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Author Topic: Introduce Yourself  (Read 1635303 times)

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Offline tallguy

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3345 on: June 05, 2015, 01:37:12 AM »
Welcome, Sara.  I'm kinda new here myself . . . not only to this forum, but to land speed racing itself.

It would probably be arrogant to say that I already have "salt fever", but who knows?  I have been to
Bonneville three times in the last 3 years (I live in California), El Mirage Dry Lake twice, and the Mojave
Mile once . . . always as a spectator.  I can't yet afford to race, but am still enjoying the world of
land speed racing. 

It's interesting stuff to me (a mechanical engineer/inventor type of person), all this vehicular stuff,
but a very significant part of it all is the PEOPLE!  They are all very helpful and friendly to one another,
which you don't much see in other automotive or athletic sports.  I think the reason is that there's no
prize money at stake -- or otherwise involved, so why not help someone else to go fast safely?  Many
great and long-lasting friendships have been created in this sport.

The creativity displayed in the design and build of the vehicles is extraordinary, and the racing itself
involves much more than meets the eye.  You might think, what's so hard about going fast in a straight
line?  You just floor it, right?  Well, this might be true for a relatively slow vehicle on pavement, where
there's pretty good traction for the driving (usually rear) tires.  But a place like Bonneville offers about
half the traction that a pavement does.  And if a vehicle spins its tires, they could push the rear end
of the car around to the side, resulting in a rollover.  It has happened many, many times!  Fortunately,
the racing rules -- for the drivers/riders, vehicles, procedures, and safety equipment are pretty strict,
which helps keep it all relatively safe.  I said relatively.  Yes, there have been some serious injuries and
deaths in land speed racing over the years.  It's like driving to the store in this regard.  Always a chance
that something may go wrong.  Statistically, I'd say it's a lot safer than just about any other type of
vehicle racing.

Generally, I think that if your family goes to Bonneville, a good time would be during Speed Week. 
What you'll see there will blow you away. . . I guarantee it.  It did me, and I've been a vehicle nut
all my life (I was 60 when I first went there).

Glad you'll be going.  Now, for the bad news:   Speed Week is the biggest annual event there,
and the small town of Wendover, just about 5 miles from the Salt Flats, doesn't have much lodging. 
Typically about 12,000 racers, crew members, and spectators (such as myself) attend.  So yes, all
the motels will be booked well in advance -- and they also jack up their prices for that time of year! 
You are allowed to camp on the salt flats (I don't know the details, but you could inquire, perhaps
on this forum).  What I did was stay at a motel in a town a bit farther away than Wendover, and
"commute" each day to the Salt Flats.  I had no trouble reserving the room, but did it well in
advance of my trip.

Other events at Bonneville draw smaller crowds.  You could ask people about this.  I attended the
Shootout a couple years ago, which featured only about a dozen race vehicles.  It was a very small
event, for extra-fast vehicles.  Lodging was a non-issue at this time.

Usually the big concern for all of us is the weather.  If the Salt Flats are under water, nobody races.
Several (if not all) of the meets got "rained out" last year.  So I am now in the habit of keeping a
close watch on the weather forecast for that part of the world, and also checking this forum very
frequently, particularly as "race day" approaches.  This checking has saved me a wasted 600-mile
(one way) trip. 

Again, welcome -- to your whole family, that is.  I know they'll get a big kick out of all this stuff!

Offline Stainless1

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3346 on: June 05, 2015, 08:40:00 AM »
Welcome CW, search and read... everything you ever wanted to know about LSR and more has been discussed on this forum. 
If you are campers, the bend of the road is primitive (no hookups) camping... showers available at the truckstop  a mile or so away. 
SpeedWeek is a gearheads paradise and a family event. 
See ya on the salt  8-)
Red Hat 228.039, 2001, 65ci, MSA Bockscar Lakester with a little N20 
MSA Bockscar Lakester #1000 my fastest mile 245 and change, 84 ci turbobusa motor... but Corey's 233 MPH H/BFL record is still 3MPH faster than mine.

Offline Seldom Seen Slim

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3347 on: June 05, 2015, 10:37:35 AM »
Howdy to you, Sara.  Thanks for joining the Forum.  So far the guys have been accurate in what they've said -- but I've got something that they didn't say.  If you want to drive your '31 on the Salt for anything more than just getting around - you'll want to investigate the 130 Club/150 Club that the USFRA runs at their "World of Speed" event in early-mid September.  Far less safety equipment is required and there's a timing slip for you to keep as a super-fine example that you've driven at speed on the famous salt flats.  It's great for bench racing sessions.

As for camping -- I'll make the announcement here and elsewhere.  For the past few years the mayor of Wendover, Utah, has allowed racers to camp on the grounds of the new-to-be-built Bonneville museum, and this year will be the same.  It's close to town - right at the northeast end of Wendover, in fact) and free.  there are a couple of pay campgrounds, but unless you absolutely MUST have amenities like electricity and running water -- save the $$ and camp.  Just about infinite area to camp at or near the Bend in the Road (You'll soon see what it's called that), and also back at the museum.

Yes, you probably can get a room at one of the casinos - especially if you tell white lies and say you'll be in the area for a couple of days for gambling and so on.  Don't use the words "land speed racing" and, if they ask about the event, I suggest you respond with "Oh?  What's that?"  And finally -- when you register at the desk it'll help if you are NOT wearing a race t-shirt. :-D

See you on the salt.  Come find Nancy and me at the Seldom Seen Slim pit trailer.  We'd like to meet you.  And also - consider putting Salt Talks, our annual get together and picnic for racers and everyone, help Sunday at the end of racing.  We do the picnic at the museum parking lot - so if you camp there you'll be in the right spot already.
Jon E. Wennerberg
 a/k/a Seldom Seen Slim
 Skandia, Michigan
 (that's way up north)
2 Club member x2
Owner of landracing.com

Offline Woodyedmiston

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3348 on: June 06, 2015, 03:49:59 PM »
Hello All,
  My name is Kerry Manning and I am looking to build an AWD electric S10 for the flats.  A bit of background on me I am a Mechanical Engineer with a aerospace and solar background.  I know that there is no class for what I am building but I I have exchanged a few emails with Dan Wright and I will just be running for time only because it sounds like fun.  I have built 10 vehicles over the years (mostly road racers and rock crawlers) and 5 of them are EVs.  I find I enjoy building cars as much as driving them. My plan right now is to run this year in the 150 club and see how I like it before I go whole hog at trying to go faster.  I have taken the twin motor powertrain out of my htrack rat miata and coupling it to a 600hp watercooled battery pack I am building for the salt.

I am planning on being out there for the test n tune in July to help with the tech and pick up some pointers along the way so I hope to meet some of you then.
You might Google - zombie 222 - an electric 68 Mustang that ran in the 160 range at the Houston Mile event 5/16.  Heck of a nice guy and does these conversions.  I assume he also sells parts etc.

Offline rbeikmann

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3349 on: June 07, 2015, 01:41:06 PM »
I'm Randy Beikmann, a long time automotive engineer, almost all of it at the General Motors Proving Ground in Milford, MI. I work in noise and vibration, on reducing powertrain noise - the opposite of outside work.

I've recently become the author of Physics for Gearheads, which is just what it sounds like. It's aimed at people like us who love cars, making them fast, and driving them fast. So it's made readable, because not all of us have taken physics, or it may have been a long time ago. It covers drag racing, land speed record setting, oval track racing, and road racing. I'm a fan of all of them.

I worked for years on a 1969 Cougar, to the point of putting in an independent rear from a Cadillac CTS. But 9 years of book-writing won out, and I sold it to a young ambitious kid who is going to finish it (I do get to drive it!). Then I got a first generation Cayman and started doing high performance driver education events on road courses last year. I needed to finally drive something fast!

My goal has always been to understand everything about how a car works (still working on it, of course), so I got my bachelor's, master's, and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering. I took lots of courses on thermodynamics, internal combustion engines, and vehicle dynamics. Later on I concentrated on mechanical vibration, and did research on serpentine belt vibration. I've been putting all this to work ever since.

I grew up on a farm in Kansas, hauled hay bales, worked in a gas station that actually did mechanical work, and welded. I read stacks of Hot Rod and Car Craft magazines, and drove, broke, repaired, and modified my first 1969 Cougar. Combining the practical with the theory has helped me understand much more about what might work, and what won't.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2015, 01:42:50 PM by rbeikmann »
Author - Physics for Gearheads

"A problem well stated is a problem half solved." - Charles Kettering.
"Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right." - Henry Ford

Offline manta22

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3350 on: June 07, 2015, 03:25:11 PM »
Welcome, Randy. Nice background you have.

I worked for Kaman (rhymes with "Japan") Aerospace for 5 years. The company was founded by Charles Kaman who left Igor Sikorsky and founded his own helicopter company. As his company grew he put a lot of emphasis on analyzing vibration modes of helicopter rotor blades and since he had played guitar all his life (at 17 rears old he had an offer to play with the Dorsey band but he chose to study engineering instead) he wondered if the same tools could be used to find out why one musical instrument sounded better than another. His studies led to his founding of Ovation and explains why they started out with such an odd-looking guitar body.

See- studying vibration can lead to unexpected results.  :-D

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ
Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ

Offline rbeikmann

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3351 on: June 07, 2015, 08:13:33 PM »
Thanks Neil. You're right, vibration is a very intriguing phenomenon! You can end up with designs no one sees coming.
Author - Physics for Gearheads

"A problem well stated is a problem half solved." - Charles Kettering.
"Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right." - Henry Ford

Offline Coupewife

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3352 on: June 07, 2015, 11:15:57 PM »
Thanks @Tall Guy and @Seldom Seem Slim...that is some great advice for a newbie. Taking it all in camping, RV, racing...whew.

Great group I can tell!


Offline Milwaukee Midget

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3353 on: June 08, 2015, 12:00:48 AM »
Sara, welcome aboard.

Yeah, it's mostly a bunch of guys jack-jawin' on the board, but I can tell you that if your husband does get into LSR, your support and encouragement - or at least your understanding - will be very important.

And it could well become a whole family operation.  Who knows - you might be the faster driver.  :roll:

Just this weekend, at an event in Wilmington, Ohio, a couple I met almost five years ago, Amy and Frank, put the car that Frank had been working on all this time on the track, with Amy behind the wheel.  She's now licensed for 180 mph.

Last year, I took a record that stood for 22 years, and it would have never happened if not for my wife, Kate, or her nephew, Nick. 

Slim's wife, Nancy, hasn't raced in a few years, but I can tell you first hand that Slim gets a little out of his element when Nancy's not there.

And I expect that despite you're claim of not being "a huge car buff", as a person with a design background, you will find many points of interest that will spark your imagination at Bonneville.  Everything stands in contrast to the intense whiteness of the salt, and creates a sense of focus you won't find anywhere else.

You will meet people from all walks of life, you will witness highs and lows, you will make friendships that will likely last a lifetime.

But do yourself a favor - remember, it IS mostly guys.

So . . .

If your husband does decide to race at Bonneville, make it clear to him that you will expect him to rent a personal team port-a-potty for the pit.

Because it's your vacation, too.

Chris and Kate

"Problems are almost always a sign of progress."  Harold Bettes
Well, I guess we're making a LOT of progress . . .  :roll:

We are NOT rebuilding . . . We are reloading.

GOD SAVE MG - The Queen can take care of herself!

Offline tauruck

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3354 on: June 08, 2015, 06:15:39 AM »
Welcome and I know you'll enjoy the forum.

God Bless.


Offline southsaltracer

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3355 on: June 08, 2015, 03:44:45 PM »
Hey ya'll, my name is Jeff ! I live Bristol, TN,  I've been following LSR for a long time,  then I stumbled across the ECTA 9 years ago and was so jacked up that they was LSRing in Maxton, NC, I called up my brother-in-law and said grab your stuff we are going to check out LSR racing in NC, and ever since I having been wanting to build or purchase a car. Well after 9 years that dream came true! I purchased a B/GS Streamliner from the Co -founder of the ECTA Tom Sarta. Tom spent about 12 years building the Streamliner. So now I'm living a dream, learning and having fun. I have set goals to run in Bonneville 2016 .  I've already made some great friends in LSR and hope to meet many more. I just love all designs and ideas racers come up with and enjoy sharing with others. I will be attending Speed Week 2015' and be a crewing on awesome car of a fellow Tennesseean , I'm super excited. Hope to some of you there. Stay safe and pedal down!

Offline Coupewife

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3356 on: June 08, 2015, 09:33:44 PM »
Wow thanks Chris( & Kate) love it! I added expectations of a personal team port-a-potty for the pit to my must haves. Great to hear some of the lingo...i have so much to learn. Adding it to my google doc of info.

We are current members of the Santa Clara Valley Model T club but landracing vs. a Model T they are kinda going at different speeds - if you catch my drift...haha my first car joke.

Who knows maybe I'll race one day too, thanks for the tales of other women too!


Offline Stan Back

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3357 on: June 08, 2015, 10:25:33 PM »
Your first car joke is ill-received.

Here'a an entry from 2011.  Note he is running against his own record . . .

V4F/BFS      Matrix Machine, J. Young, 8/10   201.700

   845   Joel Young
      Streamliner, 194” Model T Ford
      Owner:  Joel Young – Phoenix, Arizona
      Driver:  Joel Young
      Crew Chief:  Tom Brawner
      Crew:  Brad Taylor, Dennis Cling, Michael Swenson, Jim Martin, Robyn Martin 
      Sponsors:  Matrix Machine, Sanderson Ford, Cling’s Manufacturing, Lucas Oil
Past Member of the San Berdoo Roadsters -- "California's Most-Exclusive Roadster Club" -- Fifty-Seven Years of Leadership  Is Enough

Offline xpertmachinist

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3358 on: June 12, 2015, 09:25:53 AM »

My name is Shawn. My wife Kym and we live in northern Colorado.

Been riding motorcycles since age 5, and when I was lighter I rode a bit of trials just for fun.

We are both newbies to land speed racing, and we plan to field a bike this August at the Bonneville Motorcycle Speed Trials this year.

I am a bit more of a lurker on these forums as it is sometimes painful for me to put ideas to words. Two finger speed typing doesn't help that either.

 Kym is a teacher, I work as a tool and die CnC machinist.


Offline ejand22

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Re: Introduce Yourself
« Reply #3359 on: June 12, 2015, 11:54:22 AM »
Good afternoon everyone,

My name is Eric.  I'm here because after some recent family health issues I've realized that I need to start doing some of the things that I've always wanted to do.  One of those things is running a motorcycle at the Bonneville Salt Flats.  I went to Speed Week in 2011 as a pseudo crew member with a friend and his son and have had the fever ever since.  My current goal is to run a '72 cb450 in 2016 at the AMA Bonneville Motorcycle Speed Trials.  I'm just starting to research frame geometries and trying to settle on a class to run, but my initial thoughts are 500cc A-CBG and APS-CBG.  This forum should be a great resource for me - thanks for being here!