guardrails vs concrete walls.....

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guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  DILLIGASDAVE on March 31st 2014, 9:53 pm

Saw this wreck on another forum, happened at a DFW area track. It's another example of why tracks need to stop dragging their feet & replace their ancient guardrails with concrete walls.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LU-5NzeoS-4


And the concrete walls need to be correctly designed for racing so that they have a flat face top to bottom on the track facing side. In the past some tracks have incorrectly used concrete walls with a kick-out taper at the bottom of the wall on the track facing side (kinda like some highway use walls & barriers do). That kick-out at the bottom of the wall can actually help a race car up-over the wall if it's hit at the correct angle.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  dfree383 on March 31st 2014, 10:01 pm

I don't think concrete would have made a difference with that one.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  61coon on March 31st 2014, 10:03 pm

Dang man, that's pretty messed up. I couldn't agree more about the concrete walls. The guardrails just won't cut it on the dragstrip. When a car hits one, it just shreds it to pieces.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  whatbumper on March 31st 2014, 10:09 pm

Same guardrail got my car.(wrecks happen I know but we've hit a concrete one before and bounced off and front halfed the car and was good to go.)  Sure like Kennedale and Ennis so much more.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  rmcomprandy on March 31st 2014, 10:23 pm

If guard rails are stacked and high enough, they work awfully well at oval tracks all over the country however, the bolts aren't rusted through and partially attached to rotted pylons.

They get checked and repaired and new railroad tie posts installed often. It seems that when drag-strips use them they are there for the duration and the rail itself usually is not the problem.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  whatbumper on April 1st 2014, 4:50 pm

rmcomprandy wrote:If guard rails are stacked and high enough, they work awfully well at oval tracks all over the country however, the bolts aren't rusted through and partially attached to rotted pylons.

They get checked and repaired and new railroad tie posts installed often. It seems that when drag-strips use them they are there for the duration and the rail itself usually is not the problem.

you mean they aren't supposed to be mounted to rotten posts?

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  dr's wife racing on April 1st 2014, 5:10 pm

I hit a concrete wall HARD with my fox body. It hurt but kept the car up right and in the track. I was about 600 ft out at some where around 120 mph. I walked away the car was fixed and will be able to race again to.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  chuck on April 1st 2014, 8:24 pm

That car was bought from a friend of mine back in February, I believe he paid $34,000 for the car. We were told it was a no prep race. I like to go fast...........but I'm not into white nuckle death rides!!!! No prep may have it's place, not in a 4sec car. JMO.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  cool40 on April 1st 2014, 9:07 pm

concrete may have been a lot harder on the car and driver...... Question 
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  kim on April 1st 2014, 10:05 pm

Not seeing the result after the wall except vehicle damage its speculative to the results of either. The car went through the ARCO head on, so concrete wall impact would have been head on, the after impact effects would have been different but the car destruction would have been total.


Anything less than head on, I would argue concrete for nothing more than safety containment. Kid just bounced his off ARCO last night, new A arm, strut, and ignoring the ugly body, its racing today. Concrete , we might have junk........... Its got a Darlington stripe headlight to rear bumper.

Im an advocate of 48" concrete. Protect the innocent, and pray for the performers.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  whatbumper on April 1st 2014, 10:25 pm

kim wrote:Not seeing the result after the wall except vehicle damage its speculative to the results of either.  The car went through the ARCO head on, so concrete wall impact would have been head on, the after impact effects would have been different but the car destruction would have been total.


Anything less than head on, I would argue concrete for nothing more than safety containment.  Kid just bounced his off ARCO last night, new A arm, strut, and ignoring the ugly body, its racing today.   Concrete , we might have junk...........  Its got a Darlington stripe headlight to rear bumper.

Im an advocate of 48" concrete.  Protect the innocent, and pray for the performers.
Might be head on but it is still a roughly 45 degree angle of impact and not 90.  I don't think the rail is the big issue here.  It's the fact that over half of the post are rotten and can not do their jobs of holding the metal up to absorb the impact.  It folds so fast that it basically helps tear stuff up.



I know the driver of the car and many more who have totaled cars at that track and Kennedale before they fixed it up and seeing wrecks like these have encouraged us to become a dealer for multiple more companies that are safety related including head and neck restraint companies.  This can be a dangerous hobby but statistically one of the safest due to the advances in safety equipment and car design.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  richter69 on April 1st 2014, 10:56 pm

No prep = better have tank tracks.......
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  DILLIGASDAVE on April 2nd 2014, 3:18 am

I saw a wreck once where the double rail failed similar to what's in that video even though it had good looking posts that wern't rotten. The problem was the car's initial impact point happen to hit right between two posts, it basicly pushed it's way through the rail between two posts like a wedge.

A guardrail might be a little easier on the car or driver vs a concrete wall, but I'm less concerned about that. I'm more concerned about the really scary part once the car gets over/though a guardrail & starts to tumble, once that happens you never know how far into the crowd it might go.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  supervel45 on April 2nd 2014, 6:28 am

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMPztuRTRXg Old Crash. If the guard rail was closer to the lane it may have helped?

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  DILLIGASDAVE on April 2nd 2014, 9:11 am

supervel45 wrote:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMPztuRTRXg   Old Crash. If the guard rail was closer to the lane it may have helped?
Nope, not a chance.

That pass was major fuuked regardless of where the guardrail was located at when he got back in the throttle while crossed up over the centerline & out of the groove which turned the car hard right & up on two wheels. Even if the guardrail was parked right up next to the side of the track surface the car was dead meat & going for a tumble because it was already up-on it's side by the time he reached the side of the track.

Happens so damn often it's not funny anymore. A racer goes for a little unplanned butt-pucker sashay ride but initially saves the car like a champ, then he gets back in the throttle while still crossed up or out of the groove & stuffs the car hard.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  rmcomprandy on April 2nd 2014, 11:58 am

DILLIGASDAVE wrote:
supervel45 wrote:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMPztuRTRXg   Old Crash. If the guard rail was closer to the lane it may have helped?
Nope, not a chance.

That pass was major fuuked regardless of where the guardrail was located at when he got back in the throttle while crossed up over the centerline & out of the groove which turned the car hard right & up on two wheels. Even if the guardrail was parked right up next to the side of the track surface the car was dead meat & going for a tumble because it was already up-on it's side by the time he reached the side of the track.

Happens so damn often it's not funny anymore. A racer goes for a little unplanned butt-pucker sashay ride but initially saves the car like a champ, then he gets back in the throttle while still crossed up or out of the groove & stuffs the car hard.

Jeez ... the first post here which put any kind of the responsibility on the DRIVER.

Why don't we just go all the way and require 3 foot thick "safer barriers" like on NASCAR super-speedways.  Rolling Eyes
Cars STILL go into the crowd when they get to flying.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  Gary Varney on April 2nd 2014, 12:20 pm

After watching this car "ramp" over a steel guard rail a few years ago I started thinking there is a better choice of containment. Evidently Orlando speed world did too, they installed concrete right after this.

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  YellowStangDuane on April 2nd 2014, 1:02 pm

Walls tend to keep the cars on the track, but they are harder on the driver and the car. The original video shows the car knocked down the fence in the spectator area. Too close. On Pro Mod nights, I work the 330' point of the track, ready to reset cones, check for oil, ect... If we did not have concrete walls, I would not be there. I've had plenty of cars smack it right in front of me.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  bbf-falcon on April 2nd 2014, 6:56 pm

In Gary's video from Orlando,watching the oncoming view,take a look at the guardrail posts,looks like they are ready to fall over before the crash. Rolling Eyes 

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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  DILLIGASDAVE on April 2nd 2014, 9:32 pm

What I noticed in the video Gary posted was that car didn't really make it's final hard right move until after the driver had fully lifted. It's possible that the hard throttle lift might have caused the hard right turn from a sudden side-to-side suspension preload change from getting out of the throttle.


I was also thinking that on top of a car's weight, speed, & angle of the hit it's also possible that a car's C/G height off the ground might also play a large part in if a guardrail might fail or not. We were at a TOPMA Pro Mod show in 2011 (at the same track as my original post) and a Pro Mod Vette smacked the same guardrail hard 3 times after it got loose & the throttle hung. The guardrail was able to successfully contain the Vette on all 3 hits without failure. Here's the video, jump to 0:46.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0vbu9qy2RY

So I guess it's possible that a car with a higher C/G might increase the chances of a guardrail failure vs a car with a lower C/G.
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Re: guardrails vs concrete walls.....

Post  supervel45 on April 3rd 2014, 1:16 am

That track must have been greasy. I don't think I saw one clean pass, and the times are about what they where in the late 90's on a good track in Texas.

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