Submarine Racers

The first of two semi-final builds begin with an underwater drag-race. The Custom Cruiser (who defeated the Wenches with Wrenches in Collapsible Cars) will face the Model Ts (they won a Mud Racer race against Detroit Steel) in a watery challenge. This time, the teams must build a one-man submarine that will race down a track. The team with the fastest time in three runs will advance to the finals. The subs must have an air supply as the experts (who will be driving them) will not be wearing scuba gear. The other build requirement are 3 foot high skids to allow the expert a way to escape in the event of a mishap.

The Custom Cruisers are going to build a traditional submarine. They'll use a large tank for the body and attach a small conning tower to the top so their expert will be able to see. To move them through the water will be...welll...a trolling motor (or two). A trolling motor is a small boat engine used to move a boat along slowly and quietly so as to not disturb fish. They normally have very little power so expecting one or two to move along a giant propane-tank submarine might be asking too much.

The Model Ts want an out-of-this-world design. They'll use a VW Bug for the body of their sub. This design will allow plenty of visibility and provide a large air bubble for the expert to breathe. For power, they want to convert a normal engine to work on compressed air...not the easiest task in the world, especially under a time limit. Essentially, this propulsion system is the most difficult part of their build. Anyone can strip a car but making a gasoline powered engine a gas-powered engine is no small task. Failing that, they will have to use some sort of motor designed to be used with compressed gas (or, say hydraulic fluid).

Both teams, once in the water, will have to sink their subs. That's the easy part. The problem is floating which is something they don't want to do. The teams will have to add 75 pound lead weights to their subs in the hops of attaining neutral buoyancy. Neutral buoyancy is a state where you're not sunk (I.e. sitting on the bottom) and you're not afloat (I.e. sitting on the top). It's when you're somewhere in the middle.
Custom Cruisers expert
Bob Wickman
Model Ts expert
Ken Ripley
The Cruisers will build a submarined
The Model Ts will use a Volkswagen
Beetle for the hull
A fine-tuned
This propane tank will do the trick
Not the engine from this car
Yes...this one will do nicely
An escape hatch is cut into the bottom
of the Cruisers sub
Judge Rob Martin
One of the wimpy trolling motors
Cutting plexiglass is not as easy task
Brewsir does his best Dr Strangelove
Karyn delivers compressed air to
the Model Ts
Somehow, this engine is supposed to
run on air
The conning tower is in place

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