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Thread: Are billet rods realy better????

  1. #1
    Senior Member MASTER BUILDER
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    Are billet rods realy better????

    hey guys i though you would like to read the truth about billet rods. i know some of you will go to your graves beleaving that billet are better but just read a keep a open mind. my first job when i got out of school was for a company that did r&d for the big three and my job was to brake rods all day. if i had to guess i broke thuosands of them and my findings were the same as all the other companys doing the same r&d. if you don't beleave me do some research on your own and you will find the same thing out. (True billet steel rods are fairly uncommon in today’s marketplace. Manufacturing begins when rough shapes are flame-cut from a plate of premium quality forged high-carbon steel (usually SAE 4340), then finish-machined to the required final specifications. Similar to cutting a pattern from a sheet of cloth, manufacturers benefit from true billet rods because they do away with the need to make expensive forging dies. These dies can cost between $35,000 and $45,000 a pair, and several may be needed to supply the wide range of shapes and sizes needed to fit all the various applications in the hot rodding galaxy. On the contrary, the dimensions and physical characteristics of a true billet rod are only limited by the size of the plate it will be cut from.

    Although the rolling process that creates the plate of parent material gives a uniform, longitudinal grain flow with excellent molecular bonding properties for outstanding strength, there is one minor shortcoming. True billet rods lack the circular grain flow inherent to the big end of forged steel rods. Instead, the longitudinal grain flow continues undisturbed throughout the shoulder and cap sections. This does compromise some strength, but industry experts say it is a minor issue and is responsible for, at worst, a 15-percent reduction in the ultimate hoop strength of the bearing hole.

    On the positive side, true billet rods are inherently free from the surface degradations caused by the forging process. A fully machined billet rod has virgin, high-quality material of uniform composition all the way from the core to the external surface. This makes it more resistant to the formation of cracks, a detail that more than makes up for the stubborn grain flow at the big end.

    Fully Machined Forged Steel



    Commonly misidentified as “billet” rods, fully machined forged steel rods are exactly what the name implies. Quite simply, they’re premium-grade forged rods that are treated to a high-tech shower and shave. The machining process eliminates undesirable surface imperfections and allows improvement of the shape for increased strength and/or reduced mass.

    Before the advent of readily available CNC-machining equipment during the last 15 years, the material removal had to be performed on manual machines at great expense. Combined with the cost of the needed forging dies, the primary exclusive benefit of forged rods (dedicated big end grain flow) was not deemed to be worth the added expense, so most high-end manufacturers stuck with true billet rods. But with the manufacturing cost reduction made possible by automated CNC workstations, the economics shifted and it has become possible to couple the advantages of a forging with a pristine machined billet-like surface in the same rod. It truly is the best of both worlds, and for this reason, fully machined forged steel rods are the ultimate choice for strength where weight savings of the reciprocating assembly is not a primary goal. They’re a great choice for any high-performance application short of Top Fuel.

  2. #2
    Junior Member JOURNEYMAN
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    Sounds like your trying to convince yourself.
    This is copied from Olivers website:
    Q: How much power will your rods take?
    A: Connecting rods do not break due to horsepower, they fail due to tension loads. Heavy pistons, long stroke cranks and high RPM will actually pull a connecting rod in two. The goal is to select a rod that will handle the tension loads produced by your engine combination. Please call our toll free tech line at 800-253-8108 for assistance with your connecting rod selection.

    Q: Isn't a forging stronger than a billet?
    A: A steel forging is stronger than a steel billet only if both parts are not heat treated or if they are not heat treated correctly. When a part is heat treated correctly, it is heated to a temperature that changes the grain structure and removes the grain flow that is present in a forging. Proper heat treatment will change the steel to a fine grain structure that is stronger than the structure that is found in a forging.

  3. #3
    Senior Member MASTER BUILDER
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    very good perfconn, know try finding someone not trying to sell you billet rods. your going to have to dig past the b.s. to find the truth. i will post the place were the info's from but i'm going to wate to see how many people chime in. no convining here i have broke many of the top brands in testing and know the ones that brake first. but thinks for the info. just a little f.y.i you don't change grain flow around the ends with heat treating but you are ready knew that i'm sure. so how does heat treating make a differents in the grain flow around the ends? Like steel and aluminum rods, titanium rods can be forged or cut from a billet. Given a choice, titanium rods are most durable when manufactured by the forging process. This is because the grain size of even the best aerospace grade titanium is less than steel. In a Richter-esque grain-sizing scale where a 6 rating is twice as tight as a 5 rating, titanium rates between 5 and 6 while high-carbon steel is far more cohesive, rating as high as a 9. To offset the possible negative impact on strength, a fully machined forged titanium rod is the best type thanks to the improved grain structure around the big end versus a cut-out true billet titanium rod.

  4. #4
    Senior Member RACING JUNKIE curtisreed's Avatar
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    Slowman,

    In your testing experience, where do you rate the powder metal rods against forged and true billet?

    Curtis

  5. #5
    Senior Member MASTER BUILDER
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    hey curtis good question, i have never tested those rods so i have no answer but i can and will get it for you. or if you have the answer please chime in. i can get it from a friend that still does testing on this matter. thanks for asking it just brings more into the post.

  6. #6
    Junior Member JOURNEYMAN
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    Ain't nobody trying to sell me nothing.Oliver sells forged rods also.

  7. #7
    i thought when you heat treated something it changed the crystal lattice structure....i can get my metallurgy book out and look if you guys want me too! you are right billet doesn't mean anything just like cnc'd heads don't mean anything. it's all in the machining, type of material and heat treating.

    i don't care as long as my OLIVER rods don't break! 8)
    http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f2...hire8-12-1.jpg
    Best Et:8.962@149.5 Mph
    Car Weight is 2750 w/driver

  8. #8
    Senior Member MASTER BUILDER
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    this came to me when i worked at newman haas racing. Pauter Rods has years of hands-on experience working with rods of all shapes and materials. Through different types of racing-related abuse, and the resulting design successes (and failures), PAUTER has acquired a fairly comprehensive file on just what works - and what doesn't - on the subject of high performance connecting rods. From this body of knowledge they’ve selected and incorporated elements into what they think a great rod should be.
    E4340 vacuum melt chrome moly forging, heat-treated to Rockwell C36
    All surfaces 100% CNC machined, and shot peened for stress relief
    Pauter 220,000 psi tensile strength MSP220 steel, J-formed, rolled thread racing rod bolts
    Aluminum-bronze wrist pin bushings
    EDM pressure-fed oiling to pin
    Custom pin diameters and center-to-center rod lengths
    End-to-end balanced in sets.

  9. #9
    i'm not trying to say your wrong....

    the 4340 vacuum melt is just as implied, it is melted in a vaccum to remove air bubbles and impurities common with forgings or castings. then it is cnc machined (just like a billet rod would be), heat treated to 36 rock (just like a billet would be), shot peened for stress re-leaving (can do same thing in another heat treating cycle and can be done to a "billet"), and the only other machining op is the edm of the oil hole which can be done to a billet?

    so what do you really have here? a cheaper billet as far as i'm concerned. the only reason they used a forging is so they wouldn't waste all the material that they would cut away from a block of steal. it's CHEAPER!!!

    you don't have to pay for the tooling to mill out the rod, the holder, the end mill, the inserts, the guy to write the program, etc. and as far as the custom dimensions go, it would be a helluva lot easier to change the x-y dimensions on a mill than spend 40,000 on a new forging die to customer specs.

    just my take on this!

    corey
    http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f2...hire8-12-1.jpg
    Best Et:8.962@149.5 Mph
    Car Weight is 2750 w/driver

  10. #10
    Senior Member MASTER BUILDER
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    heat treating doesn't change the end grain of the rods at all. so nomatter what you do to either one the forged is always stronger on the end. i broke thuosands of billet rod with just about every heat treat, vibatrory stress releaving and cryo treating and the billet never hold up to a good forged rod. this was a e-mail i got from carrillo after i tested there rods. i sent them a data sheet to see if i could some free . Fatigue is the major cause of connecting rod failure. At Carrillo Industries, we use proprietary steel, manufactured and forged to our own custom specifications. After experimenting with virtually every other reasonable material, we have found this chromium / nickel / vanadium / molybdenum FORGED alloy to be the best product to meet our stringent requirements for strength and durability. just a little f.y.i most of the pro race teams use forged rod not billet. all nascar all top fuel and funny car. most all prostock. f-1 use forged titanuim, indy use pankel forged rods not billet. so the only thing i see is big marketing has done it's job.


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