Creating a Carbon Clutch

Ever wondered how a Tilton carbon clutch is made? Get an inside look at the process in our new video, from design and manufacture to assembly and final installation by Tilton’s technical partner, Wayne Taylor Racing.

The process of creating a carbon clutch begins with CAD and finite element analysis (FEA) software. Every detail of the clutch is produced digitally with exact measurements, down to the nuts and bolts. FEA software is used to ensure that quality, performance and safety standards are met for each component used in the clutch assembly. The CAD model is then used to program initial machining for the clutch covers on the lathe. After a quality control check, the clutch covers head to the mill for more machining. When all machining is complete, the dimensions of the clutch cover are checked using a coordinate-measuring machine (CMM), which can be user-operated or computer-controlled. With another quality control check, the clutch covers head to plating, and all lettering and graphics are applied by laser-etching.

After covers return from plating and laser-etching, the clutch is ready to be assembled. The “carbon stack” for each individual clutch (the combined height of all the driven and floater carbon plates) is measured down to the thousandth of an inch and documented—one clutch at a time. The stack height can vary slightly from clutch to clutch, so the legs of the correlating clutch cover are then machined to accommodate this height measurement, ensuring perfect fitment for each clutch every time.

The final assembly of the clutch cover involves installing the diaphragm spring for requested specification—there are six available spring rate choices—along with all the hardware (bolts, washers, etc). The carbon stack is assembled in the clutch cover, and the clutch heads to the first of two dynamometers to test clamp load and release load. Torque capacity is tested on the second dyno. These measurements, as well as a build sheet, are included in the final packaging. The clutch is then secured, boxed, and ready to ship to the customer.

If you have any questions about the process, reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter, or you can send an email to [email protected].
If you’re interested in purchasing a carbon clutch from Tilton, call us at +1 805 688 2353, or send an email to [email protected].