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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I also submitted a revision of the whole rules section on roll cages; I have been wanting for years to make this clearer and more readable. My revision was mainly intended to keep the same rules but make them better organized and usable.

I did propose 2 new items:

1) require that bolt-in cages be mounted to weld-in plates in unibody cars (backup plates would still be allowed if mounting to a frame member); I think this is a big improvement in bolt-in cage safety. I tried to write it so that only the weld-in plates would be needed and existing bolt-in cages could be kept with this change. Proposed effective date would be Jan 1, 2004.
2) Specify maximum lenghts on the diagonal bars being places beside the occupants' heads (between main hoop uprigthts and the tube over the doors). I am concerned that we may be creating an unseen head injury problem. I am no expert here so discussion on this would be good.

This proposal is a 7 page Word document so it too long to post in a message. I will email this to whoever emials me for a copy. And, if someone would be so kind to help me, it could be linked here. (I am proud that I am so ignorant to not be able to do this; John V. you modern weenie! :7 )

I am open to creating an alternate proposal to make our cages compatible with those from the frozen northern lands. I first wanted to create a good framework to replace what we have.

Again, this message is a courtesy to my many friends here on this Forum. Please let the PRB go through their process on this and use this to study and think on this issue, so we can have ourselves well sorted and organized when they open this issue for comment, if it gets that far!

Regards,
Mark B. :)
 

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I haven't read your proposal and since I am not qualified to design cages I am not going to read it. I must take exception to the one point you mention in your post. Limiting the length of the diagonal between the upper door bar and the main hoop can severely limit design choices by those so qualified. Every Rally accident is different, angles of impact, speeds, impacted objects, etc. I think the rules must specify the minimum acceptable but leave freedom for those wishing to enhance their cages. As for the question of head impact, it is 50/50 depending on the accident. I once hit sideways so hard that my head hit the tree. I think a well padded diagonal bar would have hurt less and my neck certainly would have felt better. Again, whait is good in one accident may hurt in another. I think it is far too complex to legislate and that, lacking clear and compelling evidence, each competitor should be allowed their own discretion.

Greg Gilfeather
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi Greg,

Well on the diagonal bar issue, I don't know the right answer either, and that is why I am raising the question. Your point on the bar saving your head from going out the window is a point I expected to be rasied, and it is a very good point. But, other racing venues solve this problem by helmet restraint straps or window nets requirements. If they do this, maybe they know something I don't know about these bars being beside one's helmet. And, I do belive the real intent of these diagonals is strengthening the joint between the main hoop and tubes over the windows to prevent separation and add some crush resistance in that area, not head restraint. If head restraint is an added function, then it needs to be done the right way (if there IS a right way) and not create a new problem.

I want to know the best answer here and do the best thing for safety, and so I don't care what the actual answer is. If there is a safety issue with this , then we sould make an attempt to make sure that folks don't do the wrong thing out of not knowing any better. ("not knowing any better": seems like tht was the main theme of my early car building days! :7 )

Regards, and thanks very much for taking the time and interest here,
Mark Bowers :)
 

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>I haven't read your proposal and since I am not qualified to
>design cages I am not going to read it. I must take
>exception to the one point you mention in your post.
>Limiting the length of the diagonal between the upper door
>bar and the main hoop can severely limit design choices by
>those so qualified. Every Rally accident is different,
>angles of impact, speeds, impacted objects, etc. I think the
>rules must specify the minimum acceptable but leave freedom
>for those wishing to enhance their cages. As for the
>question of head impact, it is 50/50 depending on the
>accident. I once hit sideways so hard that my head hit the
>tree. I think a well padded diagonal bar would have hurt
>less and my neck certainly would have felt better. Again,
>whait is good in one accident may hurt in another. I think
>it is far too complex to legislate and that, lacking clear
>and compelling evidence, each competitor should be allowed
>their own discretion.
>
>Greg Gilfeather

As it is written - without a limit - the diagonal could go from the door bar to the top of the A-pillar. Imagine tech inspection: Scrutineer - You can't do that! Cage builder - There's nothing in the rulebook that says I can't, besides it's safer/stiffer/cooler/etc. Scrutineer - But you can't get out!

The FIA limits the distance from the rear of the door aperture to the front of the diagonal to 250 mm and the distance from the top of the aperture to the bottom of the diagonal to 300 mm most likely so access is still reasonable. For a drawing see http://www.fia.com/regle/reg_tec/Annexes_J-planches/P06.pdf and for the rules see http://www.fia.com/regle/REG_TEC/Annexes_J-textes/253(02-03)-a.pdf page 4 about 1/3 down.

Randy,
Thanks for posting Mark's paper.

Mark,
Thanks for spending all the time on it. I prefer the FIA limits on the diagonal size, but we do need some numbers in the rulebook for things like this and roll cage mounting pad size.

Tom Bier
 

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I don't beleive the bar is ever in that location specifically for lateral helmet control. As you pointed out there are better ways to accomplish helmet control. I'm merely pointing out that in addition to it's primary function, if properly padded, it doesn't seem to be any more dangerous than not having a bar in that location. I agree that concerns about ingress/egress and possible contact with the lower portion of the face and or neck might be areas of concern that could be addressed.
 

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Get rid of bolt ins. They are not worth the money or the risk.
Whiplash RallyeSport
 

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Was the SCCA's cage study of 2(?) years ago ever released to the
membership? I recall this right at the end of the past presidents
tenure and it created some HORRIBLE arguments at a few places I
was at for road racing due to the secrecy, at the time, of the study
results. These involved cendiv politic'ers (it was election time)
running for office arguing with a couple BoD members. It was
VERY ugly.

Just wondering.

Ed
 
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