Daily Archives: August 17, 2020

Another round of “Not dead yet!”

I took an extended break from social media and my computer to try to do something about my mental state, and it turns out the only thing helping my mental state was connecting to people through social media and this blog.

OK a big part of my problems are related to lack of touch, and a lack of access to people who would touch me in ways that were beneficial for me, and that is something I can’t get from social media. But it is something I can get from massage. Which is another reason why the closing of massage places was so hard on me. At this point between social distancing and so many of my friends passing on for many reasons, finding someone willing to touch me for free is pretty much impossible. And given my current economic state finding money to pay people to touch me in ways that help me is another impossibility.

I guess if I stop buying things online I could save my money for my phone, meds, and massages. But seeing that stuff I buy online is allowing me to go outside (masks), and/or is contributing to the goal of building the Sprint-T by paying for components that will eventually go into either the full size or scale version (Mini Sprint-T), so obviously I need more money to be socially adjusted, and have more than a fat chance of finishing the Sprint-T. But if I get more money I also have obligations that suddenly appear as a consequence of having money. It’s like the universe conspires against my ever getting the car I have been dreaming about literally for a half century. The car has changed as the technology has changed and as my preferred form of competition has changed, but the only thing that has changed about my preferred form of competition has been classification and the existence of the Goodguys sanctioning organization strictly for vehicles like hot rods like the Sprint-T and traditional street rods. So I have more places to play with the toy I have been wanting for more than a half-century.

I saw a movie on TV in 1968, and knew I wanted something like that, not the turbine car, or the jet dragster, but the cheap hot rod from the start of the movie. As I grew up, I understood the engineering and physics behind the T-Bucket and Sprint cars, and their inherent economy of form. Basically the design ethos of the two cars is “does it make the car faster? is it necessary to make the car go?” and if there is not at least one “Yes” answer it doesn’t go on the car. Now before someone jumps on me about the full cage around the bucket body and asks are they required, the answer is they are “yes” to both questions. I drive faster when there are reduced dangers and I drive faster when I’m comfortable. The cage protects me and makes the suspension work better by transferring weight from one corner to another with no losses from twisting or bending, by making the entire chassis stiffer because the forces are reduced on individual frame members by the geometry of integrating the cage as a crossmember of the frame. Certain parts of the frame are going to be heavier than required from typical loads imposed because of rules requiring roll cage members be of a certain minimum thickness to prevent distortion from crash loads, but the change in weight is a few pounds out of a couple of hundred more or less for the full frame.

The brakes being as large as they are even though this adds a few pounds in a very bad place to add weight, brakes being both unsprung and rotating weight, the additional stopping power will let the car stop quicker, which will lead to lower lap times because less time and distance stopping mean more of the lap is under power. A bigger proportion of the lap under power means that part takes less time, and that means the whole lap takes less time. That means bigger brakes make the Sprint-T faster. That’s why I have the biggest brakes that will fit the parts I have already bought because those parts make the car I build a T-Bucket. And unless I build a T-Bucket, this build is stripped of much of its meaning.

And that looks like a really good place to stop, because I’m paying more attention to Michelle Obama on TV than I am to my writing.