- Written by webmin
With our new-found horsepower and engine torque we anticipate on our engine rebuild, we looked into changing the clutch to a ceramic button-type disc. The reliability of ceramic facing over the standard friction material is obvious. Ceramic is a much tougher substance and will far outlast a conventional clutch facing.
With the harder compound however comes trade-offs; the ceramic facing has more of a tendency to chatter and the engagement is not at smooth during shifts. Ceramic can also cause more wear on the other clutch components. We contacted Fort Wayne Clutch for a recommendation and they suggested we use a little of two possible facing choices. They created a dual-friction kevlar and ceramic disc for us from our old unit.
Mike DeMayo of Fort Wayne Clutch suggested we use the ceramic button facing on the flywheel side, to give the assembly more holding and clamping power, while the pressure plate side should use a softer Kevlar facing to give us smoother engagement than a full ceramic disc and less wear and tear on the pressure plate. We shipped off both of our old units to Fort Wayne and had them back in less than a week. The pressure plate had been reset to the proper spring pressure for the transmission and engine package, and the three small adjustment bolts on the end of the fingers were welded in place once the adjustments were complete. That saved us a lot of minor adjusting once we put the clutch back into the car. Aligned to our stock flywheel with a new outer ring gear, the clutch went in easily. We also replaced the throwout bearing and collar while the transmission was out. The handy-dandy plastic alignment tool was well worth the few extra bucks when it came installation time; much more reliable than a broom handle.
With the engine work completed, our next report will have dyno numbers and some tales of the final installation of the flathead.