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Wirelock life

Practical Engine Building

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Discussion and questions related to the course Practical Engine Building

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When do you need to replace wirelocks?

I have a set of brand new unused pistons which has been assembled onto a couple of sets of rods (I changed to a stronger forged rod mid build) which means whilst the pistons have never seen action the Wirelocks have been fitted and removed a few times.

I am at a stage were the engine has been balanced and I want to strip the components down again for final clean and assembly but I just don't know if the Wirelocks are a multi use item or should be binned after removal and looking for some guidance and advice?

Many thanks


As long as they're fitted and removed with care, and aren't deformed, they should last indefinitely. However, they're cheap insurance to replace as part of the final build process.

Hi Andrew,

During development builds I have reused wire locks over and over, being careful to examine them each time but this was for engines that might only spend 5 hours running before being pulled apart again to change dev parts.

Generally we used to change them after no more than 4 used but again this was with great care and attention and if there was any doubt they where replaced as a full engine set to track mileage of parts.

As Gord says they don't cost the earth and many manufacturers will be able to sell you a bag of them for a lot less than a whole engine might cost risking not replacing one if your unsure.

Make sure the orientation is correct (gap north or south) and that they haven't deformed and you should be good. The piston is in good health, groove wise etc.Friday

Hope that helps.

Thanks for the advice helps a lot, I purchased a new set.

Also realised I asked the question twice on two different parts of this forum lol

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