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International Journal of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

Abstract

The automobile industry has shown increased interest in the replacement of steel spring with fibre glass composite leaf spring due to high strength to weight ratio. Therefore the aim of this work is to reduce the weight and low cost fabrication of complete mono composite leaf spring and mono composite leaf spring with bonded end joints. Also, general study on the analysis and design. A single leaf with variable thickness and width for constant cross sectional area of unidirectional glass fibre reinforced plastic (GFRP) with similar mechanical and geometrical properties to the multi leaf spring, was designed, fabricated (hand- layup technique) and tested. The results showed that an spring width decreases hyperbolically and thickness increases linearly from the spring eyes towards the axle seat. The finite element results using ANSYS software showing stresses and deflections were verified with analytical and experimental results. The design constraints were stresses (Tsai-Wu failure criterion) and displacement. Compared to the steel spring, the composite spring has stresses that are much lower, the natural frequency is higher and the spring weight is nearly 85 % lower with bonded end joint and with complete eye unit.

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