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Not For Him

The review for the Holden SRi Turbo coupe you said in your review 'not for us'  Experts have tested this car and I did not see any of the  problems your team found in their reviews. I guess your team love  the  ugly looking Mazda 3 MPS with insane 190Kw FWD with kidney  busting noisy suspension;  a Ford XR5 with no foot rest or cruise, noisy ride and massive weight at the front. Your team sound like amateurs. Your web site is not for me.


Hydrogen Generators

Hello guys at Autospeed. After a bit of searching and reading of various articles I failed to find material specifically relating to the effectiveness of hydrogen genorators as aftermarket add on's to standard petrol engines. for example:

I was just calculating that the large generator (H2= 20L/hr) produces around half a mL per second... but how would such an amount change fuel economy by up to 30% as claimed?  Has autospeed done any  research into such items? or are there any proven figures of what such a generator will actually achieve?  How much H2 may be needed to really attain such fuel savings?

Colin Bainbridge

If it sounds too good to be true, it almost always is.

RWD Towing

I asked a flippant question the other week which Julian did not answer but I thought the answer obvious. “How much weight did you have on your Ford tow bar?”

If the rear wheels spin easily when towing, this usually occurs when not enough weight is on the tow ball especially with a tandem trailer. You need roughly 10% of total loaded trailer weight. John Lambert figures of 70kg on tow bar gives +100kg on rear axle are probably close to the money. I really can’t see how that Falcon (with a sane driver) can spin its wheels with that load on the rear axle unless brake fluid is poured on the tyres.

If you take a good size boat with a heavy outboard on a single axle, you find little weight on the tow ball so you have to load as much in the bow as possible to achieve your 10% on tow ball. Otherwise you get “push steer” from the trailer’s harmonics in some situations which creates a type of over steer, jack knifing! Another device I have found very useful for towing your OWN heavy trailer is load leveler bars and of course trailer brakes (not over ride) to stop jack knifing. OK Julian your off the hook, you only hired the trailer with over rider brakes<g>

Robert may

As described, in the rain the Falcon will easily spin its wheels when towing a car trailer. We’d estimate over 100kg was on the towbar – the towbar could barely be lifted to have the coupling placed on the ball.

Flying Frank?

Are you planning to do any aero testing, undertrays, etc on Frank the Falcon? I saw today that you are re-running the original aero testing series.  I really like all the aero testing, and undertray building articles and would like to see a re-run on them, but using different vehicle(s) (like you did for the negative boost series), and Frank would seem like a good choice.

Lindsay Young
New Zealand

A good idea.

Or Maybe Twin Turbo Frank?

Enjoying the ‘new’ Autospeed, bearing in mind the reality that  motorcars are a finite topic. There are only so many fresh articles that can be produced in a ten year period, however enough of the small talk - When are the Supra turbos being bolted onto Frank??! I realise the world doesn’t need yet another big HP turbo motor with   no finesse, so perhaps it could be encompassed in the bigger    overall challenge of regaining the world caravan speed towing   record. Rightfully returning it to the hands of an Aussie in an old   home built Falcon?  - that’s gotta be a project worth doing? – it   could even attract sponsors to foot the bills.Matt King

Hmm. Not only do we have the twin Supra turbos, we also have an XR6 Turbo intercooler and its associated plumbing, an XR6 turbo exhaust and XR6 Turbo injectors!

Alloy Wheel Repairs

In regards to the article "Damage Control" (Issue 414/technicalfeatures). I worked in one of America's best wheel re manufacturers. I've learned quite alot about alloy wheels and painting/ cnc work.

-when a wheel is dented it does not just dent inward, it pushes two "bumps" outward on each side. You want to target these after hitting the dent outwards.

-Under .010 along the inside of the rim is perfectly fine - most other shops went up to .030

-normal cuts with a lathe are .001-.005, Carbide or CBN tooling is usually used.

-Polished faced wheels were always a pain - we had one worker dedicated to polishing. clearcoat was always sprayed - alumn. oxidizes

-We used a unique cleaning process before powercoating, developed from german wheel manufacturers (I dare not go much farther into it, it's a
"trade secret"

Kevin Unger
United States

Tailshafts 1

Re: tail wag - My japanese RWD also suffers from the centre bearing failure and I have been tossing up simply replacing the centre bearing, or upgrading to a single piece driveshaft.  There is significant debate about which is superior in performance terms, but of more interest to me was the safety issue. I understood that  one of the reasons for having a 2 piece was that in the event of a crash, it provided a breaking point and the engine was more likely  to angle downwards and slide under the car, rather than directly into the cabin.


Tailshafts 2

I was pleased to see your article "Tail Wag", addressing prop shafts. In in Front engined, RWD or AWD cars, a modified prop shaft can have some advantages. You mentioned that if you fit a lightweight prop shaft, the effect is to increase 'revvability' in much the same way as if you fitted a  lightweight flywheel. However, it might be useful to note that if  you fit a lightweight prop shaft, when driving at speed you also   risk making your revs drop as the road rises. I suspect that this would be especally true of small capacity, high-powered, low-torque engines, or in racing.

Michael Adamantidis

Fuel Consumption

If you are reading a magazine about performance up grades on a car why on earth would you give a damn about fuel consumption? I certainly    dont.Two of my cars have engines in excess of 6 liters, a third one  is 4.6 liters and the fun per k factor is a lot higher than the    boredom per K factor of a so called economy car. But i also have an old mate who decided that he couldn't afford to finish building his '32 Ford hot rod and decided to hot his Suzuki   hatch...:-). the result? a 3 cylinder Suzuki which holds a world FIA record at 129 i suppose you can have your performance cake and an  equitable consumption figure too....and hey! ,he drove it from Brisbane to South Australia, set his records and drove home again! have a look here..

Ron Bunting

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