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Sweat and anger and shame.
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>Heres another
>doosey...http://www.rally-america.com/pdf/Rule_Bulletin_2006_006.pdf.
>So I have done a Nascar style door bar that maoes it SOOO much
>easier to get in and out of the car AND is safer do to the
>fact that the rear upper part of the "x" is about 20 cm from
>my seat...but now I have to cut it out and put a door pannel
>back in. Why not make the idots that can't cover the sharp
>edge with trim fix thier crappy cars. Seats on sliders are
>still leagal...give me a break...

according to the p/pgt rules "All door panels may be modified for clearance of the roll cage, but all OEM door panels shall be retained." so i don't see why you wouldn't be able to "alter" what door panel you need to in order to still be legal. i have my door panel trimmed around my cage. though i was also hoping on taking all that out.

but i don't make the rules.
 

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>The new fuel cell

........
...If all the conections are are A/N type and
>the cell is supported and protected properely I really can't
>see the benifit to this rule. A poorly desinged cell support
>system is just that...poorly designed and should be rethunked
>anyhoo.

Aero Tech Labs and Fule Safe have both told us directly, that under no circumstance should their products ever be mounted in a closed cockpit without a bulkhead or sealed container (Including the fillers, fittings and connections). Allowing fuel cells to be used in violation of the manufacturers recommendations poses an unacceptable liability risk.

No other major form of racing allows fuel cells to be mounted, unprotected in a closed cockpit area. Deviating from generally accepted racing industry practice poses and unacceptable liability risk.

Every recognized motorports safety expert in the world believes fuel cells chould not be mounted unprotected in a closed cockpit area. Knowingly allowing a practice in contrast to the directives of recognized safety experts poses an unacceptable liability risk.

When a sanctioning body has a rule, or allows a practice not backed up by an industry standard (SFI or FIA), or by generally accepted industry practice, we expose ourselves to "strict" or "direct" liability. It is a legally indefensible position, because we would be alone in our opinion that the practice or rule is acceptable, and a plantiff could quote the rest of the racing and safety industry as saying the rule or practice is unacceptable.


>
>Heres another
>doosey...http://www.rally-america.com/pdf/Rule_Bulletin_2006_006.pdf.
>So I have done a Nascar style door bar that maoes it SOOO much
>easier to get in and out of the car AND is safer do to the
>fact that the rear upper part of the "x" is about 20 cm from
>my seat...but now I have to cut it out and put a door pannel
>back in. Why not make the idots that can't cover the sharp
>edge with trim fix thier crappy cars. Seats on sliders are
>still leagal...give me a break...WE ARE MAKING RULES TO
>ACCOMODATE AND FACILITATE THE LOWEST COMMON FACTORS OF HUMAN
>BEINGS!
>
>
>
>Rem and Pamela Wyatt

Are these your "Nascar" door bars?! :
http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/rembert/detail?.dir=de59&.dnm=3112.jpg&.src=ph

In the case where the door is hollow, and the bars curve into the door (legal but not recommended), then the only sharp edge on the door that needs a panel or protection is the top edge of the cut opening, below the window.
 

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> How would someone
>construct such a thing in a hatchback like a Golf without
>sacrificing the entire rear area (if that is where the cell
>is) or entire area behind the seats (if the cell is in the
>middle of the car).

Go to http://www.improvedtouring.com/ and ask the road racing VW guys there. We've been required to have a bulkhead between fuel cell and driver compartment for at least two or three decades... Personally I wouldn't want to have my fuel cell in the same area as I'm sitting. Ever see the video of Dale Earnhardt Jr. in his ALMS Corvette? Fuel cells reduce, but don't eliminate the chance of explosive fires, no matter how well they're installed.


Nick Polimeni
nick*at*odysseyhouseonline.com
www.odysseyhouseonline.com
www.hrm-usa.com

"YOUR TOAST HAS BEEN BURNT! AND NO AMOUNT OF SCRAPING WILL REMOVE THE BLACK PARTS!!"
 

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Well maybe MY understanding of a bulkhead may be different...I have seen several IT cars, Prod cars, etc that hace the cell in "its" bulkheaded casing and that is all between the driver and the cell. If the manufacturers recommend that why was ever allowed? There are lots of logbooked FIA cars out there that have a similar set up to mine. This rule change seems to me to be one that will affect LOTS of cars. Now I agree that having a fuel cell in compartment occupied by the passengers has dangers, but if the mounting is designed properly and the cell is protected should not be a problem. I understand the manufacturers angle...they are writting thier "reccomendations" for the lowest common denominator...the idiot that ties the cell in with bungees and uses rubber hose and hose clamps. If we follow the "recomendations" then the rally tires we all race on will ONLY be used for "off highway"or "competition use only", right? Which means not for use when on a transit (seems right, the tires could heat up too much due to added friction from the asphalt). Also we would not be allowed to wear headsets on tranists...THAT IS ILLEAGAL EVERYWHERE...is that enforced by Rally America? Golly there are SOOO many recomendations that aren't followed or laws that are broken where would we even begin to get this all straightened out???!!!

I know...I am maybe going overboard...but the point is where does it all stop. I truely do understand the dangers of having the cell in the compartment...but for me it seems that blocking an egress route and rear vision also has it's dangers. And ANY comparison to a track car and a rally car are really a waste of time. I looked online for some solutions, but if anyone has some links I would love to seem them. I have @ 1 month to get ALL this addresed as well as the trans that "pooped the bed".

As far as my door skins go if I "trimmed" the skins there would nothing left. Also my door bars go all the way to edge to the outer skin of the door with vertical attatchments from the "x" to the sill bar. Again why not just cover the sharp edge with an "anti-sharp edge" material? Seems real simple to me. I covered mine with old-school door trim...works GREAT

Rem and Pamela Wyatt
Rally West Racing
Thanks to:
Ivo @ Renner Motorsport (Ingle-hood)310-673-8492
Joe @ Eastside Muffler (Palmdale) 661-267-2648
John @ Big Johns Tire (Valencia) 661-254-1611
Car #406
85 GTI (Ver. 1.6)
[url=http://photos.yahoo.com/rembert
 

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The more I look into this the more it really does not make any sense at all. What about shell deformation? Lexan as stated by Mr. Hurst could be used on the upper prtion of the bulkhead in the R/A forums is NOT fireproof at all. I think filler necks extensions are a JOKE and should not be allowed. I like filling directly to the cell eventhough it is a PIA.

The benifits for using a fuel cell are that it is far easier to overcome fuel sloshing/starvation, use aftermarket pumps that are far more reliable, relocate the pumps and filters to a safer location. As on VW the stock has an internal "lift" pump the feeds a main pump by way of a serge can and filter. This apparatus all hangs under the car with fragile plastic conections AND the older VW run 90 PSI from that local to the engine bay. Seems to me like this is quite dangerous if one of the tiny plastic connections were to fail in a wreck. There would 90 psi misting in the air right near the hot exhaust. Eventhough it is outside the car, it would be UGLY. Maybe we should inpsect EVERY potential rally car and check the fuel system integrity.

ALSO Mr. Hurst states in the R/A forums that a bulkhead fitting is not needed on the fuel bulkhead...if any place THAT IS THE EXACT PLACE IT SHOULD BE USED.

Wow-wee!

Rem and Pamela Wyatt
Rally West Racing
Thanks to:
Ivo @ Renner Motorsport (Ingle-hood)310-673-8492
Joe @ Eastside Muffler (Palmdale) 661-267-2648
John @ Big Johns Tire (Valencia) 661-254-1611
Car #406
85 GTI (Ver. 1.6)
[url=http://photos.yahoo.com/rembert
 

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Hundreds of IT racers, many with Golfs, have figured out how to put a fuel cell in a sealed box...They're not any smarter than us.

A Bulkhead fitting is more likely to leak than a hose passing through a grommet.

If you have a fuel leak or fire outside the cockpit, you'll probably have a chance to get out. If you have a fuel fire inside the cockpit, your going to get burned, period.

There's no guarantee of any part of a car remaning structurally sound after an accident. We're making changes based on common sense, generally accepted practice, and the advice of safety experts and the fuel cell manufacturers.

Racing is dangerous, and we have no illusions about being able to prevent death or injury, this may sound cold, but part of our job is to insure that, in the event of a tragedy, the sport can continue without you.

If you claim to know better, so be it.
 

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I am just trying to picture a way to build it and still allow acces to the tire, tools, not be in the way of the harness, and still meet the letter of the rule. If you have any pictures that would help greratly for me...I am a visual person!

Thanks

Rem and Pamela Wyatt
Rally West Racing
Thanks to:
Ivo @ Renner Motorsport (Ingle-hood)310-673-8492
Joe @ Eastside Muffler (Palmdale) 661-267-2648
John @ Big Johns Tire (Valencia) 661-254-1611
Car #406
85 GTI (Ver. 1.6)
[url=http://photos.yahoo.com/rembert
 

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>And ANY comparison to a track car and a rally car are
>really a waste of time.

I've built both in my shop. Only the details of how they are assembled are differant. For instance, my ITB Volvo has 880lb front springs, which you'd never see on a rally car. :) In both cases you're taking a former street car, and making it into a competition vehicle. You may have to change or adapt some things but the principal is the same. Things like a bulkhead around the fuel cell is something that is directly transferable. Go ask on the forums I suggested, there are plenty of people over there who love to hear themselves talk, (just like over here) and you will have ample reference material before the week is over... I think they even have a sub-forum entirely for VW's.


Nick Polimeni
nick*at*odysseyhouseonline.com
www.odysseyhouseonline.com
www.hrm-usa.com

"YOUR TOAST HAS BEEN BURNT! AND NO AMOUNT OF SCRAPING WILL REMOVE THE BLACK PARTS!!"
 

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>
>Aero Tech Labs and Fule Safe have both told us directly, that
>under no circumstance should their products ever be mounted in
>a closed cockpit without a bulkhead or sealed container
>(Including the fillers, fittings and connections). Allowing
>fuel cells to be used in violation of the manufacturers
>recommendations poses an unacceptable liability risk.
>
>No other major form of racing allows fuel cells to be mounted,
>unprotected in a closed cockpit area. Deviating from generally
>accepted racing industry practice poses and unacceptable
>liability risk.
>
>Every recognized motorports safety expert in the world
>believes fuel cells chould not be mounted unprotected in a
>closed cockpit area. Knowingly allowing a practice in contrast
>to the directives of recognized safety experts poses an
>unacceptable liability risk.

Here's some fuel cells:
[http://www.racerpartswholesale.com/images/custcell.jpg]


another:
[http://www.racerpartswholesale.com/images/dragrace.jpg]

another:
ttp://www.fuelsafe.com/images/custom_DSC_0053.jpg


And here is what has been accepted for years by FIA, Svenskabilsport Förbundet, OMK, FFA, RACMSA etc etc etc, as the fire proof bulkhead:
[http://www.behrents.com/Merchant2/graphics/en-US/graphics/00000001/FUESC122B-lrg.jpg]
Here's a well known car done with the cell separated by an allmetal separtion:
[http://www.jvab.f4.ca/EscortCageII.jpg]
>
>
 

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>Hundreds of IT racers, many with Golfs, have figured out how
>to put a fuel cell in a sealed box...They're not any smarter
>than us.

I'm confused. I've always been told that the "fuel cell" is a plastic/fiberglass tank, nothing more. 99% of the time when you order your fuel cell you also get a steel or aluminum "can" that encloses the plastic cell. Does this can constitute a RA approved "sealed box", or does the fuel cell go into the can, which in turn must be sealed off by another box or partition?

Dennis Martin
[email protected]
920-432-4845
 

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Opel is a 4-letter word...
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Regarding rule #2006-009, which states only unleaded fuel with no MTBE.

In my part of the country anyway, we can't buy pump gas without MTBE. Does this mean that my car HAS to run $6 per gallon unleaded racing fuel rather than 93 octane pump gas which it's more than happy burning? I don't have a high enough compression ratio or enough mods to warrant the higher octane, so any perceived advantage from the oxygen content of MTBE is really a moot point.

Bob
 

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>>Hundreds of IT racers, many with Golfs, have figured out
>how
>>to put a fuel cell in a sealed box...They're not any smarter
>>than us.
>
>I'm confused. I've always been told that the "fuel cell" is a
>plastic/fiberglass tank, nothing more. 99% of the time when
>you order your fuel cell you also get a steel or aluminum
>"can" that encloses the plastic cell. Does this can
>constitute a RA approved "sealed box", or does the fuel cell
>go into the can,

That's what the photos I posted was attempting to illustrate and the 20 years of precedent would leave me believing.

which in turn must be sealed off by another
>box or partition?

and that into a 3/8" steel box with 5" concrete revetments?

>
>Dennis Martin
>[email protected]
>920-432-4845






John Vanlandingham
Seattle, WA. 98168

janvanvurpa (at) f4 (dot) ca

Vive le Prole-le-ralliat!
Vive Le Groupe F!
 

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>Regarding rule #2006-009, which states only unleaded fuel
>with no MTBE.
>
>In my part of the country anyway, we can't buy pump gas
>without MTBE. Does this mean that my car HAS to run $6 per
>gallon unleaded racing fuel rather than 93 octane pump gas
>which it's more than happy burning? I don't have a high enough
>compression ratio or enough mods to warrant the higher octane,
>so any perceived advantage from the oxygen content of MTBE is
>really a moot point.
>
>Bob

Status of State MTBE Bans 3/27/03

Legislation that would ban or restrict the use of MTBE in gasoline has already been passed in 16 States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, South Dakota, and Washington.In addition, Maine has passed legislation that contains a goal of phasing out MTBE.Of these States, only five currently rely on MTBE (California, Connecticut, Kentucky, Missouri, and New York); together, they account for approximately 45 percent of the Nation’s MTBE consumption.Table 1 provides a summary of these State MTBE bans.


http://www.eia.doe.gov/oiaf/servicerpt/mtbeban/table1.html


There still may be some "contains MTBE" stickers left on the pumps, but I doubt there's any coming out.
 

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>>Hundreds of IT racers, many with Golfs, have figured out
>how
>>to put a fuel cell in a sealed box...They're not any smarter
>>than us.
>
>I'm confused. I've always been told that the "fuel cell" is a
>plastic/fiberglass tank, nothing more. 99% of the time when
>you order your fuel cell you also get a steel or aluminum
>"can" that encloses the plastic cell. Does this can
>constitute a RA approved "sealed box", or does the fuel cell
>go into the can, which in turn must be sealed off by another
>box or partition?

That is my question precisely. I have the supplied metal container around my cell...but this rule seems, by my reading of the rule and from the discussions here and at R/A Forums, that there needs to be a barrier or container in addition to the metal container commonly used in a fuel cell setup. I hope that is not the case. I can't picture a single rally car that uses a cell and does not use the commonly supplied metal casing.

Thanks
>
>Dennis Martin
>[email protected]
>920-432-4845


Rem and Pamela Wyatt
Rally West Racing
Thanks to:
Ivo @ Renner Motorsport (Ingle-hood)310-673-8492
Joe @ Eastside Muffler (Palmdale) 661-267-2648
John @ Big Johns Tire (Valencia) 661-254-1611
Car #406
85 GTI (Ver. 1.6)
[url=http://photos.yahoo.com/rembert
 

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If you peruse the FIA website enough you'll find the FIA standards are for the bladder , the soft part. The can is used to hold the bladder, nothing more. The FIA rules state simply the fuel cell has to be mounted in the luggage compartment or original location. Nothing about the back seat location.

FIA also requires a way to contain and evacuate spillage, requires a guarantee no fuel can be spilled inside a compartment, requires if the filler is in the car it must have liquid tight protection from the occupants. This last one seals the deal. IF the can were considered a fireproof bulk head (it's not) you still can't have the fill exposed to the inside of the car. The fill cannot be mounted on an outside panel. Then FIA says a bladder is good for 5 years, may be re-certified after inspection by the manufacturer for only 2 more years.

Neither ATL or Fuel Safe advertise the cans as fireproof or liquid proof, they are just a way to contain the fuel bladder.In fact they say if the cell can nget wet it should have drain holes drilled in it to keep water from rusting the can and degrading the bladder. Looking back a few years, I was a SCCA National scrutineer when this was an issue . The fast guys then were all in hatchbacks..Audi, 323s and so on. The fuel cells were illegal then also...but with racers in charge of the show it was allowed to call the can a legal bulkhead..wink, elbow nudge, good old boys.

This isn't just Mike Hurst and RA being difficult, NASA and FIA hold the same view. This is the way it is. Because it was done improperly before is no reason to continue the practice. Neanderthals used to hunt grizzlies with sticks, you can still find grizzlies...

As an aside I was in a propane explosion many years ago, 2nd & 3rd degree burns on arms, neck and parts of face. You've never lived until you've seen the skin on your arms hanging off in strings, wait until they remove the rest of the burned skin , it gets pulled off with forcips, then once you come out of the shock and ICU weeks later, you get to have bandagse for months and months. The slightest bump will break open the new growing skin. Normal room temp is painful, infection a constant worry, scarring a quarantee. No fun to had with burns.

Install the fuel cell right, keep the firesuit free of grease, oil and especially gas. You want to set the world on fire..not yourself.

Gene McCullough
Olympus Chief Scrutineer
 

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> If you peruse the FIA website enough you'll find the FIA
>standards are for the bladder , the soft part. The can is used
>to hold the bladder, nothing more. The FIA rules state simply
>the fuel cell has to be mounted in the luggage compartment or
>original location. Nothing about the back seat location.

I am not aware of anybody saying they wanted to have the cell in the back seat.
I _strongly_ advise folks to put the cell where studies have shown to be the absolute safest place: between the rear shock/strut towers.
I have seen little innocent little SAABs tailended by city busses bending the car 20* at the rear axle, and fuel tank was no just safe, it came out and was reusable.
>
>FIA also requires a way to contain and evacuate spillage,
>requires a guarantee no fuel can be spilled inside a
>compartment, requires if the filler is in the car it must have
>liquid tight protection from the occupants. This last one
>seals the deal. IF the can were considered a fireproof bulk
>head (it's not) you still can't have the fill exposed to the
>inside of the car. The fill cannot be mounted on an outside
>panel. Then FIA says a bladder is good for 5 years, may be
>re-certified after inspection by the manufacturer for only 2
>more years.

Too many points all in one paragraph that _Could_ be discussed point by point, I will try and find actual examples of what the specifics mean and how they are dealt with.
>
>Neither ATL or Fuel Safe advertise the cans as fireproof or
>liquid proof, they are just a way to contain the fuel
>bladder.In fact they say if the cell can nget wet it should
>have drain holes drilled in it to keep water from rusting the
>can and degrading the bladder. Looking back a few years, I was
>a SCCA National scrutineer when this was an issue . The fast
>guys then were all in hatchbacks..Audi, 323s and so on. The
>fuel cells were illegal then also...but with racers in charge
>of the show it was allowed to call the can a legal
>bulkhead..wink, elbow nudge, good old boys.

Yep and I've been looking at club, National and works cars and have seen how things are done, and APPROVED
>
>This isn't just Mike Hurst and RA being difficult, NASA and
>FIA hold the same view. This is the way it is. Because it was
>done improperly before is no reason to continue the practice.
>Neanderthals used to hunt grizzlies with sticks, you can still
>find grizzlies...

Not to be meaqn Gene, but in the 15 or so years you've been away, some were regularly looking at works cars for methods and techniques, and ideas.
>
>As an aside I was in a propane explosion many years ago, 2nd &
>3rd degree burns on arms, neck and parts of face. You've never
>lived until you've seen the skin on your arms hanging off in
>strings, wait until they remove the rest of the burned skin ,
>it gets pulled off with forcips, then once you come out of the
>shock and ICU weeks later, you get to have bandagse for months
>and months. The slightest bump will break open the new growing
>skin. Normal room temp is painful, infection a constant worry,
>scarring a quarantee. No fun to had with burns.

I'll show you my lower left leg which was drenched in gas and lit off.
Knee to ankle burned to complete ratsh!t, and _I_ pulled the skin and charred broiled meat off. One month in DeWitt Army Hospital's acute burn ward fighting bad gangrene----heavy opiates---one year in wheelchair and crutches.
The worst was KNOWING that the leg had been signed away, permission given to carve it off, and it was only the every two hour blood test monitoring the level of infection in the bloodstream which kept the leg attached.

I do not take fires (and other injuries---2 more years+ on crutches before 30) lightly.
I do take precedent and reality seriously.

>Gene McCullough
>Olympus Chief Scrutineer






John Vanlandingham
Seattle, WA. 98168

janvanvurpa (at) f4 (dot) ca

Vive le Prole-le-ralliat!
Vive Le Groupe F!
 

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Mr. Hurst...Is the metal container commonly used in a "fuel cell" installation and pictured in the photos posted by JVL in this post a R/A legal fireproof bulkhead? I want to cut to the chase here. If it is not I want and demand definitive answers to what will be considered (per your quote) fire proof and fuel proof. I am quite concerned that that a true bulkhead that runs from ceiling to floor in a hatchback with a Lexan window for LEGAL rear visibilty will deform and loose its ability to contain the fire or the fuel. I am also concerned that the deformation will also make the "gromet" pass throughs that you allow also allow fuel and pass through. I am also concerned that the bulkhead will greatly limit egress from the car if the car were pinned between trees or upside down in a ditch with the side of the car againt the sides of the ditch (been there). I also feel that requiring threaded bulkhead fittings at the engine firewall and not at the fuel cell bulkhead is illogical and I would like an explination and clarification so that any scruitineer will have the same answer as to that components legality under the new rule.

I appreciate the fact that getting burned is a serious and potentially life threatening possibility and I sympathise with those that have experienced that first hand. I do not appreciate everyone sharing their experiences here. We all have our war stories. I am concerned however that the new rules are not really addressing the real issues and posiblly creating some ancillary dangers at the same time. No bulkhead will save anyone if the cell is not mounted and protected properly in the first place.

I really appreciate your clarification on this matter as I feel that there are many of us that will benefit from your answers.

Rem and Pamela Wyatt
Rally West Racing
Thanks to:
Ivo @ Renner Motorsport (Ingle-hood)310-673-8492
Joe @ Eastside Muffler (Palmdale) 661-267-2648
John @ Big Johns Tire (Valencia) 661-254-1611
Car #406
85 GTI (Ver. 1.6)
[url=http://photos.yahoo.com/rembert
 

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I don't understand what is so complicated about making a bulk head that contains the fuel cell in a hatchback, or for any other car. I didn't see anywhere that says it must go from floor board to ROOF. Why not go from the floor right in front of the fuel cell to the height of the fuel cell, plus whatever you need for the filler neck; Then go straight back, creating a nice large flat space to mount all kinds of goodies, or a big sticker that says "Look Ma, no stupid lexan window inside my car".

You could run a filler neck to the rear quarter, or just put a trap door in the bulkhead and fill the cell directly.

Gabe "maybe I'm missing something" Pari

- Where we make everything but money
 
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