When price becomes the difference between winning and losing sometimes you just have to bite your lip and fork over the greenbacks. In this industry, racers are realizing that wallets have to be big (and open) to stay on top. Let's put it this way, you just spent thousands of dollars on building your race car and everything seems to be perfect. Horsepower is in the 600-plus range, the chassis is dialed in, the suspension is up to the task and you're ready to hit the track. Let's say you're lucky enough to get in the single digits first time out and you qualify high. The second pass seems to go fine then all of a sudden you smoke your single-disc clutch as you watch your competitor fly by as your single digit potential becomes a 14-second reality. Here is were the dilemma comes in, your two choices are either swap out clutches round after round and pray that they hold up or you fork up the money for something more exotic. One such exotic option is Tilton's new Carbon/Carbon clutch.
Okay so the Tilton unit is pricey but so is the money you could be winning on the track if you could hook up consistently. With horsepower and torque levels still on the rise in the Honda camp it is only a matter of time before single-disc clutch technology will not be able to clamp the power produced on B-series engines. About a year and a half ago I met up with Jason Wahl and Kirk Skaufel from Tilton Engineering at an East Coast race. It was here that they would show me a piece of a puzzle that would come into play soon after. It turns out Christian Rado had a prototype Honda Tilton clutch he was testing. According to Christian, "The clutch has survived over 30 quarter mile runs without service." A year and a half later and now the clutch is available through Tilton.
The Tilton clutch redefines import clutch technology in various ways. The units use of lightweight material, weight set to the center of the crank and its carbon on carbon construction play a major role on how profoundly this clutch is revolutionizing the import drag race scene.