In its sim­plest ex­pla­na­tion, TAF is RAYS pro­pri­etary tech­nol­ogy that uni­formly re­in­forces the en­tire wheel by ho­mog­e­niz­ing the in­ter­nal struc­ture of wheels through minia­tur­iza­tion. To do so, a ho­mo­ge­neously densely crys­tal­lized alu­minum al­loy brings an un

4 Wheel & Off Road - - + LUX­URY EX­OTIC -

To set ac­cu­rate their ex­ceed stan­dards. en­sure up for unique to tra­di­tional both and ef­fi­ciently this, bench­marks forg­ing ho­mo­ge­neous they Ja­panese pro­duce have and cast­ing (JWL+R) equip­ment pro­duc­tion highly safety while far put to man­u­fac­ture In them ad­di­tion, in mo­tor­sports un­der their the su­pe­rior con­stant heavy ac­tiv­i­ties alu­minum in­volve­ment de­mand has wheels. of the pro­gram, Given the the con­stant re­sult­ing de­mands pres­sure is what has com­mit­ted helped keep to their RAYS phi­los­o­phy Engi­neer­ing of “The Con­cept is Rac­ing.” As man­u­fac­tur­ers of wheels for both mo­tor­sport ac­tiv­i­ties and road use, they each have their own spe­cial man­u­fac­tur­ing pro­cesses, but it is their goal to erase the line that di­vides them. Yet by re­mov­ing the bar­ri­ers be­tween mo­tor­sports wheels and road wheels, RAYS has helped elim­i­nate the sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ences be­tween the two. Whereas many wheel com­pa­nies build strictly from a de­sign stand­point, RAYS Engi­neer­ing molds func­tion into fash­ion by cre­at­ing wheels they stand by. That said, here are some of the highlights of their man­u­fac­tur­ing process and a glimpse into how they are able to cre­ate some of the world’s light­est and strong­est wheels.

JWL+R Ex­treme Test­ing

for wheels The safety, dis­trib­uted JWL which are strength ap­ply in Ja­pan. to stan­dards alu­minum There are, how­ever, sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ences be­tween the ve­hi­cle per­for­mance, weight, and other at­tributes be­tween the time these stan­dards were es­tab­lished and today. As a re­sult, RAYS has de­vel­oped its own “+R” strength stan­dards to go above and be­yond the re­quire­ments and rig­ors of tra­di­tional JWL stan­dards.

Com­par­i­son of JWL+R Test­ing vs. JWL

• Ra­dial stress test: 800,000 ro­ta­tions (JWL: 500,000 ro­ta­tions) • Ro­tary bend­ing fa­tigue test: 150,000 ro­ta­tions (JWL: 100,000 ro­ta­tions) • 13-de­gree im­pact test: Drop height 255 mm (JWL: 230 mm)

JWL+R Spe­cific Test Cri­te­ria (A RAYS orig­i­nal)

• 90-de­gree im­pact (90-de­gree drop) test (drop height 100mm/ton) • Post-mod­i­fi­ca­tion drum test (800,000 ro­ta­tions) • Coat­ing per­for­mance test (spray­ing

with salt wa­ter, com­pos­ite cor­ro­sion, weather re­sis­tance tests, and so on)

Ma­te­rial Se­lec­tion

of in Ja­pan RAYS The en­tire Engi­neer­ing but it’s man­u­fac­tur­ing their is se­lec­tive en­cap­su­lated process process, tech­nol­ogy, and ma­chin­ery that shine. For ex­am­ple’s sake, TE37s are con­structed en­tirely out of alu­minum, but keep read­ing. Whereas other wheels have as much as 20 per­cent of other materials, RAYS com­mis­sions its own A6061-T6 blend that specif­i­cally com­ple­ments its forg­ing process and re­sults in the spe­cific elas­tic­ity, stress strain, ten­sile strength, and fa­tigue strength they are look­ing for. All of that means that its pure-alu­minum con­struc­tion doesn’t just re­sult in a light­weight wheel, which, by the way, is pretty im­por­tant. Ac­cord­ing to RAYS, elim­i­nat­ing 1 kg (2.2 pounds) of un­sprung weight, like that from your car’s wheels, can be as ef­fec­tive as shed­ding 15 kg (33 pounds) of over­all ve­hi­cle weight. As it turns out, pure alu­minum also al­lows for in­creased rigid­ity as well as bet­ter ther­mal con­duc­tiv­ity, re­main­ing up to three times cooler than steel, re­sult­ing in bet­ter brake cool­ing and bet­ter over­all per­for­mance.

Forg­ing Ma­chine Exclusive

The in­tro­duc­tion of RAYS’ 10,000ton forg­ing ma­chine makes it the most pow­er­ful in Ja­pan. This al­lows RAYS to pro­duce wheels with di­am­e­ters as large as 22 inches, all the while giv­ing them the tech­nol­ogy to form ideal fiber flows in line with the par­tic­u­lar wheel de­sign. Along with RM8000 tech­nol­ogy, these ad­vanced tools and pro­cesses al­low them to form beau­ti­ful fiber flows by open­ing some of the dies prior to the fin­ish­ing process.

Pro­pri­etary Tech­nol­ogy–TAF (Texture Ar­range­ment Fin­ing) Ad­vanced TAF

Today, the main­stream tech­nol­ogy for wheels called knowhow re­al­iz­ing “flow is in­ner gained form­ing.” high-per­for­mance rim from spin­ning By forg­ing ap­ply­ing (rolling) and cast the RAYS cast flow form­ing (RCF) method be­fore any other man­u­fac­turer, RAYS has pro­duced many sports wheels that have over­turned con­ven­tional cast wheel con­cepts. Flow form­ing alone is not suf­fi­cient for man­u­fac­tur­ers to ad­ver­tise their wheels as truly light and strong, how­ever, be­cause the range of re­in­force­ment is lim­ited to the in­ner rim, the disc sur­face re­mains the same un­less fur­ther im­prove­ments are made. TAF is a new tech­nique for pro­duc­ing light, strong, beau­ti­ful cast wheels, which takes a com­pletely dif­fer­ent ap­proach from the con­ven­tional cast wheel pro­duc­tion method. The key word is minia­tur­iza­tion. Molten alu­minum al­loy is poured into a die, and the struc­ture crys­tal­lizes as it cools and hard­ens. Usu­ally, the al­loy is al­lowed to cool nat­u­rally but molten alu­minum al­loys form finer crys­tals that join more solidly if chilled quickly. There­fore, RAYS in­vented their unique TAF method in which alu­minum al­loys are quickly chilled by wa­ter run­ning through in­nu­mer­able pipes in­set in the wheel die. This al­lows for finer crys­tals that join to­gether more densely in the rim and disc, thus in­creas­ing wheel strength. In turn, greater wheel strength has en­cour­aged RAYS to dar­ingly re­duce wheel weight, re­sult­ing in a truly high-per­for­mance, flaw­less cast wheel (Rcast) with an un­prece­dent­edly light and strong rim and disc. An­other ben­e­fit of minia­tur­iza­tion, not to be over­looked, is the con­se­quent smooth­ing of the wheel sur­face. Al­low­ing for a beau­ti­ful fin­ish af­ter pro­cess­ing en­sures that this is the most suit­able tech­nol­ogy for cast wheels. The TAF method is com­pleted by once again heat-treat­ing the wheels af­ter minia­tur­iza­tion in or­der to op­ti­mize their molec­u­lar struc­ture. RAYS, never sat­is­fied with the sta­tus quo and al­ways striv­ing to lead the world, con­tin­ues to in­no­vate in the realm of

cast wheel pro­duc­tion as they do in all of our mar­kets.

Pro­pri­etary Firm Forg­ing

discs, Although high-per­for­mance not as high profile rims are as an­other of RAYS’ man­u­fac­tur­ing strengths. In par­tic­u­lar, RAYS’ cast flow form­ing (RCF) is an in­no­va­tive man­u­fac­tur­ing method that light­ens and strength­ens the in­ner rim by spin­ning it—an in­no­va­tive man­u­fac­tur­ing method that has taken cast wheels to the next level of de­vel­op­ment. For wheels with a two-piece struc­ture, usu­ally sheet rims pro­duced by shap­ing alu­minum sheets into rims, RAYS uses its own in-house-de­vel­oped cut rims (VAIO-X rims) that are pro­duced by con­trol­ling rim thick­ness. This helps their con­stant ef­forts to re­duce weight across all wheel parts.

In­for­ma­tion is Power

Much like car man­u­fac­tur­ers, us­ing data com­piled from fac­tory race cars to use in fu­ture tech­nolo­gies for their con­sumer cars, RAYS has been ac­cu­mu­lat­ing, in­te­grat­ing, and an­a­lyz­ing var­i­ous data from the rac­ing pro­grams uti­liz­ing their wheels. That same data is re­flected in their lat­est strength and 3-D rigid­ify analysis, which in turn speeds up their de­vel­op­ment times. The same pro­gram al­lows them to iden­tify ar­eas of high stress con­cen­tra­tions while an­a­lyz­ing the spokes and how they af­fect over­all struc­tural rigid­ity.

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