04-16-2009, 01:18 AM
Hi, all, I'm split-s, a dedicated aerophile living in Denver.

I'll get the thread rolling with the first four of the above-mentioned "truths" I've come up with so far:

1)If Unlimited racing is to continue in a meaningful way,
a)alternatives to vintage airframes must be found and
b)alternatives to vintage engines must be found.

2)Turboprop engines are an economic alternative to high-displacement recips.

3)Economy of scale must be attained to grow the field of contestants.

4)A field of more-evenly matched contestants would make the races more enjoyable to watch and, ultimately, appeal to a larger audience.

I figure these notions are actually pretty arguable but I'm looking forward to seeing what like-minds come up with.

CAVU. :thumbsup:

First time Juke
04-18-2009, 02:16 AM
Rifght..answer could be here;


04-19-2009, 08:33 PM
Actually, what I had in mind was more like this:



AC more along the lines of the Piper Enforcer would maintain some degree of the martial cache of the vintage Unlimiteds, without which, let's face it, the races as we know them probably won't survive.

04-23-2009, 08:32 AM
The sport class rule change basically renders this argument obsolete.

By dropping the kit rule the future of unlimited air racing is now in the sport class.


05-02-2009, 10:04 PM
Laminar: I don't know what you mean by the "sport class rule change". Sounds like it redefines both "sport" and "Unlimited" out of all recognition.

UNAVOIDABLE TRUTH #5: The military aspect of the Unlimited class is intrinsic to that class' character and essential to its appeal.

05-08-2009, 03:07 PM
I'll throw in some thoughts (i.e. flame bait):

You are correct, the limited number of warbirds and their piston power plants makes the unlimited category, as it stands now, a sinking ship. In addition, the people heavily involved in the class are somewhat to blame for the coming demise. Here is my reasoning...

Most of the work/tinkering that goes on in the unlimited class happens to the engines. Yeah, they may tear the airframe apart and put it back together but nothing compared to the hours spent modifying and tuning the engines. Now if you allowed turbo shafts the few guys who get paid to build and tune engines would be out of work. In addition, the many volunteers would have no reason to hang out tinkering with buddies late into the night.

To further my point (that the engine is the focus of unlimited air racing) look at the people who actually get paid to work on unlimiteds. They all have power plant backgrounds. A couple years ago I talked to a guy who was trying to do aerodynamics for race teams. Not a single unlimited team was interested, much less willing to pay for it.

This is why the class will eventually sink. The parties in charge are not interested in alternative airframes or aerodynamics. Their specialty is the piston engine and that is what they are going to use.

The future is in the sport class:
They are open to changes and many teams focus not only on the engine but put a lot of work into aerodynamics and design. Some already achieve comparable speeds to unlimiteds but without the limited resources associated with them.

Hang on, let me get my nomex undies on,

First time Juke
05-11-2009, 04:50 AM
I agree...

Since Pond Racer, Tsunami and MA II + Orion prop of the BEAR nothing really interesting has happened ( ok on paper...DART ).

Aberle's biplane and NXT OTOH are really new and sporty but in a different class altogether.

Also Mach Buster, Baloney Slicer and Windfire etc are there, but lack funding or a change to race.

Funding makes these byrds go up. They are really really pricy.

Some innovation never intented show up in Reno like.....