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Camshafts are essential for the engine combustion process. There are many different camshafts depending on the engine, being bigger, smaller, with more cams or even engines with multiple camshafts.


It does not matter how many camshafts are in an engine. They always operate the valves, controlling the intake and exhaust process of the engine. They manage the amount of air-fuel mixture that enters and leaves into cylinders.

It is responsible for controlling how long and in what magnitude the engine’s intake and exhaust valves open and close. Thanks to this control capacity, they can manage the amount of air-fuel mixture enters and leaves into cylinders.


An engine can mount different number of camshafts. It depends on number of valves, cylinder or even cylinder heads.

Some engines, due to their high valves number, work with 2 camshafts, one of which is responsible for opening and closing intake valves and the other for exhaust valves. An engine with higher number of cylinders needs, either more camshafts or larger camshafts because the number of valves increases with each additional cylinder.

Finally, engines with more than one cylinder head, such as V engines or boxer engines, need more than one camshaft. These engines designs can not work with a single camshaft.


Technology in automobile industry advanced a lot since its beginning, not only in electronic terms but also in engine spare parts.

Early 90s, diesel engines used solid camshafts. These cast iron or steel shafts are machined directly into the iron bar itself. One advantage that they have is the simplicity of their build process. However, they are very heavy with no repair capacity. When it fails, it usually breaks, and it replaces with a new one.


Over time, these engines’ spare part evolved and intake/exhaust camshafts driven by timing chain arrived.

Unlike the first ones. They connect to the engine distribution by pinions. Those pinions provide much better management of valve opening and closing times. This optimizes the engine’s performance.


After shafts with pinions came camshafts with cams and sensor. These type had a different development than the previous ones. The cams are false. This means that cams are already built and through a process in which temperature of the tube decreases, they manage to pass it through the holes of the cams. Once the tube temperature returns to normal, the cams are perfectly fitted. This technology provides a better ability to repair it. Finally, it has a sensor connected that indicates the exact position of the first cylinder, optimizing injection process.

Later, vehicles with camshafts supported by a rocker arm bridge were implemented. In this type of composition, they support on a base and do not rotate directly on the cylinder head.


Ending this evolution, the camshafts with integrated sensor inside the pinion arrived. This evolution provided a better use of space in it.


Lastly, most modern camshafts are sets that come assembled with their cover. This set has different peculiarities. As can be seen in the photo, they are manufactured on a frame that is mounted directly on the cylinder head. In addition to being able to mount on different cylinder heads, one of the great advantages is the simplicity that they have to be repaired. It is not possible to change one camshaft or another, the entire set changes, ensuring a correct repair although, in economic terms, it is more expensive.


At Oryx Parts, we have stock of these camshafts so that regardless of the age of the engine, our customers can carry out a fast and competitive repair.

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