- Dec 7, 2012
- Ivey, Ga and Centerville,Tn
Well, yes and no. Yes, most modern industrial engines have electronic ignition systems that use a magnet and coil to both power the ignition system and trigger the spark. Yes, it is mechanically very simple, and as a result they tend to be very robust. But the electronics in the black box are usually pretty complicated, so overall it might not be the very simple system that you might imagine it is....aren't the ignitions on most industrial engines basically just a magnet whirling past a coil? Ie, no alternator per se, but as the magnet speeds past the coil, it creates a current by induction and the speed at which it grows and decreases determines the strength (voltage), in other words it's the same thing as when a set of points closes and the magnetic field in the coil collapses and creates a high voltage to the plug...
Well, yes and no.
Edward Heath is definitely the ancestor for cheap air racing. In fact he started his company well before the 1926 National Air Races, being founded in Chicago around 1911 (the exact date is hard to find). Starting as an airplane parts company, he soon began selling complete aircraft either flyable, as a set of parts or just the plans. After the war, he entered and one events in the 1923 NAR in St. Louis with the Heath Favorite. He later went on to introduce the Parasol and Super-Parasol, the best-selling planes of the period.Topaz, that's a great suggestion. Too often these design discussion threads end up as a lot of different people offering contradictory ideas but we never actually see the design process go from A to Z, which in many cases would show the rationale for the design decisions that sparked the disagreements in the first place.
I think I have found the spiritual ancestor to this budget racer, Ed Heath and Claire Linstead 's Tomboy racer, same configuration and 109 mph on the dubious 32 hp of a Bristol Cherub. With the $2,250 or $2,500 in prize money from the 1926 Nationals (reports vary, but that's over $30,000 adjusted for inflation), Heath went on to found the first successful kit airplane company which later evolved in to the famous Heathkit electronics.
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American airplanes: Heath
Aviation Heritage Golden Age Short Stories
If I put a couple of LM2500s into a 250 ton hull, I'd have a good chance of winning America's Cup. Without some restrictions, it's no fun.Having been involved in car and aircraft racing for a long time- tear downs or the sanctioning body supplying engines for aircraft isn't going to work due to airworthiness issues in most countries.
Real racing should reward those with the best technical skills, innovation, preparedness and driving/ flying skills otherwise it's boring IMO. If you want a spec class, have someone provide 10 identical airframes and engines and choose lots, but this is just about flying skills then. This won't be cheap though. People want to fly their own aircraft I think.
The F1 rules have been around and stable for a long time. This is pretty cheap to get into relatively speaking and you can test your skills against some of the best in the world if that's what you want. Using the same rules, you could set up an F1 race league in your own local area and do cross country stuff like SARL where you don't need the course or the ground infrastructure like Reno.
Fuel limits could work but this turns things into an economy race to some degree although at the same time shows overall cleverness in design and flying skill. This does have the advantage of being relatively easy to police (outside of hidden tanks). With a set airframe spec- wing area and weight, this allows a lot of innovation with layout and engine so it's interesting to designers and builders I think.
Limiting power is really hard to do or police without a ton of time and money.
I've never agreed with penalizing the people winning. This is racing, not a family picnic. The winners are smarter or better so the slower people need to up their game to catch up, otherwise suck it up or go home.