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Alfa "Bimotore" weight?


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#1 James L. Kalie

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 20:05

Does anybody know the weight of the Alfa Romeo Bimotore as produced by the Scuderia Ferrari in 1935? I can't seem to find it anywhere. Thanks.

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#2 GIGLEUX

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 20:36

In Alfa Romeo tuttel e vetture dal 1910, Luigi Fusi indicated: 1030kg.

#3 JB Miltonian

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 21:38

Doug Nye's extensive article on the Bimotore in "Historic Race & Rally" (Sept/Oct 92) says;

"Dry weight of the two finished 'Bimotori' was quoted as 1000kg (2205 lbs) rising to 1350kg (2888 lbs) fully laden".

#4 dretceterini

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 23:34

A 3000 pound car with something like 500 horsepower on the crappy tires of the period must have been very exciting to drive!

#5 JB Miltonian

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 00:24

It's not often that you see a "quip" in a serious data table, but to again quote Mr. Nye's article, the "output" on the Bimotore is listed as:

"Twice c. 255bhp at 5400 rpm - total c. 510 bhp (no, NOT at 10,800 rpm)"

#6 Vitesse2

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 01:02

Originally posted by dretceterini
A 3000 pound car with something like 500 horsepower on the crappy tires of the period must have been very exciting to drive!


On "straight line blast" circuits like AVUS and Brooklands it was actually said to be quite well-behaved, apart from the fact that the tyres couldn't cope with the power at AVUS! Austin Dobson found the main problem was stopping the thing .....

#7 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 08:31

The rebuilt Donington car certainly has some punch and at the end of any sizeable straight that mass of machinery has summoned up an immense amount of kinetic energy which certainly takes some reining in as one makes preparations for the coming corner. Hardly surprising then that the cars' serious use was confined to high-speed tracks such as AVUS and the very fast road (type?) Mellaha circuit outside Tripoli. As for the tail fin feature I found it certainly did not help in a crosswind. When I emerged from the leeward shelter of the former R-R building on the Donington straight a crosswind gust set the car zig-zagging from verge-to-verge as muggins over-corrected. An interesting experience...and an insight into the skills of better men than I...

DCN

#8 dretceterini

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 15:49

Doug:

As you have driven the car and other 1934-1935 GP machinery, would you say the Bimotore is a more difficult car to drive than the Auto Union?

#9 Keir

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 16:17

I think it's similar to a "Henway!"

#10 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 23:00

Originally posted by dretceterini
Doug:

As you have driven the car and other 1934-1935 GP machinery, would you say the Bimotore is a more difficult car to drive than the Auto Union?


I haven't driven a genuine Auto Union. From what I hear I presume the Bimotore to have been somewhat more predictable to drive than the V16 AU but it would have been infinitely worse than the apparently well-mannered V12 AU....I think... :confused:

DCN

#11 Pedro 917

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Posted 06 December 2004 - 23:08

Here's a picture from Goodwood FOS 2003 :

Posted Image

#12 James L. Kalie

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 01:45

TO DOUG NYE and ED MCDONOUGH: Having both driven the "Bimotore", I'm sure we would all love to hear any expert comments you both might offer on the "supposed" story that when Nuvolari was setting his speed records on June 15th 1935 the car actually spun "at speed" not just once, but twice. I have always chalked this up as writer's license and disbelieved the story. After reading Ed's article in a recent Auto Italia I gained a new appreciation for how wind sensitive this car must have been. I have read differing accounts of just what happened on those runs and have always been curious to learn more. All the best,,,

#13 Doug Nye

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 09:00

I for one would be very surprised if Nuvers permitted the car to spin and yet got away without damage on the narrow Autostrada stretch upon which he did his record runs. These were big machines and while one might get away without clipping something hard once...I think it's stretching credulity rather far to expect him to have achieved the feat/survived the experience twice... Spoils the story though, doesn't it?

DCN

#14 Michael Oliver

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 22:58

Slightly OT, for which I apologise! Earlier this year I went to the Monaco GP Historique with a group of friends and acquaintances, all Kiwis except one.

Anyway, we were chatting away over a meal or a drink and one of the guys, Scott, remarked to me that he had recently visited the Donington Collection with his uncle. He then proceeded to show me a photo on his digital camera or mobile phone of his uncle sitting at the wheel of the Bimotore in the museum and went on to add that his uncle had raced this car once! His uncle's name was Doug Algie.

So it is a small world! Scott only has a passing interest in motorsport and I think he only really mentioned it at all because he knew I was interested in the history side of things... Maybe one of our Kiwi TNFers can add some more detail to Doug Algie's experiences with this marvellous beast of a car!

#15 aldo

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 14:58

Hi James and all friends:
I can add something as I recently wrote an article on the Bimotore, due to be published soon in the Ruoteclassiche magazine. Reading some contemprary articles on the Nuvolari record dash at Lucca-Altopascio on June 15, 1935 I found that the full laden weight was said to be 1,100 kg, which is coherent with Fusi's 1,000 kg dry, considering the lightening of the body for the trecord attempt and the limited amount of fuel on board.
I didn't find any mention of the car spinning during the runs.
The car was said to be a real beast to drive, even in straight line. The combination of suspensions (not finely tuned like in today machine) and asymmetry of power output by the two coupled engines made traction and balance quite erratic, and hard to predict.
As far as I can understand, the car was above the 750 kg limit of the GP Formula since the original design: nobody ever dared to think at it as a GP contender. It could only be raced in Formula Libre events like Tripoli and Avus, which, by the way, were among the richest events of the season.

#16 Patrick Italiano

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 14:46

Hi Aldo :wave:

Could you please explain what you mean with "asymetry of power output by the two engines".

they were both coupled to a single gearbox, thus the only thing that could affect the car's behaviour was possibly any delay in the response of one of the two engines, causing power to be less than expected (like the well known turbo-lag of much moderner eras) at a certain moment.

While that could be frightening enough, with such a car, when cornering, it should not have affected the straight record run.