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Don't trust your fuel gauge on track!!!

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This past weekend at Watkins Glen I ran out of gas with the gauge showing a little less than 1/4 tank. VERY embarrasing to pull off and stop as other cars wizzed by (and I have that on video for laughs). After car sat for about 30 seconds it started right up and I was able to drive back to my garage. At that point gauge still read a little under 1/4 tank and display said 58 miles to empty. Roketman called his buddy at Ford who told me to never let my Boss get below 1/4 tank at a track event...especially at a track like WG with some high G sweepers. I figured it's just a fuel pickup issue with fuel sloshing in long high G turns. It's worse. The gauge lies and reads about 1/4 tank high. I decided with 58 miles to go I could easily make it into town to gas up so I did not buy any of the $9/gal stuff at the track. As I'm driving the few miles into town the gauge quickly plummets to "E" as the miles per empty display is clicking down about 1 mile to go every 1/10 of a mile. I managed to make it the nearest station and put 15.8 gallons into the 16 gallon tank.
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steveespo said:
Sean (KBBOSS1086) did the same thing at Pocono yesterday. I got 6.3 mpg on the big track and spent $150 on 100 octane Sunoco. Ouch!
Steve
I got 5.2 MPG on track.
 

PeteInCT

#LS-378 - So many Porsche's, so little time....
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ChuckP said:
I got 5.2 MPG on track.

Hey Chuck - Stop using the 87 octane ! ;D LOL

Actually I had 2 runs where I pitted in a couple of minutes early myself. Both times she 'burped' in the sweeper after the Bus Stop. Once it reads 1/4 tank you're pretty much toast unless you drive like Roketman - he doesn't generate enough G's to even have the gas in the tank move around. ::)
 
My bad I should have told you guys about that sooner......thought I posted it somewhere. Anyway, it was that way on my GT500 too. I just bring five 5 gal cans of 93 octane to the track with me. I start with a full tank and pour in 5 gallons after every session. I still almost ran out up at Road America since the track is so big and I was burning 7 gallons a session! Then I refill the cans at night off track for the next day.

Your gauge won't read accurately after the first session with all the sloshing between the saddle tanks. It will say 3/4 when you shut it off and then when you go to grid the next session it will plummet to 3/8 or 1/4. I'm always worried about running too low on track and getting a lean condition in a high G turn.
 
I ran out of gas in the banking at Daytona, made it back to pit road but not before I went straight through the bus stop. Quite embarrassing to say the least. I do not trust the gauge and in fact I don't even look at it any more, you have to calculate when at a track day. One of the Bosses also ran out of gas at Sebring last month so it is easy to do.

My car will burn 7-8 gallons a session, I normally read between 4.9 to 5.1 on the computer. It's kind of funny when you have a legit 1/2 tank and your car reads 50 miles to empty. Anyway I start the day full and add a five gallon can (pure gas) after each session. At lunch I fill it all the way and do the 5 gallon can thing until the end of the day. So far it has worked out but a few times I ended up low by days end depending on how many sessions we run.
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
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Cloud , you did post this earlier ,as I had a hiccup when I thought I had enough fuel for a bit more, did one more lap to verify, and bingo into the pits when it said 38 miles to empty. Gs were too great and the fuel pickup started to suck. Noticed it appeared on a left hand sweeper, but thanks as I remembered you mentioning it so I did not push it. Driving down the road to the gas station it went below 1/4 tank and as I came back a student who came to the track in his S2000 ran out on the way to fill up. Apparently Bosses are not the only cars with questionable fuel pick up, ha.
 
JScheier said:
I've done it three times. Slow learner ;)

Don't feel bad, I'm only one behind you but got lucky and made it back in both times. One thing to keep in mind is even after the car sits for an hour after a run it is still not correct. I can remember coming home and parking it with half a tank then the next time I drive a day or two later, it say almost empty.
 
Yeah learned that one the hard way myself. I never take it on the track with less than 2/3s a tank for a 25-minute run now. Gas cans are great, not too fond of $6/gallon 93 octane at the track :eek:
 

Grant 302

basic and well known psychic
Funny...I was thinking of bringing one 5 gal can to LS with the Boss. And I was thinking I was being paranoid. I haven't had a problem with the GT gauge yet. Thanks for the heads-up!
 
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Funny, my Porsche fuel gauge is just the opposite on track (don't have a cell). It will read empty and the warning light will come on while motoring around the track. Come in and let the car sit for a few minutes...1/4 tank and no light. Based on how much fuel it takes to fill the tank at that point, 1/4 is pretty accurate.
 
I also ran out of gas on track last weekend at Pocono. The fuel guage said I had more than a 1/4 tank at the start of my run. Luckily the car started to sputter just as I exited the last turn so I was able to enter the pit without getting stuck on track. In the future I will make sure I have around a 1/2 tank before starting a run, just to be safe.

I ended up going through nearly 2 full tanks of gas (roughly 2 hours 10 min on track).
 
fduboss302 said:
What gas cans are you guys using on track days? Do I need to attach anything weird to fill it up using these cans?

I use the old red Blitz gas cans that CARB somehow outlawed throughout the entire country. If you cut the tab off that hold the yellow cap in place it fits right into the Ford capless fueling system. You can find them used at garage sales etc.

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I drive my car into town at lunchtime and fill up for about $3.50/gal for 93 octane. ;D
 

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