camshaft

[kam-shaft, -shahft]
noun
a shaft bearing integral cams.

Origin:
1875–80; cam + shaft

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World English Dictionary
camshaft (ˈkæmˌʃɑːft)
 
n
a shaft having one or more cams attached to it, esp one used to operate the valves of an internal-combustion engine

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

camshaft

in internal-combustion engines, rotating shaft with attached disks of irregular shape (the cams), which actuate the intake and exhaust valves of the cylinders. The cams and the camshaft are usually formed as a unit, with the cams set at angles so as to open and close the valves in a prescribed sequence as the cams rotate. A separate camshaft for each row of cylinders is driven by gears or chains from the crankshaft.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Decouple the camshaft from the valves, and combustion halts.
During the experimentation, the original camshaft was sold to a customer of the shop.
Dealers will inspect the sensor and replace it with an improved camshaft position sensor.
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