Rocker arms play an important role in an internal combustion engine. They are put under a tremendous amount of stress through every rotation of the engine. In a typical V8 OHV engine, the rocker arm reciprocates millions of times through its life cycle.
They overcome friction wear and valve spring pressure with nothing more than “splash oiling.” In an internal combustion engine, the rocker arms are the link between the camshaft and the valve. As the camshaft lobes raise the lifters and pushrods, the rocker arm is lifted up and in turn pushes down on the valve in a see-saw motion. Many stock rocker arms are made of stamped steel or cast metal and feature a fulcrum pivot that is usually a metal to metal contact design. This has proven to be reliable in stock applications with small camshaft profiles and low valve spring pressures but for the performance enthusiast, this design will just not be sufficient.
With larger cam profiles and higher valve spring pressures consistent with performance engine design, the rocker arms need to be upgraded. In the performance world, the industry is flooded with aftermarket rocker arms. Many different designs have been put out to improve life and performance over the stock rocker arm designs. Some of the popular designs include roller tipped rocker arms, aluminum roller fulcrum rocker arms and steel roller fulcrum rocker arms. These have performed well for many mild performance engine builds. For more serious engines, the use of a stud girdle helped a bit but was still insufficient. The only thing left was a shaft mounted system which used a shaft that the rocker arms were mounted to and bolted down to the head. Now the words shaft mounted rocker system used to mean saving your money for two years to afford a setup and usually they were way more than was needed when stud mounted performance rocker arms wouldn’t quite cut it. For years there was a serious void for that middle of the road rocker system until now.
T&D Machine Products has specialized in rocker arm systems since 1975. In the early 80’s, T&D worked with Buick to develop a shaft mount rocker system for its iconic V6 that would make them a leader in the Indy 500 and Busch Grand National series. With so much experience in the rocker arm field, T&D immediately saw a void in the crossover between stud mounted rocker arms and expensive high end shaft mounted systems. They developed a shaft system that could meet the demands of the all out racing engine without breaking the bank. T&D Sport Comp shaft rocker systems feature many of the same features as their high end systems at almost half the price. The Sport Comp series utilizes the same bearing, shaft, adjuster and rocker arm materials as well as the same bearing design. They use the same size bearing and adjuster with no limitation on spring pressure. They keep the cost down by simply limiting the applications. They are available for SBC with or without .220 intake offset, BBC and SBF. They have a combination of different ratios to accommodate most performance racing needs. So for about the same price as a set of stud mounted aluminum roller rocker arms with studs, guideplates and a stud girdle, you could buy T&D’s Sport Comp series shaft rocker arms. They are completely superior in design, strength and reliability while being able to withstand much more rpm. That’s the type of insurance that money CAN buy.