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Ok, So It's Stupid-Now Tell Me WHY It Won't Work! Supercharged Question

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 38FLATTIE, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. mrconcdid
    Joined: Aug 31, 2010
    Posts: 1,157

    from Florida

    since were thinking outside the box here.

    Since engine drag is your concern why not drive a centrifical supercharger off the drive shaft, you would have alot more gearing advantage and less engine drag.

    And as for onboard air, you can get 2500psi or better in a oxy bottle from your torch. but its very heavy.

  2. nrgwizard
    Joined: Aug 18, 2006
    Posts: 1,320

    from Minn. uSA

    Hey, '38;

    What you propose should work. Just need to use large enough tanks, & get the air management down. Learning curve would be tough. Keane might help - think he's in Canada??

    You don't want to use a compressor to "charge" the mill (or the supply tanks) you'd run, or you may as well haul a RR Mustang engine in a trailer behind you, as a pump. & even then...:( . A small aux pump would work on the street, to charge small tanks, for occasional, quick usage, in the form of a "shot" or (maybe) w/a vortex generator. But not full-time usage.

    The trick is, using Scuba tanks - or larger tanks - like welding supply tanks, in a group. Recharging them will take a bit, what w/the heating of the air, etc (I think Scuba tanks are filled in a large water tank to absorb the compressed airs' heat,). But these tanks are filled to 5000+psi. Can't remember what Scuba tanks are loaded to (3000psi?), but maybe easier packaging. 3-5 min running time may be rough..., but at least you won't need extra ballast... :D . The compressor you'd need would be the kind used a @ gas-supply shop (or their supplier). I'm thinking : not cheap...:( .

    IIRC, from an article in HRyearbook, ~ '67,(maybe in CC, also) Keane used 4-6 Scuba tanks for one qtr mile run. Said the gasoline "hit" as hard as nitro. Of course, NHRA banned it... Article had a real good drawing layout of the controls needed. & of course, if used, could be used to dial-in any "boost" you want. W/the actual temp drop, you could really be near freezing temps for inlet air, :D , & therefore dial-in more boost, :D , but the learning curve, :( .

    Always one of my favorite methods of supercharging, disappointed to see work (& info) on it stopped. Have long thought about using it at Bonneville, & doodling to see how it can be done... :) . Practicality/reality sucks...

    Not a method of supercharging, but a way of getting more air into mill, is using a "vortex generator". Using compressed air to run the thing, would give you a nice multiple of return (volume) from usage. Something like 5 - 10 times (or more. Have heard up to 25+) amount of air initially used. Helps the engine "fill" the vacuum it sees at/in the manifold. Or at the carb/injector inlet(s). :D . Dick Datson researched & wrote about it, even this can use a lot of air.

    HTH. Hope you post what you find out from using this. You have my un-divided attention. :D .

    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  3. mrconcdid
    Joined: Aug 31, 2010
    Posts: 1,157

    from Florida

    More out of the box thinking

    I beleve Peterbuilt and Cummings used turbo and roots type blowers together on there 2 stroke desiel engines.

    Now turbos use relative free or waste energy but create alot of boost add this boost into your carbs with a roots style supercharger under them creating a push and pull system, the combination of the 2 might offset the power loss of the roots blower.

    like I said way outside the box

  4. dragrcr50
    Joined: Jul 25, 2005
    Posts: 3,865


    ive got a head ache, see you on the salt buddy.............hehe
  5. yellow dog
    Joined: Oct 15, 2011
    Posts: 457

    yellow dog
    from san diego

    The oxy bottle idea was apparently successfully experimented with at Bonneville in the 50's (posted previously). In an old Floyd Clymer how-to book, he depicted a flathead roadster feeding regulated O2 thru a Hilborn. The summary was that an essentially unmodified engine took the roadster over 150. I wish I had the old book for reference. I think the title was "how to hop up Fords"
  6. Six Ball
    Joined: Oct 8, 2007
    Posts: 3,992

    Six Ball
    from Nevada

    This is not about a free lunch it's about packing a BIG lunch. As has been mentioned it would take a lot of air and no matter how tight you pack it I don't think you have enough room. What you need is maybe three miles of high pressure hose and a quick release at the end of the run. Of course the volume would have to increased to compensate for the hose.:confused:
    This reminds me of an idea someone had to use one bank of cylinders on a V8 to compress air for the other bank.
    We see the fuel we put in the tank and we see the reading on our A/F ratio gauges. We just don't realize how much more air we run than fuel. It's a wonder there's enough left to breathe!:eek:
  7. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 34,154


    Buddy, why not just pour in some of what yer drinkin? That should be worht some HP gains! ;) BTW, we miss you in the Tuesday night chat!
  8. R Frederick
    Joined: Mar 30, 2009
    Posts: 2,658

    R Frederick
    from illinois

    So, what you're saying is that I should consider putting a Huffer on my Shop compressor. Hmmmm.
  9. V4F
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 4,174

    from middle ca.

    just buy a turbo ! ........... 114mm should do it ! .......... steve
  10. aerorocket
    Joined: Oct 25, 2007
    Posts: 488

    from N.E. P.A.

    Not a dumb idea or a new idea. I read in an old magazine, I believe it was from 1955, an add that showed an electrical driven supercharger that was utilized only for short bursts it required extra batterys to power it, which would charge up in normal driving then supply the necessary power for a short burst.
  11. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    I think it was in the 60's that I saw a 33 Willys drag car in Hot Rod Magazine that had a second 4 cylinder engine in the trunk turning a blower that fed the main engine in the front. The title was something like "Windjammer Willys". The concept was to put no drag on the main engine and supercharge it with the motor in the back.

    I guess it wasn't successful as I never saw another one. Maybe the weight of all that extra stuff wiped out any benefits. But is shows we hot rodders are always thinking. :D

  12. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,856


    Here's another: Why not get a small gas turbine engine-- the kind that guys use to power RC planes, copters, and military apparatus, and use it to charge the intake of a piston engine?
  13. Dyce
    Joined: Sep 12, 2006
    Posts: 1,913


    I saw this French liner at Bonneville in 2010. It ran on compressed air. I don't remember for sure, but I think they went over 200.
    They filled the tanks with a scuba tank compressor. I think pure Oxygen would be the bomb, but there are safty issues in the case of a wreck and fire control you would have to look into.
  14. Rogi
    Joined: Mar 22, 2007
    Posts: 29


    "Initial testing of various forms of the system was done on three different dragsters and one of Mickey Thompson's Ford Funny Cars, but in all instances, no full quarter-mile runs were attempted. Recently, however, Keane got together with Mickey Thompson and, utilizing Thompson's exotic dyno facility in Long Beach, accomplished an exhaustive testing program. The results were phenomenal. Where a 6-71 blown Boss 429 Ford engine on 20% nitro had produced 1360 horsepower, the same type of engine equipped with the bottled air system in place of the Rootes blower, burning only straight alcohol, produced 2400 horsepower at 6000 rpm! On gasoline, the system made about 1550 horsepower. This success was not easily achieved, as in one week of testing, Thompson reportedly ran 150 gallons of alcohol through the dyno engine."

    The reason why the engine on compressed air made more power is that the compressed air tanks cary their own stored energy. All of the energy required to pressurize the tanks was done offline, i.e. the engine didn't have to work to comprees the air tanks. This idea is really similar to high voltage battery energy transfer in an electric car. plug it in to charge the battery (compress the air tanks), battery stores the energy & the drive motor converts the energy to motion or assists an IC engine thus increasing it's power. It's a rather ingenious idea, but really suited for special cases like drag racing where the runs are short enough, keeping the volume & weight of the tanks at a reasonable level.
  15. Stukka
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 64

    from SoCal

    There is a guy in England that did this with a hill climb car.

    Ya it's a little OT, but, it can be done and works well.
  16. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,856


    Outrageous. Yeah, this entire thread is pretty much OT.
  17. Similar principle to the old Turbonique rocket driven blower.
    In fact, people make small jet engines out of turbos, don´t they. Could something similar be done? Burn fuel in the normally exhaust driven part of the turbo, instead of driving it from the exhaust?
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2012
  18. BLAKE
    Joined: Aug 10, 2002
    Posts: 2,775


    My math shows that, at 500 psi, you'd need 420 gallons of air per minute to support the specs on the first page. If a dragster only runs for 10 secs, that nets down to 70 gallons of compressed air (@500psi) to support 2335 cfm for 10secs... not accounting for the decreased pressure/cfm as the tank empties.
  19. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,529

    Rusty O'Toole

    I remember reading about similar experiments in Popular Mechanics or similar in the mid sixties. The experimental car was a street driven slant 6 Dodge. The guy had a small air compressor belted to the engine and a tank to hold compressed air at 600PSI. He did what you said with the venturi or entrainment effect. He could get extra boost for up to 30 seconds or a minute before the air was used up, enough to pass a line of cars or climb a hill. Then the compressor would slowly build up the pressure again.

    In other words a form of stored power that could be used on demand, not something that would go continuously.

    Don't know why you couldn't get this to work to double your HP for 10 to 15 seconds in a drag race then refill the bottle. But NOS would likely be simpler.

    In other words there is no reason it could not work but only for short bursts of extra power.
  20. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 34,154


    Yes, you did see that. It was outlawed.
  21. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 34,154


    Dyce, I think they actually only went 60 with that
  22. gotit
    Joined: Aug 27, 2009
    Posts: 357


    Close but the 4way stroke engine has to make 2 full revolutions to displace dull engine displacement so the calculation would be

    Pi x R2 x stroke ÷2 for correct cid multiply rpm for volume at a given range. You also have to estimate volumetric efficiency as a %.

    Pressure is a measure of restriction also. I have been playing with blowers (roots and centrifugal )but and turbos for a short while. Im only 28. Lol but compound turboing will reach the magical 1:1 where boost matches drive pressure and I personally think turbos are the way to go with less hp required to drive one
  23. This is exactly why 38Flattie is pursuing this idea. You add the energy while the car is in the pits or staging lanes. The discharge the energy on the run.

    As many have stated, the big issue is only size of the very large tanks required. It can and will work, just a different mthod of supplying pressurized air to the engine. The issue is to have enough stored for a complete run. The pressure drop would give some very cold temps and air density, making it even more efffective.

    As another thought, you could build some type of large valve in the air system where you would start and run up on NA power, then switch over to use the compressed air for the final push at the end. This would take less total compressed air and enable somewhat smaller tank volume.

    I do agree that drag racing would be a lot easier to implement as it is a much shorter duration of time required; and therefore a lot less tank volume needed.

    Turbos work so well because they capture the wasted energy in the exhaust. The heat energy is used to help spin up the turbo impeller, rather than crankshaft power. The exhaust heat energy is usually just lost, a turbo helps to capture some of that back.
  24. joel
    Joined: Oct 10, 2009
    Posts: 1,903


    Dividing 5500 by 2 as suggested ( 2 crank revs per vol ) and correcting cu in to cu ft produces 582.8 cfm. 10 min run time should require 5828 cu ft of air. This would require a tank 18x18x18 feet at 0 psig. I don't remember how to calculate he change in volume when you compress air, but as you compress it the size of the storage tank would shrink.
  25. 38FLATTIE
    Joined: Oct 26, 2008
    Posts: 4,350

    from Colorado

    Driving it off of the driveshaft will still be a HP drain.

    Weight is no issue for a LSR car- it's just a matter of where you put the weight.

    Here's a guy that 'gets it'!

    Talking to Keane is a good idea! I agree, the regulators and such won't be cheap, but adding HP never is!

    You should try it!

    ..but I must warn you-it's considered a 'fuel'!

    Turbos move me from Vintage class, to Modified class, so it's not an option.

    'Pony' motors are not allowed, and besides- I'm intrigued by this idea!

    I agree, and this exercise is all about stored energy!

    Compounding blowers only compounds the parasitic loss.

    Another guy that gets it!:cool: I agree that it would be better suited for drag racing, but think it can be done.

    I think the key is making the frame the 'storage tank', or at least a major part of the 'storage tank'. Obviously, the welds will need to be x-rayed and certified, to at least 5000 PSI. SCBA bottles could be integrated safely into the frame, then the whole storage system filled at about 3500 PSI.

    Easy or cheap? NO!

    Fun,and if it works-just like Mastercard, it will be priceless!
  26. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 10,020


    Check the rules guys first. I believe this has come up before and was a No Go.
  27. Dyce
    Joined: Sep 12, 2006
    Posts: 1,913


    I never did see it run or look to see how they did. When I talked to them they were shooting for alot more speed....

    One more thing to consider. You really don't need the boost through the whole run. When you run a car with limited traction on nitrous you don't hit it out of the hole. You get the car rolling and hit it in the higher gears. You could save the boost for high gear or the first or second mile. Just a thought.
  28. nrgwizard
    Joined: Aug 18, 2006
    Posts: 1,320

    from Minn. uSA

    Hey, 38Flattie;

    Do not even think of trying to use the frame as an air tank. Any real pressure = boom, or at least leaks. You need the design safety of a round cyl. & they need to be mounted in brackets, surrounded by (ballistic nylon, at least) mesh to keep them in place in case of a mishap. If you don't know, even an arc strike on a tank will result in a non-fill, = reject tank for safety reasons.

    The tanks I was thinking about, are (similar to) the nitrogen tanks. ~ 4 1/2-5' long (including nozzle/shutoff valve), ~ 11" dia. Scuba tanks to fill in the "niches". You've got a big trunk - may as well use it. Nitrogen bottle for a "bumper" (protecting the valve would be an issue, + safe mounting. Hey, what are challenges for, right? :D .) , only, what, 34 more to go??? :D . Seriously. the more psi you can safely stuff into a tank, the more "running" time you'll get from a given volume/tank.

    38Chevy454 had it correct, I forgot to mention that initial running would be N/A. Maybe even for 1/2 mile. I'm sure you could spin the smoothies w/o the boost. & here is where the vortex generator could come into play, until the large bypass valve came online. Keane did something similar, on one of the test dragsters. Not sure what M/T came up with. & the temp drop will be substantial. I'd guess almost as much worth as the boost, in terms of lack-of-detonation. Somewhere I read a graph on value of the amb temp drop vs % hp increase. WAG here, (can't remember, so) something like 1% for each degree ( or 10 ?) drop. Doesn't sound right, but it was a crazy amount. Oh, & your air had better be *really* dry.

    Seriously, I'd guess maybe 9-10 nitrogen tanks in trunk, w/maybe 10-12 Scuba tanks also. Although, I'm assuming an empty trunk, so maybe not. I followed your build thread(s), but don't remember :( .

    I suppose one could use the available space in the trunk, & then fill the passenger side, or back seat, w/nitrogen tanks, up to the bottom of the window. I *really* want to see a video of you talking your way into that one, & getting it passed by tech. :D :D . Given the right mood & BS session, I'm sure I could come up w/some "it's actually safer this way, because..." :D . Plausible deny-ability? :)


    Article, or one of them, is: Compressed Air Dragster. HR yrbk #11, 1971, p304-309. '67 - pfffft. At least I had 1 # right.(rollseyes) Anyways, article has *lots* of good pics n descriptions. Keanes' addy as of then:

    Bob Keane
    Keane Engineering Co
    1181-B East Elm
    Fullerton, Calif. 92631

    At least it's a starting point. Don't know why I was thinking Canada, maybe from a later article? Hope you find him. Would be great to get more info on this, if he's willing to cough it up.

    I can't remember the other articles I read on it. I've got them somewhere, but???

    Hope you do this!~

  29. Steve Ray
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 673

    Steve Ray

    Electrically driven superchargers are already on the market:

    So far they're less efficient than mechanically driven superchargers or turbos, and whether or not they even work is debatable.

    BMW is currently working on electrically assisted turbochargers to reduce lag:
  30. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240


    I got a good look at the French air powered car, they may have been funnin' me, but they told me they were running 18,500 psi (not a typo) to hold enough air to get the speeds they wanted.

    I would have called BS but the tanks were some kind of composite, looked to be filament wound setup.

    I was impressed.

    I forget how long they told me it would take to charge the onboard tanks, but it was more than a day.

    That was with the scuba looking compressor.

    I have to agree with those saying you don't need that much air, you would be much better off only boosting in top gear, or top and next to top.

    If you want a "quick and dirty" way to up the efficiency of the blower (offset some of the drag) that I haven't seen addressed in the rules.

    It's been suggested on the net, so the benefit is unlikely to be what is suggested, but worth a try.

    It was called an air amplifier, don't know what it's proper name is, supposedly sold in McMaster Carr catalogs for clearing sidewalks and the like with compressed air.

    Mounted in the inlet duct (admittedly of a turbo) it was supposed to do great things for performance similar to the augmenter that Smokey worked on (as mentioned previously).

    Not nearly as developed, and I suspect the majority of the benefit would be from the cooling effect of the expanding air increasing the density before compression (slight as it may be).

    IMHO tech couldn't nail you on the "compressed air supercharging" rule because any pressure increase would cause a flow reversal (blow out the intake).

    You wouldn't need nearly as much air.

    As for electric supercharging, it could be done, but you will essentially have a significant portion of one of the electric streamliners to cram in your car somehow to have enough AH to run a powerful enough motor to drive a compressor large enough to support the airflow.

    How picky are they about turbos in vintage class?

    Does it include centrifical superchargers?

    Those use less power than a roots blower, of course so does a Lysholm.

    Does it have to be a "GMC" style?

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