PRI 2017: Gibtec’s Piston Buttons Won’t Hurt Your Fingers

In the racing piston world, developing new concepts can often be a challenge. After all, in an AETC seminar just a few days ago, legendary builder Jon Kaase made mention of the fact that many “inventions” in today’s racing world are simply improvements of concepts which were developed years–and sometimes decades–ago. And then you have those improvements, which, although evolutionary, are so simple and elegant one wonders why nobody developed them before. In the case of the piston pin buttons offered by billet racing piston manufacturer Gibtec Pistons, a quick look at the design makes you think “how did nobody do this before?”

Gibtec’s Rob Giebas–the brains behind this unique concept–first conceived it in response to traditional pin buttons crushing the oil ring rails in super-high-horsepower Pro Mod and Outlaw-style turbocharged engines. Non-retained pin buttons would rotate during engine operation, pinching the oil ring, and ultimately damaging the engines severely, sometimes beyond repair.

“This one locks in and allows you to run it without a support rail. It’s a patented design that’s used in Pro Mod; big turbo and nitrous engines run these also,” says Giebas.

“It also helps with waffling of the oil ring too, where you’d see a bunch of marks on the bottom of the ring.”

The pin buttons are held in by the oil ring, which means the end of traditional finger-decimating spiral and round-wire locking mechanisms during assembly. The smooth outer contours of the buttons keep them from damaging the cylinder walls, and the dual locking tangs prevent rotation.

As the pistons offered by Gibtec are all made from billet construction, the pin buttons can be incorporated into just about any design they offer. You know how they say your internal engine parts should look like jewelry? Gibtec’s pistons do exactly that. They can design whatever you need, and since they tightly control the manufacturing process–which is all done in-house, from computer-aided design to external coatings to packaging–they can build exactly what you need. From DLC pin coatings, hard anodizing, and even positioning underside strut configurations to combat particular stresses your race engine sees, it’s all possible with Gibtec’s billet pistons.

Save your fingers during assembly with their unique button design, and save your high-dollar engine from potential damage in the process.

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About the author

Jason Reiss

Jason draws on over 15 years of experience in the automotive publishing industry, and collaborates with many of the industry's movers and shakers to create compelling technical articles and high-quality race coverage.
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