Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

All that has to do with the power train, gearbox, clutch, fuels and lubricants, etc. Generally the mechanical side of Formula One.
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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:29 am
Are solid forged billet 6061-T6 or 7075 aluminum engine blocks and heads used in F1, Indycar and MotoGP ? If not, why not ?
They're generally forged aluminium alloys, yes.

I will say these days there's exceptions I know at least one team at the start of the hybrid era went back to high pressure sand cast blocks with printed castings because it actually let them make the block smaller/lighter through internal refinement that's not possible with a near-net forged product.

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:29 am
PhillipM wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:23 am
Because they're ultra small production run specialist parts for a tiny captive market.

As said though, there's nothing rare or expensive about 6061, it's one of the most common alloys out there for engineering use, it's used everywhere, even basic aluminium handrail tube or water pipe is often 6061 or 6082.

Even $200 RC cars use 6061 and 7075 (far stronger than 6061) components.
Are solid forged billet 6061-T6 or 7075 aluminum engine blocks and heads used in F1, Indycar and MotoGP ? If not, why not ?
The Honda F1 PU block is CNC machined from a solid aluminum block since RA621H, it is no longer cast.

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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ispano6 wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 4:54 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:29 am
PhillipM wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:23 am
Because they're ultra small production run specialist parts for a tiny captive market.

As said though, there's nothing rare or expensive about 6061, it's one of the most common alloys out there for engineering use, it's used everywhere, even basic aluminium handrail tube or water pipe is often 6061 or 6082.

Even $200 RC cars use 6061 and 7075 (far stronger than 6061) components.
Are solid forged billet 6061-T6 or 7075 aluminum engine blocks and heads used in F1, Indycar and MotoGP ? If not, why not ?
The Honda F1 PU block is CNC machined from a solid aluminum block since RA621H, it is no longer cast.
Do any of you know what type of Class of aluminum F1, Indycar and MotoGP teams use for their engine blocks? 319, A356, A357, 6061, 6082, 7075 ?
Last edited by Honda Porsche fan on Tue Oct 25, 2022 6:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

Honda Porsche fan
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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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dans79 wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:45 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:18 am
Why are solid forged billet 6061-T6 aluminum engine blocks and heads so expensive?
  • aluminum stock big enough to machine a block or head, is not needed much in consumer goods or general industry, thus is can be almost exponential more expensive. The mill might have to do a custom run just for you or an intermediate supplier, and then someone is going to have to sit on all the extra inventory!
  • To machine it you want at least a 4 axis if not a 5 axis maching center of decent size, and those aren't cheap. specially the ones capable of high material removal rates or high accuracy or both.
  • You will need some specialized tooling, long reach mills, drills, and holders etc, and they can get real pricy real quick. Specially if you need high accuracy tools or holders.
  • Cnc machine time is expensive, and something as complicated as a block might require 10s of hours of maching time.
  • The market for a 100% block is limited
it all compounds on top of each other leading to a really expensive final product.
I've wondered if someone like Gordan Murray, Christian von Koenigsegg or Hennessey who design and build low volume high HP super cars would ever use solid billet forged aluminum block and heads in one of their projects someday ? If only 10 to 100 cars built might be feasible ?

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 5:18 am
dans79 wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:45 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:18 am
Why are solid forged billet 6061-T6 aluminum engine blocks and heads so expensive?
  • aluminum stock big enough to machine a block or head, is not needed much in consumer goods or general industry, thus is can be almost exponential more expensive. The mill might have to do a custom run just for you or an intermediate supplier, and then someone is going to have to sit on all the extra inventory!
  • To machine it you want at least a 4 axis if not a 5 axis maching center of decent size, and those aren't cheap. specially the ones capable of high material removal rates or high accuracy or both.
  • You will need some specialized tooling, long reach mills, drills, and holders etc, and they can get real pricy real quick. Specially if you need high accuracy tools or holders.
  • Cnc machine time is expensive, and something as complicated as a block might require 10s of hours of maching time.
  • The market for a 100% block is limited
it all compounds on top of each other leading to a really expensive final product.
I've wondered if someone like Gordan Murray, Christian von Koenigsegg or Hennessey who design and build low volume high HP super cars would ever use solid billet forged aluminum block and heads in one of their projects someday ? If only 10 to 100 cars built might be feasible ?
Murray's new cars do use aluminium - the Cosworth engines are aluminium block and head. Steel crank, titanium con-rods. But I think the aluminium block and heads are cast. It does the job, gives the most power / litre of any normally-aspirated road car engine ever, and is semi-structural. Why go to the expense of making it from forged billet if you don't have to?

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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MadMax wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 10:06 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 5:18 am
dans79 wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:45 am

  • aluminum stock big enough to machine a block or head, is not needed much in consumer goods or general industry, thus is can be almost exponential more expensive. The mill might have to do a custom run just for you or an intermediate supplier, and then someone is going to have to sit on all the extra inventory!
  • To machine it you want at least a 4 axis if not a 5 axis maching center of decent size, and those aren't cheap. specially the ones capable of high material removal rates or high accuracy or both.
  • You will need some specialized tooling, long reach mills, drills, and holders etc, and they can get real pricy real quick. Specially if you need high accuracy tools or holders.
  • Cnc machine time is expensive, and something as complicated as a block might require 10s of hours of maching time.
  • The market for a 100% block is limited
it all compounds on top of each other leading to a really expensive final product.
I've wondered if someone like Gordan Murray, Christian von Koenigsegg or Hennessey who design and build low volume high HP super cars would ever use solid billet forged aluminum block and heads in one of their projects someday ? If only 10 to 100 cars built might be feasible ?
Murray's new cars do use aluminium - the Cosworth engines are aluminium block and head. Steel crank, titanium con-rods. But I think the aluminium block and heads are cast. It does the job, gives the most power / litre of any normally-aspirated road car engine ever, and is semi-structural. Why go to the expense of making it from forged billet if you don't have to?
From what I read and heard from Elmer Racing is that with solid billet aluminum that the engine is stronger and can achieve higher power output with lighter weight...

3000 HP & 10,500RPM from a 4 cylinder billet block that weighs only 106kg (233 pounds)...


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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 5:09 am
ispano6 wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 4:54 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 3:29 am


Are solid forged billet 6061-T6 or 7075 aluminum engine blocks and heads used in F1, Indycar and MotoGP ? If not, why not ?
The Honda F1 PU block is CNC machined from a solid aluminum block since RA621H, it is no longer cast.
Do any of you know what type of Class of aluminum F1, Indycar and MotoGP teams use for their engine blocks? 319, A356, A357, 6061, 6082, 7075 ?
RA621H's cylinder block is A2099, according to the book titled ホンダF1のテクノロジー (Motor Fan illustrated Special Edition: HONDA F1 Technology Details).
The book is based on interviews with Honda, so it is a very reliable source.
Image
>シリンダーブロック。2021新骨格ではアルミ総削り出し材(A2099)を採用した。
Last edited by Eryngii on Wed Oct 26, 2022 3:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

Tommy Cookers
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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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interesting ....
A2099 is presumably a 2000 series alloy
ie copper is the main alloying ingredient
ie a 'Dural' as invented by Wilm and introduced c.1916 by Durener Metalfabrik (Duerener as I can't do the umlaut)

ie a stronger composition than a 6000 series alloy or 3000 series as in 319 356 357
die cast ??
chill cast ??
heat treated after casting ???

temperature excursions are also where strength comes from
(or as in mass production - not)
and/or some cold working for strengthening can be done after casting
eg the production 750cc Triumph twin (1970s) had the main bearing lands rolled
Last edited by Tommy Cookers on Tue Oct 25, 2022 11:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

Honda Porsche fan
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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Tommy Cookers wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 10:57 am
interesting ....
A2099 is presumably a 2000 series alloy
ie copper is the main alloying ingredient
ie a 'Dural' as invented by Wilm and introduced c.1916 by Durener Metalfabrik (Duerener as I can't do the umlaut)

ie a stronger composition than a 6000 series alloy or 3000 series as in 319 356 357
die cast ??
chill cast ??
heat treated after casting ???

temperature excursions are also where strength comes from
(or as in mass production - not)
Is A2099 superior to 7075 and ductile iron in tensile strength psi ? Is it more corrosion resistant ?

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 10:23 am
MadMax wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 10:06 am
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 5:18 am


I've wondered if someone like Gordan Murray, Christian von Koenigsegg or Hennessey who design and build low volume high HP super cars would ever use solid billet forged aluminum block and heads in one of their projects someday ? If only 10 to 100 cars built might be feasible ?
Murray's new cars do use aluminium - the Cosworth engines are aluminium block and head. Steel crank, titanium con-rods. But I think the aluminium block and heads are cast. It does the job, gives the most power / litre of any normally-aspirated road car engine ever, and is semi-structural. Why go to the expense of making it from forged billet if you don't have to?
From what I read and heard from Elmer Racing is that with solid forged billet aluminum that the engine is stronger and can achieve higher power output with lighter weight...

3000 HP & 10,500RPM from a 4 cylinder billet block that weighs only 106kg (233 pounds)...

No one needs nor can use that sort of performance on the public highway. And if you did want to accelerate like you been hit from behind by a semi, you can use electric motors. Tesla Model S Plaid hits 60 in under 2 seconds.

The reason people don't use forged billet like you suggest is because it's not necessary to meet the needs of the car they're building.

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 11:20 am
Is A2099 superior to 7075 and ductile iron in tensile strength psi ?
no
did anyone say otherwise ?

7000 series is stronger than 2000 series (which is of course stronger than the 'garden furniture metal' 6000 series)
2000 aka 'Dural' changed the aviation world post WW1
7000 (post WW2) was to change it again but failed - it had undiscovered fatigue issues

psi doesn't count in the F1 block - because of the mandated cylinder centres etc etc

a casting alloy can be forged - and will be stronger than a forging alloy that has been cast
my pet hate was 'weldable' alloys - they are already weak(ish) so they aren't weakened in welding

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Tommy Cookers wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 12:48 pm
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 11:20 am
Is A2099 superior to 7075 and ductile iron in tensile strength psi ?
no
did anyone say otherwise ?

7000 series is stronger than 2000 series (which is of course stronger than the 'garden furniture metal' 6000 series)
2000 aka 'Dural' changed the aviation world post WW1
7000 (post WW2) was to change it again but failed - it had undiscovered fatigue issues

psi doesn't count in the F1 block - because of the mandated cylinder centres etc etc

a casting alloy can be forged - and will be stronger than a forging alloy that has been cast
my pet hate was 'weldable' alloys - they are already weak(ish) so they aren't weakened in welding
Are there any steels or irons that are superior to aluminum for engine blocks and heads in your opinion ?

Tommy Cookers
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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 12:57 pm
Are there any steels or irons that are superior to aluminum for engine blocks and heads in your opinion ?
I have said where aluminium alloy blocks are superior .....
in a race class whose rules are written around aluminium alloy blocks

I have said nothing against blocks made from the irons that you seem to be advocating ....
in the absence of rules preventing it, they seem to allow some configurations of engine to be slightly more compact etc

heads haven't been mentioned .....
most think the inferior conductivity of iron heads must produce higher temperatures in combustion chamber hot spots
that would demand eg a lower CR to avoid detonation
though I have suggested that the NA Offenhauser could have been successful in the first F 1 c.1948-51 (fuel unrestricted)
1940s Blue Crown (Deidt-Offenhauser) cars twice won the Indy 500 using 115/145 Avgas (not methanol) and afaik 14:1 CR

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 12:57 pm
Tommy Cookers wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 12:48 pm
Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 11:20 am
Is A2099 superior to 7075 and ductile iron in tensile strength psi ?
no
did anyone say otherwise ?

7000 series is stronger than 2000 series (which is of course stronger than the 'garden furniture metal' 6000 series)
2000 aka 'Dural' changed the aviation world post WW1
7000 (post WW2) was to change it again but failed - it had undiscovered fatigue issues

psi doesn't count in the F1 block - because of the mandated cylinder centres etc etc

a casting alloy can be forged - and will be stronger than a forging alloy that has been cast
my pet hate was 'weldable' alloys - they are already weak(ish) so they aren't weakened in welding
Are there any steels or irons that are superior to aluminum for engine blocks and heads in your opinion ?
Isn't the question of superiority more down to what you want / need from the engine than the material (or the way of working it)? If you want to make a single unit / single figures of units, then you might opt for a different material/method of working it than if you want to make 50k units. Or if you want a particularly lightweight or particularly strong unit (in low numbers). Casting stuff might be better for large unit numbers, CNC better for a one off, for example. And then if you want a shopping car or if want a racing car you'll have different preferences too.

Is an orange better than an apple? Depends. Do you want apple pie or orange marmalade?

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Re: Engine block aluminum vs compacted graphite iron CGI

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Honda Porsche fan wrote:
Tue Oct 25, 2022 12:57 pm
Are there any steels or irons that are superior to aluminum for engine blocks and heads in your opinion ?
It's not anywhere close to that simple, specially when it comes to an F1 engine or a super car engine. As far as complexity and engineering goes a drag motor is pretty simple, its runs at max power for very short periods of time, and then its gets torn apart and completely rebuilt, and a lot of components are replaced.

Choosing an alloy for an f1 engine is a far more daunting and involved choice.

For example, how hot the alloy can get before it's heat treatment and thus its physical properties get destroyed is important. If the alloy can handle higher temps, then the engine can be run hotter. In regards to f1 that means less cooling is needed, and as most people know that can have a significant aerodynamic benefit.

The engineers do not take choosing what alloy to use use lightly, as each one comes with a long lists of trade offs.


This is a good visual example, O1 vs M2 that's been heated. Jump to about 3:40 in the video!
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