95 - 02 F1 Tech

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Discussion

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Friday 6th December 2013
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If anyone has any technical questions regarding the cars of this era I'm happy to answer them if I can. I'm lucky enough to look after cars from this era and it's all well out of NDA now wink

Fire away!

Bill Carr

2,234 posts

162 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
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Which cars were running tech that contravened the rules?

Eric Mc

100,041 posts

193 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
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Do you have access to all the original engine management software?

Some Gump

10,219 posts

114 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
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If you drove an early 90's f1 car upside down in a tunnel with a conveyor belt in it, would it take off?

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
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Bill Carr said:
Which cars were running tech that contravened the rules?
It depended entirely on the teams interpretation of those rules. So somewhere between none of them and most of them! There were strategies in place for start line performance etc. post TCS ban that could have been viewed as outside of the rules e.g. gear dependent crank acceleration limiting strategies.

For the most part though the cars and teams were legal and had every intention of being legal... apart from a few occasions wink
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poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
quotequote all
Eric Mc said:
Do you have access to all the original engine management software?
We have what is essentially the electronics lab (HIL rig etc.) from a mid 2000's F1 team along with the legacy kit required to support most mid 90's onwards forms of MM STEP electronics. We also support some Cosworth and TAG stuff but generally due to the cars we work with it's MM for the most part. It should be noted that our mission is not to develop new strategies or systems but rather keep these pieces of history running in as close to their original GP spec as possible so our priorities and use of things like HIL etc. are primarily geared towards validation of correct operation rather than exciting new clutch control strategies etc. In the day the cars would have for all intense and purpose 200 people working on/with them at any one time. 10 years later we may have much better technology available but no where near the man power which means further development is generally not a priority or a need unless we need to replace components or subsystems due to obsolescence e.g. none availability of spec PWM driven hydraulic valves on mid 90's cars.

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
quotequote all
Some Gump said:
If you drove an early 90's f1 car upside down in a tunnel with a conveyor belt in it, would it take off?
As it's wheel driven rather than relying on wheels as just a supporting structure with thrust for forward motion acting on the body I'm going with it'd fall off the ceiling. Even early 90's stuff at circa 650KG had sufficient aero to drive inverted though (sans conveyor belt anyway).....

Eric Mc

100,041 posts

193 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
quotequote all
poppopbangbang said:
We have what is essentially the electronics lab (HIL rig etc.) from a mid 2000's F1 team along with the legacy kit required to support most mid 90's onwards forms of MM STEP electronics. We also support some Cosworth and TAG stuff but generally due to the cars we work with it's MM for the most part. It should be noted that our mission is not to develop new strategies or systems but rather keep these pieces of history running in as close to their original GP spec as possible so our priorities and use of things like HIL etc. are primarily geared towards validation of correct operation rather than exciting new clutch control strategies etc. In the day the cars would have for all intense and purpose 200 people working on/with them at any one time. 10 years later we may have much better technology available but no where near the man power which means further development is generally not a priority or a need unless we need to replace components or subsystems due to obsolescence e.g. none availability of spec PWM driven hydraulic valves on mid 90's cars.
I was thinking that you might be able to find buried in the code the final and definitive proof that Benneton were cheating in 1994 and 1995.

willthisnamework

103 posts

59 months

Saturday 7th December 2013
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Lots of pictures please. How advanced were the diffs of a F1 car of that era?

red_duke

711 posts

109 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Fascinating thread, thanks for offering your time to respond.

I'd like to know which of the cars you are responsible for are the most expensive to maintain and why?

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Eric Mc said:
I was thinking that you might be able to find buried in the code the final and definitive proof that Benneton were cheating in 1994 and 1995.
I've never understood why this was made such a big deal of. Benetton weren't the only team with TCS code still in the boxes but hashed out, if you've done a full software validation test you don't really want to have to start again especially if your code is relatively proven and a couple of seasons old. There was some code that was used in testing where LCS was allowed and used to provide data on the "perfect launch" the driver then had to learn to match this manually. The LCS code had been hashed out in the race software but with the right combination of dicking around you could get the menu to display on the laptop by scrolling all the way down past the actual menu options - this wasn't anything sinister just some laptop side code that hadn't been hashed out. You have to remember the software in these instances is written by two or three guys on tight timscales it is all buggy as hell and random bits of menus that do nothing or appear only in some areas of the software are common.

Were they cheating, no I don't think so, could they have - yes but then every team had the ability to cheat if they wanted.

What the B194 "scandal" really did was made sure that all the software guys were under strict instructions that if something had a remove request made it was REMOVED not just hashed out to become none functional. Which lead to even bigger software teams and more cost.

The refueling rig tampering was dodgy as hell though wink

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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willthisnamework said:
Lots of pictures please. How advanced were the diffs of a F1 car of that era?
There are a few pictures I can post of components etc. but the cars are not for us to place in the public domain. That's the owners choice/discretion.


One of our JD engines freshly rebuilt and on the dyno for run in and test. We downspec these from back in the day to a 14,500RPM rev limit (from 16K+) at which they are still making well north of 600bhp. Life is IRO of 850KM with 1000KM available if 13K RPM is used but they're pretty close to done at that!


Replacement bag tank, the original was 14 years old and had seen better days! The original tank was used as a template to create a card template of the new tank which was test fitted before the final tank was produced.


European VJ engine trumpets. Note butterflies rather than barrels for better transient response.


The diffs in the late 90's were moving towards hydraulic actuation via a Moog to allow active control. The none active diffs are pretty simple and conventional. The 98 Minardi ran active in testing but passive in competition.

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
quotequote all
red_duke said:
Fascinating thread, thanks for offering your time to respond.

I'd like to know which of the cars you are responsible for are the most expensive to maintain and why?
None of them are expensive for what they are. In fact owning a working F1 car is in most cases a lot cheaper than buying and running a new supercar once depreciation etc. is taken into account. Most of the F1s have static values or are appreciating slowly.

Some maintenance is expensive for example the tanks need replacing every 5 - 7 years. Extinguishers every 5 years(and often they are carbon cased and built specifically to fit the tub). Wheels, uprights and wishbones need crack testing every year. Engine life is IRO 800KMs with the revs turned down, gearboxes need a check every 200KMs and a rebuild every 800KMs. Brakes are expensive but we have considerable ex F1 team stock so rarely have to buy new. Most other stuff has life IRO 2000KM. Many of these cars do exhibition and charity work so only cover 150 - 200KMs a year meaning year on year cost is pretty reasonable.

The cars were designed to be stripped quickly and for component changes to be fast and difficult to cock up so actual labour costs are fairly reasonable. It's around 500hrs for a decent level rebuild on a typical car which provides some idea of how easy they are to work on.

Eric Mc

100,041 posts

193 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Very informative.

Dr Z

2,542 posts

99 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Very cool thread! Just checking in... thumbup

Gaz.

51,962 posts

179 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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I don't have a technical question as such, but when & why did the cockpits change from having the steering wheel fully under the bodywork to exposed like today:




poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Gaz. said:
I don't have a technical question as such, but when & why did the cockpits change from having the steering wheel fully under the bodywork to exposed like today:



It's a function of the changes in driver packaging and tub height more than anything else. The more you can reduce the tub height the smaller the front area and the more 'slippy' the car is. Hence drivers now for all intense and purpose lying down in the cars.



Also with the addition of power steering there is now less requirement for a large moment on the column meaning wheels can be physically smaller also aiding tub height.

Ozone

2,748 posts

115 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Are there any parts that are too expensive to replace?
For example a '98 Arrows CFRP gearbox case, or is it that you can get CF parts made cheaply these days.

Great thread by the way smile

poppopbangbang

Original Poster:

829 posts

69 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
quotequote all
Ozone said:
Are there any parts that are too expensive to replace?
For example a '98 Arrows CFRP gearbox case, or is it that you can get CF parts made cheaply these days.

Great thread by the way smile
The Minardi cast titanium boxes are the real bds to replace but we still have spares for these at the moment. They were rapid cast with the tooling produced via rapid prototyping in a full loss form so no tooling exisited once the casing was cast. Generally carbon work is pretty simple, even down to gearbox casings but only if you have one that can be copied e.g. direction of weave, thickness, resin etc. or engineering drawings.

If the budget is there then realistically there is nothing we can't replicate.

Ozone

2,748 posts

115 months

Sunday 8th December 2013
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Have you come across anything that is a bit of an engineering revelation?