A single cylinder engine equipped with a transparent cylinder sleeve has been used to develop a technique to make visual investigations of piston ring lubrication behavior and engine oil loss mechanism. This paper describes this apparatus and the development of a laser excited oil fluorescence technique for measuring the oil film thickness change between the piston rings and the transparent cylinder sleeve wall. The amount of oil accumulated in the piston-cylinder clearance spaces above and below the ring pack, and those in the inter-ring spaces, can also be observed. Preliminary results showing oil fluorescence light intensity traces indicate that this technique works very well. Quantitative oil film thickness data should be readily obtainable from these traces once the fluorescent light intensity is calibrated.

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