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1976 Crower engine

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  • #16
    We did huge story on that motor years ago. Bruce was always known for having all kinds of time to play and let his brother run the business at Crower Cams, etc. 'Like so many of Crower's "inventions," they were seldom successful; including the SBC that Bruce had cylinder heads casted up with the intake and exhaust ports on the same side of the head. Gary B. ran one of those heads on his Chevy II midget engine with the Harry Turner monocoque chassis. And the reason Tom Sneva was in that Crower car at Phoenix that year in the fall race was because he had been "benched" by Penske and Mario Andretti drove the car that day. It was the following year that Tom really got going and earned his nick-name, The Gas Man!

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    • #17

      The problem with the flat-12 is that is blocks the area where the tunnels need to start getting larger in cross section. Inline and V configurations don’t have that problem...

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      • #18
        I remember Crower with an entry in 1973...It seemed to just pop and spit every time it was in pit lane and when it would do warmup laps up close to the pit wall....didn’t qualify...don’t think it made a qualifying run......can’t remember the number or driver...I think it was in an Eagle..Any help?

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        • #19
          Originally posted by KenK View Post
          Sad, this. I mean, the story at bottom right. I spent a lot of happy hours at Illiana, and now...
          You've worked so hard on the kidney. Very special -- the kidney has a very special place in the heart. It's an incredible thing. Donald John Trump

          Brian's Wish * Jason Foundation

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Ajandretti View Post
            I remember Crower with an entry in 1973...It seemed to just pop and spit every time it was in pit lane and when it would do warmup laps up close to the pit wall....didn’t qualify...don’t think it made a qualifying run......can’t remember the number or driver...I think it was in an Eagle..Any help?
            Jigger Sirois, no. 47, and the car was a Gerhardt. Didn't pass his refresher test because under 6,000rpm it was too slow - and over 6,000, when the turbo kicked in, it was too fast...

            IMG-3279.jpg
            "An emphasis was placed on drivers with road racing backgrounds which meant drivers from open wheel, oval track racing were at a disadvantage. That led Tony George to create the IRL." -Indy Review 1996

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            • #21
              Too Fast is an interesting concept...

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              • #22
                Originally posted by LittleFauss View Post
                We did huge story on that motor years ago. Bruce was always known for having all kinds of time to play and let his brother run the business at Crower Cams, etc. 'Like so many of Crower's "inventions," they were seldom successful; including the SBC that Bruce had cylinder heads casted up with the intake and exhaust ports on the same side of the head. Gary B. ran one of those heads on his Chevy II midget engine with the Harry Turner monocoque chassis. And the reason Tom Sneva was in that Crower car at Phoenix that year in the fall race was because he had been "benched" by Penske and Mario Andretti drove the car that day. It was the following year that Tom really got going and earned his nick-name, The Gas Man!
                Was there ever any published power and torque data? It would be interesting to see how it measured up.

                I heard the Cosworth Vega in a midget back in the day. Definitely Top 3 in loudness after Jim Downey’s Kudzu-Mazda rotary and Chuck Daigh’s BattleBird...

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                • #23
                  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.
                  Why do some refer to the PC-7 as a semi ground effect car? I've heard others say the Chaparral was the first true ground effects Indycar but I see no reason for that distinction not to go to the PC-7. Clearly, it was not streamlined to the detail of the Chaparral which showed up at Indy that same year, but it had full length venturi type sidepods that make a GE car.

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                  • #24
                    The Lotus 79-inspired 2K was designed as a fully-realized ground-effects car from the beginning, but I understand that the PC-7 was basically a PC-6 with ground effects added on.
                    "Only a fool fights in a burning house."-Kang

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

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                    • #25
                      Badger wrote:
                      "Why do some refer to the PC-7 as a semi ground effect car? I've heard others say the Chaparral was the first true ground effects Indycar but I see no reason for that distinction not to go to the PC-7. Clearly, it was not streamlined to the detail of the Chaparral which showed up at Indy that same year, but it had full length venturi type sidepods that make a GE car."

                      Badger, the PC7 was like the Lotus 78 F1 car. It was also referred to as a semi ground effect car, after the Lotus 79 came out. I think it's because the rear suspension, drive train, and whatever else is back there were built like the older flat bottom cars. Springs and shocks in the airstream, etc. Full ground effect cars like the Lotus 79, Chaparral 2K, and everything after that had much cleaner airflow leaving the side pods and out the back of the car.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by RayC View Post
                        Badger, the PC7 was like the Lotus 78 F1 car. It was also referred to as a semi ground effect car, after the Lotus 79 came out. I think it's because the rear suspension, drive train, and whatever else is back there were built like the older flat bottom cars. Springs and shocks in the airstream, etc. Full ground effect cars like the Lotus 79, Chaparral 2K, and everything after that had much cleaner airflow leaving the side pods and out the back of the car.
                        To back up what you said...

                        CD0444C0-649F-4C82-AA75-3109EF9E86CB.jpeg

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by RayC View Post
                          Badger wrote:
                          "Why do some refer to the PC-7 as a semi ground effect car? I've heard others say the Chaparral was the first true ground effects Indycar but I see no reason for that distinction not to go to the PC-7. Clearly, it was not streamlined to the detail of the Chaparral which showed up at Indy that same year, but it had full length venturi type sidepods that make a GE car."

                          Badger, the PC7 was like the Lotus 78 F1 car. It was also referred to as a semi ground effect car, after the Lotus 79 came out. I think it's because the rear suspension, drive train, and whatever else is back there were built like the older flat bottom cars. Springs and shocks in the airstream, etc. Full ground effect cars like the Lotus 79, Chaparral 2K, and everything after that had much cleaner airflow leaving the side pods and out the back of the car.


                          I recently saw a picture taken from a PC7, seen from the rear. From what I can make up from that picture compared with that if th undersied of the 2K as seen above, the backbone of the PC7 was wider at the engine level, thus the pods more narrow. It was as if the exhaust system on the PC7 was still bend into directions closer to the gound and as a result of that the room beween engine block and rear wheels less wide. To me it appears a bit as if it was very much an afterthought of putting up something that was something of ground effect on the car, it always being better than nothing at all.
                          To some extend, it reminded me a bit about what Ferrari did with the 1979 312T4, with that difference that the Ferrari had to deal with an wide engine block while on the penske a massively redesigned exhaust system might have permitted wider tunnels. For model builders that built the Tamiya 1:12 Ferrari 312T4 kit, they might be familiar with what I try to describe.

                          The mentioned Lotus 78 (the 1977 car, also used in the first races of the 1978 season by the factory team and all season long by Hector Rebaque) had genuine wing profiles that ended just ahead of the rear axle, its profiles did not extend under the rear suspension. the exhausts were in the air stream under the profiles and behind it. The PC7 had less parts in the airstream under and behind its proviles as the Lotus 78 had, but the tunnels of the 78 were much wider. I can't decide which car had the more effective solution, the 77 or the PC7

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