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Why Can’t Pushrod Engines Rev High?

No matter what engine you’re selecting for your application, all of them will have their different nuances that you need to learn about before you can really start to make them creat good power. Some of these characteristics sported by the engines might indicate the kind of modification that you do to them or don’t do them and others might just show you where some limits might lie in exactly how they are going to make power. For example, how high an engine can rev is one characteristic that you’ll notice will change from application to application.

When you look across the broad stroke of all of the different possibilities on how exactly you can go fast, you might notice that engines like rotary engines are able to rev to the moon, cranking their way out to far north of 10,000 RPM which sends a scream into the air that’s very distinct and noticeable. On the other hand, with the pushrod engine, you’ll probably notice that this isn’t exactly the case. If you’ve ever seen a pushrod engine revolving that quickly, you would probably start to get a little bit nervous, wondering exactly when it’s going to pop or wondering what kind of beefy internals it has to allow such RPM.

If you follow along down in the video below, the Engineering Explained YouTube channel takes the liberty of breaking down these concepts for us and diving deeper into why it’s unlikely that you’re going to see a pushrod engine cranking out any sort of major RPM. It’s not necessarily a disadvantage that’s impossible to overcome but there are certain aspects of pushrod engines that don’t exactly give you some options that you might have with other engines. Our host here is probably going to be a little better at explaining, so be sure to grab your notebook!


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