just citation the habit of carbon paper fiber in the context of motorsports and the most common association most individuals will make is with its lightweight properties, along with it ’ second implicit in eminent price. For years, race teams in all forms of car racing have utilized carbon character rather liberally to create lightweight components, resulting in importantly lighter racing vehicles. Of path, that ’ s not to sidestep the fact that carbon fiber is besides a very potent and durable material that can handle the rigors of racing a well as many forms of metals, but in the huge majority of uses, weight is the principle component. It ’ south in the minority of those uses, however, that we discover a place where carbon paper fiber is heralded not for its low mass or high tensile lastingness, but for a couple of its other early distinct properties — excellent hotness tolerance and broken thermal expansion — that have made it a prime option for practice in racing brakes .
nowadays, we ’ ra going in-depth to discuss the use of carbon fiber in brake systems and more specifically, in drag race applications. We ’ ll discus these aforementioned material properties and how they allow for a superior stop force, and we ’ ll do it all with the serve of our estimable friends at Strange Engineering, who produce some of the most popular carbon fiber brake systems on the market to help bring 330 miles per hour rockets, 200 miles per hour radial run down doorslammers, and a wholly batch more to about effortless halts .
not surprisingly, it was the air travel diligence that ushered in the use of carbon-on-carbon brake systems, peculiarly for military and long-haul commercial aircraft. The weight savings was key, as the reduce roll slant allowed for better fuel consumption and, in turn, better locomotive emissions. But their high energy assimilation accompanied with their unbeatable service liveliness justified their high monetary value to the industry. It was for these reasons and more why the engineering subsequently permeated into race, and it would stand to reason that if carbon character brakes could perform to bring more than 400 tons of speeding weight to a stem on a runway, they could do the same for embroil rush vehicles .
Although many of scuff racing ’ randomness fastest and heaviest racing machines trust on a much dim-witted and more pack human body of the same technology used on large aircraft, the principle, and the key advantages, all come to light in the same respect .
According to Strange ’ second engineer team and mastermind Jeff Capek, carbon-carbon parts dwell of a carbon character reinforced with a carbon matrix. This results in a share that ’ second very stable at higher temperatures, allowing it to perform exceptionally well as a brake material, particularly under extreme temperatures where other materials may fade, warp, or experience accelerated wear .
Advantages Of Carbon
As we briefly spoke upon in the last section, there are respective cardinal factors that make carbon-on-carbon brake systems desirable in scuff race applications — and in some cases, a mandatary prerequisite of the sanctioning body in order to compete .
At 200, 250, 300 miles per hour, or even faster, and with half a mile or less to come to a end, braking operation is absolutely overriding. As the sandpaper trap and condom net at the end of the track become larger, it ’ mho no time for brake fade or all-out bankruptcy of the brake system. This is where the operational differences of steel and carbon fiber brakes begin to exhibit themselves .
Carbon character brakes, which utilize both a carbon rotor and brake pad, have far superior high-temperature stability, thermal conduction, and specific heat to steel. To put it merely, where heat is the foe of sword brakes, carbon paper fiber steps up to the plate and performs better as the pads and rotors heat up. And as you can imagine in haul rush applications, brakes heat up quick, particularly if the parachutes fail and the driver must rely entirely on the binders to come to a safe stop .
Carbon-carbon brakes, polar opposite to other common materials like steel and iron, work best under hot conditions. And not fair “ kind of ” hot, but quite, it ’ south in the region of 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit where they in truth begin to work their charming. And despite that level of heat, carbon rotors will not warp, although like all composite materials, the rotors and pads can chip if handled improperly, and can besides begin to oxidize above 700 degrees. For this reason, oxidation protection systems are normally utilized .
amazingly, even with these kinds of operating temperatures, carbon-carbon has no melting compass point. In fact, it has the highest sublimation decimal point ( the transition of a means from the solid to flatulence phase ) of all the elements at a staggering 6,588 degrees Fahrenheit. As such, the hot the carbon fiber gets, the stronger it gets, unlike steel, which gets weaker .
The specific heat of carbon-carbon ( the sum of hotness per unit mass required to raise the temperature by one degree Celsius ), which we mentioned earlier in this section, is twice that of steel, making it a better “ heat sponge ”, as Capek explains it, for brake assemblies. Carbon besides heats up quick and cools quicker than steel because it ’ second one-fourth the concentration of sword ( meaning light in weight ) and is a better heat conductor. So despite it ’ s high-heat properties, carbon-carbon cools much quick .
As one concluding interest fact to note regarding the high-heat properties of carbon fiber : we ’ ve all seen road race and embroil race vehicles with the brakes glowing under hard or elongated application, and you ’ ve credibly wondered at what temperature this phenomenon occurs. According to the information supplied to us, at 896 degrees Fahrenheit, the rotors will begin to exhibit a faint crimson gleam. They will then turn dark red and then a bright bolshevik before turning brilliantly orange at 1,710 degrees and a pale yellow orange at 2,010 degrees. Above 2,550 degrees, the brakes will appear white .
Drag racing teams will semi-regularly replace the carbon paper rotors and pads in their brake systems, but their service life is rather impressive, even following repeated hard-braking episodes. And there ’ s a cause for this .
Steel bracken wear is proportional to the kinetic energy that the brakes absorb. The vehicle weight unit and the degree of braking applications directly reduce the life of steel brakes. Small, inner light applications with ample fourth dimension to cool between applications will increase their utilitarian life. Carbon fiber brake break, on the other pass, correlates to the total number of brake applications. One difficult application will cause less wear than respective smaller applications, and carbon paper is less outhouse to weight and speed than steel. It is, in fact, cold stop, rather than heat, that directly leads to more clothing in carbon-carbon brakes, adenine well .
Density Of Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber material has one-quarter the density of steel, therefore resulting in a a lot lighter share. In the case of Strange Engineering ’ sulfur brake systems, the total weight of their Pro Race Carbon rear brake kits is fair 15 pounds, with the 11-inch rotor tipping the scales at just 3.10 pounds. Their battlefront kit weighs 12 pounds, while a steel kit of the lapp size comes in at 19 pounds. Rotating weight is paramount in the performance equation of a heads-up vehicle, and this reduce system of weights surely adds up, particularly on full-bodied cars carrying both battlefront and rear brake systems.
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last, there ’ s fiddling deny that weight does indeed play a agent. As we ’ ve already alluded to, carbon fiber is one-fourth the density of steel, therefore saving a considerable amount of system of weights in the rotor and pad fortune of a brake assembly. That ’ south surely a winder sell point of carbon fiber brakes. But unlike other components, it ’ s not the only sell luff .
Proper Carbon Brake Application
If you ’ ve never driven a fomite with carbon character brakes before ( and most of us haven ’ thyroxine ), you ’ re probably wondering how best to go about utilizing them. After all, knowing what you nowadays know about carbon brakes and their heat properties, you can probably surmise that there ’ s a difference in how they react compared to steel, and you ’ five hundred be compensate. As Capek explains to us, a potent application, in the event of something like a chute failure, is preferred so arsenic much torsion as possible is realized for optimum stopping world power. With carbon brakes, one firm application results in less clothing than respective smaller applications, and utmost carbon paper brake life can be achieved by using a number of long, moderately firm applications preferably than several light applications .
Strange’s Pro Race Carbon Brakes
strange Engineering ’ second line of carbon fiber bracken systems are one of the most popular setups in the sport, with racers in Top Fuel, Funny Car, the Top Alcohol categories, Pro Stock, Pro Modified, lawless small-tire doorslammers, and many others relying on the them to bring their cars to a dependable diaphragm. And there ’ s a good reason for that, as Strange has poured respective years of R & D and ample fiscal resources into developing a ace intersection over the survive pair of decades, since first introducing their carbon paper brake systems in the 1980 ’ s .
“ We ’ ve done tons of research and development with our carbon paper brake systems that ’ mho led to great benefits for the racers, ” says Strange ’ s JC Cascio. “ We ’ ve worked with several carbon suppliers and race teams to find the right combination of material, including some extensive test in the past with Warren and Kurt Johnson .
“ There are many variations of carbon combinations that can act differently when use together, and so it ’ s truly been about dialing in the right combination of carbon for the market that we ’ rhenium using it in. The time and commitment we ’ ve arrange into these brakes, we feel, sets them apart. ”
There are many variations of carbon combinations that can act differently when use together, and so it ’ second in truth been about dialing in the right combination of carbon paper for the market that we ’ rhenium using it in. – JC Cascio
strange offers four distinct Pro Race Carbon products that are suited to a stove of the sport ’ south faster and heavier race cars. The batting order begins with their 10-inch front brake kit out, which is used on the majority of nitro Funny Cars on down to radial run down doorslammers and the like. Although Cascio tells us that some Funny Car teams have moved to an 11-inch rotor setup on the front, the 10-inch kit has proven to be a solid performer regardless of the vehicle .
Moving to the rear of the car, Strange offers an 11-inch Pro Race back, an 11-inch carbon Sportsman kit, and ultimately, an 11.5-inch live axle frame-up for top Loader rear ends used on top Fuelers and Funny Cars. The latter kit out, according to Cascio, features a slightly slurred rotor to help cope with the 300-plus nautical mile per hour speeds, but is differently the same as the other kits .
These carbon systems are similar in their constitution to their steel counterparts in terms of the calipers, digression from the obvious dispute that these use carbon paper pads and rotors. One dispute you will find is the function of a small titanium estrus shield between the pads and the pistons or an upgrade two-piece, ceramic-coasted piston to isolate the brake fluid and prevent it from boiling in the extreme point high-heat environs of carbon brakes .
strange ’ randomness carbon brake kits besides offer a significant weight savings over comparable steel brakes. strange boasts a 40-percent decrease in weight, and those numbers surely add up when you multiply them by all four corners on the race car. The 10-inch front kits weight in at 12 pounds while the 11-inch Pro Race rear tips the scale at 15 pounds — marking the lightest 11-inch brake kit on the market .
In terms of service life, Cascio shares with us that most racers can and do utilize a single carbon rotor throughout a full season, but will typically replace the pads doubly a year. For doorslammer racers who may alone compete a handful of times a season, this makes for a pretty solid and long-run investment .
Of course, that investment is multi-fold, when you look beyond the lighter weight and the impressive service life. Carbon brake systems like Strange ’ mho Pro Race and Carbon Sportsman provide the safest product one can buy, with matchless stopping performance and dependability thanks to the eliminations of fade, failure, and destruction. Call it a platitude, but it ’ south intemperate to put a price on your own safety. The rest is fair icing on the cake .