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Why old F1 cars take hours to start

Formula 1 is all about speed, but getting the car ready for the track really takes patience. Even 25 years ago, starting a Formula 1 race car took hours, as YouTuber Matt Amys explains in this video.

The car used for this demonstration was the Minardi M198, currently campaigned by the Italian team. Alpha Tauri, during the 1998 season. It was not the most competitive car as it was estimated to be about 3 seconds off the pace. Michael Schumacher’s Ferrari F300 The McLaren MP4/13, in which Mika Häkkinen won the drivers’ title that season, represented the technology of the time.

According to the TDF, cars from this period, when F1 used the glorious high-revving V-10 engine, could take between 1.5 and 2.5 hours to start, depending on various factors such as ambient temperature (cold days takes longer to start). , keep this Minardi and other vintage F1 cars for collectors.

The process begins by preheating the engine with warm coolant. A common misconception is that these engines have such tight tolerances that they get stuck when cold. It’s not, but running an engine like the Ford Cosworth V-10 in the M198 below the optimum temperature will cause excessive wear. Air is also flushed from the hydraulic lines before the car starts.

Next we need to charge the onboard air cylinder. These provide the air to actuate the valve springs, as conventional valve springs cannot keep up with the rotational speed of the engine. The engine is then fueled and cranked over using an external starter motor plugged into the back of the gearbox to turn the crankshaft.

Everything is controlled by an old laptop running Windows 95, as the car’s software is not compatible with the new computer. Even some outdated laptops are faster than a car’s on-board computer, which can distort readings. This isn’t just a problem with his 1990s race cars. McLaren F1 You also need to connect your 1990s computer with obsolete electronics. If all temperatures and pressures look good, the car is ready to hit the track. Why old F1 cars take hours to start

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