Engine mounts are vibration absorbers placed between a motor and the frame that supports it. These are installed with the purpose of reducing the oscillatory motion inherent in a running engine. In diminishing movement, the vibration mounts increase product longevity by reducing wear to engine components otherwise caused by repetitive contact with moving parts. Failure to properly mount an engine may result in misaligned linkages, friction between the radiator fan and the engine itself as well as a sticking throttle.
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Applications of Engine Mounts
Automotive, metallurgical, transportation, machine building, and many other industries use rubber mounts in engines and machinery to protect both workers and machines. In the automotive industry, in particular, engine mounts serve a secondary purpose. Not only is the frame or chassis protected from the movement of the engine, but the engine block is likewise buffered against the jarring movements encountered by the frame as the vehicle passes over rough terrain. Even a slight amount of vibration control has a significant impact on enhanced engine performance and fuel economy.
Manufacturing Process of Engine Mounts
Shock mounts, for engines or other applications, function by absorbing the kinetic energy produced by oscillating engine components. Most often, this energy is diffused as heat. It is therefore essential to use mounts made of materials that are both efficient energy absorbers and can withstand the high temperatures produced in industrial environments. To meet these requirements, engine mounts are often composed of two separate materials.
In the case of hydraulic shock absorbers, metals such as steel, brass, bronze, copper, and iron are formed into cylindrical tubes through a series of processes, which may include extrusion, metal spinning, and welding. These cylinders house pistons and hydraulic fluid, often oil or water. When vibration makes contact with the piston, it compresses the fluid, which absorbs the energy leading to reduced motion.
While hydraulic mounts are popular, layered blocks provide another common and effective engine mounting technique. Rather than tube forming processes, metal for this type of mount is annealed, rolled, forged, and pressed into sheet metal, which is then cut to size as needed. One sheet is attached to the engine and another to the support apparatus. The two are connected by natural or synthetic rubber. Rubbers such as neoprene, silicone, and EPDM are commonly used for their energy absorption qualities.
Benefits of Using Engine Mounts
Engine mounts increase product longevity and productivity. Noise reduction is another notable benefit of vibration control, particularly in enclosed spaces or industrial settings where high mechanical noise can infringe upon worker health and safety.