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steering suspension package

Posted: Fri Jan 02, 2009 3:19 pm
by hawkwind racing
righto you car type blokes ,I need some advice ,im after the smallest ,most compact ,front steering ,suspension package , which type and on what car would I find this , must have 15" wheels also, or any sugestions for steering /suspension suitable for a streamliner

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:05 pm
by momec
Several ways I think on this subject Gary
Presume your looking for a whole package from a very narrow car which is difficult. Almost all micro cars are front drive. This means they don't have a viable crossmember and there is nothing to hang your lower arms on. Almost every thing is Mc pherson strut also which ends up a bit to high for aero.
On my XP ute I used '82 mazda 929 crossmember, lower arms, stubs and rack. This is a Mc strut setup but unlike most the lower arms unbolt from the struts. This allowed me to adapt Barina struts cause they were short with small dia race type 350Lb springs so no stabilizer would be needed. The whole setup was less than $200 and has worked very well.
I layed it back for more caster and cut the discs off some EL Falcon front hubs and machined to suit the Mazda stubs.

All the above would work for what you want apart from width but you could cut and shut to narrow this and the geometry would still work.

You could use short coilovers from some bike? and reduce the height.
I have a Diahatsu Mira rack in the shed which is quite narrow, I'll measure that and post a width later.

Did you look at Trevor Slaughters front end pics? KISS and could make it all yourself apart from the rack. Plenty of drag race style racks available too depends on your budjet.

Before you decide take a tape measure to a wreaking yard and look at as many cars as you can.

Good luck Chris

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 4:52 pm
by hawkwind racing
thanks Chris,basically Im designing a streamliner which is a bit of an odd ball ,and thats as far as it goes "design" cause that costs nothing which is what my finances at present can tolerate :( ,so far Im leaning toward a chassis thats a hybrid backbone/spaceframe, uneven A arm (wishbone?) up front as per auto practice , rack & pinion steering if i can get it short enough and reverse it , motorcycle swing arm at back modified to take 2 wheels side by side , layout will be reverse trike allows a very good shot at teardrop streamlining, undecided on front or rear drive and lots of ideas sloshing around in the brain box ,anyway it helps to keep up the interest untill we can race again .

this is a reverse trike platform and something along the lines of what I have in mind



Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 7:51 pm
by Greg Watters
Have a look at some mini sprint cars or dirt gokarts, some have nice A arm with motorbike shock for spring and damping.others have tortionbar , all small , sometimes a cut down rack for steering.

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 8:03 am
by momec
Agreed Greg
Most auto stuff would be too bulky and over kill.
Get a book on suspension design and build your own.
The cut down rack is easy but go kart stuff is about the width your after.

Thats a pretty slippery shape Gary :wink:

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:42 pm
by Rob
G'day Gary,

If you're not carrying too much weight perhaps a golf kart front end would work for you. In std form the Yamaha setup runs no brakes on a 4 stud hub with a rear mounted rack and coil overs. You'd obviously need a different wheel/tyre combinaton for speed.

I have thought more than once on the full chassis/driveline rebodied as a streamliner. The std engine is 301cc but many have had a bie engine/box conversion. A chassis stretch is pretty simple too.

If you're interested (and I should have another one apart in the near future) I'll post a pic of the front suspension for you.


Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:06 pm
by hawkwind racing
thanks all for your ideas :D at present I have the steering setup off a Quad heavy duty farm type , but to my untraind eye it looks a bit on the not strong enough side ( GOOD ENGINEERING TERM :? ),no idea about the geometry ( yes get a book on car stuff :shock: :shock: ) ,Ill check out the stuff as I come across it ,as for some idea I estimate total weight including all fluids and driver around 1500KG with a weight of 70/30 70 %front 30% rear

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:14 pm
by Greg Watters
front 1/4 weight at ~500kg is a bit more than you may want on an atv frontend but a similar design with heavier material could be a easy option, using heim joints instead of the atv ball joints and rubber bushes.

Jenny Craig

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:35 pm
by Dr Goggles
Jeez Gary, 1300kg is pretty heavy......or did you mean that the 1500kg was just the 'liner WITHOUT DRIVER? :wink:

I'm with Maj , Quad front ends are a neat idea, but not heavy enough....but a very good starting point ........

I like Chris's front end idea especially the price , holy hell...and tested all the way to 100, sorry Chris...170(?)mph......OK I has been tested to 174.861mph................

What did turn my stomach is the idea of lying on my guts getting whacked in the nuts and continually winded for five miles :oops: :oops: I dunno if I could hack that.....heck I'm not even comfortable lying on my guts watching the tele.......I can't even lie on my stomach in bed......going fast doesn't freak me out but doing it lying on my guts head first unsettles me a little I have to admit. There are profile advantages but are they that great......what is the main difference between the two Nebulous Theorem liners....
Nebulous Theorem


and the Salt snake Nebulous Theorem VII


sure there is the obvious(*) and the fact that the VII is longer but I reckon the frontal area difference must be them to the bumper height on the push truck which is the same in each shot.......Correct me if I'm wrong but you're allowed to steer with your feet and brake and throttle with your hands aren't you....dunno if i'd want to do that either but when you're lying on your guts you can't use your feet for anything( ok, you can press down with your feet and pull up with your lower leg but neither have much strength or fine control) I assume you're thinkin' air shifter, handle bars and hand throttle?...and hand brake???

When I first drove the Bellytank I felt like I'd had someone give me the best kick in the arse ever, with a run-up ...if my nuts were exposed to that I'd rather be dead .

And, you have to get out of it in a hurry.......

*Cliff Gullet was killed when Salt Snake crashed this year, RIP.


Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:29 am
by David Leikvold
Gary, I once found a picture in the Landracing gallery a few years ago of a streamliner that had one front steering wheel and one drive wheel (just like the beautiful Neb 7) but it had outriggers near the rear axle line for stability. The increase in drag was compensated for by the difficulty the car would have in pencil rolling, assuming the "wing spar" was very strong.

You haven't mentioned what engine layout you have in mind. If you go front wheel drive you could use Camry stuff because it uses 15" wheels with a Ford bolt pattern, you'd just need to turn up some hub spacers for the different centre holes in the wheels. And there would never be any question about them being strong enough for the job. The Camry wheel offset also gets the disc and caliper well out of the airstream. The front hubs on those or any other front wheel drive hubs could easily be converted to a double A-arm setup because the strut legs unbolt. Make up your own arms with good geometry. Use oval or even furniture tubing for good aero. VW magazines always have ads for small steering racks for sand buggies, I think they're the ones Formula Vees use now.
Good luck.

Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 5:52 pm
by hawkwind racing
Googes you senile old fart ,some times you can be so wrong and some times so right :wink: the weights should read LB's not KG's thats the right part , the pic is only there to show an example of a 2F1R wheel layout ,under no circumstances would this old fart concider laying down face first :shock: I will be in a semi reclined feet forward position ,how reclined ?? depends if I can fit in the "jason recliner" :wink:

Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:07 pm
by REAL Stan
face down on the salt dont sound right to me eather :twisted:
but thats enough of that OLD FART stuff :cry:
were all young at hart :D

Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:24 pm
by w3stie
Hi Gary

When I started looking at all this land speed racing stuff, the first thing I thought was, well, air resistance is your enemy, spend the $$ to reduce air resistance, i.e. frontal area and CoD. So basically, a needle :) Then spend the $$$$ on power. But I've never been to the salt so I sat and listened to the wise ones with experience. You're going along the same lines as I was thinking, particularly the 'superman' driving position. It's logical for what we want to achieve. I'll be following your progress with great interest. Cheers :)

Posted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 9:49 am
by momec
I love the idea of 200mph with your chin 3" from the salt. You'd really feel alive that day :lol:


Posted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:14 am
by David Leikvold
I love Chris's line "You'd really feel alive that day". What a wonderfully evocative statement. :D

I can't imagine myself ever being crazy enough to try it though, it would be very, very dangerous if it got out of shape. And Doc's right, there really is virtually no difference in frontal area between the two cars. Gary, you would do yourself a big favour if you researched all of Jack Costella's Nebulous Theorem cars before you finalised your design.
By the way, keep asking questions, I've always thought this forum should be used more for us to help each other design better and faster cars and bikes. And w3stie, if you decide to build a head first car (should we call them skeletons after the Winter Olympics?) give considerable thought to effective head restraint and rib cage protection. If the car spun and flipped you wouldn't want to land hard face down. The first hit would probably smash all your ribs and if it did it more than once and didn't stop quickly the consequences don't bear thinking about. Of course, if it was a long open bike instead of a 4 wheel streamliner it wouldn't be quite so dangerous and would be very slick.