BangShift Question Of The Day: Who’s Going To Invent A Quick Way To Dry A Drag Strip? How?

BangShift Question Of The Day: Who’s Going To Invent A Quick Way To Dry A Drag Strip? How?

So as I was sitting there, lamenting our luck that the rain was falling at New England Dragway on Sunday at the NHRA New England Nationals, my mind wandered to the one place it always does in these situations. That’s of course to the topic at hand. Why has no one invented a better mouse trap when it comes to drying a drag strip? The NASCAR guys have their Air Titan and it works boss for them. Most people do not know but NHRA actually tested the Air Titan during some rain we had earlier this year. It is really not that great for a drag strip because there is no where for the water to be blown like it can be down a banked stock car track. It was a valiant try.

Right now the two options are physical removal with stuff like squeegees and wind or evaporation via the insanely expensive option of running a jet dryer. Yes, the dryers work but they rack up fuel bills that would make any track operator cry in his beer for every hour that they run.

There have been all kinds of schemes dreamed up from taping style systems, a covered drag strip, and even force fields of some sort have been bandied about by the more sci-fi minded among the drag racing populous. There’s gotta be a better way than what we’re doing now, right? What is it? How could it be implemented? This could truly change the sport forever.

BangShift Question Of The Day: Who’s Going To Invent A Quick Way To Dry A Drag Strip? How?


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32 thoughts on “BangShift Question Of The Day: Who’s Going To Invent A Quick Way To Dry A Drag Strip? How?

  1. Garry

    When you don’t want shit in your pool you put a cover on it. When you don’t want the pool on your shit I don’t know what to tell you.

  2. Crazy

    I question the NHRA testing the Nascar air titan , as most nascar tracks are banked and there is no where for the water to go as the inner wall doesn’t have drains,, and the front straight, would only put it all on the pit lane if it when through holes in the wall..

    The NASCAR air titan system has the blower truck, a VACUUM truck.. and then a jet drier truck if needed..

    Maybe the NHRA should look at how the Rednecks do it, again..

    1. Crazy

      Heck even using just the air titan water pushing to one side truck and then a warehouse floor washing machine to suck up the water..

      Clearly the NHRA hasn’t really put any thought into this..

      1. Crazy

        or use the tractor at the track,, a strong pump to start, and a vacuum to get the last of it, a squeegee to collect the water. Then put a tank on an axle behind the tractor on wheels..

        There is 3.. easy answers… This one is small enough, low cost enough that most tracks could afford to have it, for all racing not just the pro show.

        1. Crazy

          Isn’t it sad that college edumecated people can’t think like this..
          Sometimes engineers/etc over think things.
          There is something to be said about keeping it K.I.S.S..

  3. Dave

    Never understood why they can’t cover it when it starts raining and/or have a huge vacuum.

    1. Crazy

      THEY COULD BUT THEY DON’T HONESTLY CARE,, or didn’t but now might as they can’t fill the latters or stands..

      No skin off their backs if the race is run on Monday. or can’t be run at all because of permit limits..
      As the tickets have no refund if the fan can’t be there on a Monday..

        1. crazy

          Why because I’m right!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          the track drying is so simple, yet they have not bothered, or they have a way to do it..

          a simple tow behind tractor(you know the one that pulls the rubber around to clean the track) unit with a squeegee a pump and a vacuum , pump for the 98% of it, then a vacuum the last of it..
          The equipment has been avail for a few decades… so what is the hold up..
          the 10 grand it cost to build it..

          heck a floor washing machine that the person sits on(used in most warehouses),,, towing a tank behind it.. could do it.. it need a tank as the track is a tad large for the on board tank..

          So, BRIAN… WHY DO I NEED MED’s…
          Is it because it is so ,simple, that you should’ve been able to thing of it…

          1. crazy

            heck the tractor PTO could run the pump and vacuum…

            no need for an outside power source..

            but I’m just a fool of my med right Brian..

          2. Loren

            Go do it, if you’re right you’ll make a million dollars. Really. We know talk’s cheap, it’s hard to say what delusion is worth.

            I’m sure if you were to take a microscopic look at an asphalt or even concrete track surface you’d find it pretty rough, porous, even w/ the rubber coating, not like a smooth warehouse floor. No type of squeegee scheme is going to work with that, you’d get a few gallons of water but not solve the problem. If there were a better way besides hot dry air to get the last bit of moisture out of stuff, the clothes-dryer makers would have been using it long ago. Of-course, hot dry air is expensive, especially when you’re having to make it out of cold wet air, and a race track is a lot of area to dry, but the only way you’re going to beat mother nature is match her power-for-power.

            Wet weather has ruined a lot of shows over the years. So it goes.

        2. crazy

          Loren , design something that has been avail for decades?? how is that going to make me, or anyone else a millionaire ?? More like in the poor house from a copyright/patern suit.

          1. crazy

            no squeegee scheme would work,,? guess someone should tell the circle track red necks.. cause they didn’t get the memo

  4. DAVE

    Yes a vacum truck seekonk speedway has one or had on that was an old miltary unit I belive that thing would suck the shoes off you feet if you got to close.on pass was dry

  5. Matt Cramer

    I think the key here is to add a place for the water to go, without compromising safety (e.g. Armaco barriers have no place on a dragstrip, and no drainage ditches inside the barriers). Maybe drainage ditches on the outside, with holes running under the concrete barriers. Then use the tractor to drag a giant V-shaped squeegee the whole width of the strip and shove the water through the holes under the barrier.

  6. Chevy Hatin' Mad Geordie

    I can remember Santa Pod Raceway in England using a jet engine with downward-mounted nozzles mounted on a truck as a strip-dryer. With our changeable weather it worked a treat and also heated the strip to increase traction.

  7. Brendan M

    I hate to be the one to state the obvious, but has anyone heard of Rain X? Duh!!!

  8. 69rrboy

    Always wondered why they couldn’t just use technology that already exists and just adapt it to the problem.

    As in, isn’t there a way to basically attach something to the top of the wall(or just over the side) on one side of the track that could be pulled out and attached to the wall on the other side of the track. Just like the awning on the side of an RV only waterproof(obviously) and made out of some kinda durable material that didn’t weigh a million pounds.

    They could make them in 25-50 foot sections and the average starting line crew should be able to finish the job in a short amount of time.

    They could have it humped up in the middle so it would drain off the sides Most tracks I’ve seen have some kinda drainage system near the walls anyway.

    Then when it’s dry they would retract back into their holders and there would be minimum amounts of clean up left to do before they could go back to racing.

    Maybe I should patent the system before I post this huh?? Hmmmm….

  9. Gump

    I don\’t think VHT would play well with a squeegee or vacuums. The jet drier and respraying the track with a rubber drag is about as good as it gets. Most small tracks have a brush and drag at best. A cover from one barrier to the other would keep some rain off the surface, but it would most likely still need prepped again. The cost of a tarp cover a mile long would be incredibly expensive.

  10. Hemi Joel

    Since the jet dryer actually gets the job done, but they just don’t want to pay for the fuel, who is going to go to the trouble of inventing a better machine?
    If the track owners won’t even spend enough money to fuel their existing jet dryers, why would an inventor think that they would pay enough money for some new drying machine? It would take a lot to cover his research and development costs, cost of production, and enough profit to make the whole thing worthwhile. Especially when he would figure he could sell somewhere between 20 and 100 of them max.

  11. ksj2

    HPT was built over a creek bed.Track would weep sometimes even if we didnt have rain. Jim Head had a solution that makes it much better than what it used to be with drain tile etc.HPT used to have a jet dryer.Til someone thought it would help dry out the dirt track.LOL. True story.

  12. Chad Fergen

    Bob Bode makes extruded plastic bags. Maybe have him do a large extruded piece of plastic, 1320 ft long (or so…) just a thought. 🙂

  13. crazy

    Even if you want to K.I.S.S.
    home depot/etc sell these long U shaped pipe with a grate on the top that are used in front of garages/etc.. it’s a drain..

    it would not be hard for a track to put one down one side of the track and then use the (or something like it DIY like) air titan to push it to the drain with forced air..
    I don’t see digging a small trench on one side of the track for the drain pipe being an issue, cause lets face it, if you are 10″ from the wall you got bigger problems, than any patchwork that might be holding the 6″ wide drain pipe.

    BRIAN, the products are already avail.. much of it for decades, much of it, low cost, figure 1/3 mile of drain pipe, at 8′ lengths so 330 of them, say they are 30 bucks each..(no one pays that when buying in bulk..but we’ll go with it) is 9900.oo so, under 5000.oo in real bulk wholesale cost if that for the drain.. cut the asphalt and dig a ditch.. sand/crushed stone and pipe.. and maybe a pump every 1/8 mile..

    None of any of these water removal systems are used, as why spend the money, when they can just race on Monday.. or an off week end..
    The NHRA will not think twice about fines and points losses if you oil down a track, It be nice if the pro teams could fine the NHRA for having to foot the bill for the extra day cost.. (now Brian you can say I’m off my meds )..

    Nothing will ever be done about it, or it have been done…
    with equipment that has been around longer than me..

    Odd, part is Brian comment that they tested the air titan system.. if it can dry a 2.5 mile track.. it can dry a drag way.. the forced air will push the water, and a vacuum will suck it up.. The truth is, the NHRA doesn’t want to foot the bill for the equipment.. and dragging it along the pro tour. and they get off easy, the equipment engineering and r&d is already done, they just have to buy the stuff..

    Maybe the NHRA is bleeding red so much that they can’t afford it

    1. crazy

      can’t edit so foot note
      that’s 10 inches from the wall not feet

      and 1/2 mile of drain not 1/3

      1. crazy

        So Brian was this really a question for ideas or just a P.R move.

        Going by the reply that I’m off my meds’ I’d say it’s the latter.

  14. Andy

    If had an answer I’d probably not advertise it here and have someone steal my idea 🙂

  15. butch barber

    being a pipefitter I would run a hot water/steam system under the track.. A new track would be easy to do,, lay down the loop before paving. On an old strip you would have to tunnel under it from side to side, just under the track. loop it about every 10 to 15 feet . steam would work the best.. rain stops,, fire up the system, heat up the track, water gone.. just like under the floor heating system but under the track,, Winter drags ? call a Union Pipefitter and get er done !!

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