Americans far better than Brits : LUSENET : Junkyard Wars : One Thread

Is it just me or did the Americans do a much better job in the two challenges last Wednesday than the Brits from the previous season. Both the dragsters ran a full 3 seconds faster and the pumpkin chunkers were accurate beyond belief. No wonder we won the revolution.

-- William Francis (, January 10, 2001


Both dragsters used in the US series had engines that were more powerful than used in the UK series. The auto engine was a V8, while the motorcycle, though I don't believe they actually gave a size, appeared to be around a 650cc or 750cc class. In comparison, the motorcycle engine used by the Brits was a 350cc (sorry I can't remember the auto engine size...I think it was a V6...anyone out there know?).

-- Rick (, January 10, 2001.

It's true that the motorcylce engine was bigger and the other engine was a V8 but it was running in reverse. Regardless I was still impressed with the Americans. It's amazing that two completely different styles could finish within four one thousands of each other. I don't think a team of auto engineers could have done that if they tried.

-- William Francis (, January 10, 2001.

The Brothers in Arms used a V8, I believe, but the auto transmission was shot, only working in reverse. Once the diff was flipped, they ran a pretty respectable time, but reached full speed half way down the track.

Had they the luxury of forward gearing, they likely would have posted a time similar to the americans.

On the other hand, I've got to give the americans points for style. That light weight chassis looked incredibly well designed to be built in 10 hours!

-- Michael (Canadian P.Eng.) (, January 10, 2001.

I was very happy with both dragster episodes - it is obvious that the production staff engaged their grey-matter prior to stocking the yard to provide materials that produced contests which were even; the brits were about evenly matched in their episode, and the americans were dead-evenly matched (that was a GREAT set of bracket races!).

I will agree with you that I did think that the results of the american efforts were a little more ... professional?. Especially the micro-dragster.

The Brothers In Arms were really hamstrung with the Land Rover V8 (we won't mention the bad trans). Not all V8's are alike, V8's as typically used in SUVs are optimized for low-end grunt, so by 4000 rpm they are (typically) done making torque - you could actually see the BIA vehicle top-out partway down the track, they really could have used a second gear!

Even though the Olds V8 provided to the americans obviously made a lot more power, the real asset was that it was able to keep making that power far higher into the upper-RPM range (thus more dragstrip- useable horsepower).

On the street, torque rules. On the strip, torque also rules, but you want the engine to keep producing it's torque as high as it can (in RPM) to take better advantage of gearing (and for several other smaller reasons). This is very oversimplified, but that's the basic concept - even if two engines are said to be able to produce equivalent amounts of torque, the engine that makes it at higher RPM's can usually be made into a more competitive vehicle (dragstrip wise) - this is a huge reason why the micro-dragsters were as competitive as they were. Conversely, a high-RPM screamer can at times not be the best choice for a given application, like when you need A LOT of torque at low speeds; this is why diesel-power is a good match for earth-moving equipment (GOBS of low-end torque).

-- Steve Poythress (, January 10, 2001.

The program seeded the junkyard with different things, unlike where the british went out on their own. Should have Brits Vs. americans kevin

-- ryan (, January 10, 2001.

If the british yard wasn't seeded, how would you explain the V8 in a tube? I believe the Americans got theirs out of an Oldsmobile - they actually had to seperate it from the car.

-- bkholland (, January 10, 2001.

What do you expect from the nation that has the widest resorses!

-- Aaron M. Brown (, January 11, 2001.

I think alot of how the americans did in comparison to the brits can be explained by the american intrest in fast cars and races. The brits used the same concepts but the americans had american equipment and years of watching professional car racing to really make 'em shine.

-- Edwin Pitzer Fisher IV (, January 11, 2001.

All the episodes I've seen up until now has been using junk. True there are those brand new pillow bearing blocks here and there, but in general the motors are old and so on.

This last episode I watched with the motor cycle engine powered car, and the v-8 powered car was different. The olds they got the v-8 from, did anyone notice how perfect the paint was? The engine looked brand new; newly painted block, new crome valve covers, new yellow spark plug wires, etc..

And the motor cycle they started with was really nice looking too, except for that bent rear wheel. I can undrestand seeding the yard with usefull parts but this was a bit obvious to me.

I do love the show though, please don't consider the above a complaint, just an observation. I know I would welcome all the help I could get if I where there.


-- Russell (, January 11, 2001.

Well if the Americans did so well racing lets see if the field was the same. Were both teams (Yanks & Brits) running the same relative displacement of engines. What about gearing. If the brits dragster had tires maybe an inch or two higher it would have cut their time down. Were the weight of the vehicles the same. Now let's get right down to it. What were temperatures at both tracks, was there cloud cover, what was the relative humidity, were the sea levels the same, Icould go on all day. Take John Force and his funny car over to the UK and see if it runs as fast there as it does here in North America!

-- Tyson Fortowsky (, January 11, 2001.

both of the dragster contest's were run with verry under powered,crudely built machines which is still impressive given such a short build time, factors such as tempreture,air density, elivation might make a huge difference to a 300MPH fuel car but have very little effect on the junkyard dragsters. A taller tire would have helped on top end speed for the britt racer but they could have also done much better by simpley removeing 2 tires from thier dually rearend, it was unsprung dead weight since they diden't have enough power to need the xtra traction anyway. i am supprised thier dragster expert diden't see it right away. All in all i think both teams did verry well. joe

-- Joe Perdue (SUS806@AOL.COM), January 14, 2001.

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