Worst case?

C

chris_skeeles

Guest
What can sink my car faster than anything? Short of the obvious like
a 2 foot hole through the base of the hull, I am talking about the
not so obvious yet deadly (to amphi that is) items that I as a
regular swimmer should be aware of?

A few things that came to my mind (and the previous thread about the
axle boots pretty much cleared up one myth I had).

Perhaps the bilge plug? Mine being the large diameter hole I wonder
what the flood time on that would be? Assuming factory (for this
example) bilge pump is on and functioning.

I bring this up not to mix up morbid emotions, more as a
precautionary thing, ya know, things to keep an eye on. Of course
that is to say if you have looked for Amphis on Ebay in the last
month or so, you may have had your fill of CAUTION to last a great
while. :)


Chris in Ohio
63 Red
 
D

David Chapman

Guest
Check the rubber seal where the steering box goes through the hull, that's an
important part and can get hard from gear oil leaking from the steering box. The
rubber axle boots are obviously V important and no pump could cope if one of
those failed !

It's a very good idea to have an audible bilge alarm somewhere low down towards
the back of the car to give you as much warning as possible - things are getting
pretty serious by the time your feet are wet.

If you're really nervous then replace the engine HT electrics with motorcycle
parts, that way Amphicar should run until the water reaches distributor cap
level, seriously waterproofing the electrics is a good idea because if Amphicar
start leaking or just gets a serious wave inside (because the top is down) then
it tends to get splashed all over the engine by the cooling fan.

David Chapman
 
E

Ed Price

Guest
----- Original Message -----
From: "chris_skeeles" <chris@skeeles.com>
To: <amphicar-lovers@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Monday, March 04, 2002 6:31 AM
Subject: [amphicar-lovers] Worst case?


>
>
> What can sink my car faster than anything? Short of the obvious like
> a 2 foot hole through the base of the hull, I am talking about the
> not so obvious yet deadly (to amphi that is) items that I as a
> regular swimmer should be aware of?
>
> A few things that came to my mind (and the previous thread about the
> axle boots pretty much cleared up one myth I had).
>
> Perhaps the bilge plug? Mine being the large diameter hole I wonder
> what the flood time on that would be? Assuming factory (for this
> example) bilge pump is on and functioning.
>
> I bring this up not to mix up morbid emotions, more as a
> precautionary thing, ya know, things to keep an eye on. Of course
> that is to say if you have looked for Amphis on Ebay in the last
> month or so, you may have had your fill of CAUTION to last a great
> while. :)
>
>
> Chris in Ohio
> 63 Red


OK, let's get real morbid!

The fastest way to sink is to take on enough weight of water that you are no
longer buoyant. You can do this several ways; a fast steep water entry where
you drill right under water, taking a wave over the low side freeboard, or
falling into the trench cut in the water by a 19' deep-vee hull passing by
you at 40 MPH. All of these are capable of putting enough water into the
passenger compartment to sink you in seconds. It's so quick that it's hard
to really call it a sinking.

Second fastest is probably opening a door. It's a bit difficult, but never
underestimate stupidity.

Third is the bilge plug problem. Without the plug, you have a 2" hole. Let's
run some numbers. Let's say that an Amphi occupies 50 square feet of water
surface. And let's say that you have 12" (1 foot) from waterline to side
windowsill. So, if we pour 50 cubic feet of water into an Amphi, then nature
will do the rest. Fifty cubic feet of water weighs about 3000 pounds and is
about 375 gallons.

If the bilge hole is about 2 feet under the water surface, then I calculate
a flow through the hole of about 2 gallons (16 pounds) per second. At that
rate, it's about 3 minutes until it's all over. If you had a high-capacity
marine pump, like a Rule 1200 GPH unit, that would pump about 20 gallons per
minute or 1/3 gallon per second. You would need about 6 Rule pumps, just to
stay even with the leakage. And that would be more power than the generator
could supply, so you would also be running down your battery rather fast.

Actually, I'm surprised by my numbers. I think I'm being optimistic with
that 3 minute sink time.

I haven't studied the Amphi enough to be sure, but, even if you trapped
every possible cubic inch of free space into some kind of flotation cells, I
don't think you could keep a swamped Amphi afloat. Has anyone got any
practical experience with sinking an Amphi?

Ed
 
C

chris_skeeles

Guest
>
> I haven't studied the Amphi enough to be sure, but, even if you
trapped
> every possible cubic inch of free space into some kind of flotation
cells, I
> don't think you could keep a swamped Amphi afloat. Has anyone got
any
> practical experience with sinking an Amphi?
>
> Ed


I understand someone at a past Mt. Dora event forgot to put the plug
in before swimming! Maybe that person can reflect on that experience
for us. I also know of a club member who swamped an Amphi in the
ocean. (any takers on that?) :)

The Amphpi at the Classic Car Museum in Canton, Ohio had sunk at a
local lake (Atwood Lake is what I was told) but I have yet to meet
the owner/donator of the vehicle to ask how.

Chris

PS: Thanks for the fancy math. Very interesting.
 
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