Accurate Valves = Accurate Fuel Pressure
Thrilling and unbelievably fast, the world of hydroplane racing is exciting, fast paced, and there is no room for error if you are in it to win. With this sentiment in mind, many race teams rely on Smart Products to supply quality, custom-made valves to meet their hydro needs.
The APBA (American Powerboat Association)/U.S. Titles Series involves 14-foot hydroplanes that fly over the water’s surface on a cushion of dense air at straightaway speeds over 120 MPH. Races are typically five lap sprints on a short, one mile oval-shaped course.
Outboard motor racing generates well over 265 HP at 14,000 RPM out of a 700CC two stroke displacement engine, which runs on racing grade methanol alcohol and castor (or a chemical) oil mixed into the fuel, as well as an occasional dash of nitro.
A major challenge for most race teams is feeding three gallons of this type of fuel through four 38MM carburetors in less than five minutes without flooding the engine. The flow control of fuel pressure must be accurate and precisely maintained between 2 and 3 PSI. Many of the racing teams, including 13-Time National Champion and World Speed Record Holder Liquid Courage piloted by Sean McKean, rely on Smart Products to keep their fuel pressure in line.
For the Liquid Courage racing team, the engine crankcase pumps up to 10 PSI of positive pressure generated through Smart Products’ Model #304/304 check valve from an oscillating pressure-vacuum. In action, this valve opens and closes over 200 times per second!
Pressure is maintained by using another Smart Products pressure relief valve, Model #118, at the fuel tank. This valve keeps the fuel tank pressure between the prescribed 2-3 PSI.
“There is absolutely no room for error! If either valve fails, the boat will go dead in the water and fail to finish the race. That’s why we depend on Smart Products as our valve supplier because they make our boat run dependably and breathtakingly fast! Racing products have to be dependable and durable to win races," says Joe Cohen of Vapor Trail Racing/the Liquid Courage Team.
Cohen continues, "We are undefeated in Top Hydro in the U.S. Title Series this season and just recently won Top Hydro at the U.S. title race in Michigan with the overall faster time thanks to these valves.”