Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

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ace_chris
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by ace_chris » Wed Jul 22, 2015 2:15 pm

Some onboard with rent-a-relative yesterday


quicksilver-wsr
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by quicksilver-wsr » Wed Jul 22, 2015 2:35 pm

Enmity develops for all sorts of reasons. It's a basic fact of life I know only too well.

Me, I speak as I find. And speaking purely for myself, I've never had anything but good relations with Don - and long may that continue.

Those points aside, it was good to see the Pendine runs get so much air-time. Working from home as I do, I have BBC News 24 on much of the time for company, and there was much coverage of this on there throughout yesterday. This was good for record-breaking in general, and for the Bluebird name in particular.

Joe (and Josephine) Public can relate to this kind of stuff. It's helped keep the Campbell and Bluebird legend on everyone's lips. Who mentions Parry Thomas, Segrave, Cobb and Eyston these days, outside the Goodwood/Brooklands set and petrolhead boyos with too much Castrol R in their nostrils? More's the pity.

And while I'm chucking the goodwill around - good on the NMM for letting the car get wet.

Nigel

quicksilver-wsr
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by quicksilver-wsr » Sun Aug 16, 2015 5:44 pm

World's fastest shed ...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-ox ... e-33951868

... and street-legal to boot.

Nigel

f1steveuk
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by f1steveuk » Mon Sep 14, 2015 2:08 pm

Just back to the UK having found a picture of the oft spoken of, but rarely seen big white "CN7 with fins" version of Quicksilver.

I took the picture, Arthur had put up his paintings and gone to the cafe, and David looks like he is just plain bemused!!

Image
Steve Holter, UK and France, and sometimes reality....................

quicksilver-wsr
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by quicksilver-wsr » Mon Sep 14, 2015 3:56 pm

Thanks for posting, Steve. I haven't seen that shot before. Indeed, I don't have any here that show that model in its latter stages of use, before the concept was abandoned.

This, basically, is the original Quicksilver concept - or, put another way, the final Bluebird concept. It was proposed by Ken Norris as a replacement for K7 if Donald had decided to retire the old boat and move on to something new. Ken's idea was to base a boat on the aerodynamic design of the car (CN7).

It was a beautiful concept, but sadly problems were found with it once windtunnel testing got under way, and no amount of altering it could overcome its fundamental instability. Canards were added first, then the tailfins got bigger and bigger and bigger, until they looked like sails!

Three years were devoted to it. Time wasted? I like to think not - because at least it got the Quicksilver project under way. But on another level, it was a portent of problems to come.

This photo will have been taken around 1992 - I'm guessing at Southampton University. Incidentally, this was many, many years before John Ackroyd maintains Ken Norris became the project's chief designer.

Nigel

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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by f1steveuk » Mon Sep 14, 2015 4:20 pm

Might be slightly earlier than '92 Nigel, 90 or 91, I didn't write the date on the back, and 92 I was busy doing other stuff, probably 1991.

It is Southampton. I had done a huge sheet of data for Ken on power to weight ratio on every land and water speed vehicle, which he then didn't refer to once!! Still, it helped with Leap.

As I recall, again happy to be corrected, this concept started off as the amphibian Bluebird. Run on it's wheels, which were then removed, and the wheel shrouds became four planning points?? But definitelybased around CN7 neutral aerodynamics. I'm sure I have a short video (remember that) of this (well the water tank version) in the test tank.
Steve Holter, UK and France, and sometimes reality....................

quicksilver-wsr
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by quicksilver-wsr » Mon Sep 14, 2015 5:45 pm

Ken lost all track of time when he did a talk, invariably strayed way off-theme, then ran out of time, at which point there would be an abrupt ending. It's fair to say public speaking wasn't his strong suit.

The photo would date quite comfortably to 1991 - as you say - but if so it would be late in the year, maybe November. No matter! It was a long time ago!

Ken's original concept was an amphibian, yes, but thank goodness that idea was dropped and we stuck to "just" a boat. But the shape that had worked so well with the car (CN7) proved to have major difficulties when applied to a boat. It was a lovely theory to think that it could work as well on water, but this was found not to be the case.

By the time the Southampton talk took place there were already three totally different concepts on the stocks. Ken got into complicated knots ... oh, the stories I could tell ... and it was some time before we got on-track - and when we did it was another totally different design concept - the reverse four-pointer that everyone is familiar with, but which also eventually had its day, despite being a very promising venture.

The video you mention was a short promo video not intended for public consumption. It was only seen by a handful of people, and that was how it was planned from the outset. It came about due to the interest of U2's drummer, Larry Mullen, as a result of which we got to use the band's production facilities in London and Dublin.

Getting back to the model pictured, there were actually two made, and development parts were interchangeable between the two. One was for windtunnel testing and was built for us by the University of Southampton. The other one - the white one pictured - was a waterborne, towing-tank model made by Bo Johansson, a former Swedish Air Force fighter-pilot based at Bruntingthorpe, who brought our team strength at that time up to four!

There was Ken, me, and two modelmakers - Bo Johansson and John Shinton.

Looking back, all madness. But nice too.

Nigel

f1steveuk
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by f1steveuk » Mon Sep 14, 2015 6:56 pm

Yes, I can see the belly of a CN7 type boat might cause problems, big area to get unstuck!

I loved John Shinton's model's. His sell through ones wer fantastic, and I once tried, unsuccesfully, to get my hands on a Jaguar wind tunnel model of his. John is still modelling, one of those I put in the "genius" bracket, and aa nice blooke too!!

Larry Mullens, worked with him when he did a stint with Killing Joke!!
Steve Holter, UK and France, and sometimes reality....................

quicksilver-wsr
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by quicksilver-wsr » Mon Sep 14, 2015 7:09 pm

Back then, John had not long quit the motorsport industry to start full-time as a self-employed modelmaker working from home.

Prior to that, among other things, he'd worked for Jaguar on their successful Le Mans Group C campaign, under Ross Brawn, which of course was crowned with overall victory. John didn't just work on Jag's windtunnel models, he worked on the actual race-car bodywork patterns. He was a pattern-maker by trade and so was his father before him.

I'm still in touch with John myself from time to time. As you say, he's one of life's nice guys as well as being a superb modelmaker. Few realise that masters like him don't make exact scale models. The trick is to exaggerate some features whilst diminishing others, so as to achieve the correct "look".

It's a skill very few have.

Nigel

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Renegadenemo
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Re: Other Speed Record Breakers Are Available!

Post by Renegadenemo » Sun Sep 20, 2015 9:51 pm

Caught a snippet of the kids' news programme earlier about someone in a jet dragster breaking a record today but then couldn't find it in the news. Didn't catch his name but l didn't dream it either.
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