Tech Tips - How much horsepower can my connecting rods handle?
It is nearly impossible to put a power rating on a connecting rod. Power is produced from the expanding gasses in the combustion chamber pushing down on the piston which in turn pushes down on the connecting rods. While there are certain situations that could lead to failed rods due to compressive loads, rods generally don't fail because of power loads. If rods broke due to power, they would experience severe bending to the point of permanent deformation prior to breaking. When you see a broken connecting rod where there is no seizure of the bearing or failure of the piston/pin/cylinder wall, look closely and you will see that the rod was actually pulled in two. This high tension pulling load on the rod takes place at TDC on the exhaust stroke and is caused by the piston trying to continue up the cylinder walls and through the cylinder head and the crankshaft trying to pull it back down. The heavier the piston, longer the stroke and the higher the RPM, the more pulling load is placed on the rod. When you look at a dyno sheet, you will see that as the RPM is taken past peak power the power falls off. However, most of us have seen engines that have had rods break when over revved. If power broke rods, they would never break due to being over revved. All K1 Technologies connecting rods are specifically designed to handle the high "inertia" loads (pulling a rod apart) and the "compression" loads (pushing the rod together) that are found in modern high performance engines. Use our products with confidence!