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Buggy Alumni Association • BAA's next big project
Page 1 of 2

BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:27 pm
by Jmohin
I hear some similar themes being whined about/tossed around, but the really pervasive one is "not enough people involved".

I had some shootin-the-shit with some buddies who never did buggy before. They always said the same thing: "How in the WORLD can you wake up that early?"

Explaining that "it's a labor of love" or "I'm addicted" or "I'm literally and physically addicted to chemicals involved with buggy, most notably grain alcohol" don't seem to help us out that much.

So, this is the cah-razy idea we had. I know this is far-fetched and I'm prepared to be torn apart, but bear with me.

What if we floodlighted the course?

We could run practice friday and saturday nights, like 1am-3am. Course chores could be done early in the night, and more students would be totally siked to come out - that's a time when almost ALL college students are DEFINITELY awake - I could see this even morphing into a spectator event for bored kids on weekend nights.

So, the obvious list of problems:

1.) Safety. lights would have to be industrial quality and reliable, like baseball stadium lights.
2.) Cost. Baseball stadium lights are really, really expensive.
This is where BAA folk with money they can't figure out how to blow on under-performing undergrad teams come in.
3.) Permits. Convincing the city to change our perennial permits would be tough. CMU police would need to be on our side, which might not happen. That apartment building probably wouldn't let us do hills 1 and 2.

Problems I don't think matter:
1.) Weather. 7am vs 1am is almost the same in terms of temp. The coldest part of the night is immediately before sunset, so it's a wash, really.
2.) Quality of light. Drivers are ALWAYS telling me about how the sun is in their eyes. I don't think floodlights are the same quality as sunlight but it eliminates this problem.

Flame away. I'm sure this is a horrible idea but if for some reason it's not I think it could change the perception of buggy to the greater undergrad populace from "Something fanatics do at 4am that i prefer to sleep through" to "Something cool to do on a saturday night"

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:54 pm
by galexkeene
Yeah.... pretty sure enough light to cover all the freeroll would be, as you said, very very expensive. That's a lot of road. Also, I have a strong feeling CMU would not like this one bit from a liability stand point.

You also left out the most important factor, which many of us Buggy types forget about on those weekends with rolls (well except nbonaddio): Drunk people!

I feel like 1-3am on weekend nights is really asking for some seriously trouble from drunk kids, either wandering back to dorms or coming out to see what the hell their friends/brothers are doing since they weren't at the kick ass party that night.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:02 pm
by Zatchmo
Heh, sounds cool. But some googling turned up a Board of Education proposal from not too long ago that had the cost of just four stadium light poles as $360,000. We would need a few more than that, and I imagine wiring under the sidewalks would just bump that price up way higher.

Maybe a bit less impractical would be those diesel trailers you see at construction sites with the light towers attached, but those still run $10k a piece or so on the low end. Not to mention the logistical concerns of setting them up and taking them down. Still not happening unless there are previously undeclared ultra-wealthy fans waiting for a good project to jump on here.

I really wish something like that were realistically possible, if nothing else because it would mean more hours rolls for the fixed setup time. It's five hours setup, moving, and cleanup for as few as two rolls on a bad day, and that can be as discouraging as the time itself. Being able to roll more than 110 minutes on a day would be great... speaking as someone who doesn't push, anyway.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:25 pm
by Carl Nott
Okay, sure. Let's say that freerolls could happen from, I dunno, 10pm - 1am at night. Could be weeknights too, I guess.

I would be worried about drunk/dumb drivers. Barricade duty would be more interesting, I'd think. Might want to upgrade barricades in general, actually.

Would have to talk to drivers about lighting. I worry about having different lighting during practice/freeroll and during races. Instead of floodlights could do rope lights of some sort.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:27 pm
by Jmohin
Yeah, some quick pricing shows that floodlights of any kind are prohibitively expensive, not to mention the other points brought up.

As for the drunk people, I think many of us have had JUST as much of a problem with drunkies at 5am as we might at 1am. Honestly, I've been heckled by other drunk teams, had pushers puke next to buggies, at one point I think SigEp DQ'd on raceday due to a drunk driver.
Wanderers coming on the course to fuck with buggy is a bigger concern though.

props to the person who finds cheap floodlights.... it was a nice idea I guess.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:59 pm
by revo
How about a jet-powered heater to dry the course?

Just stay away from the hay bales...or, with this infinite budget we find something to replace the haybales...

Though those are maybe just expensive ideas and not necessarily helpful in the 'get more participation' part of Jmohin's premise for this thread.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Mon Apr 25, 2011 12:04 am
by Jmohin
.....that's actually one of the coolest things I have ever seen.
NEED IT.

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:52 am
by DeVos

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:41 am
by Jerry
Maybe a few ambitious MechEs could set up the mega-blowdryer as a trailer attachment for our official sweepstakes streetsweeper I keep saying we need to invest in. Just drive around the course once at 6 AM, and boom, it's ready to roll!

Re: BAA's next big project

Posted: Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:45 am
by nbonaddio