Cylinder Features

  • Continental® Motors manufactures cylinders for the most popular piston engines in general aviation. Whether you are flying behind a Continental®, a Titan™ or a LYCOMING®* engine, we have the right cylinder for you.

    Continental® Motors innovates year after year, investing heavily in research and development, manufacturing equipment, and quality control. We are proud of our history that goes back to 1904 and of our future.

    For over 110 years, Continental® Motors has been manufacturing cylinders for its engines. Building technical and engineering expertise year over year, Continental® now offers cylinder kits and parts not only for its own engines (including the Titan™ range of experimental engines) but also for LYCOMING®* engines.


    Cylinder for Continental® Motors Engines Features

    When Continental® Motors set out to deliver a high-quality cylinder, we started at the beginning with metallurgy, the tools to cast the heads or forge the barrels, and the method of seating heads and barrels. Our cylinders include the best steel and aluminium materials. They are precision machined to tight tolerances and assembled with custom designed computer operating systems. Lastly our cylinders are durably tested under extreme conditions in advanced engineering test cells and high-performance aircraft. Continuous improvements in manufacturing technology and advanced statistical process control have enabled Continental® Motors to hone in on the center of the tolerance band.

    Cylinder Barrels

    Cylinder Barrels start out as high-grade aircraft quality, through-hardened 4140 forged steel. Then the cylinder bores, for our higher horsepower Continental® Motors engines (300-500 series), go through a thru-hardening process which gives the cylinder barrels excellent resistance to wear and greater durability at higher temperatures.


    • As a corrosion-resistance and initial break-in measure, barrels also receive a manganese phosphate coating.
    • Plateau honed finish created by a two-step hone process resulting in less friction, more contact area, and enhanced hone pattern.

    Cylinder heads

    Cylinder heads are machined on computer controlled machining centers. Custom designed computer controlled equipment is used in the assembly of the critical head to barrel joint.


    Pistons are designed to be extremely wear resistant and use the best alloys to ensure longevity and heat resistance.


    • Advanced anti-friction graphite coated piston skirts enhances break-in during initial startup and reduces wear.
    • Cast in place steel ring carrier maintains integrity of top compression ring seal.

    Cylinders for Titan™ and LYCOMING®* Engines

    Cylinders for our Titan™ Experimental line of engines and for the LYCOMING®* engines come in two flavours:

    • Parallel Valve Cylinders
    • Angle Valve Cylinders


    We have a solution for your engine, bringing quality, reliability, and superior performance. Our warranties are second to none, bringing you peace of mind on every flight.

    Parallel Valve Cylinders


    • Increased critical aluminium wall thickness.
    • Plateau bore surface finish (NiC3TM plate or Steel).
    • Optimized interference fit between steel barrel and aluminium head.
    • Molybdenum-faced top compression ring.
    • Tru-Bore Valve Guides.
    • High-chrome alloy exhaust valve guides.
    • Calibrated intake port (for balanced air flow).
    • Casting surface texture for heat dissipation.
    • Shell mold casting.


    When used on a Titan™ Experimental engine or a LYCOMING®* engine on a experimental airframe, additional benefits:

    • Taper barrel fins for weight reduction.
    • Optional 14mm spark plug bosses for electronic ignition.


    Heritage with a future: Optional NiC3™ Cylinder Coating
    NOW Available for Angle Valve or Parallel Valve Cylinders

    Continental® Motors has been innovating and leading the industry for over 110 years. Today, we bring to the market a new revolution: Nickel Silicon Carbide coating of our cylinders for Continental® Motors, LYCOMING®* and Titan™ engines. This process offers corrosion resistance, abnormal or premature wear resistance, increased strength, and a warranty extension of five years or TBO. If you fly less frequently than you wish or if you are based in a region where maritime or humid climate is prevalent, the NiC3™ cylinder family was designed for you!

    The Coating Process
    Cylinders are coated with the NiC3™ compound via electrolysis. An electrolytic nickel matrix is prepared, to provide perfect adhesion to the surface of the cylinder wall. Within this matrix are suspended minute particles of silicon carbide, which are almost diamond-hard. These particles are spread evenly throughout the matrix, and provide exceptional resistance to wear. The resultant coating becomes an integral part of the cylinder wall, and provides an extremely low friction coefficient, thus increasing the mechanical performance of the cylinder itself.

    NiC3™ Cylinders Better Performance
    Nickel Silicon Carbide is a chemical compound coating of Nickel and Silicon Carbide, a strong ceramic. It is much harder than steel, with performance attributes that first appeared in the engine cylinders of sports and race-cars. Continental® Motors now offers nickel silicon carbide (NiC3™) as an optional coating across its entire range of cylinder products. The increase in performance, wear-resistance and cylinder lifetime are among the many reasons more owners and operators are choosing NiC3™.

    Better Protection Against Corrosion
    Piston engines used infrequently are more prone to internal corrosion, since the oil layer left following operation slowly fades away over time through lack of use. A cylinder coated with NiC3™ actually absorbs and retains a layer of oil, keeping the cylinder surface coated much longer than a standard uncoated surface. This greatly increases the protection against corrosion in engines that are not used regularly.

    Greatly Improved Surface Integrity
    Since aviation engines breathe ambient air, moisture can enter as a result of daily variations in temperature. NiC3™ coating enhances and protects surface integrity and provides a strong barrier against corrosion, while improving cylinder performance. The coating process is performed under strictly controlled conditions, with consistent and uniform coverage of the entire cylinder.

    Industry leading warranty
    Our full range for Continental® Motors, Titan™ Experimental & ASTM-certified and FAA-approved cylinders for LYCOMING®* engines are now available with the option of NiC3™ coating. In addition to the standard warranty (2 years or 1,000 hours, whichever comes first), these premium cylinders are backed by an additional warranty extension covering the cylinder barrels for abnormal wear and/or corrosion for 5 years. Or TBO, whichever comes first. More peace of mind to you!

  • * Lycoming® is a registered trademark of Textron Innovations Inc. Any reference to Lycoming® or associated trademarks, word marks, and products is only for purposes of identifying engines with which Continental parts are compatible, or for which Continental® Motors offers maintenance services. Continental® Motors parts compatible with Lycoming® engines are aftermarket parts and are not original equipment parts. Continental® Motors is not connected to, affiliated with, or sponsored by, or endorsed by Textron Innovations Inc. or Lycoming Engines, a Division of Avco Corporation, or any of their affiliate companies.