Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Extreme Racing

This document has been prepared in order to compare the different features of racing wheels. The Xtreme Customizing race car needs to be fitted with four lightweight racing wheels that are able to withstand the stress produced on and off the race track. During my reaserch I have come across many different products. These products all vary in size, weight, cost, strength and design according to the application. Throughout my reasearch, I have found that the metal alloy being used to make the wheel has a direct effect on these properties. I have taken this into consideration to help find the best product to suit our needs.

The main three types of material used in making racing wheels is aluminum, steel and chrome. Aluminum wheels are the lightest available on the market today and are resonably priced. This seems to be the reason for the gaining popularity of the aluminum alloy wheels among racing teams. The steel rims are a bit heavier, stronger and less expensive than the aluminum ones. These are usaully used in heavier applications such as drag racing where any other wheel would twist and bend under the stress. The heaviest and most expensive rims would have to be chrome based. Although there the heaviest and most expensive, they by far have the best finish, look and style. Many racers like these because they make the car stand out the most and are well respected by the fans. I believe because of our racing style and our vehicle of choice, it would be best to go with a lightweight aluminum racing wheel.

Another thing that should be considered is the spoke design. Each wheel may range from having anywhere from three to sixteen spokes. The spokes on a wheel help to transfer stess evenly throughout the part. It also helps to cool down the brakes by circulating the air flow through the tire to the brake pads. The fewer the spokes, the faster the cooling rate while on the track. Although choosing a wheel with very few spokes takes away from the strength of the wheel, so a medium must be reached. I believe that it would be safe and wise for us to choose a rim with seven or eight spokes. This will allow just enough air to keep the brakes cool without sacraficing alot of strength.

In the racing world the ideal rim would be one of very light weight and very high strength. Usaully to get one property you have to sacrifice the other. A very light weight rim will not have the high strength tolerence a heavy rim would and vice versa.

The rims that we require for the Xtreme Customizing Race Car do not have to be extremely strong because they’re to be mounted on a lightweight car. Although it must be able to handle the everyday stresses of racing. Motegi Racing says "our newly designed lightweight racing wheels are able to cope with the everyday stresses on and off the track". Many other companies also state there aluminum wheels to be the strongest and lightest among the competition.

I have reasearched a different variety of wheels and come to conclusion on which one will best suit our needs.

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