Motion is the principal behind how an engine makes its power via the rotating assembly deep inside the block. That motion is great inside the walls of the cylinders, but the engine’s valvetrain isn’t the biggest fan of unnecessary motion, especially the valve springs. To prevent valve springs from dancing in directions they aren’t supposed to, adding a full set of Spring Seat Locators is the best course of action for a valvetrain. ,
Valve springs require a certain height to be installed at to function correctly and you can use a set of shims to achieve this, however, that will not eliminate unwanted motion in the spring. Using a Spring Seat Locator will allow the valve spring to maintain its designed location, without dancing around on the surface of the cylinder head and possibly damaging it.
Ferrea Racing Components are experts in the world of valvetrain technology and they understand how important it is to control the dynamic motion of a valve spring. Zeke Urrutia from Ferrea explains just why a set of Spring Seat Locators is a good idea for a potent engine.
“You really want that locator in there to deal with the flex that can occur with parts like this, we call it walking. Walking happens if the spring isn’t happy where it’s at and it will literally start walking to the left or right to a new position. The more movement you have like that, the more it will transfer to the valve stem area itself and that can cause some big problems. That flex can hit the entire valve train as well, including the retainers, locks, and spring. When that happens it will just amplify the problem even more.”
Having stability within the valvetrain will assist in dealing with the brutal harmonics that can come from the motion of a valve. Before you decide to just throw any set of Spring Seat Locators in your cylinder heads, make sure they are correct for your application or they will do more harm than good.
“The correct set of Spring Seat Locators will reduce the movement through the spring area and let it do its job. It adds stability to the spring and keeps it in its frequency level so it doesn’t fail. The locator also is a snug fit in the guide area. Every locator we make is particular to that application, so it’s very accurate versus just putting shims in there,” Urrutia explains.
Check out this quick video from Ferrea that gives a nice high-level overview and more details about how a Spring Seat Locator functions.