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F1

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F1 discussion

Wheel Tethers, do they work well enough?

This topic contains 12 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by Avatar of James_mc James_mc 3 years, 9 months ago.

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
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  • #128190
    Avatar of Hare
    Hare
    Participant

    Today we saw a few wheels seemingly randomly fall off (Kubica/Rosberg) and a few coming off in crashes (Di Grassi/Petrov). In all cases we had wheels bouncing around free from the chassis of the car. For me, I’ve noticed this many times in F1, and the tethers are supposed to prevent this.. they’re clearly not working well enough. How can they be improved? Should this be a priority for the working group? What are your thoughts? Seems it’s just a matter of time until someone gets hit, and ultimately very hurt..

    #147243
    Avatar of VettelS
    VettelS
    Member

    They’re being improved for next season anyway.

    #147244
    Avatar of
    Anonymous

    Clearly not after today and there’s been a few flying wheels already this season in the pitlane and when Liuzzi crashed at Germany. AlthoughI’m sure Ned pointed out that Jordan were rubbish for flying wheels and maybe FI inherited it. I think he did anyway, sorry Ned if I dreamt that!

    #147245
    Avatar of damonsmedley
    damonsmedley
    Participant

    The tethers are built into the suspension, so if the wheel just falls off, then the tether is useless. Nothing will ever be able to stop wheels coming off in these instances.

    #147246

    Flippin’ wheel tethers – how do they work?

    I suppose unless you’re making them out of diamonds, they’ll always come apart when subjected to the massive forces generated in F1 collisions. They can make them stronger, and they will, but I don’t think we’ll see the end of wheels coming off after certain collisions. Hopefully, they won’t cause any harm when they do.

    #147247
    Avatar of damonsmedley
    damonsmedley
    Participant

    But the tethers aren’t and cannot possibly be designed to catch wheels that aren’t secured on the car properly! They are designed to keep the wheel to the chassis, and if the wheel isn’t coming off the chassis, rather the suspension assembly itself, it is completely bypassing the tethers.

    #147248
    Avatar of Ratboy
    Ratboy
    Keymaster

    Petrovs wheel tether worked if you watch the replay, as already been said its part of the suspension so if the stub axle the wheel is bolted to snaps then the wheel will come off without the suspension being affected.

    Also if the part of the car the tether is bolted to breaks then it’ll still come off

    #147249
    Avatar of Hare
    Hare
    Participant

    Luizzi lost a wheel too. Point is, wheels bouncing around will hit someone in time. Henry Surtees died last year in F2 in the same way. I counted 5 today.

    My personal response to this, is it’s probably the last clear and significant fatal weakness in the F1 car build. By this I mean, neck injuries have been helped a lot by the Hans Device, the monocoque is fantastic these days, fire regulations have helped massively. I don’t believe this isn’t a largely solvable problem, but it will require some significant and maybe radical engineering. This could take some time, however new materials are continuing to appear in this nanotechnological age. It’s got to be worth continuing to pursue, so many of the other real danger areas have been massively improved, it must be possible. Hopefully we don’t see any injuries from in the near future.

    #147250
    Avatar of Ned Flanders
    Ned Flanders
    Participant

    No Steph I did say that, Force India’s tend to shed wheels rather too easily, although all the wheels stayed on the wagon today as I remember.

    The incident that worried me today was Petrov’s, a relatively inocuous looking collision tore both of his rear wheels off. I don’t think wheel tethers are designed to stop wheels sliding off the rim though, so they aren’t to blame for the Rosberg and Kubica indicents

    #147251
    Avatar of Red Andy
    Red Andy
    Participant

    We have this discussion every time someone sheds a wheel in an accident. The wheel tethers are only designed to withstand certain types of forces, often a big accident with lots of shearing forces will break the tethers. Not a lot you can do about that either – an infinitely strong wheel tether (if such a thing existed) would just pull a big chunk out of the monocoque if the accident was big enough.

    Also even if the tethers fail to stop the wheels from flying off, they can at least absorb a lot of the forces involved before breaking, meaning that the wheel’s subsequent bid for freedom is a lot slower and therefore less dangerous.

    #147252
    Avatar of Fer no.65
    Fer no.65
    Participant

    The forces generated at a crash are impossible to avoid.

    The tethers help, but if the car crashes heavily enough, they can do nothing.

    Imagine Kubica’s crash at Montreal 3 years ago. There’s nothing a tether can do in that situation.

    #147253
    Avatar of Ned Flanders
    Ned Flanders
    Participant

    “(Tethers) can at least absorb a lot of the forces involved before breaking, meaning that the wheel’s subsequent bid for freedom is a lot slower and therefore less dangerous.”

    Yes, that’s a good point that tends to go ignored

    #147254
    Avatar of James_mc
    James_mc
    Participant

    At the end of the day, as pointed out by others, the stronger you make the wheel-tether-monocoque bond, the greater the likelihood of the monococque breaking.

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