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Thread: NASA Elan NP01 thread

  1. #81
    Administrator ucfbrett's Avatar
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    Track Testing the Élan NP01, a Le Mans-Style Race Car Regular Racers Can Afford

    Road and Track's take on the car. I've been waiting to see this if for no other reason than to see the photos. We had spectacular light at the end of the NP01 media day. If you look closely, you'll see me driving the red and white car. Well, all you can see is a white helmet, but I'm digging it because I rarely get to be on that side of the camera.

    I might have mentioned this before, but the red and white car had much lighter steering than the blue and white car, but I'm not sure what setup creates the greater ease of steering.

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    Not Certified Slow SDSUsnowboards's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ucfbrett View Post
    Track Testing the Élan NP01, a Le Mans-Style Race Car Regular Racers Can Afford

    Road and Track's take on the car. I've been waiting to see this if for no other reason than to see the photos. We had spectacular light at the end of the NP01 media day. If you look closely, you'll see me driving the red and white car. Well, all you can see is a white helmet, but I'm digging it because I rarely get to be on that side of the camera.

    I might have mentioned this before, but the red and white car had much lighter steering than the blue and white car, but I'm not sure what setup creates the greater ease of steering.
    I thought I was going to get an NP01 review, but what I got was depression.

    Face it: The traditional automobile, the kind of car where you sit down behind the wheel and operate it with your hands and feet, is going the way of the horse. It won't happen all at once. But once autonomous vehicles make up the majority of traffic on the road, choosing to drive yourself will become … well, at first it will be an individual choice. Then it will be an unusual choice. Your insurance company will raise your rates. First by a little, then by a lot. Your neighborhood association will send someone to talk to you. There are children who play in the streets and it's been shown how much safer self-driving cars are around kids.

    Before you know it, you and your Corvette or Miata will be in the same position as the fellow who thought he could ride a horse into Manhattan circa 1950. It might be legal, but it won't be practical, and eventually, it won't be possible. That's the future.
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    Administrator ucfbrett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SDSUsnowboards View Post
    I thought I was going to get an NP01 review, but what I got was depression.
    That was a bit of a buzzkill, wasn't it? I'll race till I can't get in the car anymore. If my truck drives me to the track, so be it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ucfbrett View Post
    [url=http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture/a28595/nasa-prototype-elan-np01-track-tested/]

    I might have mentioned this before, but the red and white car had much lighter steering than the blue and white car, but I'm not sure what setup creates the greater ease of steering.
    Caster?

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    Quote Originally Posted by emilio700 View Post
    It's easy actually.

    No room for a bigger steering wheel in NP01 unless you are built very small. Any normal size driver already has hands close to thighs. So we looked at reducing caster on Richards car.. no adjustment.
    As much as I dig the car, I get the strong feeling Elan had trouble meeting NASA's deadlines and rushed it into production. Early adopters are beta testers. They showed rows of major production components on facebook then 4 weeks later were doing initial track testing to make sure the car worked.
    Jeremy is still working on baseline setups for the car. IOW, they put the car into serial production long before development was complete. In a year I think it will be dialed but after looking at Richards car carefully and talking with him for a few hours, I think it's still a WIP. That all said, cars finished the 25. That's a strong indicator of the inherent
    strength of the package.
    As with any car, you are not going to get anything perfect when the car is brand new. I'm totally loving mine and I expect some things will need to be worked on- it is expected on new racecars.

    As for you Wookies at 6'3"- 6'5"- can you really blame Elan for you not you fitting perfectly in a NP01? They designed a great prototype car for the masses, its just You guys are way taller than most drivers I ever see at the track. In an ideal world, everyone would fit perfectly in everything. It does suck a little though, because you may miss out on driving this car. My buddy who is 6'1" fits in and loves it- it just depends on your body type.

    Steering: As previously stated, Elan is making a spacer to move the wheel closer to the driver about 1". This may allow gaining clearance over my thighs. I think with that I can fit a 290mm cut top D wheel. The stock cut top D wheel is 250mm. I have been told the steering gets "looser" as the bearing tolerances break in. All this is optional as everything the way it is works fine now. I'm just looking at not having to keep arm workouts going

    The drivers are working on the baseline setups that Elan provided. The car is so new, guys are going different directions with setups. Elan has the baseline setups in Excel format. Elan had guys at the 25hr race working on the CLP car. Again, the baseline setup from Elan on my car netted 1:52's on CW13 within 25 minutes of driving the car for the first time. That was with me being overwhelmed with everything. It's just a matter of time.
    Thanks,

    Chad
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    Senior Member robburgoon's Avatar
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    result are in, bw 1 cw:

    50, 50, 53, 55, 57, 2:00 for the best laps in the race. 6 cars

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    Warmup - two np01 in the 1:49's.

    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by markn View Post
    Warmup - two np01 in the 1:49's.

    Mark
    Hi Mark,

    Our car #5 with Andy Lee driving was able to log a best of 1:49.0 in practice. We actually logged more then a few below 1:49.3.

    The heavy steering is a function of the caster setting. It is a reasonable strategy to set the caster on a race car as high as can be managed by the driver under the circumstances the car is being used. And that doesn't mean so high as to cause the steering to feel insensitive. So for a long distance drive you might consider lowering the caster by just a few tenths of a degree over a sprint race setting or lower it for the driver most affected (weakest). We are using less than is shown in the Elan #1 set up. More like the Elan #2 Setup works better.
    Last edited by steveruiz; 04-20-2016 at 01:50 PM.
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    Hi Steve,

    Sunday was a really nice end to the weekend after a tough Friday test day for you guys. No doubt speed will continue to be found in this car as everyone learns what works and what doesn't. I was impressed by the number NP01 cars that turned out for this event. Six I think. Impressive for a new class and new car to get everyone in one place like that.

    Mark
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    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif emilio700's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steveruiz View Post
    The heavy steering is a function of the caster setting. It is a reasonable strategy to set the caster on a race car as high as can be managed by the driver under the circumstances the car is being used. And that doesn't mean so high as to cause the steering to feel insensitive. So for a long distance drive you might consider lowering the caster by just a few tenths of a degree over a sprint race setting or lower it for the driver most affected (weakest). We are using less than is shown in the Elan #1 set up. More like the Elan #2 Setup works better.
    What kind of caster numbers for each? Richard would like to run less in his car.
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