A clutch may be most commonly associated with automobiles, but mechanical clutches are needed any time that the transmission of power or motion must be controlled. There are many varieties of mechanical clutches, with each type designed to fulfill specific requirements. One of the most commonly used types is the centrifugal clutch.
These clutch systems employ a centrifugal force to automatically engage when the engine rpm rises above a threshold and to disengage when it falls low enough. The centrifugal clutch has a number of advantages. No control mechanism is necessary to run it, and it is highly cost effective. It also prevents the internal combustion engine from stalling when the output shaft is slowed or stopped abruptly, by using the engine in this fashion less braking force is required.
Centrifugal clutches are well known in smaller vehicles such as mopeds, but they are also used in a wide variety of industrial applications. Centrifugal clutches can be found in a wide range of military applications as well as for chillers, municipal waterworks plants, and many more. These clutches need to maintain constant alignment between the driven and drive side shafts in order to function properly. Centrifugal clutches can be engineered to fit into applications with limited space, such as mining. Mining is a highly demanding environment, and it’s important to use resilient and tough centrifugal clutches in this industry. Mixers are important in a variety of fields, including the chemistry industry. Centrifugal clutches play a vital role in helping chemical mixers run at the highest level of efficiency, and with optimal design, can prevent jams. Finally, centrifugal clutches can be built to operate under harsh environmental conditions, including extreme cold.
Mechanical clutches are available in many different forms. The centrifugal design has utility and versatility that allows it to be used in many diverse products, including augers, pumps, saws, kilns, compressors, power trowels, and many others.