The higher grade materials increase the strength of the converter and eliminate "ballooning" which can occur when stamped steel front covers are used.  

  • The individual fins or blades within the torque converter primary pump and turbine are furnace brazed. This process bonds the metal components together and prevents breaking of the blades.

  • The stator assemblies in most OEM converters contain aluminum castings and simple spring based roller clutches. These are upgraded with billet steel stator assemblies with upgraded multi cam sprags, mechanical diodes, or solid spragless slugs.  

  • OEM input shaft splines are cut out with CNC precision and new heat treated splines are welded into place.

  • The torque converter is reassembled with the upgraded component parts, endplay and runout are checked after welding, and a final balance test using a computer balancer makes sure the torque converter will run without any vibration.

  • A final multi point inspection by three specialists ensures the torque converter is built to our racing specifications and is ready for painting and shipment.

A BTE Torque Converter From Start To Finish (In Photos)

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