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Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes - Page 4 - Buggy Alumni Association

Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

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TommyK
Posts: 208
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby TommyK » Wed Oct 14, 2009 3:12 am


hambone
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby hambone » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:54 am


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McCue
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Location: New York, NY
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby McCue » Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:59 am

No. You aren't in Fringe.

KDR has a long and storied history of good-on-paper ideas. My favorite was a wheel heater circa 2004 (I was a sophomore, so I was just following orders at that point. Don't judge me.). A number of methods were tried, but the one I spent a spring break working on was a radiator -- obviously because it will never get hotter than 212 degrees, so it will never burn the wheel, which is something our previous heaters did a lot (a LOT). So, I spent days in the garage sweating joints for a homemade radiator and attaching a hot water heater to it, and putting it in a big 30 lb wooden insulated box. The water was moved around via a drill powered pump. Like, hand drill. This was by far the coolest and stupidest thing I have ever built for buggy.

This story gets better: After a while, we came to realize that I am not the best plumber, and my poor joint sweating meant that the water could easily evaporate out of the heater, so we replaced the fluid in the entire contraption with antifreeze. I still can't remember the exact reason for this, but I bet it was awesome. So then after like a week, the entire contraption was covered with green, sticky crap. The kicker, though, was that the antifreeze dissolved the plastic parts in the hand-drill pump, so my beautiful radiator became full of super-hot antifreeze/dissolved plastic. We didn't keep going with this idea.

Unfortunately by this time it was a week before raceday, so for truck weekend we put the wheels in the house convection oven. This was not horrible -- they got hot, and if you handled them with gloves and kept them insulated between the house and the course, they were actually pretty usable (compared to a cold or green/sticky wheel). It made getting bearings and junk in before the heat kind of painful, but whatever, it gave me a sick pleasure seeing TJ in obvious pain and trying to fake it. About 4 hours in the oven and the wheel was ready to go.

So if 4 hours is good, 9 hours is great, right? Raceday, gotta be as fast/hot as possible! So that happened. 20 minutes before Men's A, we carried a tray full of very hot wheels over to the truck. 10 minutes before (or whatever, I wasn't in the truck) someone picked up the hub, and it came completely off -- as in, left its urethane ring on the tray. So they had to find a new wheel, which didn't fit or something, and we got a 5 second DQ.

The story has a happy ending where the next year we weren't retarded and set a house record. My favorite part about KDR was the technological development between 2003 and 2009, which was absurdly rapid. You can say it wasn't but... go to hell. Homemade drill powered antifreeze radiator ftw.

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DangerMike
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby DangerMike » Wed Oct 14, 2009 11:40 am


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abordick
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby abordick » Wed Oct 14, 2009 11:53 am


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lemuroid
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby lemuroid » Wed Oct 14, 2009 5:54 pm

Last edited by lemuroid on Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tomas
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby tomas » Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:26 pm


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TommyK
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby TommyK » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:26 pm


shafeeq
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby shafeeq » Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:08 pm


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DangerMike
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Re: Examples of Bad Buggy Ideas in the Annals of Sweepstakes

Postby DangerMike » Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:31 am

Carl mentioned plate steering in the thread. Oh, the horror! I'm sure that there have been several examples of successful plate steering, but I have never worked on one. I feel comfortable sharing the information below as a warning to future buggy people: Don't do this! By way of an apology to the mechanics whose work I'm about to impugn, I have to note that the steering in Brooklyn was largely my design and it sucked hard! There were pieces of wool blanket in there, and I'm not even making that up.

had the most remarkable plate steering I ever saw. It was a dead-side plate with a massive 1" thick bolt on one side and a set of 2 bearing pairs (1 bearing below the plate, one above) on the live side. The steering handles were originally mounted on the plate at the front axle, although we had to move them forward on little arms for a taller driver in 1996. This plate was a metal sheets over composite core job, I assume to keep the weight down. Did I mention the 1" bolt? This steering was replaced with a more sane solution sometime around 2000.

had a composite plate. Imagine a circle with the sides cut flat. There were 4 Delrin "beds" with a piece of angle-iron with a bearing that ran across the top of the plate. There were 2 at the front, 2 at the back. These were not awesome, nor were they cut uniformly, so they were not interchangeable. Eli Whitney would have been sad. When GR was sold to KapSig (renamed ), before it was stolen, broken, and thrown in Westinghouse pond, they replaced the steering with a different plate design, but I don't remember the details.

had a similar design to GR, but it replaced the Delrin beds with all aluminum blocks with 3 bearings each (top, bottom, and edge). These did work a lot better. On raceday, one of the top halves to these blocks was lost! I grabbed another mechanic and headed down to the Fringe Room, where we manufactured a new one in time for the race. The new piece was not used as the missing block was found in the jacket pocket of a mechanic shortly before race time.

During my short stint in CIA, I had a chance to work on . This was a huge metal plate pair sandwiching loose ball bearings in a custom-cut race. Because of my days as a bike mechanic this didn't scare me much, but the other CIA mechanics said that this was torn down, cleaned, and re-greased once every few years as it was a massive pain to get right.

KapSig had a very similar steering in Razorback (not present in the history pages). The plate was simply stunning in its diameter, but it was silky-smooth and the driver commented on how much she liked it as a result. The bottom plate was thick enough to serve as the front attachment point for the 3 long pieces of C-channel bolted to the buggy to stiffen it up shortly after its debut.

Do any of you out there have similar experiences with (read: distaste for) plate steerings? Any other design anti-patterns to share?


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