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Thrust-powered Land Speed information => Discussions on absolute land speed records => Topic started by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:15:33 PM



Title: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:15:33 PM

The last American team to hold the official ALSR


Gary Gabelich (born August 29, 1940, died January 1984) was a Croatian-American who won (land speed records are "set" and not "won")the land speed record with his rocket powered automobile "Blue Flame" on October 23, 1970, achieving the average speed of 622.287 (record speed was 622.407)miles/h (1001.452863 km/h) on dry lake bed at Bonneville Salt Flats in Wendover, Utah. This record was the first record over 1000 km/h, it remained unbeaten until 1983, when Richard Noble broke it driving Thrust 2. Gabelich was seriously injured in the crash of an experimental 4 wheel drive Funny Car. Gabelich died in January 1984 in a motorcycle crash


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:20:58 PM

Gary Gabelich Tom Daniel

The American Way Rocket Car the 1984 design to regain the record back to the united states after Richard Noble record run in Thrust 2

1984 Design of rocket car
http://www.tomdaniel.com/td_career/td_articles/rocketman_design/rocketman_home.html


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:33:54 PM

Between test runs

Very rare photos of Blue Flame with nose removed I received from a design specialist thought I would share them with you


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:39:41 PM
 Tribute Picture

 This is a great photo of Gary and the Blue Flame you can see the double front wheel from this front view


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:45:41 PM

 Blue Flame

 Here is a great in depth artical with design chart and drawing and a lot more on the rocket car

http://www.bluebird-electric.net/blue_flame.htm


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 09:57:33 PM
Article from Jimmy Walles


The Blue Flame was the high-performing, ultra high-speed, rocket-powered vehicle which achieved the world land speed record on Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah on October 28, 1970. The Blue Flame's record 1014.656 km/h (630.478 mph) lasted for 13 years and was set as an average of achieved speed in both ways ((629.412 + 631.367)/2= 630.478 mph). The driver, Gary Gabelich, was of Croatian ancestry and native of San Pedro, California.

The Blue Flame was constructed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin by Reaction Dynamics, a company formed by Pete Farnsworth, Ray Dausman and Dick Keller who had developed hydrogen peroxide rocket dragsters. The Blue Flame used a combination of hydrogen peroxide and liquified natural gas (LNG), pressurized by helium gas to eclipse previous speed records set with jet engine powered vehicles. LNG was used in the actual record-setting performance but at a lower ratio of LNG to the hydrogen peroxide oxidizer than would be used at maximum design thrust. This was the original plan for the record runs in 1970. The effort was sponsored by The American Gas Association, with technical assistance from the Institute of Gas Technology of Des Plaines, IL.

The engine of the Blue Flame was designed and manufactured by Galaxy Manufacturing Co. of Tonawanda, New York. Galaxy Mfg. Co. was formed in 1966 by Donald J Magro and Gerald Muhs and was principally engaged in flow control systems, cavitating venturi, and precision machining fields.

The Blue Flame engine is a re-generatively cooled, liquid-propellent engine of the variable thrust type. It can operate on either a single or dual-propellant basis. In operation, the engine permits natural gas use as a liquid or gas or both with a two-stage combustion start. The oxidizer flow is established first, then LNG enters a heat exchanger where it vaporizes and is brought to combustion temperature. The gas is then injected into the combustion chamber with the oxygen provided by the hydrogen peroxide. A stable flame front is established and the remaining LNG is injected to bring the engine to full power. Nominal engine running time was 20 seconds at full thrust with 58,000 equivalent horsepower.

The frame of the Blue Flame is a semi-monocoque type aluminum, with welded tubular structure in the nose section and with an aluminum "skin." The vehicle is 37 feet 4.6 inches (11.39 m) in length and 7 feet 8 inches (2.3 m) wide. It has a 306 1/2 inch wheelbase and an empty weight of 4,000 pounds. The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. designed 8:00-25 tires for the vehicle, with an outside diameter of 34.8 inches (880 mm) and smooth tire tread surface to help prevent heat buildup.




Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 10:20:58 PM

 Blue Flames final resting spot

 The American record setting rocket car is now on desplay at Sinsheim Auto & Technik Museum

http://www.technik-museum.de/museum_sinsheim_english.html


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 01, 2009, 11:48:53 PM

November 9th 1970

Sports Illustrated (George Ferguson)


The run was a natural gas


Fifty-two fuel companies cooked up a rocket car to promote their products, hired an almost-astronaut to drive it and, one might say...

 
There was a time when Gary Gabelich seemed headed for the moon. He qualified for a program involving astronaut training and worked hard at it. He ran six miles every other day, and he frequently fell out of the sky with a movie camera, photographing the actions of parachutes opening. He lived in earthbound space capsules for days at a time under simulated high-altitude conditions. He grew wiry, with 155 pounds of lean muscle over his 6-foot frame. But he dropped out of the program when it became clear that he would not be permitted to pilot the spaceship up there and back. If Gary does not get to drive a thing, he doesn't want to go.

That was in 1968. In the months that followed, Gabelich sort of careened around. He kept on sky diving. He played tennis, baseball, handball, raced gokarts, went surfing and water skiing. Mostly, he turned to motor sports. He raced cars, motorcycles, fuel and jet dragsters, even drag boats. By 1968 he was the American Power Boat Association fuel-hydro champ. Then, last September, he hit 200.44 mph in a drag boat, fastest such run ever recorded. All of which, in the inexorable manner of such things, finally brought him, at 30 years of age, to the Bonneville Salt Flats and this monster jet car called Blue Flame.

Racing cars is one thing. But driving a vehicle faster than anybody in the world is the ultimate, the nub of it all, the final stinging glory of speed. By the time Gabelich got to the rocket car on the desert, the world land-speed record was a tidy 600.601 mph, a mark set in 1965 by Craig Breedlove.

Gabelich has changed since his pre-astronaut days, in the subtle ways that would better prepare him for his run across the salt. No more conservative clothes, no NASA haircut. He is a lot more hip, with deliberately shaggy hair that tumbles almost to his shoulders. More Captain America than Captain Carpenter. His talk now is studded with phrases calculated to indicate he is very with-it, and he is apt to refer to something as being "plenty boss," which really means it is a bit of all right. Upon checking in at the tiny border town of Wendover on Sept. 14, the Gabelich crew put a lot of champagne on ice. They would drink it when he broke the world speed record. A plenty boss gesture. And then they learned that it is not that easy: it was to be 39 days before they got to taste the wine.

First, there was that fearsome super-car that dominated everything around it on the desert—38.2 feet from nose to tail, 8.8 feet to the top of its tailfin, 7.8 feet wide. It weighed 6,500 pounds. The rear tires were 35 inches high, about as tall as, say, Mario Andretti. "It is, basically, a long piece of pipe," said Gabelich. "It is built to run horizontally, man, not vertically."

Laid over it all was a snappy silver and blue paint job, and fitted inside the pipe was a 770-pound rocket engine tuned to 16,000 pounds of thrust—which figures out to 58,000 horsepower. The Blue Flame, Gabelich found, could accelerate from zero to 650 mph in 20 seconds. The cockpit was basic: the steering system and throttle, cameras, a recorder and radio setup over which Gabelich would talk to his crew. Not hip conversation.

"I would flick on all the switches and shout 'here we go!' " he says. "Then I would slam it right to the wood and count off my speed: 250...300...350...400. Man, it's really far out."

Before selecting Gabelich to drive the Blue Flame, a great many experts had a hand in the project. Prime sponsor was the Natural Gas Industry, which is a combine of 52 companies in gas and related fields—the sort of staid, vest-wearing outfits hardly ever associated with such madcap adventure. Still, it seemed a dramatic way to demonstrate what they feel is the safety and versatility of natural gas as a pure form of pollution-free power. The liquefied natural gas-hydrogen peroxide concept for the engine came from an astronautish-sounding Milwaukee outfit called Reaction Dynamics Inc. Goodyear, which has a long association with land-speed attempts, developed the tires over a year of research, rolled them out to Bonneville and pronounced them capable of speeds up to 700 mph and tested in excess of 800, if Gabelich cared to go that fast.

Not at first. The Utah flats are tricky: a vast bed of crystalline with mountains on one side, more mountains on the other, a 10-mile black guideline painted straight across—and unpredictable weather in between. The salt tends to be uneven in texture; the winds blow capriciously—headwinds, crosswinds, the works. And anything over the gentle push of a 6-mph breeze can scratch a run. Gabelich did not get in his first attempt until Sept. 19. Then, in 19 more attacks, he got the monster up over 600 mph seven times, and twice just barely missed the two-way record.

According to the worldwide rules that govern such things, a land-speed mark is recognized only after two runs through the flying kilometer and measured mile clocks. Both runs must be made within one hour and, for all their early speed down the black line, the crew approached the record slowly. Finally came the morning of Friday, Oct. 23 when, as Gabelich puts it, "They got it all together."


For the record, let it be noted that the fastest man in the world fueled up on hot chocolate, cereal and a cinnamon roll, accompanied by the digestion-inducing sounds of Creedence Clearwater Revival on the cafe jukebox. He was wearing his lucky canary-colored T shirt, Levi's and black stocking cap. On top of that, at the Flats, he added the things he wanted for spiritual comfort: 28 strands of beads around his neck, a hair clip from his girlfriend, a St. Christopher medal, various Indian good-luck pieces, a Mexican peso, several key chains and four letters which had been carried by John Cobb during his 1947 record run in which he averaged 394.196 mph.

Spirit thus fortified, Gabelich took care of the physical: over all that stuff he donned flame-resistant suit, gloves, boots, face mask and helmet—producing an effect that was pretty much astronaut at that. Except that the suit also displays the decals of the participating companies, plus one peace symbol and one American flag. That left only one thing left to do: talk to the car. Gabelich patted the nose cone and said to the Blue Flame, urgently: "Let's do it together, baby. Give me a good ride. Let's go, baby. You can do it. We can do it together, baby." Then he climbed into the cockpit.

"This is what happens," says Gabelich. "You're sitting in it and they put the cover on you. Suddenly, all my adrenaline pumps up to about the same pressure as the gas. My thinking clears up and it's all beautiful. I'm in a completely different world, man. I know how a lion tamer feels. I turn on the recordings and let it go: suddenly I'm blasted back into the seat and my body conforms to it exactly. And I count off the speeds. Then my hearing cuts out at 600 mph and it's all beautifully still, quiet. It's better than sex, man, it's better than anything."

First run down, the Blue Flame hit 617.602 mph through the measured mile. In 48? minutes the car was ready for the run back. The truck eased up behind and started the push-off. It got the Blue Flame rolling down the approach at about 35 mph and backed off. Inside the cockpit, Gabelich fired off the engine with a shattering roar and was away.

The slick tires quickly picked up a coating of damp salt, creating the eerie visual effect that the car was floating, slightly airborne, as it flashed through the mile, stretched out in a long, shimmering silver-blue streak. Behind it, drifting lazily, came puffs of fluffy white vapor. And inside the cockpit, despite the push of some five G's, Gabelich kept his cool. "It was smooth, very smooth," he said. "It seemed to float a little. Nothing wrong, though. Everything was perfect." Then, even as the car zinged past the timing trailer, the chutes puffed out and it was all over: 630.388 mph through the kilo and 627.287 mph through the mile. A world record two-way average of 622.407 mph.

When the crew unsnapped the canopy and unstrapped him, Gabelich, now officially the fastest man in the world, uttered the historic words: "Plenty boss, man, plenty boss." Then he added, more prosaically, "I knew it was a good one. It was a wild ride. We really got with it. I'm very happy.

"Next year," said Gabelich, "we'll go after the speed of sound. It's about 720 miles an hour at this altitude. I'm also looking for a sponsor to build me a rocket-powered boat. I want to be the first man to hold both land-and water-speed records and survive."

Then they all piled into cars and paraded back to Wendover, honking horns and shouting the news. And they finally drank the champagne. Plenty boss. Maybe better than going to the moon.




Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: redrock_2003 on January 02, 2009, 12:04:23 AM
Very interesting... Thanks for all the info and pictures.
 :-D


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: racefanwfo on January 02, 2009, 12:46:30 AM
why is the car on display in germany and not here in america.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 02, 2009, 01:25:38 AM
why is the car on display in germany and not here in america.


racefanwfo

The Blue Flame, the rocket-powered vehicle that set a land speed record in 1970 with an average two-way speed of 622.407mph. The Gary Gablelich driven rocket car would hold that record for 13 years and the last American team to hold the ALSR official record. At this point there was no real explanation on how it got to Germany, but I suspect its an interesting story. I know Robin from the UK knows more about this. This American ALSR official record holder should be on display in the US for us to all enjoy and to see in person

The car is a legend the driver an American hero its an historic ALSR rocket car the car today could reach 850mph with larger fuel tanks. Now from what I herd the owners would not sell the car to Gary so he designed his own rocket car "American Way" but he died in January 1984 in a motorcycle crash before it could start in build stages


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 02, 2009, 01:39:37 AM
Very interesting... Thanks for all the info and pictures.
 :-D



redrock_2003

Your very welcome I am glad you appreciate this thread on the Blue Flame the ALSR its an amazing rocket car


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: PorkPie on January 02, 2009, 10:38:30 AM
Yeap, the story how the Blue Flame comes to Germany is a very interested story....I know the story :-D

By the way, when did the article start to use the correct record speed :roll:

Also, the car can't be used anymore, due to a damaged front axle from a transportation accident 25 years ago - there is a sub frame inside to keep the car in position.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: joea on January 02, 2009, 02:17:18 PM
pork, can you post our pic..?

Pork took me on a personal tour of the Tecknik
museum this summer........

museum had abit of everything....

including Nazi stuff....Pork.....Germans
should be excited about the new movie
here "Valkyre".......................

i dont think i got the "cd".....

Happy New Year....





Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: rockstar on January 02, 2009, 02:22:10 PM
Thanks,that made very interesting reading,especially the man behind the name.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 03, 2009, 12:40:24 AM
Thanks,that made very interesting reading,especially the man behind the name.



Thanks rockstar

Glad you appreciate and enjoy it here is more info





Third Annual
Long Beach Motorsports Walk of Fame
South Pine Avenue, Long Beach, California
The Long Beach Motorsports Walk of Fame honors key contributors to motorsports and annually inducts new members during Grand Prix Week.


Honoring Mario Andretti, Parnelli Jones, and Gary Gabelich
April 17, 2008
 
 

Gary Gabelich, a San Pedro native, also began his racing career as a teenager, winning first place in the stock eliminator drag racing class at Santa Ana at sixteen.  At nineteen, won the
world's first jet dragster race, topping 250 mph and also traveled 356 mph at the Bonneville, UT salt flats in a jet car, probably a record for a teen-ager.

He was the first man to break into drag racing's seven-second bracket, driving a Double A Fuel dragster at 7.05 seconds in 1967.  He drove the Beach City Chevrolet Corvette funny car to speeds over 200 mph, a first for a Chevrolet funny vehicle powered by a liquid gas-hydrogen peroxide rocket engine, achieving an average speed of 622.287 mph, a land speed record that existed for 13 years.

Gabelich who was killed in 1984, will be represented at the ceremony by his widow, Rae Gabelich, a Long Beach 8th District council member.  Mayor Bob Foster, City Manager Pat West and Jim Michaelian, CEO of the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach, will join the honorees on the podium

http://www.lbmotorsportswalkoffame.com/gary_gabelich.html


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: PorkPie on January 03, 2009, 12:33:33 PM
pork, can you post our pic..?

Pork took me on a personal tour of the Tecknik
museum this summer........


This happens to you if you got a personal tour...... :wink: you can go to the car...... :-D


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 03, 2009, 12:46:32 PM

This happens to you if you got a personal tour...... :wink: you can go to the car...... :-D
[/quote]


Very nice picture

It would be neat to see the car in person if where here in the US good close up of the side thanks for posting it


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 03, 2009, 11:19:15 PM
Blue Flame Gary Gabelich
 
Bonneville Run video (Vintage VW Comercial)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4OB7kDiHF8&feature=related


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 04, 2009, 01:43:05 PM
 Blue Flame

 Here is another good shot if it on a run at Bonneville


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 04, 2009, 05:59:16 PM

The Last American official ALSR record holder

(2007 Goodwood Festival of Speed) 


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 04, 2009, 06:25:40 PM
   The New York Times


Gabelich, 43, Dies After Accident
 
Published: January 27, 1984
Gary Gabelich, who held the world land-speed record for almost 13 years, was killed in a traffic accident here today, the police said.

According to the police, Gabelich was riding a motorcycle ''at a high rate of speed'' when he ran into the right side of a truck. Gabelich, of nearby Long Beach, died nearly three hours later at San Pedro Hospital of injuries suffered in the accident, the police said.

Gabelich, who was 43 years old, set the land-speed record in a rocket- powered car of 622.407 miles per hour on Oct. 23, 1970. The record stood until Richard Noble of England averaged 634.051 m.p.h. on Oct. 4, 1983.



http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9802E0DA163BF934A15752C0A962948260


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 06, 2009, 08:45:36 PM
 The Fabulous Five Historic Photo

Ky Michaelson, Dave Anderson, Paula Murphy, Gary Gabelich, Art Arfons


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 07, 2009, 09:17:32 PM
Toyota Pro/Celebrity Race History

http://www.toyota.com/motorsports/pro_celeb/history.html

1979 Entries  Celebrities  Professionals 

Gary Gabelich, Kitty O'neal  just some of the ALSR heavy hitters of the time


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 07, 2009, 11:09:12 PM
 (Rea Gabelich) Garys wife still going strong

 http://www.longbeach.gov/district8/default.asp



She has Gary's passion for speed

The Bixby Knolls Dragster Expo and Car Show was produced by Doug Kruse and his Professional Dragster Association and sponsored by the Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association and the office of Councilwoman Rae Gabelich. It was no surprise that Gabelich would spearhead an event like this as she grew up in the world of drag racing married to the late Gary Gabelich who not only drove fuel dragsters, but set a land speed record of 622.407 MPH in 1970.



A special part of this was that Rae wore one of Gary's old helmets. in picture below and Guy Gabelich (Rae's son) in the Frantic-4


See Gary's wife Rea and Gary's son Guy Gabelich in this Crakelfest
http://www.cacklefest.com/event-photos-7.shtml


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 10, 2009, 12:30:17 PM
Form the Press-Telegram Long Beach CA.
http://www.presstelegram.com/news/ci_8967401

(I like the quote on the Blue Flame by Gary)



Gabelich, perhaps more than any of the inductees, had the need for speed.

The San Pedro native began drag racing at 16 and won the first-ever jet-powered drag race in 1959 - topping 200 mph - at 19 years old.

He's best known for the Blue Flame, his 37-foot, 5,000- pound car powered by a liquid gas-hydrogen peroxide rocket engine that broke the land speed record in 1970 at 622.287 mph. The record stood for 13 years.

Gabelich later developed a love for powerboats and set the National Drag Boat Association record at 200.44 mph in 1969. The year before, he won the American Power Boat Association fuel hydro championship.

Gabelich was killed in a motorcycle accident in 1984. His widow is Long Beach Councilwoman Rae Gabelich, who spoke on his behalf. Gabelich's son Guy and mother Rae also attended.

"It is beyond an honor for Gary to be recognized with two legends of racing," Councilwoman Gabelich said.

While preparing her remarks for Thursday, Gabelich randomly chose one of about 20 books she has on land speed records, trying to find the words to explain why some choose to race the clock instead of each other.

The book she grabbed was "Land Speed Record" by Cyril Posthumus, published in 1971, with a forward written by Gary Gabelich.

In it, he wrote land speed records are "the measure of man's assault ... on speed and time." He also wrote he still looked upon the Blue Flame as "a beautiful woman."

"Today is the most special of all," said Rae Gabelich. "To be recognized in the city he called home ... is an honor."



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 10, 2009, 01:14:22 PM
The Blue Flame

Rare collected info build photo article from a ALSR design info specialist and big help to our team.  As documented in the attached article, The Blue Flame rocket car that Gary Gabelich drove to a World Land Speed Record of 622 mph in 1970 remains in some fundamental ways, with its use of a fully reuseable throttleable bipropellant motor, the most advanced private manned rocket vehicle ever constructed. The Blue Flame the last official American ALSR record holder
 



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 10, 2009, 01:17:30 PM
Info continued


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 10, 2009, 01:19:48 PM


Build photo of the Blue Flame you can see some of the chassis design


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Robin UK on January 14, 2009, 08:31:54 AM
If this has worked then you should see a pic of BF co-designer Dick Keller taken while the car was at Goodwood last year for the Bonneville display. If it hasn't worked, then clearly I'm a muppet in need of assistance.

Robin




Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 14, 2009, 08:56:18 PM
If this has worked then you should see a pic of BF co-designer Dick Keller taken while the car was at Goodwood last year for the Bonneville display. If it hasn't worked, then clearly I'm a muppet in need of assistance.

Robin





Robin

Nice picture of a great designer with the Blue Flame in the background thanks for posting it


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 17, 2009, 10:59:46 PM
Gary Gabelich

 Four-Wheel Drive design AA/FC
http://www.northernthunder.com/gabelichfc.html

I just wonder how this four-wheel drive design would work on the salt flats with a streamliner body 


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: RayTheRat on January 17, 2009, 11:44:44 PM
Thanks to all who've posted to this thread.  I've really enjoyed it.  I learned a whole lot and filed stuff away in my "LSR History" folder.

Thanks again,

RtR


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: racefanwfo on January 18, 2009, 02:49:28 AM
very cool funny car.
did it ever run.
where is it now.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Malcolm UK on January 18, 2009, 09:13:35 AM
Robin - we know over here that you are not a muppet - although you might need assistance!  Even though the Blue Flame was some distance away at Goodwood the lack of surrounding Mercedes Benz cars as you get at Sinsheim, Germany (it's usual home) made up for it.

Four wheel drive funny car - I guess the major crash and fire at Orange County Raceway April 7th 1972 proved it could run ...... but not very well.  Left hand and left leg badly damaged stopped Gary (a left hander) from a speedy recovery.  [Information from David Tremayne].

Malcolm UK


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 18, 2009, 12:39:14 PM
Robin - we know over here that you are not a muppet - although you might need assistance!  Even though the Blue Flame was some distance away at Goodwood the lack of surrounding Mercedes Benz cars as you get at Sinsheim, Germany (it's usual home) made up for it.

Four wheel drive funny car - I guess the major crash and fire at Orange County Raceway April 7th 1972 proved it could run ...... but not very well.  Left hand and left leg badly damaged stopped Gary (a left hander) from a speedy recovery.  [Information from David Tremayne].

Malcolm UK



Robin


I found a little bit on the Four wheel drive Funny Car ordel by (Cole Coonce)

After setting the Land Speed Record, Gary Gabelich drives a 4 wheel drive Funny Car, a car doomed to make one run. During a closed photo-op for some drag racing magazines at Orange County International Raceway, it is agreed that Gabelich will merely “smoke the tires” for photographers. Caught in the moment, Gabelich stays on the throttle and the car climbs onto the guardrail and rolls, unraveling like a tin lid on a can opener. Gabelich’s body is not exempt from the slicing and dicing and a hand is severed as well as other limbs sliced open like so much canned fruit. Through a stroke of luck, after being stuffed into a station wagon and raced to the hospital with severed limbs in tow Gabelich is sewed back together by a crack team of neurosurgeons. He was said to never be quite the same, unfortunately. He is later beheaded in a motorcycle accident with a diesel truck on the streets of San Pedro, CA. As a testament to free-wheelin’ lifestyle, he is eulogized more in biker magazines than in any hot rodding publications.




Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 18, 2009, 12:42:34 PM
 Blue Flame/ Four wheel drive AA/FC

 Info from Blue Flame Crew Member (Paul Stringer)


“Gary was very upset when the car was sold because he wanted to attempt a sound barrier run with the car. In 1970 when they raced it, they had many mishaps. The most Dodgeing was they burned out the retro in the rocket and had to get a loaner or a gift motor to finish. As I remember the original rocket had about 40,000 pounds of thrust and the actual motor they used to set the record had about 14,000. That would lead you to believe that the car could go much faster given the space limitations of the Salt Flats, and the ground effects of going supersonic.

”I can’t even describe how many hours we spent talking about where the air goes (under the car). Would the air flip the car when supersonic ’splits the air?‘ They talked at great length about lengthening the rod on the front tip of the car to split the air farther out in front to prevent any negative effects. Craig Breedlove was a very close friend of Gary’s and he as well was always helpful in helping Gary advance his efforts. Craig and Gary where from the same town in California and I met Craig in 1966 on a water skiing trip. Most would think that they would be strange bedfellows when Gary got picked to drive the car, but Craig was one of his biggest supporters and fans.

“Gary was trying to figure out how to stop the new car going supersonic also.

“The problems are: no air for chutes and brakes won’t work over 400MPH. He was working on a splitting tail like the Space Shuttle and body panels that popped out. Of course, he never considered running anywhere but the flats.

”Gary‘s feelings about the car being sold was this: the car was owned by the Natural Gas Association as a publicity stunt. When the car got the record, they received millions of dollars in promotion which they never could have bought. They never saw it as a race car and felt that a return to the flats and the risk of an accident would become negative publicity. Hence, the car was sold.

”Gary even pursued contacting the new car owner about another run. Apparently, the car had been dropped while being off loaded from a ship when it left the country and there was some tweaking of the frame and that ended his interest.

”Gary then began trying to raise sponsors for a new car he‘d named The American Way. While he raised some eyebrows at the time, he raised no money for the project as interest in the LSR had waned by then. This was in 1979 nine years after the last true attempt and he wasn‘t breaking another guy‘s record; he would only be raising his mark and sponsors wondered how much interest this would raise. To raise the interest, he and Craig Breedlove stated they‘d create some new interest by building two cars and they‘d ’drag race‘ for the record on the flats. Wow, a 700MPH drag race! Of course, Craig would have to change his thinking to a rocket as a Jet vs. Rocket race would be no race in a drag event the best I can remember is something like 0 to 500 in 10 seconds (more than a few G forces).

”One of the reasons Gary was chosen to drive the car (Blue Flame) was because his full time job was he worked for Rockwell International in Downey, California as a ’Test Astronaut.‘ He tested all the space suits for the Apollo space missions. This is a glorious title to say he was the guy going around in the centrifuge. He was used to a lot of G forces, they were always concerned that the driver would blackout during acceleration.

”As far as Gary‘s life being cut short, while we all miss him lots, few of us could picture him dying an old man. Gary’s life was lived on the edge from the time he was 15 years old. Gary started racing by cleaning up the grease/oil mess for some kids in his neighborhood who had a drag car. He did this for a few years on the promise that someday they‘d let him drive it at the drag strip. That day came when he was 15, on the first pass he went faster than any run ever in the car. One year later, he had his own car and became a legend in California drag racing. He was the ultimate crowd pleaser being a lot ’nuts & wild‘ and being EZ to spot as he always wore an ostrich plume on the top of his helmet. He’d love to taunt his competitors on the starting line by shaking his fist and sometimes getting out of his car to yell something. Of course, it was all in good fun and I never met another racer who didn‘t love his magnetic personality.

”While setting the LSR made Gary infamous, many of his friends consider it a high point in his life that made the rest of his life chasing a dream. After the record, he didn’t know if he was a career LSR car driver or needed to return to his career in Drag Racing. Before his death, he nearly lost his life four times to my count. He flipped a drag boat @ 200MPH and as he went in the water the motor hit him in the back, nearly killing him. His kidneys were badly damaged and he was on dialysis for two years. He had two accidents in the same Funny Car (Beach City Corvette). Once, he lost the chutes and ended up on fire on a freeway and the second accident, the car caught on fire during a run and burned to the ground (he jumped out at over 100MPH). That accident burned holes clear through his goggles and helmet but he had only minor burns to his face and head. The fourth accident was a crash in his own Funny Car. It had 4 wheel drive which made it very fast off the line. On a photo shoot for a magazine, the throttle locked down during a ’burn out‘ and he lost control. At about 160MPH it went through a guard rail twice and flipped end over end.

”Gary had one of his hands cut off to the outside skin, one leg was behind his head and one was wrapped around the steering wheel. That leg became the problem. While his hand was re-attached and the leg behind him was dislocated, the surgeons wanted to remove the other leg as it was nothing but shattered bone from the ankle. Gary would not let them remove the leg, so they inserted a long rod to replace the bone. He adapted to the handicap, but spent about a year trying to get rid of gangrene.“ –Blue Flame crew member Paul Stringer.




Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: PorkPie on January 18, 2009, 03:13:55 PM
Blue Flame/ Four wheel drive AA/FC

 Info from Blue Flame Crew Member (Paul Stringer)


“Gary was very upset when the car was sold because he wanted to attempt a sound barrier run with the car. In 1970 when they raced it, they had many mishaps. The most Dodgeing was they burned out the retro in the rocket and had to get a loaner or a gift motor to finish. As I remember the original rocket had about 40,000 pounds of thrust and the actual motor they used to set the record had about 14,000. That would lead you to believe that the car could go much faster given the space limitations of the Salt Flats, and the ground effects of going supersonic...

Historian knows this story a little bit different and also Pete Farnsworth would not agree.................


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 18, 2009, 04:05:37 PM
Blue Flame Big part of ALSR History

 The sad part of this historic Rocket car it was damedged. Even though Gary never new he would be the last American to ever hold the official ALSR. His record run is now 39 years to this day that he ran that and thats a long time. The fact is the car will never run again due to transport handling
 

Blue Flame crew member Paul Stringer.

”Gary even pursued contacting the new car owner about another run. Apparently, the car had been dropped while being off loaded from a ship when it left the country and there was some tweaking of the frame and that ended his interest.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 24, 2009, 09:08:52 PM

 Motorsports Memorial

Gary Gabelich   
Complete name: Gary Gabelich
Birth date: 29.Aug.1940
Birth Place: San Pedro Hill, CA, United States
Death date: 26.Jan.1984
Death Place: Long Beach, CA, United States
Nationality: United States
Gender: male
 
 
Gary Gabelich, which family was of Croatian origins, was the driver of the "Blue Flame" that signed the Land Speed Record at the speed of 622.407 miles per hour (1001,67 km/h). He was killed in a road accident when his motorcycle crashed against a truck on 26 January 1984 at Long Beach, California.

Gabelich had his racing debut at the age of 16, winning first place in the stock eliminator drag racing class at Santa Ana Dragstrip, California. In 1959 he won world’s first side-by-side jet dragster race, topping 250 mph and then traveled 356 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats, in Wendover, UT, in a jet car, probably this was a record for a teen-ager. In 1963 he won the first United Drag Racing Association driving a Double A Fuel dragster. Then he worked for North American Rockwell, eventually becoming a test astronaut for the company, but he decided to get back into racing, competing in the 60s as a drag racer of both automobiles and boats. In 1968 he won the American Power Boat Association fuel hydro Championship, and the following year he set a National Drag Boat Association record of 200.44 mph (322.38 km/h).

Near the end of 1969 he was signed up by Reaction Dynamics Inc. to drive the Blue Flame, a 37-foot-long, three-wheels vehicle powered by a liquid natural gas-hydrogen peroxide rocket engine. Another drag racer, Chuck Suba was signed up before him but he was killed in a racing accident shortly thereafter. The first run for the Blue Flame land speed record attempt was scheduled for September 1969, but it was postponed due to tuning trouble until one year later, on 22 September 1970. This attempt was a failure, reaching Gary Gabelich a speed of only 426 mph, compared to Craig Breedlove's five year-old Land Speed Record of 600.601 mph. On 15 October 1970 Gabelich hit 609 mph on a new run, before a mechanical problem forced him to stop the second run. The same thing happened eight days later, when the first run reached 621 mph. Finally, on 23 October 1970, the Blue Flame driven by Gary Gablich averaged 617.602 mph on the first run and 627.207 on the second for a new Land Speed Record of 622.407 (1,001.67 km/h). This record was set over a measured mile at Bonneville Salt Flats, UT, it was the first record over 1000 km/h, it remained unbeaten until 1983, when Richard Noble broke it driving Thrust 2 at a speed of 633.468 mph (1019,469 km/h).

After setting the record, Reaction Dynamics Inc. stopped the Blue Flame activity and Gabelich came back to drag races. During his career he also drove go-karts and racing cars in circuit races, in 1969 Gabelich had driven the Beac City Chevrolet Corvette funny car to speed over 200 mph and in 1975 he finished 2nd at Riverside, California, in the Mickey Thompson’s off-road race. Then he scored a win in the Toyota Charity Slalom at the Rose Bowl in 1979 and the following year a second place in the Toyota Pro Challenge Race at the Michigan International Speedway. Unfortunately in 1972 he had his right hand severed in a drag racing accident. It was reattached, but his racing career was over. In 1977 Gabelich worked as an actor in Mel Welles' and Ronald C. Ross' movie "Joyride to nowhere". May we never forget the last American to ever hold the ALSR in his rocket car Blue Flame


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 24, 2009, 09:26:51 PM

 Thanks to all LSR racers and viewers

I hope you enjoyed this thread on Gary Gabelich and the Blue Flame. I gathered all the in depth info and pictures on this historic car and driver. Again may we never forget his racing career and his historic American ALSR effort 622.407mph the last offical American ALSR 


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Robin UK on January 26, 2009, 02:20:15 PM
Gary with the man he took the record from



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blown Alcohol 57tbird on January 26, 2009, 07:51:37 PM
Gary with the man he took the record from




Robin

That picture is "priceless" great photo of Gary and Craig two amazing record holders


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Jim Demmitt Jr on March 01, 2009, 06:19:35 PM

 Dick Ralstin, Memories of Gary Gabelich
https://home.comcast.net/~bjdesind2/dralstin/stories/RoomFull-2.htm


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: STUTZ on March 06, 2009, 11:38:42 AM
Being a fellow Croatian myself probably makes me more prouder than any American would be with what Gary had acheived in life,albeit a short one. Gary Gabelic is also mentioned proudly in the Croatian American Archives as well as back home where he is listed as a hero and favorite son. This list is dated back to the 1400s to the present day.

Ray, if you're collecting, there is a spanish site www.interfilmes.com that sells a video of THE BLUE FLAME.



 :cheers:Ive.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: interested bystander on March 08, 2009, 05:27:36 PM
Now that the JDFR duo has been temporarily silenced - it can now be shown what the guys at Lakehurst N.J have ready!


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Robin UK on March 09, 2009, 03:01:01 PM
Now that the JDFR duo has been temporarily silenced - it can now be shown what the guys at Lakehurst N.J have ready!

Wow!!!  What's the story behind this then IB?

Cheers

Robin


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: interested bystander on March 09, 2009, 10:38:18 PM
An old fuel altered driver, now a pilot sent me a website on abandoned and little known US airfields and this was in the historical section on Lakehurst Naval Air Station (remember the Hindenberg) in New Jersey, USA from the '80s or '90s.

Its one of FIVE tracks at the US Navy's test facility and the text said they launched things there to run into arresting gear or BARRICADES!


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: black18 on June 02, 2009, 12:10:24 AM
If the LNG was used in the actual record-setting performance but at a lower ratio of LNG to the hydrogen peroxide oxidizer than would be used at maximum design thrust it could not be made of problem.


_________________
spammer


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Dr Goggles on June 02, 2009, 02:23:40 AM
If the LNG was used in the actual record-setting performance but at a lower ratio of LNG to the hydrogen peroxide oxidizer than would be used at maximum design thrust it could not be made of problem.
Scotsman Ice Machine (http://www.nt-ice.com/)

Och Laddy, tek yee friggin oice mecheene and shoov it oop ya kilt, dez nay bizniz for ye here.

Bashed neeps indeed.


git  ye  SPAMMERS.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: Peter Jack on June 02, 2009, 03:16:47 AM
Couldn't have said it better myself Goggles. :-D

Pete


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Blue on June 15, 2009, 12:31:22 PM
If the LNG was used in the actual record-setting performance but at a lower ratio of LNG to the hydrogen peroxide oxidizer than would be used at maximum design thrust it could not be made of problem.


_________________
Scotsman Ice Machine (http://www.nt-ice.com/)


There's two things to remember about peroxide:

1. It's a monofuel: once it starts going off, it will self-catalyze and burn everything down.  I appreciate the theory, I've had peroxide go off in a clean container.  It's no fun.

2. Every single country and company that has had a rocket program reach orbit has used peroxide at one time or another.  NONE of them use it on their operational systems today.  Billions and billions of dollars, decades of experiments, and the worlds best rocket scientists, engineers, and technicians have all gone into trying peroxide.  Before anyone says it's a good idea, they need to look at why no professionals use it any more.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: N72727 on May 14, 2010, 01:37:39 AM
Hi to all. I'm living in France and I'm interested in LSR cars since I saw an article in a magazine in 1971. A guy called Gary Gabelich ran over 1000 km/h in The Blue Flame rocket car. What is more incredible is that the same year, I saw The Blue Flame at an exhibition in my hometown. I was 15 years old and took only one photo. But many years later, I compared my photo with others and if you look closer, you can see that the different lettering on The Blue Flame are not the same and not in the same position. So, I think that the car in my hometown was not the real thing, but rather a promotional moke-up. Maybe somebody has more information? Where is this moke-up today? Destroyed? Or somewhere in storage? What do you think?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Stainless1 on May 14, 2010, 08:48:40 AM
Nice picture, welcome to our world.  I think they paint cars to look nice when they go on tour....  racing is really hard on paint...  :|


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: N72727 on May 15, 2010, 07:52:35 AM
I'm sure, The Blue Flame that I saw in my hometown (I think in 1972) was not the real thing. If I remember well, there were no rivets on the fuselage. Again, look closer to the 3 photos:
The first one with Gary at Bonneville, 1971.
The second one in France, 1972.
The third one in Germany, where you can see The Blue Flame today.
Photos 1 and 3 have the same lettering and on the same place. In photo 2, the lettering is different.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: Dr Goggles on May 15, 2010, 08:36:48 AM
I'm sure, The Blue Flame that I saw in my hometown (I think in 1972) was not the real thing. If I remember well, there were no rivets on the fuselage. Again, look closer to the 3 photos:
The first one with Gary at Bonneville, 1971.
The second one in France, 1972.
The third one in Germany, where you can see The Blue Flame today.
Photos 1 and 3 have the same lettering and on the same place. In photo 2, the lettering is different.

OK, I know nothing about the Blue Flame, but I do know this,.....it really aint economical for someone to produce a "replica", however, when a team is running a car or bike they may well have enough parts to make several race vehicles, albeit without the full complement of safety gear or whatever it requires to pass ...."tech"........... they might have a couple of frames, a few engines, heaps of bodywork.........the fact of it is there is no benefit in anyone making "fake" versions........Stainless may be right , there may have been different paint versions or it may have been different arrangements of the bodywork....but whatever , it's doubtful there were "fakes"......my own experience at watching Brett de Stoop is  that he has enough stuff to make  bunch of "bikes" but there is only one" Brett de Stoop bike"............So I'd suggest, you saw the real thing.... just maybe not the arrangement they had on race day


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: Peter Jack on May 15, 2010, 11:28:26 AM
When cars are being shown around the country they tend to get nicked up and are often repainted after a while to hide the travel weariness. The museum where the car now resides probably restored it to its original appearance before putting it on display.

Pete


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: N72727 on May 15, 2010, 12:56:05 PM
Thank you... But I really think you're wrong. Now look at the wheels...


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: racefanwfo on May 15, 2010, 01:41:24 PM
i have a question why is a piece of american land speed racing history doing in a german museum. the blue flame should be in the Smithsonian right next to big daddys swamp rat.
it is quite possable that a mock-up of the blue flame was built for car show duty.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: N72727 on May 15, 2010, 02:01:41 PM
Part of the answer is in BlownAlcohol57tbird's post #36, page 3. The Blue Flame was owned by the Natural Gas Industries and they had no interest to keep it. So, the rocket car was sold.
I'm living about 2 hours driving from the museum. But like you, I think the German museum is not the right place. The Blue Flame should be in a museum in the U.S.A.
Again, I'm sure the thing that I saw in France in 1972 was NOT the real Blue Flame.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: N72727 on June 04, 2010, 10:29:07 AM
Another photo with Gary Gabelich.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: F104A on June 06, 2010, 01:41:01 AM
Sometimes, sponsors will want a mockup of a race vehicle built just for shows. John Force has about 16 funny cars that travel all over the place for shows and they will never run the 1/4 mile. We don't have a sponsor that wants
to build a second car for us but one of them put up over $1000 to have a 9' long model built for a couple shows. After they did the business shows, they gave it to me to use where ever I want to put a model of the NAE on display without going through the trouble of hauling the entire car.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407m
Post by: healewis on July 14, 2010, 07:50:54 AM
Blue Flame Gary Gabelich
 
Bonneville Run video (Vintage VW Comercial)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4OB7kDiHF8&feature=related

Hi, :wink: does anybody know if there is any more video footage of blue flame other than purchasable items I have several you tube clips on my site but could not find any of the Blue Flame?  :roll:  :cheers:

Thanks

Paul


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on October 30, 2010, 07:26:22 PM
Regarding N72727's comment on The Blue Flame he saw as a youngster, it was a fiberglass mock-up made for the French natural gas company. I am not certain of the timing, but it may have been exhibited in France while The Blue Flame was still on its US tour.  It later was toured in Europe.

Efforts were made by the Institute of Gas Technology to display the car in a US museum, but was turned down. Pathetic, since Breedlove's Spirit of America is in the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry and The Blue Flame's roots were in Chicago, and it was built in Milwaukee.

The car was purchased for a song ($10,000) for a private collector, then later acquired by the museum in Sinsheim. Because it was the first to exceed 1,000 kilometers per hour, it was a bigger sensation in Europe than in the USA.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on November 01, 2010, 11:58:05 AM
Thank you for your comments MAYOMAN. When I took the photo of the fiberglass mock-up in 1971, they gave this jigsaw puzzle to the visitors.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on November 01, 2010, 12:01:46 PM
Another photo (poor quality :|) from a magazine. Gary in the cockpit.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Fabrizio T. on January 28, 2011, 08:04:36 PM
Hi from Italy,looking for photo's of Gary Gabelich 4 wheel drive funny car at Orange County pre-accident,thanks,Fabrizio.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on February 22, 2011, 02:17:33 AM
Very interesting story about The Blue Flame in the January 2011 issue of OCTANE Magazine.
http://www.classicandperformancecar.com/features/octane_features/262615/the_blue_flame_record_car.html


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TD on March 01, 2011, 11:23:09 AM
Thanks for posting that link, I enjoyed the story and the photos.
Tim


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: velocity on March 20, 2011, 02:08:16 AM
Dick Keller is NOT the designer of the BLUE FLAME Rocket car. That honor belongs to Dr. Paul Torda, Dr. Uzgaris and a small gang of doctoral students at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) in Chicago. The wind tunnel testing which validated the TBF supersonic capability was conducted at the now defunct Ohio State University using a brass scale model that is still in existence and in the safe keeping of the builder, Pete Farnsworth. Keller was the PR and sponsor guy who also happened to be a talented draftsman and occasionally drew up a part or two but make no mistake, he is not to be credited with the design of the car.

I have copies of ALL the Doctoral Thesis that earned the students their respective PhD's and count Paul Torda and his wife among my friends while still living in Chicago. Ray Dausman gets the credit for designing and building the throttlable rocket engines.

Dausman first drew, and then hand-built the first rocket engine. It was tiny, 25lb of thrust I believe, later given to IIT for educational purposes after he and Keller tested the thing in a Blue island, Illinois back alley using a pair of bathroom scales to measure the thrust output. That test validated Dausman's design theory and Reaction Dynamics was formed (Farnsworth, Dausman and Keller) and built the X-1 rocket dragster which validated the concept so the Blue Flame project could be sold to sponsors thereby raising money to construct the car Gary drove to glory.

As for why the car is now in Germany, it was all politics and sponsor ignorance that saw the car sold to a Dutchman, a Shell Oil Exec that somehow cowed the gas guys to sell him the World Record car for a lousy $10,000. and made the Americans pay for the shipping overseas. Gabelich tried repeatedly to borrow the car back, but Dutchman gave it to the museum and told Gary that as long as he was alive the car would never again come to the USA. Pissed Gary right off. This led to him and his pal drawing up the car that is sometimes confused with TBF but was never built. 

This information was relayed to me by Farnsworth, Dausman and Rae Gabelich with mountains of documentation, photos and films. Further data was provided directly from IIT. After reading this thread and realizing too many facts were fiddled with, it was time to set the record straight. If for no other reason than retain proper honor for Gary, Paul, and other dedicated Blue Flame crew no longer with us.

-- LandSpeed Louise


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on March 26, 2011, 09:14:05 AM
Louise,
I don’t understand why you suddenly, out of the blue, decided to attack me here. First, you were never involved in the WLSR project. You really knew nothing about the WLSR until I contacted you in 2008 about partnering my book project. Second, I don’t recall ever claiming to be THE designer of The Blue Flame World Land Speed Record (WLSR) vehicle.

Reaction Dynamics, Inc was the designer and builder of the car. It says so right on the side of the car. Have you ever even seen the car? Ray, Pete, and I were Reaction Dynamics, Inc. What does that make me?

Rae Gabelich was never involved in the WLSR project and only met Gary several years after the WLSR, so she knows nothing, and has nothing to contribute to the conversation. Even so, Gary was the hired driver (actually our third choice) and had little knowledge himself of the total project beyond his brave and skillful driving on the salt flats.

Ray Dausman worked with me at the very beginning of the WLSR journey, but he bailed out of the project a year before we set the WLSR, and before we were done building the car. So, he never even saw the car completed, tested, or raced on the salt flats.

Pete Farnsworth joined our project at phase two, building the dragster prototype. So he wasn’t there at the beginning conceptual stage and rocket design and testing, but he did fantastic work on managing the WLSR fabrication and construction. He also was a key member of the Reaction Dynamics WLSR team on the salt flats.

PR guy and sponsor guy? Maybe, but certainly much more.

Researched rocket design options and worked out the 25 pound thrust hydrogen peroxide rocket design and performance calculations with Ray.
Drew the working drawings for building the 25 pound thrust rocket.
Machined the stainless steel parts for the 25 pound thrust rocket.
Ray and I developed the Samarium Oxide coating process for the silver catalyst and assembled the 25 pound thrust rocket motor.
Ray and I built the rocket motor test stand.
We tested it behind my friend’s home in Blue Island, Ray Muller.
Ray Muller was part of the (former Tucson) Speed Sport drag race group (with Joe Bush and Don Maynard), building several dragsters. He originally was to be our prototype rocket dragster builder, before I later asked Pete to join us.
My bathroom scale and my 16mm camera provided the test instrumentation and recording.
I brought Pete on board later, showing my rocket test films and ideas for the rocket dragster.
Ray and I designed the 2500 pound thrust dragster rocket together.
I drew the working drawings for building the 2500 pound thrust dragster rocket.
I machined some of the stainless steel parts for the rocket and arranged for machining and welding the larger parts at IIT Research Institute – as well as the spun stainless nozzle.
Ray and I applied the Samarium Oxide coating on the silver catalyst and assembled the rocket.
I designed the rocket dragster chassis which Pete built. We collaborated on the design details, Pete doing almost all the fabrication.
I test drove the rocket dragster (without parachutes) and then got Chuck Suba on board as our race driver. I was the sole (slow) test driver – static and dynamic, for the rocket dragster over the three years. Chuck drove it fast.
I traveled with Chuck to every dragstrip appearance, filmed the car running, packed parachutes, refueled, etc.
Using my films of the test motor and the dragster, I promoted the sponsorship of the WLSR.
A researcher at the Institute of Gas Technology, I wrote the WLSR proposals and convinced the natural gas industry to get on board, appearing at several AGA and gas company meetings around the country. $ponsor$hip is money. That’s where I got it.
I convinced Drs. Andrew Fejer and Paul Torda at IIT’s Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department to support our WLSR design program – also recruiting Dr. Uzgiris and his several engineering master’s degree candidates to assist in the WLSR design.
Reaction Dynamics and IIT worked as a team, collaborating on the design throughout the construction of the vehicle. I also have a list of at least 50 persons who assisted or worked on the car with us in various roles. It was a big, complicated project – scratch-built in our shop.
I also convinced associate sponsors to provide their products, essential in building the car.
After Ray left Reaction Dynamics in 1969, I finished the rocket system construction, testing, and operation on the salt flats.
I also designed and built the vehicle trailer and the rocket system support trailers to refuel and pressurize the car on the salt flats, in parallel with The Blue Flame’s construction.

So, let’s recap – without Dick Keller there would be:
no 25 pound thrust hydrogen peroxide rocket motor,
no hydrogen peroxide rocket dragster,
no natural gas industry $ponsor$hip,
no IIT Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering support,
no WLSR!

Before Reaction Dynamics, I was an Experimental Engineer at IIT Research Institute, working on projects including a propellant monitoring system for fuelling the NASA Saturn I and Saturn V boosters for the Apollo program, and a military space satellite defense system for the DOD. Later, I was Chief Technologist at the Institute of Gas Technology researching the gas reaction kinetics of methane (natural gas combustion).

Following the WLSR, I was the Engineering Manager, Director, and Vice President at four multi-national companies. Oh yes, and I was a “talented draftsman” as well. Doing business as  Keller Design Corporation, I designed and built numerous rocket powered dragsters and funny cars for Lew Arrington, Sammy Miller, and others.

It’s obvious we have a different perspective on the truth here. I suggest, if you want, to continue the discussion off-line and not further bore these folks on the Landracing Forum.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Gwillard on March 26, 2011, 10:19:34 AM
In response to:

 "The wind tunnel testing which validated the TBF supersonic capability was conducted at the now defunct Ohio State University using a brass scale model that is still in existence and in the safe keeping of the builder, Pete Farnsworth."

I can assure you that the reports of The Ohio State University being defunct are greatly exagerated. They are alive, well, and 50,000+ students strong.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 06, 2012, 01:55:56 PM
Gwillard - The whole story of The Blue Flame world land speed record is summed up in my home movie on Youtube. There are some good secenes at the Ohio State University transonic wind tunnel where we tested using our brass model. Dr. Paul Torda and Tom Morel are shown in the tunnel lab scene.
After proving the rocket concept with our X-1 rocket dragster, the American Gas Association (AGA) signed on for the land speed record project.
Chuck Suba drove the X-1 and was to be the driver for The Blue Flame. Unfortunately, Chuck died in a fuel dragster accident one month after we got the sponsorship commitment at the Oklahoma City “World Jet Nationals” in 1968.
Since there was no sound track on my 16mm camera, there is only a musical background. Sorry about that. It was the 1960s!
Go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmdffpaO4Vo



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 16, 2012, 02:15:28 PM
The "official" film of The Blue Flame world land speed record is now on YouTube.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOFVUNoT5wE

It took me a while to get the copyright approval from the American Gas Association, but here it is.

Remember, though, that the world land speed record set by The Blue Flame was for the kilometer, not the mile, at 630.388 miles per hour - or 1,014.656 kilometers per our.

That record stood until 1997 since FIA requires a new record to exceed the existing record by more than 1%. Thrust 2 only did 633 miles per hour in the mile, not enough to get the kilo.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: velocity on July 07, 2013, 12:28:41 PM
Louise,
I don’t understand why you suddenly, out of the blue, decided to attack me here.

If this is Dick Keller posting this comment, my reply:

This is not an attack. My posting was a statement of facts backed by documentation that will hold up in any court of law, or fact checking editorial department. The documentation is form Ray Dausman, Pete Farnsworth, Rae Gabelich and assorted other Blue Flame team members.

I/we challenge a number of your posted facts as incomplete, or erroneous. I only interest is the integrity of the historical record to reflect the correct contributions of all concerns and pump up the contribution of one person.

I withdrew from your book project because you were unwilling to share publishing credit with Farnsworth and Dausman. Both of these men have since contacted me individually to pursue a historical recounting of the The Blue Flame project. Work is underway.

Further, Sarah Kasprowicz, Dausman's daughter, has just published "The Reluctant Rocketman" available on Amazon. A great number of the points I posted are contained within her book that is a personal memoir of her father's life with emphasis on the Blue Flame rocket engine design.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: 4-barrel Mike on July 07, 2013, 12:48:14 PM
http://www.amazon.com/The-Reluctant-Rocketman-Curious-Breaking/dp/0988199475/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1373219198&sr=8-1&keywords=reluctant+rocketman (http://www.amazon.com/The-Reluctant-Rocketman-Curious-Breaking/dp/0988199475/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1373219198&sr=8-1&keywords=reluctant+rocketman)

Mike


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Phil UK on July 16, 2013, 04:13:17 AM
It's been fantastic to see The Blue Flame over at the Goodwood Festival of Speed recently. Some great pics on the Speed Record Club's Facebook page here - https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.656216021074779.1073741833.359703307392720&type=1.

Quick question though, who was Gerard Brennan listed as "Alternate Driver"?

Phil



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on July 16, 2013, 07:53:20 PM
To understand the “Alternate Driver” designation for Gerard Brennan, a little background is necessary.
The original driver for The Blue Flame was Chuck Suba, who piloted the X-1 rocket dragster – precursor to The Blue Flame. Gerard Brennan was a fellow car club member with Chuck and had driven several dragsters in the midwestern United States. He also was a skilled welder and fabricator. Gerard came on board Reaction Dynamics, at Chuck’s request, to help us build The Blue Flame.

After Chuck died in a dragster crash, Gary Gabelich was eventually hired to drive The Blue Flame. We believed it prudent to have a backup to Gary in the event he would not be available to drive the car on the salt flats. Gary was still active in drag racing and boat drags during the year prior to The Blue Flame running at Bonneville in 1970.

Gerard did operate The Blue Flame during some of the static testing of the rocket, prior to leaving for Bonneville, when Gary was not there. Gerard was an important member of the Reaction Dynamics team at the Salt Flats, servicing the vehicle, modifying the rocket motor, etc. Fortunately, he was never required to drive the car. Afterward, Gerard toured The Blue Flame across the United States and in Europe. He later went on to work as a member of the Shadow Racing group for Don Nichols and drove the Pollution Packer Bonneville Dragster for a brief time.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: JimL on July 16, 2013, 10:26:46 PM
What a strange world it is.  This morning I stopped at McD's for a quick bite on my way to the self serve stone quarry.  A gentleman next to me struck up a conversation, where I learned he had grown up in Hungary, escaping at the time of the revolution to school in Germany, emigrated to the U.S. As a result of going to the U.S. Embassy library because he was hungry one morning. 

He said that friends told him they gave free coffee and snacks, and he was homeless at the time.  A young lady (working for the embassy) misunderstood his visit, filled out papers for him, and six months later he was living in America.  He subsequently became a sports/action photographer.  One of his assignments was the Blue Flame runs.

He told me they had great difficulty with their radio communications, and that they would watch for the first puff of smoke and try to get the pics.  The car accelerated so fast that they struggled to get pics and footage.

He said they finally figured out how to see the car coming, before it got to them at the 5 mile.  They found they could see the car upside down in the mirage above it, well before it could be seen on the ground.  They took photos of the mirage to prove it, he said. 

I was so flabbergasted, I never got his name.  I will be looking for him at breakfast times.  He lives alone on a 100 acre ranch just west of my little town of 7000 people.  He is a really interesting gentleman, and strangely enough, we both served in similar fields in the U.S. Army, in Germany, but about six years apart.

such a teeny, tiny world, :-o
 JimL


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: racefanwfo on July 17, 2013, 02:17:32 AM
I wish there was a way to get the BLUE FLAME back to america. The car has no business in germany. It should be sitting next to BIG'S SWAMP RAT 31.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Robin UK on July 17, 2013, 02:42:30 AM
Here's another pic of it at Goodwood. The LSR display was courtesy of Daytona International Speedway.

Robin


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Phil UK on July 17, 2013, 07:11:53 AM
Thanks for the explanation Dick, just a name I hadn't heard mentioned before.
And a fabulous looking car by the way!

Regards,
Phil


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 05, 2013, 10:02:12 AM
Thanks, Mike, for posting the link to Ray Dausman’s story. Although Ray’s book, “Reluctant Rocketman”, is filled with inaccuracies, mostly inconsequential, there are a few that challenge the credibility of The Blue Flame’s achievement and of its sponsor, America’s natural gas industry. In fairness to our generous sponsor, that begs for correction.

Since Ray wasn’t around for the last year of the project, he apparently wasn’t aware of the maximum speed restriction imposed by the Goodyear Tire Company racing department for our first year’s (and only) attempt, 700 miles per hour. The Blue Flame was, however, originally designed with the intent of ultimately comfortably achieving Mach 1 plus, up to 850 miles per hour, with full thrust [22,000 pounds] and a larger LNG fuel tank. That larger LNG tank was never installed in 1970, to ensure compliance with the Goodyear 700 miles per hour mandate. So, we set the record with (figuratively) one arm tied behind our back, and less than 16,000 pounds thrust.

Ray’s first big “revelation” concerned the missing flow control orifice that proportioned the LNG flow between the 2nd and 3rd stage LNG injectors. He claimed we erred by not installing the restrictor orifice. However, since we never intended to operate at full thrust (700 miles per hour speed restriction, remember), we only planned to use the 2nd stage injectors and, therefore, no need to proportionally control the LNG flow. The flow control orifice was not a necessary function in the reduced thrust 1970 rocket configuration, and thus not installed.

Ray’s other “revelation”, that the LNG was never burned in the rocket combustion chamber, and did not provide additional thrust, is also not correct. A frame snapshot from my 16mm film of one of the early tune-up runs confirms, with the diamond exhaust shock waves, that we were efficiently burning the LNG with the oxygen-rich H2O2 decomposition gasses in the rocket combustion chamber. This was also borne out by the performance difference without and with LNG in test runs. When the 2nd stage injector assembly explosively failed on the first run, I later reconfigured the rocket to use the 3rd stage injectors instead. We ran several tests to optimize the LNG flow, going from an LNG-rich to a lean mixture, modifying the 3rd stage LNG injectors (to improve combustion) as well.

Our fastest H2O2-only run netted a mile average speed of 484 miles per hour (run #10). After LNG-tuning we achieved 557 from a standing start (run # 12), and later, 650 peak with a push start during the record runs. That standing start 15% performance boost, along with the visual evidence, certainly indicates effective combustion of the purposely reduced LNG fuel capacity.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 12, 2013, 11:22:26 AM
Just as a side note - there are three videos on Youtube of The Blue Flame land speed record project.
"Break the Record" is the film produced for the American Gas Association and was shown in movie houses as well as television in 1971 and later. "Speedquest" is my personal 16mm film of the project - just a musical soundtrack since recording sound then was beyond my resources. "The Blue Flame - Speedquest" is a re-do of "Speedquest" for the American Oil and Gas Historical Society (AOGHS.ORG) with my narration dubbed in. These are the links.

Break the Record
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOFVUNoT5wE
Speedquest
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmdffpaO4Vo
The Blue Flame - Speedquest
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PFEnzhP9Y4

Also, I found another photo of the car at speed with the visible combustion shock waves.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: joea on October 23, 2013, 09:02:42 PM
Oct 23 ...anniversary Blue Flame world record accomplishment.....
A real ..official...actual FIA sanctioned record....congrats again team...!!!

622.407  mph.     Wow over 4 decades ago.....



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 04, 2016, 01:32:46 AM
Some photos...


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 04, 2016, 07:45:55 AM
Nice photos. Again, just want to make clear the official World Land Speed Record set by The Blue Flame in 1970 was the kilometer record speed of 630.388 mph (1,014.656 kph).
The mile record speed was the slower 622.407 mph. The ALSR is the fastest world record recognized by the FIA or FIM.
There was confusion by the American Gas Association's public relations firm - since we had always been talking about the MILE record before we went to Bonneville. Nobody in America knows what a kilometer is.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TD on April 04, 2016, 10:24:41 AM
Thanks for sharing the pictures, one cannot get enough of this stuff.

Interesting that model shows strut and wheel fairings.  Could you describe how and why those were discarded for the build?

Last, a kilometer is a thousand meters... whatever those are  :-D

Nice photos...
Nobody in America knows what a kilometer is.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TrickyDicky on April 04, 2016, 11:36:49 AM
...

Last, a kilometer is a thousand meters... whatever those are  :-D

Nice photos...
Nobody in America knows what a kilometer is.


And a kilometre is a thousand metres.   :-D :-D


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 04, 2016, 12:42:14 PM
Regarding the rear wheel fairings and faired struts on the model in the photo - that was the original design we wind tunnel tested at the Ohio State University transonic wind tunnel. The first tunnel tests indicated some rear lift and transonic instability with that design. The immediate solution was to eliminate those faired members, as was seen in the actual final vehicle design. We had to find the solution very quickly due to our tight schedule and funding. A more elegant solution would have taken more time than we could afford. The follow-up wind tunnel tests demonstrated the changes solved the aerodynamic issues, so we went with that solution.

We were limited by Goodyear Tire Company to a maximum speed of 700 mph the first year, anyhow. The tires and wheels had been tested to 850+ mph, but they (Goodyear) were concerned about our lack of LSR experience. We had more than enough thrust to overcome the additional drag resulting from the exposed struts and tires, so it wasn't a big problem. In fact, we had to "de-tune" the rocket to ensure we didn't exceed 700 mph. We peaked at around 660 mph, so we were correct in our calculations. The result was probably the most stable LSR vehicle over 500 mph at that time.

Pete and I were only 31 years old then, so this was a pretty ambitious venture for a couple of hotrodders. We both had engineering educations, so there was some method to our madness. Ray Dausman, likewise, was just a youth.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 04, 2016, 02:22:14 PM
Where is the model today ? Preserved ?
From any angle, The Blue Flame is the most beautidul record car ever built. And the place where I can see it is about ~2 hours driving from my home.
The videos are fantastic. Thanks again for them.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 04, 2016, 06:28:18 PM
The Blue Flame model is now in Chicago and being touched up for display. The photos attached are from the original project proposal.

The wind tunnel model is shown with some of the design variations we explored at Ohio State University in their transonic tunnel.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: kiwi belly tank on April 04, 2016, 11:47:50 PM
Don't hold back on us Dick, we're hungry for all the history.
  Sid.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 05, 2016, 12:16:40 AM
Thank you for the photos !
Here's a link to Tom Daniel's project with Gary Gabelich. Too bad that this couldn't happen.

http://www.tomdaniel.com/td_career/td_articles/rocketman_design/rocketman_home.html#


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: tauruck on April 05, 2016, 02:10:24 AM
When I was kid the astronauts, Gary Gabelich and Sprint Car drivers were my heroes.
I wish I'd never learned to read. :-D :-D :-D


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Glen on April 05, 2016, 09:33:52 AM
My wife went to school with Gary, Gary and his dad were good friends and his dad and I set together several times at the drag races. Sure miss those days. RIP Gary. :cheers:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 18, 2016, 07:58:10 AM
Kiwi Belly Tank - So, what would you like to know? I'd be happy to fill you in on what it takes to set the world land speed record.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: kiwi belly tank on April 18, 2016, 05:14:28 PM
It's not that I'm looking for anything in particular Dick, I just like to see the history being shared before it gets lost to history.
My world is wheel driven & while I share everything on what it took us to get Betsy over 400, I share very little on the latest liner until it too becomes a part of the past.
  Sid.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 18, 2016, 06:13:33 PM
Well, tell me what you think of this slice of history. This was generated from my correspondence files.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Speed Limit 1000 on April 19, 2016, 12:51:59 AM
Very cool :-o


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 19, 2016, 05:33:16 AM
Seems that this is a smaller model than that on the photo in post #85 ?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 19, 2016, 07:38:30 AM
That is the model we built with the final design for the rear struts and no wheel pants.
Gary carried that one around to various TV interviews.
That was certainly more practical than the big one.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 19, 2016, 08:48:47 AM
Thank you. And where is this model today ?
I just noticed drag driver Don Garlits on the bigger model...?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 19, 2016, 08:57:46 AM
That small model is lost.
Don Garlits had originally agreed to drive The Blue Flame after Chuck Suba was killed in a dragster accident. However, his family was uncomfortable with him driving a car he hadn't built himself, so he declined.
Gary Gabelich was later hired to drive - see the post above with The Blue Flame Timelines PDF attachment.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 24, 2016, 10:12:40 AM
Sid,
The post #98 contained the PDF THE BLUE FLAM TIMELINES rev 4 which ended the day we arrived on the Bonneville Salt Flats.
This PDF starts when we arrived and chronicles 24 timed runs by the USAC/FIA crew headed by Joe Petrali.
Of note, run #3 was a 1/4-mile standing start performance check. We ran the distance in 6.724 seconds elapsed time. This computes to the AVERAGE SPEED of 133.849 mi/h. At a constant rate of acceleration that would produce a TOP SPEED, for example, of around 266 mi/h.
For comparison, Don Prudhomme was Top Eliminator at the 1970 U.S. Nationals in a Fuel Dragster with an elapsed time of 6.45 seconds and 230.78 mi/h.
Not too shabby, eh?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 30, 2016, 10:22:54 AM
Reaction Dynamics, designer and builder of The Blue Flame, was three guys in their mid-20s with engineering educations and innovative ideas on the land speed record. Ray and Dick worked at the IIT Research Institute, where they worked in an environment that encouraged thinking outside the box. Pete had been designing and building competitive dragsters for several years. In the timelines from post #98 above, the March 1965 IITRI Spectra newsletter was an indicator of the sort of encouragement that would drive these young men forward to the land speed record.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 30, 2016, 10:43:50 AM
Also, in the post #98 timelines there are two items that were significant in the progression of the land speed record project.

After discussing the LSR with Dr. Henry Linden, director of the Institute of Gas Technology, I needed to convince him of the publicity value of the project. If he was to bring the American Gas Association on board as project sponsors, they needed assurance that the media would cover a land speed record. This would also be a learning experience for me. I called the motor sports editor, Robert Markus, at the Chicago Tribune to fill him in on the project. The February 1968 Tribune article had that effect in helping to land the sponsor. However, I also learned that when you talk with a reporter, the story begins with the first contact. It gave me too much individual publicity (as the story source) versus Reaction Dynamics - our partnership. Lesson learned.

Later in the timeline, after IGT had moved The Blue Flame to Chicago following our losing ownership of the car, a highly publicized accident on the Chicago freeway brought The Blue Flame back to our Milwaukee shop. The photo appeared in the news and the sponsor immediately reacted in our (Pete and) favor. So we were able to complete the car and get that elusive LSR.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: kiwi belly tank on April 30, 2016, 10:53:00 AM
Can you tell us the details on your loss of the car & the accident?
  Sid.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on April 30, 2016, 11:44:04 AM
Sid,
Again, in the timelines document, on July 30, 1968 we submitted a project budget ($147,000) and a proposed schedule for September-October 1969 record attempts. Both were mildly optimistic. While we were able to recruit engineering graduate students to assist in the vehicle design, they worked on a school semester schedule. While this is perfectly reasonable, it took a lot more time to get the design work completed than we had estimated. As a result, in December 1969 IGT assumed ownership of The Blue Flame (we actually had a DMV title) since we had defaulted on our contract schedule.

In January 1970 we towed The Blue Flame to IGT in Chicago. While the chassis was complete (less the tail fin), the rocket system plumbing and controls had not been installed. I was concerned at that time that IGT thought they could take over the whole project and run it themselves.

In February 1970, IGT was towing the car to a meeting with the primary gas industry sponsors in Rockford, Illinois, lost control of the trailer and rolled it over on its side.

After that negative experience (and my calls to the gas industry execs), Pete and I took The Blue Flame back to Milwaukee to finish the car and make the record attempts in September 1970. While we didn't actually own the car anymore, we had designed and built it, and ran the record attempts at Bonneville. Then, we returned the car to IGT for a world tour publicizing the liquefied natural gas fuel. So, the whole project was completed in less than two years. First attempt to set a LSR and we did it!


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on April 30, 2016, 02:38:51 PM
Very interesting and rare document with the accident. Thanks for sharing.
Here is TBF at the Chicago Auto Show in 1971.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on May 09, 2016, 07:14:20 PM
We never had a team photo in this thread. These were the guys that worked full time, part time, overtime, weekends, holidays at our little shop in Milwaukee. They continued to work our exhausting schedule on the salt.
Ken McCarthy was our first full time employee. Gerard Brennan was the second and also the reserve driver for The Blue Flame. He did most of the aluminum welding on the chassis. Larry Henkel was the electronics expert as well as a fabricator. I guess we were all fabricators at some point. Dave Bykowski was a fire fighter and his schedule allowed considerable time on the car as well. The fire department gave him extended time off to stay at Bonneville for the six weeks. Mark Neubauer was an automobile salesman and also fabricated.
There were several others that worked temporarily in our shop who did not make the trip. Most notable was Dix Erickson, who would have come with us to Bonneville but was hired by American Honda in California before we left.
Aluminum body work was by Ray Besasie - a remarkable older gentleman and outstanding metal craftsman. He was also an aviation pioneer in Wisconsin among other notable activities.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Stan Back on May 09, 2016, 09:22:58 PM
Thanx for recognizing them.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on May 10, 2016, 10:33:18 AM
We never had a team photo in this thread. These were the guys that worked full time, part time, overtime, weekends, holidays at our little shop in Milwaukee. They continued to work our exhausting schedule on the salt.
Are you still in contact with some of those people today ?
Interesting article here:
https://magazine.iit.edu/fall-2015/blue-flame


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on May 15, 2016, 10:57:41 AM
Larry Henkel and Mark Neubauer passed away several years ago, way too young.
Larry Henkel lived nearby in Pewaukee and was partner in a golf course before he passed.

We had a 40th anniversary reunion in Wendover, in September  2010, at the USFRA Bonneville World of Speed race event. A good turnout there from Reaction Dynamics members, IIT, IGT, and various supporting suppliers.

Other than Gerard Brennan, everyone else was from Milwaukee and friends of Pete. This was an “ad hoc” event, so to speak, so I didn’t see most of them afterward.
Gerard toured The Blue Flame in the U.S. and Europe for a few years and we have stayed in touch since. Gerard also drove The Pollution Packer Bonneville Dragster the last time it ran, in 1975.

Pete, Ken McCarthy, and I did the Honda Hawk streamliner in 1971, then we closed the shop in 1972.
Gary Gabelich was a hired hand, only drove The Blue Flame, and then he went on to other projects on the West Coast.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on May 30, 2016, 09:07:26 AM
While the photo above shows our crew on the Bonneville Salt Flats, The Blue Flame project was successful only because of the enthusiastic support of a large number of contributors. It would take a book to really describe these individuals and businesses in the manner they deserve. Actually, I am writing that book. Don't hold your breath waiting for it, but I promise to get it done this year.

The attached document is the most comprehensive list that I had prepared in 1970. Pete and I never made any money setting the record - just satisfaction. But we did send everyone we had identified a certificate thanking them at that time.

If we had known at the beginning what resources the land speed record project would take to be successful, we might have been overwhelmed.

Thanks, again, to all those on the lists - and any we might have missed - who were a part of the last successful American world land speed record project.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on June 01, 2016, 01:31:27 PM
Always interesting documents and information here. Thank you for that. And I'm in for your book.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 03, 2016, 10:00:42 AM
Ray Besasie Senior (in his mid-60s) was probably the most interesting character on our Milwaukee fabricating team. He single-handedly fabricated all of the formed aluminum panels for The Blue Flame and, later, the Honda Hawk streamliner. Ray built the patterns and formed the panels in his Milwaukee garage behind his home the old-fashioned way, with a hammer and sand bag. He did the final panel fitting in our Reaction Dynamics shop. The most impressive piece was the single nose cone. This was a Von Karman ogive profile with a non-circular (modified triangular) cross-section. Amazing work.

Ray could have been the prototype for the mad scientist in “Back to the Future”, Dr. Emmett Brown. With only a 10th grade formal education, he was an aviation pioneer in his early 20s, an inventor of automotive turbo-charging, and a creator of several innovative and eccentric automotive designs. We were honored that he devoted his time and effort to make The Blue Flame a success.

Due to size restrictions, I’ll follow up with additional posts.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 03, 2016, 10:09:55 AM
Here is a photo of the young and handsome daredevil, Ray Besasie, behind the wheel of his racing car - and some not too professional photos of his homebuilt airplane - Sonny Boy.
The primer-painted panels on The Blue Flame were fabricated in his home shop in Milwaukee.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 03, 2016, 10:16:15 AM
It's hard to believe that I had no photos of Ray with The Blue Flame. He also drove out to Bonneville in his X3 automobile and watched the early runs of The Blue Flame. His enthusiasm for our project was boundless. I did find a photo of Ray working on fitting the Honda Hawk body panels. Again, the panels he fabricated are in primer. Ray is the mature gentleman at the far left in the photo.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Dynoroom on June 03, 2016, 11:56:17 AM

Those photos are FABULOUS!

Thank you for your information & insight. Love the history...



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 04, 2016, 02:26:24 PM
Because of space limitations on reply #117 I didn't include this photo. It gives a better view of Ray Besasie's masterful aluminum craftsmanship. Again, primer is his work.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on July 31, 2016, 11:13:49 AM
The previous discussions in this story about the last American World Land Speed Record holder have focused on the actual “hands on” participants – both in our small Milwaukee Reaction Dynamics shop, and the crew that spent those stressful 20 hour days on the salt. Their recognition is well earned.

However, there was an equally involved “team” working on the design phase of the project which also deserves recognition. I’ll try to do that now.

When, in late 1968, the American Gas Association with prodding from the Institute of Gas Technology (IGT) committed to sponsoring The Blue Flame, we agreed to run for the record in 1969, which was in our sponsor contract. After the elation of seeing our dream finally becoming a reality, Pete, Ray, and I realized extra design manpower was necessary if we were to meet that ambitious schedule.

IGT was located on the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) campus and offered courses towards a degree in Gas Technology. We decided to enlist the available manpower of 2 IIT professors and several graduate students (whose work on The Blue Flame became their course theses) to help in the aerodynamic and structural design, calculating performance and stresses, and providing the engineering drawings we turned into the physical LSR vehicle. Even though their work was superb, the timing was affected by their necessary course work and academic schedule. The result was an awesome design, but a missed sponsor contract schedule. The record was achieved on October 22, 1970.

Aerodynamics:
Dr. T. Paul Torda
Thomas A. Morel – “Aerodynamic Design of a High-Speed Rocket Car”, June 1969
Structure and Performance:
Dr. Sarunas C. Uzgiris
Shashikumar V. Kurani – “Structural Design of an L.S.R. Vehicle”, December 1969
Kirit C. Desai – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle (Connnectors)”, December 1970
Harshad R. Parikh – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle Pat IV-Wheels”, January 1970
Prahlad T. Thakur – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle Part V-Suspension”, January 1970
Krishna G. Pandey – “Performance of The Blue Flame”, March 1970

While we had some challenges to overcome at Bonneville with our rocket design, The Blue Flame performed flawlessly with respect to the aerodynamics, vehicle handling dynamics, and structural integrity. The Blue Flame ran as if on rails from the very first. The veteran USAC timing crew and Goodyear engineers were in awe of the high speed stability. Job well done, IIT!

 :cheers:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on July 31, 2016, 11:36:01 AM
Pate and I interacted wit the IIT crew throughout the design and construction of The Blue Flame. This collaboration helped the students understand the physical constraints in the vehicle design.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 01, 2016, 11:52:11 AM
ERROR CORRECTION!
I can't believe that I stated "the record was achieved on October 22, 1970"!
I had typed the text early in the morning - before coffee - then pasted to the post later.
Of course, we set the record on October 23!!!
Sorry about that. Just a senior moment.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: kiwi belly tank on August 01, 2016, 04:18:11 PM
Nice save Dick, Trickydicky over in England would have likely been correcting you on that one. :-D
  Sid.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TrickyDicky on August 02, 2016, 11:22:44 AM
Nice save Dick, Trickydicky over in England would have likely been correcting you on that one. :-D
  Sid.

Too fast for me...


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Robin UK on August 02, 2016, 11:57:10 AM
Blimey Dick, just a senior moment? I have senior days sometimes interrupted only by the need for more frequent personal pit stops.

Robin


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on August 02, 2016, 04:17:08 PM
Tom Morel worked on the aerodynamic design of The Blue Flame under the direction of Dr. T. Paul Torda at IIT. Tom had just arrived from Czechoslovkia, as an engineering graduate student, and was asked to accept this project for his master’s thesis by the MMAE Department Chair Dr. Andrew Fejer, also a Czech.
Dr. Uzgiris, directing the Indian graduate students, was an immigrant from Lithuania. So, all of the IIT engineering talent we were able to recruit for The Blue Flame project were recent immigrants to the United States. Following our land speed record, in 1970, they all went on to successful careers here, several starting their own engineering and consulting firms.
We were very fortunate to have this invaluable resource at our beckoning at that time. In discussing The Blue Flame project with many of them years afterward, they all related that in discussing their career resumes in interviews the most interest was in their work on this land speed record vehicle.
 :cheers:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 09, 2017, 04:37:32 PM
This thread has thoroughly covered the middle to the end of the journey, setting the world land speed record in 1970.
Several questions have come up requesting more information on the beginning of the journey.
I'll try to address that gap in a few more posts.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on June 10, 2017, 11:12:35 AM
Better yet, Dick, finish that book so we can read the whole story in detail co.plete with pictures. Lots and lots of pictures.

John


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: WOODY@DDLLC on June 11, 2017, 08:07:06 AM
I second that motion!  :-D :cheers: :cheers:
And third it and fourth it and ............... :roll: :roll:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on June 13, 2017, 12:04:51 PM
Where is that trailer today ?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on June 13, 2017, 04:31:24 PM
I am quite certain that it remains with the car at the Sinsheim Museum. They occasionally have transported The Blue Flame to outside events, such as the Goodwood Revival in the UK. The trailer would be invaluable for those occasions.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on February 05, 2018, 09:56:37 AM
Dick, what was the aero penalty, if any, by going to exposed trailing arms at rear compared to faired in supports originally seen on the brass wind tunnel scale model?

John 


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 05, 2018, 11:24:16 PM
John, The original concept of The Blue Flame had streamlined wheel "pants" and a thin wing-like structure locating the wheels outboard and swept rearward of the fuselage (area rule). This resulted in an unstable pitching moment. The immediate solution was to simply attach the rear exposed wheels by means of four tubular struts. While this configuration increased the subsonic aerodynamic drag considerably, as the speed increased into the transonic region the overall drag tended to be the same. Thus, the vehicle's ultimate performance capability was unchanged. Future tunnel work may have led to another solution, but the schedule required us to move forward with this one. The tunnel model options and drag plots are attached.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 05, 2018, 11:26:47 PM
Here is the wind tunnel model and the various optional aerodynamic configurations along with the resulting drag curves.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on February 06, 2018, 11:13:13 AM
Dick, what were the measurement values on the horizontal scale? I assume velocity but by what measure?

John


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Stainless1 on February 06, 2018, 12:22:32 PM
John, looked like Mach to me... they were swinging for the fences.... probably could have been there with smarter sponsors


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 06, 2018, 12:41:18 PM
Vertical scale is drag coefficient (CD) and horizontal is Mach number (M). At 0.9M, the CD was .35 with the faired wheels and support structure, but .43M with the final open wheel configuration. That would have been about our peak velocity in the mid-mile/kilometer speed traps, which was 660 mi/h. Instrumentation showed The Blue Flame was stable, as if on rails, throughout the high speed runs. In fact, tire wear was non-existent from the 24 runs. One rear tire was replaced when it skidded on braking, while towed in the service area, at around 30 mi/h and showed a tiny flat spot. The two front tires were replaced early when a slow leak (probably O-rings in the wheel) occurred in one. We just replaced both as a caution. The 4th tire remained on The Blue Flame for every run and looked new when we were finished. I believe Goodyear kept that one on display in Akron. We would have uprated the rocket to 22,000 lb thrust the next year and tried for Mach 1+, but, since we didn't own the car any longer, the sponsor put it on the exhibition tour and then "sold" it to the Shell Oil executive in Europe so we couldn't run it again. Now the shell of The Blue Flame remains in Sinsheim. So, 0.9M was it for The Blue Flame. Not too bad for a bunch of "cheese heads".


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on February 06, 2018, 03:21:40 PM
OK, just finished reading Morel's Masters thesis. Yes, those were Mach numbers and should have guessed as much considering the vehicle. But I thought Morel achieved a Cd of .23 for "The Flame"?

John


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 06, 2018, 04:19:47 PM
The .23 CD was the initial calculation before the wind tunnel tests. Gee, too bad we didn't have CFD back then. Mostly slide rules, electro-mechanical calculators, paper and pencil. Well, ink and vellum if you had money to burn. Just watched the Tesla automobile ROCKETED into orbit. Who has the fastest car now?


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Speed Limit 1000 on February 06, 2018, 07:29:48 PM
Just watched the Tesla automobile ROCKETED into orbit. Who has the fastest car now?

I just watched the news and thought WTF when they said they launched the car into space. :-o One way or are they going to bring it back?

Johnboy


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 06, 2018, 08:06:08 PM
Elon Musk says the Tesla roadster, top down, will fly past Mars and on to the universe. The instrument panel display was priceless, stating "Don't Panic!". I wonder if the car had batteries installed. I doubt NASA would have that sense of humor.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: manta22 on February 06, 2018, 08:16:13 PM
The .23 CD was the initial calculation before the wind tunnel tests. Gee, too bad we didn't have CFD back then. Mostly slide rules, electro-mechanical calculators, paper and pencil. Well, ink and vellum if you had money to burn. Just watched the Tesla automobile ROCKETED into orbit. Who has the fastest car now?

They have to make a backup run.  :-D

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 06, 2018, 08:25:53 PM
BTW - here is the display panel en route to Mars


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 06, 2018, 08:27:08 PM
this time I'll add the photo


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Stainless1 on February 08, 2018, 12:07:15 AM
Wonder how long the camera's will work... it is a view through the windshield that only 1 car will have.  I think it has a "built on earth by humans" tag on it as well  :wink:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TD on February 08, 2018, 10:09:19 AM
While the car and builder / driver don't seem to attract much attention in this forum, McGlashan's Aussie Invader 5R seems to follow many of the design principles established by the Flame.

They don't seem close to running, but they are making progress.  They haven't said much about the rocket engine lately, so my guess is that this problem isn't solved, funded, or both.

I'm not on The Book of Face but that's how they are sharing project updates - https://www.facebook.com/AussieInvader.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on February 08, 2018, 11:16:26 AM
Thanks for the mention about Roscoe in Australia.  I do get his monthly updates - and am trying to figure out what I've done with 'em.  I had it firmly in mind that I was doing something besides reading them.  I'll see if I can convince Bob to put them someplace easy to find. . . if he isn't already.


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: TD on February 08, 2018, 11:41:03 AM
Glad to be of service :)  I'm pretty sure Rosco has stopped producing the monthly updates, indicating that their preparation was taking too much time, and that he was going all in on The Book of Face.

While you are over there check out the final items on the parts list.  I think he's got them already!



Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: N72727 on February 08, 2018, 11:54:58 AM
http://www.aussieinvader.com/read-newsletter-for-2017


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on February 08, 2018, 01:00:33 PM
Looks like Rosco took a few queues from the Blue Flame, Dick.

John


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: MAYOMAN on February 09, 2018, 08:23:12 AM
Rosco reached out and I was able to share some technical information. Mostly cheerleading. He shares the same problems many land speed records experience, lack of funds. Also, down under, every time they drop a tool or small part it falls to the ceiling. I think there are other issues being somewhat remote in Oz. It was interesting watching Rosco and his team develop their strategy to get this thing together. The KISS method (Keep It Simple Stupid) is working. My hope is that they get to run before the Noble/Green extravaganza. They have a straightforward rocket propulsion system versus the Bloodhound's Turbojet/Rocket/Piston engine behemoth. :cheers:


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: ggl205 on February 09, 2018, 03:30:13 PM
Rosco reached out and I was able to share some technical information. Mostly cheerleading. He shares the same problems many land speed records experience, lack of funds. Also, down under, every time they drop a tool or small part it falls to the ceiling. I think there are other issues being somewhat remote in Oz. It was interesting watching Rosco and his team develop their strategy to get this thing together. The KISS method (Keep It Simple Stupid) is working. My hope is that they get to run before the Noble/Green extravaganza. They have a straightforward rocket propulsion system versus the Bloodhound's Turbojet/Rocket/Piston engine behemoth. :cheers:

It would be interesting to have them both at the same place, at the same time like Noble and Breedlove did at Blackrock. A minimalist against overkill. It would be a glorious shootout, indeed.

John


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: WOODY@DDLLC on February 09, 2018, 05:33:09 PM
It would be interesting to have them both at the same place, at the same time like Noble and Breedlove did at Blackrock. A minimalist against overkill. It would be a glorious shootout, indeed.



Especially if they ran from opposite ends at the same time! Two sonic booms colliding!  :-o :-o


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: martine on February 10, 2018, 06:28:58 PM
...My hope is that they get to run before the Noble/Green extravaganza. They have a straightforward rocket propulsion system versus the Bloodhound's Turbojet/Rocket/Piston engine behemoth. :cheers:
Yes I agree.  Even the Bloodhound team publically say they quite like the idea of Rosco beating the current record and then Bloodhound breaking it back again. 

Go Rosco!

(and I say that as a Bloodhound Ambassador)


Title: Re: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph
Post by: tallguy on February 10, 2018, 10:37:47 PM
I'd prefer that Ed (North American Eagle) be next, followed by Rosco (Aussie Invader), followed by Andy (Bloodhound).

Good luck and safe racing to all of them.