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Old 10-26-2011
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ratonabike ratonabike is offline
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Default Preventing fire from entering a dragster cockpit

I posted this in the NHRA/Schumacher 'Shroud' thread at first, and started thinking about the issue of fire, just from a technical perspective, just about the problem of fire getting in there in the first place...

I think someone may also have mentioned this, but referring to the low pressure area in the cockpit that sucks those flames forward... How far forward would you need to move the driver's cockpit, before the fire just was unable to reach that far forward, to get in there? It's probably not that far, just guessing, but a foot or two maybe? Maybe a little more? It would throw the balance of the whole car out of course, but it wouldn't take too long to dial that back in I would think.

So, instead of adding stuff to protect them from the fire, how about moving them out of the fire in the first place? The plus side, is the lower cost I would think, you at least wouldn't need to add too much, just redesign where the driver sits... Seems like a feasible simple idea, or what am I not thinking of?
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Old 10-26-2011
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i guess i should've been more specific in my thread title, Preventing fire from entering a rear-engine dragster cockpit... the front-engine ones, well, that's a whole 'nuther story
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Old 10-27-2011
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I recall that they used to play around with driver & engine location/distance in relation to the rear axle centerline in order to find the proper weight distribution and it seems they have settled on the present layout. Don't have my rulebook handy to see if these distances are mandated.......

One thing that Schumacher mentioned in the WFO interview regarding Brown's fire incident.... He stated that the point of entry for the fire was through the cut-outs for the shoulder harnesses where they attach to the frame tubing, and the flames did not wrap around the shrouding.

I would think rear openings and cut-outs in the driver compartment would be the first thing to eliminate....particularly for something as important as driver restraints.
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Old 10-27-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy View Post
I recall that they used to play around with driver & engine location/distance in relation to the rear axle centerline in order to find the proper weight distribution and it seems they have settled on the present layout. Don't have my rulebook handy to see if these distances are mandated.......

One thing that Schumacher mentioned in the WFO interview regarding Brown's fire incident.... He stated that the point of entry for the fire was through the cut-outs for the shoulder harnesses where they attach to the frame tubing, and the flames did not wrap around the shrouding.

I would think rear openings and cut-outs in the driver compartment would be the first thing to eliminate....particularly for something as important as driver restraints.
ah, i missed that in the radio interview... oh btw, that was a great WFO interview btw, i meant to comment on it, thanks for posting that... (it was pretty long so by the time it was over i had to jet out late for something...)

yeah plugging up entry holes would be the first thing to do, now that the shrouds are off, i wonder if that's still an issue as the primary entry point for the flames, even without the shrouds.... i wonder if anyone will close those up still.... i guess as you close up that area, when it's still somewhat open, it would create an even greater suction, a greater low pressure area (a lower pressure?), pulling in from the outside with even greater force through every small opening... that is, until it was completely closed up...
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Old 10-28-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy View Post
...I recall that they used to play around with driver & engine location/distance in relation to the rear axle centerline in order to find the proper weight distribution and it seems they have settled on the present layout. Don't have my rulebook handy to see if these distances are mandated.......
well, in my 2010 rulebook at least, i couldn't find anything specifying a particular distance as to where the driver/cockpit should be in relation to anything... just in its own construction... (or, i totally missed it somewhere too)

just had a vision of Arfon's Green Monster with the Allison V-12 behind the cockpit... the engine was so long he was sitting so far forward, like in an Indy car... in a really mean looking Indy car that is.... though i'm guessing fire wasn't the only problem he was worrying about in that, well, monster... ha
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