What is WPC Treatment and Why Do We Use it?


Wonder why we use this mysterious WPC Treatment on so many of our engine builds? Let us explain what WPC is and how it works. It’s an inexpensive dose of prevention that can free up power lost to friction and also double the life of your engine!  It is also great to reduce heat, friction, extending the life of your transmission and differential. It can also make your clutch type limited slip diff as smooth as silk!

If you want us to build your engine or get WPC treatment on your stuff, visit the Garage Services tab up at the top of the site, fill out the brief form and we’ll get back to you!  (or just click here: https://motoiq.com/motoiq-garage/ )

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  1. Mike, has anyone investigated/built a WPC treated Rotary engine that you know of? Given all the friction and oil surfaces it seems like an ideal application, from the housings, to the edges of all the seals, to the e-shaft.

    As far as I know, you guys at MotoIQ are the most extensive users of WPC in builds.

    1. Yes Kyle Mohan uses WPC extensively in Rotary engine builds as did the Berganholtz brothers when they used to run Mazdas.

  2. So typically a high end rod will be shot-peened from the factory, would you typically WPC a rod after it has been shot-peened?

  3. I have a pretty good size order on it’s way back from WPC (Mr.Ogawa). Some interesting points. if it has slippery stuff mixed in, seems like a bad idea for dry engine clutches. I had no idea having the rings done would lead to a longer break-in. So that’s good to know. It also make one question if it’ll hang around on the rings after the break in process. I would have done the plates in the limited slip had I known. Do you think this is a better process than hard anodizing for a rough duty piston? what happens if you WPC a hard anodized piston? You should do some dyno testing on the easy to process things. like cams and followers.

    1. Hard anodizing piston skits is more of a top fuel drag racer thing. Hard anodizing is hard on cylinder walls.

  4. how do you feel about this statement?
    WPC is a good process but do know it is a sacrificial surface treatment. The premise is that its media blasted with fine ceramic powder. This creates dimples or depressions in the substrate which retain oil. In a dynamic state the high spots created due to the impeding of the surface will wear down thus equaling the low areas and your wpc treatment is thereby no longer there. To maintain optimum surface retention and overall beneficial surface treatment integrity the wpc treatment must be reapplied annually to keep the benefits maintained.

  5. Wonderful answer. I have watched the whole video. The affect under the surface is increased hardness and compressive strength (at least those are the only graphs with data). that doesn’t seem much different than hard anodizing (I’m referring to pistons).
    Will a running shaft not “smooth” the dimples created by WPC?
    Will the “top secret” sauce lubricants never wear away?
    I come to this site for information. Maybe it’s just another advertisement.

    1. I saw a Japanese interview about WPC and from what I understand they are not using ceramic but micron tungsten dust because it was the only way they could shot peen soft aluminium components without abrading or deforming the surface, the tungsten actually embeds into the aluminium and acts as a bonding agent for DLC (Diamond Like Coating) wich was the original goal of WPC treatment, DLC motorcycle pistons.

      Check https://youtu.be/Uc_oxYd3-5U?t=1289 for some nice info and microscope closeups.

      1. From what I understand the media varies depending on the surface. WPC is secretive but I have seen them use a white powder.

  6. who do you recommend sending my gearsets too.I’m rebuilding my transmission for a TT car build this would help me address some of the weak spots in my tranny

      1. I tried to send a message through there but I don’t know if it went through or if that section doesn’t work.

  7. I have been intrigued by WPC Treatment ever since I learned about it a few years ago. I know some OEMs use it in top level racing, but it’s quite secretive on who uses it.
    If I ever get to build a rotary engine, I’m definately going through Mazdatrix fof the full treatment on everything that can be treated.
    Will also be considering it for a race bike I plan on prepping (engine components, gearbox, clutch).
    I know the costs of treating individual parts then having to reassemble everything can be quite high for volume production (OEMs), but the benefits on high-end sportscars would be worth the investment of improving overall durability. I mean, I would gladly pay a few grands more on a new 60-80k$ sportscar knowing critical components will last much longer even under track use.
    Anyhow, good video, very interesting stuff indeed!

  8. I see no one else is asking the hard questions like how much this all costs.

    Is pricing calculated by surface area or time (or whatever the metric) and if so how much is the average for something like a set of 8 connecting rods, just to get a ballpark idea?

  9. How would I go about preparing a limited slip to send it in? Do I take it apart and only send certain parts?

  10. If I were to send WPC some EJ257 cams would any of the cams AVCS holes need to be taped off before treatment or just cleaned out once they are sent back to me?

  11. Hey mike would cryo treatment and wpc treatment be good for a pro touring 500 550 hp 5.3 truck that is also a daily driver?

  12. Would like to know, what would be the top 5 parts in a piston engine that would be the most urgent to treat? Let’s say it would be a boosted application, for competitive and or non competitive environments, say a k24 or a nissan sr20, or b series. I know this process is extremely effective, and with that said, So where would one concentrate the budget for the process? Bearings? Valve springs? Valve seats? Piston skirts?
    How about the transmission? Same question. Thanks for your time.

  13. Excellent information! I’m mostly sold, except for one thing. You say it’s inexpensive. But that is relative to your build and other variables. What is the approximate cost to have WPC treatment done to a crank, cylinder walls, pistons and rods of an SR20VE? There’s going to be a shipping cost, each way, and then there’s the cost of the actual treatment. I just need the APPROXIMATE treatment cost. Is it $200, $500, $1000?

    (I’m in the middle of copying your SR20VE, H22 Long Rod build.)

    Also, I had copied your 3″ Vibrant exhaust for the SR20VE a few years back. Love you write-ups and your builds!

    1. It seems to depend on which type of engine and which components in that engine you are doing as to what the costs would be. I am estimating about $3,500 for upper and lower engine components. Includung, but not limited to, ctankshaft, cams, valve springs, retainers, bearings (cam, crank, rod and thrust), pistons, con-rods, etc…

      That’s after prepping those parts with cryogenic treatments which I’m also estimating $2,500. So all in with shipping and handling I’m thinking $7-8K.

      Now, I could be grossly over estimating and I won’t be doing this in one-shot, but when it’s all said and done I’m hoping to have a bullet-proof build.

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