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F1 Variomatic project?


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#1 Rainer Nyberg

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 17:25

Stumbled upon this pic during a Google search, it is claimed to be a DAF F1 Variomatic project?
Anyone recall anything? I have seen posted various F3 projects, but never seen a F1 before.

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#2 Geoff E

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 17:41

I found this:-

"Experimental continuous variable transmission (CVT) set-up by Van Doorne Transmissie (VDT) on championship-winning car bridged gap to late-sixties F3 and FJ efforts by Van Doorne's Automobiel Fabriek, better known to the world as DAF. The CVT paired to a Renault V10 constantly revving at its peak led to spectacular test times by David Coulthard, after which CVT was quickly and silently banned from Grand Prix racing in 1994, much in the fashion as six-wheeled racers had been banned by the FIA after worryingly fast test times by a Williams... "

It was referring to the Williams VDT FW15C project. There was a programme on TV a week or two ago that mentioned the Coulthard car.

The DAF car:
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Read all about it:- http://www.ritzsite....AF_cars_p17.htm

#3 Ray Bell

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 19:53

I don't think I've ever heard of an F1 project before either, though it was logical that it should happen after Ferrari came out with their 'automatic' box...

We had a thread a long time ago on the DAF F3 effort...

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#4 fines

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 21:23

I believe the first pic is a standard DAF F3 racer, the Brabham copy. The second appears to be the Tecno/DAF, don't think I've seen one before.

#5 dolomite

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 23:32

Here's the Williams version:

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#6 Vitesse2

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 23:51

Originally posted by fines
I believe the first pic is a standard DAF F3 racer, the Brabham copy. The second appears to be the Tecno/DAF, don't think I've seen one before.


I think you're right on the Tecno Michael, but surely the first picture is the Alexis Mk 6 that they used before the Chequered Flag built the Brabham copies?

I like the tiger-striped bike too. Is there an Esso connection there somewhere?

#7 petefenelon

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 01:50

Originally posted by Geoff E
It was referring to the Williams VDT FW15C project. There was a programme on TV a week or two ago that mentioned the Coulthard car.


There was some footage of DC testing the car on the programme - it was kind of surreal listening to a car just rev right up to the sweet spot and keep going with no gear changes.


pete

#8 Leo

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 14:01

Originally posted by Vitesse2


I think you're right on the Tecno Michael, but surely the first picture is the Alexis Mk 6 that they used before the Chequered Flag built the Brabham copies?

I like the tiger-striped bike too. Is there an Esso connection there somewhere?


I think Michael is right on the first picture, as the Alexis had a very distinctive radiator grille.

Alexis - DAF:
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More pics:
http://www.rallydaf.nl/DAF%20F3.html

#9 Vitesse2

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 15:41

As those pictures are all from Monaco, I wouldn't like to bet it always ran looking like that. It's certainly not how it would have left the Alexis factory!

I don't read Dutch, but did they perhaps have some sort of overheating problem?

#10 Cirrus

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 17:17

Those "cut off" ugly noses were quite common at Monaco. They were intended to reduce the chance of body damage at the hairpins.

#11 Rainer Nyberg

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 17:36

The front suspension layout on the car at Monaco seems identical to the pic in the first post, so I think we can say it is an Alexis F3 car. Thanks for the help :up:

#12 Cirrus

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 17:47

Sorry to disagree, but I am pretty certain that the car in the first picture is different to the one at Monaco. There are some small "ears" around the inboard wishbone pickups in the Monaco pic, and the antiroll bar drop links are vertical. The tyres are also much narrower, suggesting an earlier date.

The first picture is either a Brabham, or an extremely close copy. It has the little NACA duct ahead of the windscreen, and the top and bottom wishbones are identical to those on a BT21 I used to own.

#13 Geoff E

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Posted 17 March 2003 - 17:53

Originally posted by Cirrus
Those "cut off" ugly noses were quite common at Monaco. They were intended to reduce the chance of body damage at the hairpins.


I've read that before (only on a forum), but I don't see how a long nose could possibly hit something that the wheel was going to miss. Look at the pic in the second post in this thread and try to imagine such an event - I can't. I'm sure the short noses were to aid cooling air flow with the slower speeds of Monaco.

#14 Simpson RX1

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Posted 18 March 2003 - 00:44

Back OT, I'd not come across this before, and I find it quite interesting.

I did many happy miles in a DAF 55, and worked for Volvo during the latter stages of 340 Auto imports, but received wisdom was that CVT didn't work well with "big" engines; certainly, the largest road engine I know of with this transmission was the afore mentioned Volvo with 1400cc.

I'd also be interested to find out how well it worked at low engine speeds. There is a certain technique in getting a CVT 'off the line' with any great speed, largely due to the fact that this system attempts to find the highest ratio as quickly as possible, which means that from a standstill (or exiting a low speed corner), just booting it doesn't get you very far. I found the best way, was to floor the throttle and just as the revs reached their peak, back off slightly and then floor it again. I would have thought that this was all a bit much under racing conditions, although the earlier post mentioning "Spectacular test times" from DC, suggests that they found a way round this.

As an aside, this transmission works the same in reverse as forwards - 300+ kph backwards anybody?!

#15 Wolf

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Posted 18 March 2003 - 02:32

Simpson, I think the belts limited the amount of torque that could go through it... Nowdays Audi makes them with chains-drive instead of belts, and IIRC ~240Nm is their limit (I guess that would be over 150BHP on decent revving production engine*).

* few years back VW had VR6 engines with 245Nm and 190BHP, and 235Nm and 175BHP.

#16 Geoff E

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Posted 18 March 2003 - 08:01

The only two pedal car I have ever driven was a Ford Escort Ghia (c1995) which was fitted with CVT and a 1600 Zetec engine. It was a slightly odd sensation to be cruising down a dip in the road at 2000rpm then hearing the revs rise to 3500 to go up the other side.

#17 Marco94

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Posted 18 March 2003 - 09:24

Ferrari had a CVT project together with VDT in 1979 or 1980. That was discountinued and funding was transfered to the turbo engine project. I have seen one drawing of the system at a presentation a few years ago. Don't have it and have not been able to find it on the web. :-(

I have been driving and was driven around in CVT cars since 1975/1976. You get used to the decoupling of engine speed and wheel speed. And I find it adictive. Don't want anything else anymore. Manual gear shift is so late 1800's. ;-)

#18 scotts216

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 00:39

The DAF variomatic transmission was placed in an Alexis MK 5...........

#19 dmj

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 01:52

Strange this thread popped up right now when I am contemplating of buying a DAF... But I am a little bit afraid of its transmission. How reliable Variomatic is? How much it costs to rebuild if something goes wrong? I wouldn't like to buy it only to find out it couldn't be properly serviced outside Netherlands... Do you think it would be wiser if I simply abandon the idea?

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#20 Racer.Demon

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 10:02

You may try to contact some of the people behind these sites:

DAF Club Nederland
DAF Preservation Society

Anyway, strange that I neglected to post the link to this article here...

#21 Arjan de Roos

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 13:24

Anyone further interested in DAF F3:

The Alexis and one Brabham are on view at the Daf museum in Eindhoven. The Brabham was also kindly on loan by the Van Doorne family at schools and meetings during the years.

One Tecno is supposed to be in the living room of Mr. Koch, race engineer at the time.

When I visited Van Doorne Transmissies (VDT) in the early nineties, we got to see accidentally what seemed like an F1 car under wraps. Also an American car was sitting in this garage. Obvious for us that VDT had some interesting projects in store. Sorry bout the rule change.

Reading your interesting article Demon, makes me wonder how many F3 chassis Daf used. One Alexis, two Brab's, one Gemini, two Tecno's = 7??

And what about the story that Daf produced one or two Brabham chassis in license?

#22 Manfred Cubenoggin

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 14:11

I purchased a spanking new Subaru Justy in early 1990 fitted with their ECVT and shift-on-the-fly AWD. It was marvelous little car with plenty of pep and the AWD earned it's keep when I moved later the same year from Bowmanville, Ontario to Bracebridge which is about 100 miles north and deep in snow country. The ECVT was so efficient and a pleasure to drive. Unfortunately, the winters in Bracebridge see plenty of days at -30C degrees with a few guaranteed each year at -40C. This led to a few problems for the little beast and the ECVT crapped out several times. Ultimately, in 1998, it suffered a catastrophic transmission failure that would have cost a fortune to repair and as a few other things needed attention, I could not justify the expense. She went to that great bone yard in the sky. It just wasn't up to that brutally cold weather. If I'd stayed in B-ville, I'd probably still be driving the Justy. I miss her still.

:cry:

#23 Rainer Nyberg

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Posted 26 January 2004 - 15:46

Another use for CVT - at least in snowy regions - is snowmobiles...

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