Two Types of Engines
There are two primarily different kinds of motorcycle engines that both operate in different manners. These are the two and four stroke engines. Two stroke engines are smaller, but four stroke engines operate on less fuel and are more eco-friendly.
Two Stroke Engines
Two stroke engines are comprised of a piston, the piston’s rings, a crank, a spark plug, an exhaust and intake port, and an engine cylinder. The process is fairly straightforward. The intake port first accepts a combination of fuel and air. The air and fuel mixture is compressed via the rising of the piston. This is where the spark plug enters the picture. The spark plug ignites this mixture, causing an explosion within the engine cylinder where activates the pistons and rotates the crank. As the piston retreats to its former position, the exhaust leaves out the exhaust port. This process is repeated over and over at a rapid pace.
Four Stroke Engines
Four stroke engines operate a bit differently. There are comprised of a spark plug, a piston and piston rings, a crank and crankshaft, and an engine cylinder, just like its two-stroke engine brother. However, intake and exhaust valves, a timing cain, and multiple camshafts, lobes and stems make an appearance as well, leading to an altered process.
The intake valve accepts the fuel and air mixture as before, and the piston acts to mix this mixture. An ignition is again created by the spark plug, pushing the crank and eventually the timing chain. The chain in turn activates the two camshafts; the camshaft for the exhaust valve rotates the lobe, which presses on the stem. After all this, the exhaust is then outed via the exhaust pipe, and the process is begun anew, with the timing chain again turning the camshafts and these in turn operating the intake valve and the lobe. This eventually pushes the stem that opens the intake valve, letting the fuel pass through.
Motorcycle engines also vary in the number of cylinders they possess. Motorcycle engines can possess between one and six cylinders. In America, Europe and Japan, the V-twin engine design was the favorite engine for many years. The two cylinder engine was long in vogue, but recently has been supplanted by four cylinder engines, which are now the favorite due to their ability to provide for higher revolutions per minute. Other engine types include: the Single Cylinder, Twin (V Twin Inline and Transverse), Flat Twin, Three Cylinder, V Four, Flat Four, Inline Four, Flat Four Inline and the Square Four.