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Old 08-24-2008, 02:39 AM   #1 (permalink)
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"spoiler" out front

Would this idea improve the aerodynamics of a pickup or flat fronted SUV etc...

Put a receiver hitch on the front of the truck then put a 'spoiler'/bumber a foot or so out in front.

This idea first came to me when I looked a a Smart car. They look too short to be safe so I thought that it needed bumpers that would extend out in front of it at higher speeds then retract for parking.

So, with the right aerodynamic shape could such an extendible bumper actually improve the vehicle's mileage? If so, it would seem that it could do wonders for a vehicles such as my flat fronted Ford Excursion. (Note, I have a 4 cyl Saab 9000 Aero as a daily driver.)

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Old 08-24-2008, 06:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Sunwapta, I'm surprised you haven't gotten any replies so far!
I was thinking along similar lines for an air dam on a larger car. In my case I was thinking of a surface out in front that would be hinged off-center so that at road speeds, air pressure would swivel it into place. At slower speeds it would swing up for more road clearance for parking, etc.
But now that I think of it more, it would have to be double -jointed to be able to move up. Back to the drawing board...
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Old 08-24-2008, 10:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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That sounds like an idea! Mount a hitch to the front and you can make several different air dam styles and use them as needed. Also make a small cover that hides the reciever when not in use.
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:21 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Yes - basically a wing out front - but not something that could slice someone in half or take out their legs and slam them headfirst into the grill. Instead - some sort of soft aerodynamic nerf? bat that might make the vehicle even safer than before.

Or a wedge that retracts to match the contours of the truck/car when retracted (say lexan with swooping down cut out for airflow to the grill that would pull back and fold up against the vehicles front)


This should be of interest to the RV community - where something like this could be put on just for a long trip to maximize fuel economy and then stuck on the back of the trailer when not in use - or to work as a boat tail for the bottom back end of a travel trailer.

<<<_o_<<<

Last edited by Sunwapta; 08-25-2008 at 03:28 AM..
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Old 08-27-2008, 03:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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out front

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunwapta View Post
Would this idea improve the aerodynamics of a pickup or flat fronted SUV etc...

Put a receiver hitch on the front of the truck then put a 'spoiler'/bumber a foot or so out in front.

This idea first came to me when I looked a a Smart car. They look too short to be safe so I thought that it needed bumpers that would extend out in front of it at higher speeds then retract for parking.

So, with the right aerodynamic shape could such an extendible bumper actually improve the vehicle's mileage? If so, it would seem that it could do wonders for a vehicles such as my flat fronted Ford Excursion. (Note, I have a 4 cyl Saab 9000 Aero as a daily driver.)
Sunwapta,you may be surprised to learn that the nose of the Excursion is more slippery than older Corvettes.If you'll go to the archive and look at the Phil Knox aerodynamic photos album,you'll find wind tunnel photos of cars with "dirtier" noses than your Ford's,with perfectly attached flow.Your greatest challenge lies behind the Excursion,with it's enormous wake.That's where your money is going.I believe your efforts at the front end will go un- rewarded.
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Old 08-28-2008, 02:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
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So up front maybe I should just try a bit of grill blocking?

You should see the undercarriage - what a mess - I've thought that I should get a big sheet of tin and cover the whole bottom (there's no great risk of losing needed ground clearance) - even the running board braces must create terrible drag.

What amazes me is how little attention the issue gets on pickup truck sites - yet even for those that don't care about mileage - doesn't all this drag REALLY hurt acceleration and passing speeds?
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Old 08-28-2008, 06:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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grill

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Originally Posted by Sunwapta View Post
So up front maybe I should just try a bit of grill blocking?

You should see the undercarriage - what a mess - I've thought that I should get a big sheet of tin and cover the whole bottom (there's no great risk of losing needed ground clearance) - even the running board braces must create terrible drag.

What amazes me is how little attention the issue gets on pickup truck sites - yet even for those that don't care about mileage - doesn't all this drag REALLY hurt acceleration and passing speeds?
Sunwapta,I think the grill block is a good starting point,as it comes from the head of GM's truck division,Mr. Taylor.-----------------------Do it in increments small enough that you can monitor temps without anything getting away from you.Once your confident that you're "safe",you can move on to other projects.------------------------------ If you'll keep a mileage log,you'll be able to gauge any performance gains from your mods.The Excursion may already have an on-board trip computer,if so,you may already have access to instantaneous readouts.A very nice feature! Let us know how it goes and best to you on the project.

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