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Author Topic:   Fire Suppression
Dirt Forum Racer

Total posts: 76
posted July 05, 2002 10:16 PM
Anyone have any thoughts on fire suppression systems ans how best to install them ??
I gotta admit that being unable to see alky burn spooks me more than I normally would be with gas.

Dirt Full Roller

Total posts: 37
posted July 06, 2002 10:18 AM
The truth is while its hard to see alky burn its also far harder to get it to start burning. To demostrate it to yourself put a small plan of alky out and throw a match it it, almost always the match will go out before the alky will ignite. Dont try this with gas. The vapor is what burn and when you see the alky fires on Indy type cars the cause is almost always the dunping of alky on the 12-1500 degee headers during refueling. Now for fire suppression we use whats called Cold Fire its a water based fire suppression systen good for a fuel based fires its far cheaper than Halon and the bottle can be recharged by the user for around $40 There is a web site for the product if you use a serch engine you can find it. And I wish more people would consider a fire system for there cars just as the do fire suits

George Gilliland
Dirt Full Roller

Total posts: 39
posted July 06, 2002 06:01 PM
I think that drivers need to think more about fire suits. Just because what you are using is legal does not necessarily fill the bill. The more layers of Nomex the better. I see some young drivers using Proban single layer suits without tee shirts! Not good! I wear a double layer Nomex with a cotton layer under plus a cotton tee shirt. I have survived two fires and consider this the minimum. Another thing to consider is how fast can you get out once your car and everyone elses has stopped. In a modified it takes a lot longer then a stockcar. That is why I run a window net and not a arm restraint. With the arm restraint the time to exit is greatly increased! I also run a rock screen made from hardware cloth with half inch centers, it does not stop the big rocks but it does slow them down. I think in a methanol modified the fire that you are most likely to be involved in is oil. When a bearing fails it heats up the oil and then developes enough heat to ignite it, if at that time a rod does not break through the water jacket, then you are likely to have an oil fire. Sometimes it goes under the car, but in a modified it usually goes up and into the drivers face. You can not see and it gets warm quickly, if a rod does not penetrate the pan then you best have on a good fire suit. I think that you are right considering an on board fire suppression system. When you get burned there is a lot of soft tissue damage. With a cut there is tissue to be joined, but with a bad burn all the skin has to be replaced many layers deep.

Dirt Forum Racer

Total posts: 76
posted July 07, 2002 12:38 PM
Thanks for your thoughts. Actually, I have been trying to figure out how to make a top exit in my mod. Sorta like I used to have in my desert buggy. A lot easier to get out of in a hurry.

Dirt Full Roller

Total posts: 41
posted July 07, 2002 04:19 PM
Originally posted by Pickles:
Thanks for your thoughts. Actually, I have been trying to figure out how to make a top exit in my mod. Sorta like I used to have in my desert buggy. A lot easier to get out of in a hurry.

I think alot of sanctioning should require a quick exit top in all cars.

Dirt Freak

Total posts: 240
posted July 09, 2002 01:57 PM
I have raced and been a firefighter for 24 years now, first of all alky will burn on these race cars. second, I have heard of fires being started and started one in my garage by dropping a drop light in some spilled alky. (Get a safety light) Don't take alky for granted, if you use top lube in your alky, you will see it burn. Practice getting out of your car quickly with all your gear on and your eyes closed, start slow and pick up your speed as you go. Get a good firesuit, not the probane suit, your life is worth the extra 300 bucks, use racing gloves you can't even wipe your rear without your hands.

Dirt Maniac

Total posts: 102
posted July 15, 2002 10:04 PM
on the fire suppression systems: I recently installed a two nozzle Safecraft system in a STOCK CAR RACING magazine project car. It was simple, came with all the hardware and brackets. This a halon system at about $325.00. Consider a square inch of third degree burned skin will be more expensive to replace.

The owner of the company told me much of his sales are around Christmas. Wives and girlfriends buy them for their racers. Make sure the girls see this!

Dirt Forum Racer

Total posts: 76
posted July 23, 2002 11:56 PM
Thanks for your thoughts. Do all agree that a loose fitting suit is better than a tight fitting one?

Dirt Full Roller

Total posts: 32
posted July 24, 2002 01:14 PM
A loose fitting suit should be better as it will provide air pockets which help insulate from the heat. This is why Nomex underwear is normally waffle weave material. By the way, don't be so harsh on Proban. Last year, either Circle Track or Open Wheel did a good comparision between Proban, Nomex, and Carbon Fiber and Proban did suprisingly well.

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