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Old 12-12-2002, 11:45 PM
  #181
Tom
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Quote:
Sadler took a moment to describe how Hutchens' device functions:

"It's a device that straps around your waist, and straps around your chest, and it comes up your back and hooks to helmet," Sadler said. "And then it comes under you, and you sit on it and it hooks to your lap belt. It comes up under your butt and you sit on it, and it hooks to your lap belt."

The nature of harness is much different than the HANS device, which uses a neck brace and tethers to hold the head in position upon impact. Hutchens' device holds the head and neck in place by utilizing the car's seat belts.

"When you hit a wall in one of these racecars, the first thing your body does is go down in the seat," Sadler said. "You go down and then it throws your head forward. What this lap belt does, if you try to go down, it tightens up on the lap belt and pulls your head back. So there's no possible way your head can more forward."

Sadler feels there is no comparison between the two.

"(This device has) so much advantage to the HANS because the HANS has your shoulders and your head tied down so much, so you can't move under racing conditions.

"I wore one in Happy Hour here at Rockingham. You can't even tell you have one on under racing conditions, and I really came in one time and tried to slam my head forward and it really locked in there like it's supposed to. You can move your head side to side all you want, so you have peripheral vision."

"This is a huge step from where we were," Sadler continued. "The way they've got it hooked to the belt it can't come loose. It won't ride up, and can't come loose cause it's hooked to the lap belt."
Quote:
The HANS device is a semi-hard collar made of carbon fiber and Kevlar, and it is held onto the upper body by a harness worn by the driver. Two flexible tethers on the collar are attached to the helmet to prevent the head from snapping forward or to the side during a wreck. The device weighs approximately 1.5 pounds (0.68 kg).
click this for Hans device link

click this for Hutchins device
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Old 12-13-2002, 12:14 AM
  #182
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Hey guys,

I've been using the HANS device in our Unlimited for 2 seasons now and can't say enough good about it's effectiveness. The newer style has quick release lanyards and you're out of it in virtually a second. The early styles were bulky with quite a contraption over your shoulders. That's not the case anymore.
They only work with a 5 point restraint harness. The shoulder belts are what hold the HANS in place. Powerboat Magazine may have a couple of pictures of one in the next months issue. Even without an accident the restriction on fore to aft neck movement is reduced significantly. The post race day neck stress is virtually eliminated.

Movement is adjusted by the length of the lanyards which also address side to side movement. When properly fitted, you have about 90 degress side to side vision and 2 inches of forward movement. The rear movement is restricted by the back of the device. It's carbon fiber and costs something between $1,200 and $1,600. There are a couple of different styles, from lay down, to semi reclining to NASCAR almost sitting up style.

In an open cockpit boat with restraint systems they might still provide significant protection over the conventional neck collars. However when you're sitting in the open, (no canopy) restrained or not, you're still a sitting duck for hydraulic damage. When that wall of water comes over the deck and hits you head on, there is very little that will save you.

The only death we've experienced in Unlimiteds in the past 21 years occurred in San Diego in 2000. My Colleague George Stratton lost his life in a canopied state of the art boat WITH a restraint system. In this instance, based on various expert opinions it was the strucutral failure of the canopy and resulting hydraulic implosion and facial pressure that took George.

Since his accident, our canopies and framwork structures that support same have been changed. We learned a couple of things:

#1. A canopy is not a canopy merely because it's lexan or some other plastic/composite. Texstar or equivalent is state of the art.

#2. A canopy merely bolted to a deck is little more than a wind deflector. The canopy must be an integral part of an overall safety cage.

#3. Restraint systems (seat belts) must be exceptionally snug about your body whence in a canopy. A human neck will stretch over 4 inches. Thus if your helmet to canopy clearance is less than 4 inches the resulting impact can be lethal.

#4. Any deficiencies in the canopy, aside from mere optical distortion significantly reduces the integrity of the canopy.

#5. A canopy with an opening has less strength than a solid canopy. The best have hatches that are integral to the canopy when closed.

I welcome any of you to visit us at an Unlimited race next season and sit in our cockpit, check out the systems etc.

BTW T2x, our Hydro, being neither a Vee or a Cat, we're ????? Man does that leave it wide open Then again, just to tick off my Friend T2x, we do have steps on our sponsons and undercarriage of the cockpit and the aft "shoes". I'm not certain we're running quicker, but I know it urinates T2x off, and that alone, is deeply satisfying

Good night Chet.
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Old 12-13-2002, 07:22 AM
  #183
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Quote:
Originally posted by SteveDavid
I welcome any of you to visit us at an Unlimited race next season and sit in our cockpit, check out the systems etc.
Great post Steve- I guess I wasn't watching that close at the Gold Cup to see the drivers wearing the device. Might take you up on the above offer next summer though!

Can somebody drag Harry up to a keyboard to get his input on the step hull? We have a lot of the masters here, sure would be great to hear from someone that has been doing the step thing for so long. His design sure works well on the Active Thunder AVH, without a whole lot of weird handling issues. He is presently working with that company on the 28 AVH.
Jim
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Old 12-13-2002, 09:21 AM
  #184
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Quote:
Originally posted by T2x
The bigger problem has to do with the Pleasure/Poker Run crowd who can hardly be expected to wear items such as these...... Even though they, in many cases are going at equally or greater ballistic speeds than today's somewhat de-fanged raceboats.
Armed only with a bikini and a bank account, my fear is that these are the most innocent potential victims of misplaced hull trends. Not necessarily the good ol' boy owners...... rather, the passengers who in many cases are just eager to go for an exciting days recreational jaunt....and are little more than flailing projectiles when things go horribly wrong at a buck and a quarter.

T2x[/B]
Could have not said it better myself.
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Old 12-13-2002, 09:37 AM
  #185
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Tom,

As for the Batboats. The way they stuff is completely different to conventional boats. Going through a wave hardly slows the boat down and I have never heard of an instance when the boat takes a downward angle into the water, as conventional hulls do when they stuff. The constant level attitude of the Ocke Mannerfelt designed boats is main reason why they are so dominant in rough water and have been outlawed in almost every offshore racing class. Simple fact is they run much faster and handle better in rough water - that is what it was designed to do.

Chris Reindl
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:54 AM
  #186
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Chris, Tom and others in canopies:

Should you wish to purchase a HANS device, they are made by Hubbard/Downing, inc. which is located at 5096 Peachtree Road, Atlanta GA 30341.
The fellow to talk with is Ken Adams at 770-457-1046.

Have fun, be safe.

JAFO, good to hear from you, hope you're well and maybe we'll see you at the Miami show? We'll have the Black Thunder fueled and ready to take you and the Mrs. for a fun run. From what Bob Jenkins has said, we'll have an especially cool one for demo rides this year. Newest bottom and cockpit configuration.

Steve
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Old 12-13-2002, 02:58 PM
  #187
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I fully agree with you on the Poker Run crowd. I have been a captain, a racer, and a builder, damn if I'll ever go on a poker run again after just one experience. It made parts of me srivel up and hide
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Old 12-13-2002, 06:51 PM
  #188
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Steve,

Thanks for the info, and hope to see you at the Miami Show as well!

Chris
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Old 12-14-2002, 07:28 PM
  #189
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Steve David:

I love steps............... on Hydros. That's what makes them hydros.
It is steps on top of steps for the sake of steps on vee hulls that I have an issue with.

Your cockpit statements are right on the money and in lockstep with the Lavin Guidelines. Anyone wanting a copy of these guidelines please PM GJL on this website........ They could prevent you from becoming dead......prematurely.

Belated Happy Hanukah and early Merry Christmas to my favorite Unlimited Driver...............whoever that is

T2x
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Old 12-15-2002, 04:54 AM
  #190
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T2x,

Thanks for the Happys and Merrys!

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