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Stationary drag race using dynamometers
  [vote for,

Authoritative answers as to who has the fastest car could be answered legally with a Friday night drag race centre. Instead of clandestine meetings of teen age boys and fast cars, a safe place can be set up where cars are paired off on dynamometers and the winner decided by computer. Of course full noise and smoke and girls would be allowed and encouraged.
yunohu, Jul 13 2001


       would this work? i mean, varying tire sizes would throw u off just a lil wouldnt they? just a thought...
Cryptic33, Jul 13 2001

       I think a dynamometer takes tyre size into account.   

       The problem is that the dyno-drag-race doesn't take the mass of the car into account ... one person may have a more powerful motor, but if this is more than compensated for by a heavier car, they won't win a real drag race but would on a dynamometer, yes?   

       Maybe the dyno-drag-arena could weigh the car as well, and apply a different amount of resistance to the dyno for each (this would be part of the computer control/judging bit.)   

       Alternatively: dress male Tyrannosaurs up in frilly clothing, exaggerated makeup, etc.
wiml, Jul 13 2001

       Why not just set up a rolling road instead? This takes into account mass, friction and everything else. In fact, you could even create a virtual drag race on a screen in front of them (a la Sega Rally). I've seen this done with a real rally car at a motor show, so why not for drag racing? The course is certainly simpler!!
goff, Jul 13 2001

       A weigh bridge and a rolling road to which you can lock the cars down or a dyno. The drivers must accelerate from stationary and the first to hit 1/4 mile wins. Tires, vehicle weight, shift strategy, gear ratios etc. all factor in, except air resistance and weight shifting.
Furry, Jul 13 2001

       The "rolling road" idea doesn't apply the air resistance you'de get with a moving car. And air resistance is really, really significant. That's why race cars are sleek and pointy.   

       A rolling road in a wind tunnel, now...
baf, Jul 13 2001

       as long as the roling road can accelerate at the same rate as the cars...
RobertKidney, Jul 13 2001

       Oh, I thought we would see Dinosaurs in pretty dresses
matculv, Nov 27 2002

       Doesn't this sort of take the fun out of drag racing?
notme, Nov 27 2002

       The fun all comes back, and quickly, when the car breaks free of its moorings just about the moment it's developing peak power.
bristolz, Nov 27 2002

       yeah, or maybe a (public or private?) drag strip should be built in various towns like the skate park for the motor head, that way, it's real but if you die, it's your own d@mn fault
imthatwillguy, Jan 19 2003

       Suspension and chassis fine-tuning would be a lot less genreral, and aerodynamics would not enter the equation. (!). The sound and noise would be much the same... :-)   

sirau, May 15 2003

       now this is what i call an idea giving every man and woman the chance to live out the scenes in films such a gone in 60 seconds and the fast and the furious giving less road rage and more fun at night rock on
Gash, May 15 2003

       Why not just go to a dragstrip?
rapid transit, May 18 2003

       I'll just stick to meeting at Bob's bigboy for a REAL race. The best part of drag racing is the adrenaline rush you get during therace, and the gloating afterwards.
NVadirZim, Jul 08 2003

       I've seen these exact things for motorcycles. A portable trailer with twin dynamometers and a starting tree awaits 2 contestants. The goal is to get to the end of the simulated quarter-mile first. A great byproduct is you get your peak HP numbers and RT. I'll see if I can dig-up a link.
Letsbuildafort, Feb 20 2004

       Most of the big car shows have chassis dynos set up, and people compete for bragging rights, or just see how well they built and tuned the car. The only thing more boring than drag racing is rolling a dyno. I'll stick to autocrossing.
moPuddin, Feb 20 2004

       I've never done any drag racing, so I may be blowing smoke out of my proverbial tailpipe;
Excluding upper-level racing where the entire thing from green light to finish takes a little over three seconds, I don't imagine there's all that much skill to being a drag car driver. I feel this applies especially well to the tuner car street racing we hear so much of today. It would seem that the bragging rights would go to whoever can dump the most money into building a fast streetcar, or whoever is willing to burn out a cheaper engine and tranny by running too much boost or nitrous.

       Autocross, on the other hand, requires considerable skill behind the wheel. At lower levels especially, a good driver in a low-end car can easily best a poor driver in a kick-ass car. (I've taken a couple of autocross classes just for the fun of it. After watching some cocky kid in a big-dollar porche squeal around the course a few times, my instructor got behind the wheel of my bone-stock civic and toasted the porsche.)   

       I can slam through the gears in a straight line, but where's the fun in that? Now braking hard into a sharp corner and drifting the tail around the next, all while keeping under control, pushing the tires, shocks and engine to the limit every second, now that's my idea of a fun day at the track.
Freefall, May 21 2004

       In drag racing, the skill comes in at the start - especially when drag racing motorcycles. Knowing when to hold em' and when to fold em' is the drag racer's trick. No rev limiter, a huge powerplant, and some specialized machinery can make a time machine. Turning 6-second quarter mile times will certainly distort your perception of time.   

       BTW, Freefall - where are you taking these autocross courses? I've been looking into that quite a bit and it really appeals to me. Good, relitively cheap fun.
Letsbuildafort, May 21 2004

       A drag race without going fast? Why not just take the fun out of everything! This is the same kind of thinking that got monkey bars and jungle gyms replaced with boring 2 foot tall plastic turtles. All in the name of safety, right? Well what happens when the dyno locks up or the car jumps a little and goes 100 mph directly into a brick wall.   

       This idea goes against the American Dream of driving fast cars occupied by naked women. I can't beleive that real people with real cars thought this might beat real driving... and you call yourselves forward thinking. Not to mention that drag racing implies the use of a drag strip away from pesky red lights and innocent bystanders which is generally legal and one of the safer ways to go really fast. In addition the idea of dyno derived bragging rights is baked. this article should be deleted.   

       I will stop ranting now and go try to salvage my faith in humanity.
Mr Machine, May 21 2004


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