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Steel vs Aluminum Harmonic Balancer?


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Is there any appreciable difference between an aluminum vs steel balancer in a (mostly) street turbo car? There is a 3# weight penalty, but that might not be a bad thing.  Anyone with experience with either? Price is the same for both.



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I was one of the few early customers that had their newly offered BHJ aluminum damper for the L28 fail in the sleeve mount area back about 10 years ago (there were a few others on this board as well). There is a Rockwell difference in the aluminum sleeve mount & the forged steel crankshaft. The damper came loose & the key on the crankshaft deformed the aluminum key way on the sleeve. This may have been caused by using the stock crankshaft damper mounting bolt & washer. I repaired the key way on the damper with JB weld & got the larger Nismo race damper bolt & washer. The washer in the race bolt set up is a stepped configuration. It appears to have been a successful fix. The key way's main function is for position of the damper vs the actual clamping force of the damper to the crankshaft. The crankshaft bolt & washer is where the clamping action is & should take place. BHJ did not have a disclaimer/warning/recommendation of using the stock bolt vs the larger racing bolt & washer at the time they first offered the damper.  I believe BHJ has since moved to a steel sleeve mount damper. At any rate it is highly recommended to use the race bolt application for any aftermarket damper.

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