Urban Transport

Twin-turbine street luge to attempt 300 mph record run

Fellows hopes to break the existing record of 115.8 mph (186.4 km/h) set by Jason Bradbury of the UK in 2011 (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fellows hopes to break the existing record of 115.8 mph (186.4 km/h) set by Jason Bradbury of the UK in 2011 (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Power increase of roughly 537 lb of thrust is available when afterburners run full burn, an increase of 38 percent over regular thrust (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Power increase of roughly 537 lb of thrust is available when afterburners run full burn, an increase of 38 percent over regular thrust (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fellows will ride in the feet first position like typical luge riders ... but there's no word on whether he'll wear Chucks for the run or not (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Fellows will ride in the feet first position like typical luge riders ... but there's no word on whether he'll wear Chucks for the run or not (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The Mk II jet luge will use 12 snowmobile racing wheels to guide the craft during its five minute run (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The Mk II jet luge will use 12 snowmobile racing wheels to guide the craft during its five minute run (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Each turbine weighs only 29 lb (13 kg), with a rev limitation of 72,000 rpm (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Each turbine weighs only 29 lb (13 kg), with a rev limitation of 72,000 rpm (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Turbine Internals (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Turbine Internals (Photo: Daz Fellows)
83 mm wheels running at 124 mph will see revolutions hit 12,780 rpm (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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83 mm wheels running at 124 mph will see revolutions hit 12,780 rpm (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The turbines are military grade, and capable of generating 202 lb (91.6 kg) of maximum thrust for five minutes, with a continuous thrust rating of 176 lb (80 kg) (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The turbines are military grade, and capable of generating 202 lb (91.6 kg) of maximum thrust for five minutes, with a continuous thrust rating of 176 lb (80 kg) (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fuel consumption is 3 liters/min under continuous thrust or 4.5 liters/min when afterburners are engaged (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Fuel consumption is 3 liters/min under continuous thrust or 4.5 liters/min when afterburners are engaged (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Acceleration and power modulations will be managed via either a thumb controlled wheel or a trigger styled grip (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Acceleration and power modulations will be managed via either a thumb controlled wheel or a trigger styled grip (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Luge form design during pre-production phase (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Luge form design during pre-production phase (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fellows' first board, the Mk I did not meet the Guinness World Records strict guidelines so the Mk II was designed to comply (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Fellows' first board, the Mk I did not meet the Guinness World Records strict guidelines so the Mk II was designed to comply (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The nose looks part stealth fighter or exaggerated skateboard, but on profile the design is all about being fast and low (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The nose looks part stealth fighter or exaggerated skateboard, but on profile the design is all about being fast and low (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The carbon fiber board houses twin-turbine engines, as well as electronics and wheels (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The carbon fiber board houses twin-turbine engines, as well as electronics and wheels (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Production photo showing board build and engine integration (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Production photo showing board build and engine integration (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The board is aerodynamically optimized and custom formed and fitted to Fellows' frame and turbines (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The board is aerodynamically optimized and custom formed and fitted to Fellows' frame and turbines (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Tip to tail the board measures 3 m (9.8 ft), and is 598 mm (23.5 in) at its widest point (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Tip to tail the board measures 3 m (9.8 ft), and is 598 mm (23.5 in) at its widest point (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fellows hopes to break the existing record of 115.8 mph (186.4 km/h) set by Jason Bradbury of the UK in 2011 (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Fellows hopes to break the existing record of 115.8 mph (186.4 km/h) set by Jason Bradbury of the UK in 2011 (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The carbon fiber board, including engines and carbon fiber fuel cell, is only 72.7 lb (33 kg) (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The carbon fiber board, including engines and carbon fiber fuel cell, is only 72.7 lb (33 kg) (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The highest point on the luge is the carbon fiber area surrounding the turbines and the trailing fin integrated into the board behind the rider (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The highest point on the luge is the carbon fiber area surrounding the turbines and the trailing fin integrated into the board behind the rider (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Fellows' carbon fiber board incorporates all electrical, fuel and suspension components (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Fellows' carbon fiber board incorporates all electrical, fuel and suspension components (Photo: Daz Fellows)
The board will run only 10 mm off the ground during the record attempt run (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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The board will run only 10 mm off the ground during the record attempt run (Photo: Daz Fellows)
Lean steer turning will be the board’s sole directional tool (Photo: Daz Fellows)
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Lean steer turning will be the board’s sole directional tool (Photo: Daz Fellows)

Australian Daz Fellows wants to ensure proper nomenclature is used when describing his modified street luge. Sporting twin-turbines with a combined output of 537 lb of thrust, and a custom formed board composed of carbon fiber, Daz has made clear that the conveyance he'll be climbing aboard when he shoots for a world record attempt of 300 mph (482 km/h) next year is a "jet luge."

In 1996, Daz "the Cowboy" Fellows became a founding member of Australia’s street luge circuit. In 2007, when the first powered luge record was set, he became obsessed with the notion of becoming the fastest street luger in the world. The current street luge record is 115.8 mph (186.4 km/h), and was set back in 2011 by Jason Bradbury of the UK. Fellows hopes to not only break the existing record, but exceed it by more than double.

Fellows' first jet luge had to undergo some modifications and updates to meet the strict rules of the Guinness World Records. Mounted just behind his head at the back of the board, and running on Jet A-1 fuel, each of the two small military grade turbine engines is capable of generating 202 lb (91.6 kg) of maximum thrust for five minutes, with a continuous thrust rating of 176 lb (80 kg).

According to Fellows, with afterburners running full burn, an increase of approximately 38 percent is available to the turbines for a short period. This power increase equates out to roughly 537 lb of thrust when the afterburner gods are called upon.

The small-but-mighty turbine engines add only marginal weight gains to the board. Each engine weighs only 29 lb (13 kg), has a rev limitation of 72,000 rpm and a fuel consumption rate of 3 liters/minute under continuous thrust. With afterburners engaged, the turbines use up 4.5 liters/minute giving Fellows enough fuel in the 22 liter tank to get the job done in around five minutes.

The board itself is an exercise in unproven aerodynamic theory. The nose on it looks part stealth fighter or exaggerated skateboard, but on profile the design is all about fast and low. The highest point on the board will be the formed carbon fiber area surrounding the turbines and the trailing fin integrated into the board behind Fellows’ helmet. Weight specs for the board, including engines and carbon fiber fuel cell, is only 72.7 lb (33 kg). No word on what dietary regimen Fellows will be adhering to prior to the attempt in order to keep overall weight at a minimum.

Running only 8-10 mm (0.39 in) off the road, it will be important for the course to be absolutely debris free. In order to fit Fellows’ frame and the twin turbines, the board needed to be long. From tip to tail the board comes in at just under 3 m (9.8 ft) which should give some good straight line stability. Across the waist the luge measures 598 mm (23.5 in), making it significantly wider than a traditional board.

The luge will run a 12-wheel configuration using performance wheels and bearings from the world of snowmobile racing. Fellows notes that an 83 mm (3.3 in) wheel running at 124 mph (200 km/h) will see revolutions hit 12,780 rpm. At 250 mph (400 km/h) this means the tiny skateboard-inspired wheels will be spinning in excess of 25,000 rpm.

When it comes to controlling the board, "lean steer turning" will be the board’s sole directional tool. Acceleration and power modulations will be managed via either a thumb-controlled wheel or a trigger-style grip. The final selection will be made closer to the attempt date.

The afterburners, which have their own separate controls are either on or off, there is no modulation capability. The afterburners have their own fuel pumps, but feed off the main fuel tank. In the event that something should go wrong at top speed on this oversized skateboard, a kill switch is on standby to shut down the entire system.

Fellows is set to make his world record attempt between April and August next year, when temperatures are more optimal for turbine operations. No location for the run has been confirmed at this time.

You can see the first rolling test in the video below.

Source: Jet Luge

Jet powered Streetluge/Skateboard first rolling test

27 comments
CaryKen
I think the phrase "kill switch" is particularly well-chosen here.
Jon Smith
Man some people are just desperate for a Darwin award.
Dave Muckey
What could possibly go wrong with that?
The Skud
Forget the extra weight ... I would add [insurance mandate] a small pop-out (drag racer style) chute to lift the rider away in case of any mishap! The story does not mention any form of braking.
Mel Tisdale
I doubt that Mr Fellows will be suffering from constipation afterwards, that is when they have found all the pieces.
Mirmillion
If it lifts off he'll tumble and that will be catastrophic. If it chucks him off he'll slide for some distance - better wear double leathers reinforced with composite sliders at the usual contact points if he doesn't want to endure months of excruciating pain while healing from deep road burn. Nothing like the thrill of seemingly endless acceleration from the micro-turbines (presume 100,000 RPM). How will he know when to shut down?
owlbeyou
Not sure which is crazier: having two turbine jets so close to his head, or going up to 300mph so close to the ground on such small wheels. Turns would be practically impossible and the assfault/surface should be smooth and very level. Any undulations at this speed and his ass would be toast.
bf_308
This brings a whole meaning to the phrase "Rocket Man"
Mandres
lol, go for it man! just make sure the cameras are rolling and your life insurance premiums are paid up ..
StWils
This guy is apparently determined to be either spam or a wet red mess in a very long line, at least until the blood dries up. There will be absolutely no possibility of turning. At these speeds and with so little vehicle around him any attempt to turn will instantly result in lethal tumbling. Also he is not likely to remain either conscious or alive long enough to use a "Kill Switch".
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