Race Tips - Performance Newsletter            

from Auto-Ware

May 2012 

Shop Tips -  New Life For An Old Tool


While pliers are a fairly low tech tool, sometimes they are exactly the right tool. Chances are you have many pairs floating around in toolboxes and trays, some old and some new. Still the same basic design with the only change these days being rubber handles to improve grip.


I "improved" an old pair of pliers and now they are the ones I reach for when pliers are the right tool for the job.


The improvement was very simple and I can get even more grip than before.  Simply place one handle of the pliers in a vice with the handle sticking up. Use an acetylene torch, heat the end to a dull red and use a hammer to bend the end as shown in the photo.


Now, the bent end keeps my little finger from sliding off the end when I grip really hard, especially if there is a little oil or grease on my hands. Naturally, we all go toward the end of the handle for more leverage, but now I can get to the very end of the handle with no problem.


This tip works well on good steel pliers and likely won't work on cheap pot metal junk that only costs a buck.

Race Tips -  Latest Data Trick!


Tire load sensitivity is a fairly well known characteristic among racers and engineers. What most people fail to understand is the same phenomenon impacts grip and handling due to frequency input at the tire.  


A clever trick to identify when handling issues are due to frequency inputs, is to take the integral of absolute shock velocities (above a given point, say 3"/sec) for each corner of the car. You can then plot the differences in pairs (front and rear) and quickly see when a handling issue at a given spot on the track is due to the interaction of the shocks and the racing surface roughness.


This is an advanced use of math channels in data systems. However, there are hundreds of other ways to use a basic data system to analyze vehicle performance and driver skill. With a little training, data systems become very easy to understand. At that point the benefit of having data far exceeds anything you can bolt on to your racecar. 


Our webinars have helped many racers achieve new personal best times and win races. Classes start the week of April 4th, so don't miss out! Sign up now before it is too late. Click HERE for more info and to sign up. Space is limited at each webinar series so I can give individual attention to participants.



Equation of the Month - Weight Transfer

Here is an oldie but goodie. Use this equation to calculate the total amount of weight transfer from the inside tires to the outside tires in a corner.


WT = G * CGH * SW / TW


WT is the total weight transferred from the inside tires to the outside tires. G is the cornering (lateral) G force. SW is the static weight of the car, and TW is the track width of the car (for simplicity you can average front and rear track width).

Please pass this newsletter on to your friends and tell them to drop me an email so they can get the Race Tips Newsletter, too.  Also you can go to our web site Auto-ware.com and see the old newsletters.
John Block