Crankshaft surface finish and shape are key factors affecting the performance of all bearings. Crankshaft journal surfaces should be ground and polished to a surface finish of 15 micro inches roughness average Ra or better. Journals on highly loaded crankshafts such as diesel engines or high performance racing engines require a finish of 10 micro inches Ra or better.
The above is a simple straight forward specification which can be measured with special equipment. However, there is more to generating a ground and polished surface than just meeting the roughness specification. To prevent rapid, premature wear of the crankshaft bearings and to aid in the formation of an oil film, journal surfaces must be ground opposite to engine rotation and polished in the direction of rotation. This recommendation can cause a great deal of confusion in actual execution. Understanding the reasons behind the recommendation and examination of the following illustrations will help make the recommendation clearer.