Professional Student Motorsport Team Drives Future of Formula 3 with Moore and Wright Hand Tools

 

Students at the University of Wolverhampton’s School of Engineering are using a range of metrology equipment from Bowers Group, including Moore and Wright hand tools, to ensure the quality build and maintenance of Formula 3 cars. As the UKs first professional student motorsport team, the University of Wolverhampton Racing Team (UWR) is the only racing team to compete in the F3 Cup and the AR Morgan Challenge that uses students to design, manufacture, and race in a competitive environment.

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Moore and Wright Micrometres and Calipers

The students use the Moore and Wright micrometres and calipers almost every day. A common use for the digital calipers involves the measurement of the clutch in order to determine the amount of wear on the carbon plates. The clutch is taken off between race weekends, or between qualifying and racing, and checked for alignment and wear. Degradation of the clutch is measured with a tolerance of 0.001mm, and if necessary, 0.25mm shims made of steel or aluminium are used to maintain the optimal clutch height.

Daniel Bird, 3rd year engineering student and Head Engineer of the UWR F3 team, said: “Ensuring that the clutch is the perfect height is crucial to the racing of the F3 car. The qualifying and subsequent track position is important, as is the ability of the driver to really make the most of that position by getting off the grid in the shortest amount of time. The clutch is a key component in this, therefore achieving the best bite on the clutch is critical.

Accurate Clutch Height

Carbon clutch plates have a tendency to wear down, and degradation of the clutch will inevitably affect the driving performance. We need to make sure that the clutch height is as accurate as possible using the Moore and Wright hand tools, in order to determine the extent of the wear and assess whether shims are needed to compensate."

As an official Metrology sponsor of the University of Wolverhampton Racing Team (UWR), Bowers Group has donated over £10,000 of metrology instruments and hand tools to the team of engineering students, both for use in their dedicated temperature-controlled Metrology Lab and in their Live Project Area

Measuring Tread Depths on Tyres

The Moore and Wright calipers and micrometres are also used to measure the tread depths on tyres, and the rear anti roll bar on the F3 car. In addition, the Moore and Wright height gauge is used for learning and demonstration purposes, as well as checking tyre depths and the rear drop height and ride height of the car.

Tutors regularly use the Bowers Group XT3 Digital Bore Gauges as demonstration and learning tools, enabling students to gain confidence and ensure accurate measurement taking skills for their future careers. The Bowers’ XT3 digital internal micrometers are also used during the winter rebuilds of the F3 cars, to check inside the engine, check the pistons, and ensure the general maintenance of the car.

Experience Using Industry Standard Metrology Tools

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Daniel Bird continued: “It’s great that we not only learn the theory involved in measurement, but that we also gain valuable experience using industry standard metrology tools in practical real-world applications.”

Dr Syed Hasan, Head of the School of Engineering and Chairman of UWR said: “Our students come from diverse backgrounds and have a range of differing skill sets. It’s really important that students are given the opportunity to learn the basic fundamentals of measurement, and are taught how to use a range of measurement devices, including hand tools. 

Applying Knowledge in a Real World Environment

We give the students the opportunity to interact with industry that will set them up for success in their future careers. It’s not just about learning the subject in the classroom, it’s about applying that knowledge in a real-world environment. Giving students the opportunity to be part of the racing team instils a strong sense of discipline and teamwork that they can take into their future careers.”

Students currently race a variety of cars including a Formula 3 Dallara F308 with a Honda Mugen engine that finished second in the 2019 F3 Cup, and an IMechE Formula Student car which is re-designed, built and driven every year by students in the UK Formula 3Student competition. In addition, the students race two Morgan Plus 4 Clubsports that won the 2019 AR Motorsport Morgan Challenge as part of a development program with Morgan Motor Company, and a Formula Renault 2.0; UWR's debut car which was successfully run in the 2015 Monoposto 2000 Championship and is still used for teaching and testing. 

Industry Standard Facilities

An investment of £10 million in the University’s engineering facilities at its Telford Innovation Campus in Priorslee has created world class education facilities for engineering students including industry standard design, development and testing facilities. Students from across the School of Engineering and the wider University test, prepare and race the cars, learning all the skills required to be part of the highly competitive world of motorsport. As a result, students gain valuable engineering industry experience working as a professional team in competitive motorsport.

As part of the University’s commitment to produce graduates who can apply both theory and practice in industry, the Undergraduate Degrees offered by the University of Wolverhampton are a unique opportunity to both study and put what they’ve learned into practice in a fast-paced, practical racing environment.

Measuring with Accuracy and Confidence

Students are encouraged to put their skills and stamina to the test in order to engineer cars that can race the fastest laps and compete effectively against national and international racing teams with world class drivers. As part of their education, students are required to use a variety of measurement solutions and hand tools with confidence and accuracy, ensuring that they are fully equipped to take these skills into employment.