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ACT Clutch Review / Rating


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ACT Clutch Review Well, as the clutch debates continues almost a year later, we have another one to review !! ...




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Old 07-02-2007, 02:34 AM
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Exclamation ACT Clutch Review / Rating

ACT Clutch Review

Well, as the clutch debates continues almost a year later, we have another one to review !!

Being able to compare side-by-side with specifications allows the members to really get a feel for what they want before deciding to purchase. Well, enough will the talk...let get on with it

My journey started with a call to Advanced Clutch Technology (ACT) (http://www.advancedclutch.com/).

The customer service was top notch and the knowledge about the product was very good. We discussed the differences between their clutch and other manufacturers' clutches and also went over the break-in period and how important it is to properly 'seat' the clutch to the flywheel. He made sure I was knowledgeable about their product, and that he was aware of the vehicle it would be installed in. Once we decided what clutch would suit me, we went with it.

ACT only has 1 clutch kit for the mighty V10, which is a "Street Heavy Duty Kit". What that means is that you get a 38% increase in clamp strength over stock, but with the same characteristics as a factory clutch (ability to slip slightly, etc..). The approximate weight is 38lbs boxed, and a max rated capacity (torque) of 935 ft/lbs at the motor (crankshaft), which is approx 1075 RWTQ.

The package was exceedingly more then I expected. The box contained more items then any other clutch kit I have seen, which is great for someone looking for a truly complete kit.

The kit includes:

Clutch Pressure Plate
Clutch Disk
Throw-out Bearing
Instruction
Catalog
Stickers
Pilot Bearing
Alignment Tool
Clutch Specification Sheet
CD w/ Images and Installation files

WOW...I was amazed in the packaging and materials! Here is a shot of the papers and such:







Now for the solid specs:



Pressure Plate:

First thing that caught my eye was the Pressure plate. The plate utilized a very similar design as the Centerforce minus the center-weights. Compared to the stock pressure plate this has undergone some serious upgrades, from springs and high speed balancing, to straps and rivets. The (measure) specifications on the factory pressure plate and the ACT pressure plate are nearly the same, as the application would need to be, to fit the bell housing.

Many do not understand what goes into a pressure plate, so I will explain it in a short summarized version.

Pedal effort is something many companies strive for in an aftermarket clutch kit, but in order to keep the stock pedal effort (release load) they use a stock diaphragm. Moving the pivot point, they can change the leverage by reducing distance, and may indeed moderately increase clamp load. The problems with this is the amount of travel required to get the required lift increases, and the working range of the pressure plate decreases. So basically you get a soggy or soft clutch pedal feel, and low clutch life. We are all looking for clutch life and performance correct??? Well, there is a trade-off, and that is clutch pedal feel . Now, the ACT clamp force is 38% greater then the factory, and in theory we will more then likely have a slightly stiffer pedal, but we will find out!













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Clutch Disk :

The ACT clutch disk is made of SFI Spec 1.1 Certified Steel Backed Organic lining and has a high copper content friction material which dissipates hear quickly, designed to help with holding capacity, and effectively transferring heat. The ACT disk is full faced disk, meaning it has material on both sides and not a 'puk' design. Allowing greater contact with flywheel surface and pressure plate surface, this design greatly increases holding capacity and reduces the chances for chatter. ACT clutch disks also provide high grade rivets to securely fasten both faces together for maximum strength, making it very safe for the vehicle.

Another slight thing I noticed was the difference in disk material width; compare the stock vs the ACT numbers..considerably more material
















Installation:

Installation was fairly simple if following the Dodge repair/service manual. The ACT Clutch does not include instructions on how to install the clutch into the SRT-10, the only documentation was tips and advice to increase the clutch longevity and generic installation procedures. For this installation / comparison, we followed the installation manual to a "T", allowing us to do a very equal comparison between different clutch manufacturers. The ACT clutch was made very well and met manufacturer's specifications quite nicely, no modifications were necessary.

First thing that is VERY important is that the flywheel must be new or resurfaced (not recommended per manual) in order for the clutch disk to properly seat against the flywheel. Once the flywheel was installed and torqued to manufacturer's specs, the clutch disk is installed. Making sure customer installs the clutch disk on the right side, they engraved "flywheel side" into the disk, which is quite helpful. Once the clutch disk is installed, an alignment tool is installed to properly align the clutch disk to the flywheel and pressure plate; this is important, as even wear on the disk / pressure plate / flywheel must be achieved.
The alignment tool supplied unfortunately does not fit , the pilot bearing is larger in diameter, so we put some electrical tape on the end of the alignment tool to make it fit snug into the pilot bearing.

It is now time to install the pressure plate, which is VERY VERY heavy. Once in place, all bolts were loctite and torqued to manufacturer's specifications (22.5 ft lbs). Pretty isn’t it ?? Now that the installation has been completed, we can reinstall everything back together!









The Test

My first reaction was, "wow, that's stiffer" as the pedal felt slightly-to-moderately stiffer then the OEM Luk clutch; remember we talked about clamping force and such .

I started her up and let it idle for a little bit, checking for any noises or leaks. With the clutch fully disengaged, I placed it in reverse and slowly started engaging the clutch, not knowing where the engagement point was located. The clutch engaged approximately 2-3 inches from the floor compared to the 3-4 inches with the factory clutch, so not too much difference. Stated by ACT, the clutch needs a 'seating period' of 250-300 miles of city driving (not highway) for the disk material and chemicals to mate with the newly surfaced flywheel and pressure plate. So when engaging the clutch, I was easy, shifting at 3k rpm, and no full throttle driving.

In stop / go traffic, there is no chatter and the clutch feels like it has A LOT more bite. I will not be able to tell how the clutch performs under stress until the break-in period is reached. Updates will follow....


Conclusion:

At first, I expected there to be more differences in the pressure plate, but once measured to the stock, it is considerately similar. I feel ACT did a very good job in 'upgrading' a pressure plate to fit the tight spaces of the bell housing with a product that can preform and meet SFI Certification that needs to be met for most tracks and racing organizations. The included items in the package blew me away, as I just expected the 'standard kit' (pressure plate, disk, and maybe and throw-out bearing) but instead received a lot literature and products; I really believe bank-for-buck this is a great value.

As for the clutch disk, the materials are really kind of a in-house "trade secret". It contains copper friction material, but the remaining material is yet to be discovered; I'm pretty confident in the quality and excited to see how well it works.

For those looking for an EXACT stock feel, this is close, but wont do it for you. This is more of a performance clutch with a performance feel. You will get slight increase in pedal feel but a lot greater feel in clutch grip and performance, which in theory will provide you with greater longevity.

OEM??















Ratings

Customer Service - 10 / 10
Ordering, Shipping, Handling - 9 / 10
Installation Material (for the do-it-yourself-ers) - 10 / 10
Quality / Craftsmanship - 9 / 10
Driveability and Comfort - 8 / 10
Performance - 9/10 (currently - updates will follow)
Overall Value for the Money - (10/10)

If you have any questions please feel free to PM or Email me!

Thanks!

Patrick

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Old 07-02-2007, 09:49 AM
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Thanks Patrick. Great info. At some point I will be replacing these items and will be looking for exactly this type of feedback to make a well informed decision. Thanks for your efforts. Great pics too.
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:46 AM
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Yeah Joe... Just about time for a clutch swap for you.

Patrick. You keep screwing me up!!! Great write up.. But I need less choices... BTW, what is the cost for this thing?
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Old 07-02-2007, 11:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TREKER
Yeah Joe... Just about time for a clutch swap for you.

Patrick. You keep screwing me up!!! Great write up.. But I need less choices... BTW, what is the cost for this thing?
You can contact DC Performance, they are a direct reseller for ACT.

Thanks

Patrick
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Old 07-02-2007, 12:11 PM
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It would be interesting to see how it stacks up against the Centerforce, keep us updated... Great info Patrick.
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Old 07-02-2007, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walenator
It would be interesting to see how it stacks up against the Centerforce, keep us updated... Great info Patrick.

Thats eventually what we need after its broken in. Direct comparison to to a Centerforce. Did you change out the the master/slave to the viper unit as well?


patrick
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Old 07-02-2007, 02:47 PM
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Is it priced less than the Centerforce, or was it about the same?
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Old 07-02-2007, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mauiSRT/10
Thats eventually what we need after its broken in. Direct comparison to to a Centerforce. Did you change out the the master/slave to the viper unit as well?


patrick
Viper Master & Slave is HIGHLY recommended...the plastic hydraulics just do not have the integrity for the increased pressure of the diaphragm....this goes for all other aftermarket performance kits too.

-Patrick
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Old 07-02-2007, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by FATJACK
Is it priced less than the Centerforce, or was it about the same?
I would say they are both pretty comparable...but call Dan @ DC Performance and see if they have any specials for the VTCOA going on

Thanks!

Patrick
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Old 07-02-2007, 08:31 PM
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Thanks Patrick, Great review. I'll definitely pick up a kit


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