Detailed animation of working principle of double acting cylinder piston arrangement02:37

Detailed animation of working principle of double acting cylinder piston arrangement

A detailed animation of double acting hydraulic cylinders.


Single & Double Acting Hydraulic Cylinder

Reciprocating engine cylinders are often classified by whether they are single or double acting, depending on how the working fluid acts on the piston.


A single-acting cylinder in a reciprocating engine is a cylinder in which the working fluid acts on one side of the piston only. A single-acting cylinder relies on the load, springs, other cylinders, or the momentum of a flywheel, to push the piston back in the other direction. Single-acting cylinders are found in most kinds of reciprocating engine. They are almost universal in internal combustion engines (e.g. petrol and diesel engines) and are also used in many external combustion engines such as Stirling engines and some steam engines. They are also found in pumps and hydraulic rams.


A double-acting cylinder is a cylinder in which the working fluid acts alternately on both sides of the piston. In order to connect the piston in a double-acting cylinder to an external mechanism, such as a crank shaft, a hole must be provided in one end of the cylinder for the piston rod and this is fitted with a gland or 'stuffing box' to prevent escape of the working fluid. Double-acting cylinders are common in steam engines but unusual in other engine types. Many hydraulic and pneumatic cylinders use them where it is needed to produce a force in both directions.

Process For Ordering Single & Double Acting CylindersEdit

The process is as follows:

  1. Bore diameter
  2. Rod diameter
  3. Pin hole diameter in boss
  4. Pin hole diameter in rod
  5. Type and size of boss
  6. Type and size of rod end
  7. Length of stroke
  8. Closed centre Length
  9. Port size
  10. Any other special feature

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