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1976 Crower engine

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  • 1976 Crower engine

    I was just glancing through Tom Sneva's Wiki page and it notes a one-off DNS in an Eagle at Phoenix in 1976; the entry is listed as Bruce Crower, the well-known engine guy, and the engine entry sounds interesting: "Crower 160 ci F8," which I can only assume is a bespoke flat-8. Does anyone know A) the story behind the Gasman being entered in this ride since he was driving the rest of the season for Penske, and especially B) the story and specs of that engine?
    "Only a fool fights in a burning house."-Kang

    "If you listen to fools....The Maaahhhhb Ruuuules....."-Ronnie James Dio

  • #2
    Originally posted by Sea Fury View Post
    I was just glancing through Tom Sneva's Wiki page and it notes a one-off DNS in an Eagle at Phoenix in 1976; the entry is listed as Bruce Crower, the well-known engine guy, and the engine entry sounds interesting: "Crower 160 ci F8," which I can only assume is a bespoke flat-8. Does anyone know A) the story behind the Gasman being entered in this ride since he was driving the rest of the season for Penske, and especially B) the story and specs of that engine?
    I can't give the exact locations but go through the 77 Hungness, there is some info about the engine within that one.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Indyote View Post

      I can't give the exact locations but go through the 77 Hungness, there is some info about the engine within that one.
      Yeah, I don't have that book.
      "Only a fool fights in a burning house."-Kang

      "If you listen to fools....The Maaahhhhb Ruuuules....."-Ronnie James Dio

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      • #4
        It was a flat 8 with Cosworth Vega cylinder heads, and turbocharged.
        "It is a besetting vice of democracies to substitute public opinion for law. This is the usual form in which masses of men exhibit their tyranny." - James Fenimore Cooper

        "One man with courage is a majority." - Thomas Jefferson

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        • #5
          That could have been interesting. I assume it was claimed by that old Hawaiian disease: Lackamuny...

          This looks like it might be the one:

          9B9C9C73-28E5-4DAC-A992-F4BC04A43294.jpeg

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          • #6
            That is it. I believe I have a NSSN issue with a story on it.
            "It is a besetting vice of democracies to substitute public opinion for law. This is the usual form in which masses of men exhibit their tyranny." - James Fenimore Cooper

            "One man with courage is a majority." - Thomas Jefferson

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            • #7
              Found it. NSSN 5-25-1977:

              NSSN-5-25-1977.jpg
              "It is a besetting vice of democracies to substitute public opinion for law. This is the usual form in which masses of men exhibit their tyranny." - James Fenimore Cooper

              "One man with courage is a majority." - Thomas Jefferson

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              • #8
                Camking posted information about the engine in his forum, but it was almost 20 years ago. Jeez, I've been hanging around this place a long time.

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                • #9
                  Thinking out load, but a boxer engine would seem to be a good layout for a rear engine ground effects car. If it isn't too wide, that flat layout would leave a lot of room for ground effects tunnels. Or, if you sit it low in chassis, you'd have a nice low center of gravity.
                  The Ayn Rand of Indycar

                  No one had to badge the Offy.

                  Crapping all over threads since 2000.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by DaveL View Post
                    Thinking out load, but a boxer engine would seem to be a good layout for a rear engine ground effects car. If it isn't too wide, that flat layout would leave a lot of room for ground effects tunnels. Or, if you sit it low in chassis, you'd have a nice low center of gravity.
                    In fact it was the other way around!!!!

                    Ferrari used a Flat 12 engine in 1980 but with the introduction of the ground effects cars in 1979 (Yes I know, Lotus and Mario had one in '78 already) Ferrari had difficulties to make a decent ground effects car, their '79 and '80 types 312T4 and 312T5 were semi ground effects it the very best and didn't provide enough downforce so despite their more powerful engines, the got behind and in '80 they were outclassed. The Flat 12 was thus retired. Now it was likely to be retired anyway because Ferrari was also working on a successor engine, the turbocharged V6 they debuted in 1981.

                    Even Porsche realized back in 1979 that their program with the 1980 Flat-6 engine was probably a short lived program because should ground effects becoming the standard in indycar as well, then they had hardly any chance any longer to do well because of the Flat-6 offereing only very limted options for applying ground effects.
                    As for approval: Look an see how competitive the PC7 sei ground effects cars were in 1981 against the full gorund effects cars of Penske and Patrick and the other ones. And from 1982 they were no lnger competitive any longer.

                    Had ground effects not been invented, well who knows what might have happened then.....

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Indyote View Post

                      In fact it was the other way around!!!!

                      Ferrari used a Flat 12 engine in 1980 but with the introduction of the ground effects cars in 1979 (Yes I know, Lotus and Mario had one in '78 already) Ferrari had difficulties to make a decent ground effects car, their '79 and '80 types 312T4 and 312T5 were semi ground effects it the very best and didn't provide enough downforce so despite their more powerful engines, the got behind and in '80 they were outclassed. The Flat 12 was thus retired. Now it was likely to be retired anyway because Ferrari was also working on a successor engine, the turbocharged V6 they debuted in 1981.

                      Even Porsche realized back in 1979 that their program with the 1980 Flat-6 engine was probably a short lived program because should ground effects becoming the standard in indycar as well, then they had hardly any chance any longer to do well because of the Flat-6 offereing only very limted options for applying ground effects.
                      As for approval: Look an see how competitive the PC7 sei ground effects cars were in 1981 against the full gorund effects cars of Penske and Patrick and the other ones. And from 1982 they were no lnger competitive any longer.

                      Had ground effects not been invented, well who knows what might have happened then.....
                      Thanks for the info.
                      The Ayn Rand of Indycar

                      No one had to badge the Offy.

                      Crapping all over threads since 2000.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by DaveL View Post

                        Thanks for the info.

                        My pleasure.
                        In fact, yor thinking about the lower GC of the car with a flat engine was spot on, that was one of the things why the Ferrari Flat12 made up in handling, despite on avearge being more heavy that the other F1 cars and using more fuel due to the nature of being a 12.

                        BTW , I have never seen the late 90s early 00s cars very well but it appears to me that those cars had way less prominent ground effects tunnels. On the early cars of the 80s the bottom plate had been raised already at the level where the engine was. If the tunnels are restricted as it comes to where the bottom plate was allowed to go up, then it might be possible to use a flat engine after all, provided that you could get the exhaust pipe out of the way somehow.

                        And when I mention that,...

                        Problably the most extreme engineered car using a flat engine was most likely the 1991 sportscar of Sauber-Mercedes.


                        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t08hFagAJ_s


                        This car had a 3.5 liter flat 12 engine, tilted slightly with the flywheelside up in order ro allow some gound effects profile under the engine as the rules permitted. But the engine had its exhaust on top of the engine while the air intake were between the camshafts on the side of the engine, just like in the same position as on the FourcamFord.
                        In a wide bodies sportscar one could think about such options, in single seater open wheelers such was likely no option at all.

                        The main aim of the engineering behind the car was indeed what you suggested, low GC and still retain ground effects.

                        Throwing this in to make you see that your thinking was not that strange at all, in hte right conditions within certain formulas, it was an option worth thinking about and to try

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Indyote View Post


                          Throwing this in to make you see that your thinking was not that strange at all, in the right conditions within certain formulas, it was an option worth thinking about and to try
                          At least I'm partly correct instead of completely wrong
                          The Ayn Rand of Indycar

                          No one had to badge the Offy.

                          Crapping all over threads since 2000.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by DaveL View Post

                            At least I'm partly correct instead of completely wrong
                            I was too hard on you and sorry for that,. If this was the wrong manner to let you know you were still partly right, then sorry for that too.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Indyote View Post

                              I was too hard on you and sorry for that,. If this was the wrong manner to let you know you were still partly right, then sorry for that too.
                              Naaah, seriously I didn't sense that at all. No worries.
                              The Ayn Rand of Indycar

                              No one had to badge the Offy.

                              Crapping all over threads since 2000.

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