Thursday, October 24, 2013

Dragon Tales:10/13 Visit, Post 5

This post is just to make a couple of my Dragon videos available.  The first one is cockpit field-of-view. The run time is 8 minutes (to which Vimeo limited me, but about the same time I ran out of clear road anyway).

The second one, of similar length, is a hood-mount.  I'm posting these for friends and relations.  If you're looking for useful driving tips, watch Killboy's videos.

Being new to in-car video, it's amusing to me that camera placement makes such a difference.  Same car, same driver, same road.  The cockpit video makes a pass look slow, compared to how fast I thought I was going.  The hood-mounted video makes a pass look (and sound) faster than it really is.

Speaking of speed, I'm a slow learner, and will still be learning the Dragon many trips hence.  I have a full pass learned maybe 20%.  By 20%, I mean than when I set up for a bend, I know what's coming, and in the next two or three, well enough to drive it hard.  Northbound and southbound passes look and feel completely different.  Here's what I've learned so far:

2011: Do not try to shorten corners by apexing pull-outs.  It gets you into deep trouble at the exit.

2012: Power is needed, in a modestly powered car.  I use 2nd gear for a hard pass (3rd gear for a cruise).  You need to be high in the rev band to pull strongly out of the apex.  What I don't know yet, consistently, is where all the straights are, that are long enough to upshift into 3rd and bury the throttle again.  That's as opposed to leaving it in 2nd, and floating the car into the next (somewhat distant) bend.  On the most recent trip, I was into the rev limiter too much.

2013: Respect your brakes.  I've learned to slow up at the end of a pass to let them cool down.  My front wheels are no longer hot to the touch.  But even when they've cooled, the brake calipers will burn your fingers.  I learned this in the parking lot of the DGMR, having backed out of the pass after the State Line.  This gives you some idea of the amount of heat being transferred to the brake fluid.  We're all driving our street cars at the Gap.  Give your brakes a thought before you pack for the trip.


Watchtower said...

Looked like a fun pass, keep the vids coming!

Wannabe Hotshoe said...

I enjoyed the in-car mounted videos - it does a good job of showing how busy the driver gets placing the car correctly turn after turn! The panoramic view of the road and hillside completes the picture. Well done.

Post a Comment