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An intermediate shaft (3 in. diam), part of a camshaft drive on a large diesel engine, broke after two weeks of service. Failure occurred at the end of the taper portion adjacent to the screwed thread. The irregular saw-tooth form of fracture was characteristic of failure from torsional fatigue. A second shaft carried as spare gear was fitted and failure took place in a similar manner in about the same period of time. Examination revealed that the tapered portion of the Fe-0.6C carbon steel shaft had been built up by welding prior to final machining. A detailed check by...

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