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Thread: An Amazing Story: Part 3

  1. #21
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    Default where is your pilot licence

    Wow,
    Talk about prop riding, HOLY BUCKETS!!!!!

    Great photo.

    Great to see you at Lake Alfred Wayne. It was not quite, but almost another reunion.

    Ray

  2. #22
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    Default evolution: boats and drivers

    Wayne:

    As Ray mentioned in his post, that is a DANDY picture. You hardly ever see boats being run that high and loose in this day and time, even at Kilo trials.

    It brings to mind a question that I have had in my mind for quite some time. Do you think that the reason you don't see pictures like that with all the air under the boat these days is because of a slow down in boat design since Tim quit building boats all those many years ago, drivers are more cautious these days because of the higher horsepower motors availiable today, or the higher horsepower motors of today don't require such "loose" attitudes to attain the speeds required to break existing records. Of course Kilo runs are not as numerous these days either, for a variety of reasons, lack of suitable water and funds versus the amount of competitors availiable to pay the tab being among the ones I have seen written here. It also seems the locations that used to sponsor and sanction Kilos like Moorehaven in Fl., and Kaukauna, Wi., have not had them for quite some time now. Possible the number of folks that used to do the work putting them on has changed along with more emphasis on oval racing, again possible due to the speed capable of being attained with engines of the present.

    Maybe what is between the drivers ears has evolved also, and the dangers of higher speeds capable today has slowed the interest in Kilos, like it did in the Lakeland course. Just wondering about your thoughts about this subject.

  3. #23
    Team Member Master Oil Racing Team's Avatar
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    No Bill Van, I don't believe there is a slow down in boat design. In fact, I think that boat design has evolved as it always has to accomodate the increasing horsepower of engines. Tim's designs came along at a time when the boats ran out of stability due to primarily exhaust sytem horsepower increases in my opinion. The hydros were about at their limit then. You could build a longer boat to handle the straightaway speeds, but they didn't take the corners as well. The two major areas where Tim's boats were revolutionary were in cornering and taking away the leverage of lift from way in front of the cockpit and moving it back closer to center where it was more forgiving.

    In the big hydros I think the enclosed cockpits have made for a more aerodynamic boat that runs clean without having to fly so high. I never drove one, but I saw the dramatic affect from just putting a rear cowling on a boat that was built before that design came about. It was Tim's first CDF boat he built. At 100 on the Keller, I could barely keep it on the water. With the cowling I could show 107 and the sponsons dropped to only a couple of inches off the water. I think a major contributing factor to being able to run so fast and clean is due to the multiblade cleavers with 3 to 5 blades. I only ran one three blade prop during my career, but it so changed the handling it completely settled the boat down. I can't say for sure that my ideas are correct, having not run any of these new breeds, but after having been in a turn watching at Lake Alfred, these boats are a completely different style from what we ran and they don't need to fly the bow to be quick. With the power they have it would be dangerous to try to do that. It's merely evolution and I think the boat builders of today are doing an extremely good job. I just wish I could watch those top hydros run once a month.

    I don't believe anything has evolved between the drivers ears. Once you have made laps on the edge in a 700cc hydro, nothing else can compete. These guys live for that and that will never change. Oh how much fun it would be to be able to strap on a top hydro and put it through its paces.



  4. #24
    Team Member F-12's Avatar
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    Default Careful..........

    Careful what you wish for, Wayne............I hear the gears turning in the heads of about 10 Top Hydro owners that would love to see you making some fast laps in one of their boats................
    Charley Bradley


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    Default present day boats versus the past

    Wayne:

    I think from your answer you and I are thinking along the same lines, although it might not seem like it at first glance. I should have been more specific in the area of the boat design I was speaking about. If you look at boat bottoms today, they are not as radical in the lift and hook curves as the boats that Tim built were. I would certainly agree that the prop advances over the last 25 years have had a good degree to do with speed advancing as it has since that time, although the props would not have done it by themselves unless the horsepower in the engines was there. I certainly agree that with present prop design (or at least as far as it had gone when I quit driving myself) certainly did a lot to settle the boat down while allowing faster speeds due to advances in motor and boat design. Multi-blade props could be run so much higher without blowing out or spinning out in the corner, which in turn increased speed. That being said, the main thrust of my comments was pointed towards the fact that boat bottoms, at first glance anyway and without putting a straight edge in them, do not seem to be as radical in shape today, as Tim's boats were in theirs compared to others of the day like the Marchetti, Byers, R&D, etc. In other words, the bottom design does not have to be as radical today to achieve tremendous speed compared to the boats of the 70's.

  6. #26
    David Weaver David Weaver's Avatar
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    Default Boat Attitude

    I grew up marvelling at Malcom Hardin floating his 250 Butts.

    But, I am glad that I can run fast today without having to float so high at the nose. If you can see it, this Pugh comes off the water, but the nose is only marginally higher than the rear of the boat. The boat pretty much lifts evenly front to back. I have noticed that 3 blade propellers will lift the nose much more than a 4 or 5 blade. That could be my boat, but I believe in general that the 3-blade props from the 1980's and 1990's had a lot of lift built into them.
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  7. #27
    Team Member Master Oil Racing Team's Avatar
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    Thanks for boosting the daydreams of a "has been" Charley, but it would be fun to see if my shoe had the same feel as my throttle hand. The good thing about the Top Hydros is you can keep both hands on the wheel.

    Bill Van...I didn't look at the bottoms of any of the new boats, and I have never been one of the guys that could spot differences unless it slapped me upside the helmet. I could feel it on the water, but how that translates on design is for the builders. Tim always gave me the parameters to set the motor and then we would go testing. One time on New Years Days a new C hydro kept spilling air to the right. The water was slick. Normally Tim's boats would hang and if the water was glass you just had to know when to back out of it. I came back in and told Tim what it felt like and he was also observing. The boat was new off the rack with only sealer. Tim, my Dad and I turned it over and Tim began shaving wood. The picture was in Powerboat on a story I did on Tim. We went back out and it flew true through the water. All I know is that the boat builders of today have got it down pretty well. Did you notice how few spills there were? It would be fun though to be able to have the time and money to play around with Tim and Ryan Butts to see what they might be able to cobble together.



  8. #28
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    That's what I'm talking about David. Notwithstanding the fully enclosed capsule boats, the open cockpit boats have taken advantage of closing up as much of the open space as possible and still allow room for the driver to move around. Before that, even the driver hunching over will give lift to a boat. Closing up the cockpit behind a driver really helps level the attitude. On that pic of my boat on the Brazos, it would have been able to go much faster if it was more like the attitude of your boat. But that's what's so great about the PRO division and what can be done to make the boats go so much faster, but safer.



  9. #29
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    Everyone was pitted on the north bank of the Brazos. The launching ramp was not directly on the river, but in a slough or man made canal just north and perpendicular to the river. We had to go right to go upriver and turn around for the approach. There were a line of trees along the river bank that obscured the view from the "pits"...a parking lot for the public access boat ramp.

    I don't remember any inboards at the kilos, but that doesn't mean they weren't there. Not many PRO racers were there either. Us, Tim Butts, and maybe the McKeans, but I don't think so. I remember there were a lot of OPC guys there though. Louis Collins was one of the main instigators, and a lot of the TORC guys were there. I think Tom Posey and Alan Yaw were there, but I'm not sure about Johnnie Sanders.

    I didn't take pictures and we didn't watch the runs for some reason. After we launched Tim, my Dad and I were talking to Jimbo McConnell when we heard Tim's engine suddenly go silent. A gap of only a second or two we heard the awe and hush of what crowd was lining the banks. Then we ran over to the river to see what happened to Tim. He blew over at around 114 mph. Tim was running a competition set up also, with allowances for just going straight and fast. Bill Van had mentioned earlier about the lack of attempts on kilo records for D and F and reasons why. That is not just a phenomena of the last 20 years or so. It was just such a lack of attempts that Tim and I had started to challege the records with competition set ups in 1976. It had been so long since the old records were set, we knew we were achieving speeds above those records while racing on a good course. In 1976 and 77, we broke the 700 and 500 hydro records with racing setups. Had we not had a broken ring, we would have done the same with 1100 hydro in 1977. The TRUE kilo records were set by Dan Kirts, and Jim and Sean McKean with their speeds in the 120's. Those runs are stories unto themselves.

    Here are pics taken by I don't know who. Tim sent these to me without the credits.
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  10. #30
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    Tim was pretty shaken up by this. In all my racing career the only other time I knew Tim to go out of a boat was at the 1972 Nationals at DePue when flipped his B in the bottom corner. One of the things besides the blowover that scared him was the chute strings wrapped around his neck. You can see from the photos that he never got separation from the boat while it was in the air. He was spit out when the left sponson struck the water. The canopy never opened and as Tim started rolling through the water the lines were spooling up around his neck. Then, after ending such a terrifying ride, he had to be calm while a rescue diver cut the cords from his neck. THAT blowover was the reason Tim built that weird looking 4 point Aerowing.

    ADD: Looking at the next to the last pic, it seems the chute had opened some. Had that happened splits seconds before and Tim already had a wrap or two while he was still skidding pretty fast, it could have broken his neck.
    Last edited by Master Oil Racing Team; 11-22-2008 at 08:46 AM. Reason: more comment



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