We have included this "frequently asked questions" section as it represents questions and concerns in plain English regarding track testing and our specific test platforms. There has been some editing done to remove race team or individual names. We will not disclose this information without express permission to do so.

We have an interest in testing at the GEO Systems Test Center. Kinematic and dynamics type testing would be our focus. How much notice is required to schedule a test? 

You would need to provide more specifics for us to answer with certainty, however all 3 of our test platforms can provide that capability. We would need to have more info as to frequencies, displacements and forces to determine which would be best fit for your needs. I would expect to be able to have the appropriate system available within 2-3 days of your inquiry. Please keep in mind if there is any unique or custom mounting requirements it may take longer than the 2-3 days to resolve that. Please keep that in mind prior to settling on a date. If you need any help with these items please let us know.

I am fairly new to the whole DAQ and off track testing experience. I have been doing considerable research into the subject. The GEO Systems seem the most modern and capable. If I decide to bring my vintage race car (it’s really not that old) it would be beneficial to learn more about DAQ systems as well. I would like to get such as system to allow the off track testing efforts to expand. 

Sure, you would be a model customer for us and we would work very hard to be sure your initial test experience was positive and very productive. We can also provide DAQ system demonstrations while you are here. You haven't mentioned what type of car you have but it may need special brackets to mount to our test platforms. Keep that in mind from a scheduling standpoint.

We have recently been chosen to develop a race car based on a production road car by a Japanese OEM. The modified Chassis will require various types of testing. Your website indicates that you do kinematics, compliance and dynamics testing on the same machine. If that is the case it would seem that it would save us time, as we are on a very tight schedule. 

Yes, we can perform all 3 types of testing on the same machine. The “Discovery” test platform will provide for the most compliance capabilities as well as extensive Kinematics and Dynamics capabilities. The “Discovery” was designed to make the process as quick and efficient as possible. Please contact us to discuss your specific needs. Also because we have 3 test platforms there is very little waiting to start testing.

I am with an Indy Car team that campaigns a rather large inventory of cars. I am trying to get the cars to drive in a more similar manner with all components and set up the same. We are searching for a way to characterize each individual chassis to get a better handle on this effort. Would one of your test systems be properly equipped to do such a thing?  

Yes, In fact all of them can provide precision torsional testing providing a clear torsional signature to your carbon fiber chassis. The Discovery maybe the best however as you have the option of “Hub Mounting” allowing you to take the wheels and tires out of the equation. We have extensive experience doing very similar carbon fiber chassis analysis. Please contact us to discuss this further.

I have reviewed your GEO “Discovery” capabilities and it seems as though it would work well for our race car development project. However I have a couple of questions. How do you measure force at the side loading rotating wheel platens? 

3 axis load cells with moment compensation are used. However the rotating function specifically designed for positioning only and not applying a load.

I noticed you can perform testing on a vehicle with wheels and tires intact or taking them off and replacing them with a “hub mount” system. We have a bit of experience with full car off track testing but have never utilized the hub mount approach. I understand that taking the tire variable out of the test may result in different data. From your experience is it best to test both ways in a single test session? Can you provide insight into this? We are developing a test plan currently and trying to decide if Hub Mounting is worthwhile. BTW it would be on a GT type race car? 

If you are able to test with tires very similar to those you compete with it makes testing both ways more valuable. With tires in play you will get a better picture of the total suspension rate. Using hub mounts in lieu of tires you will receive more precise data relative to bump steer, spindle change and vertical movement. Please contact us for further explanation.

Among other tests I would really like to determine the 3 dimensional center of gravity of my car. How should the car be prepared for C of G and M of I testing to get the most meaningful data from the process? 

Car preparation varies with customer’s intent. However the most popular would be: half load of gas or fuel, braking and engine fluids standard. Replace shock absorbers with solid members at appropriate height. Height can vary whether testing at static position or under aero loaded condition. Some also choose to test at several positions of vehicle height in between static and fully aero loaded positions.

My car is a bit unusual in that it’s a custom prototype race car and may not completely “fit the mold” compared to the more common race cars. I may need some advice or assistance regarding securing the car to your test platforms. Obviously I would like to know it’s all doable prior to scheduling test time. 

The short answer is yes we will help. I am very confident we can come up with a solution to properly “tie down” your car without influencing test data in a negative way. We can start off by sending you a diagram of the test platform highlighting critical dimensions needed to fit your car. If you had CAD data available of that area of the car it would be great. If not photos with dimensions and description would work. We will provide suggestions of possible practical locations and general design of the mounts we would recommend. From that point you can have the mounts made or we can do it for you. If you purchase these parts from us we guarantee proper fitment and function. You will only need to do this the first time, after that they will be ready to use whenever you test again.

Some of my racing buddies have done various types of off track testing. Initially they were intrigued by the process but upon returning they realize that the charts, graphs etc. they left with didn't really help them much in improving their cars. I wonder if it would be the same situation for me at the GEO Test Center? 

We have heard many such comments with inexperienced customers testing at various K & C and 4,7 and 8 post facilities. You will experience something quite different at the GEO Test Center. We would start with a comprehensive test plan that all involved are in sync with. We would also assign one of our test engineers to take you through the entire process. This would include a review of all the data and effectively translating those charts, graphs and other machine produced data necessary to change your vehicle, targeted to enhance performance and safety.

It seems like we could benefit from off track testing but have never been involved with the process. We have experience working on and setting up our car but don't have a test engineer available in our group, does it still make sense to still do it? 

Yes, upon learning more about your test requirements we will assign one of our test engineers to go through the process with you. We will do our very best to insure you receive maximum benefit from the test session.

It seems you have several different full car test systems how do I determine which is best suited for my needs? 

We can help you with that decision upon learning more about your testing requirements/desires. They all operate at different costs. We will recommend the simplest least expensive solution we believe will suit your needs. An exception maybe if that system is in use at the time you would like to test. Planning in advance will typically resolve that issue.