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Are the 2021 wheel changes more significant than they appear?
Discussion started by IanSmithISA , 04 November, 2019 11:58
Are the 2021 wheel changes more significant than they appear?
IanSmithISA 04 November, 2019 11:58
Good morning,

Come 2021 F1 is going for bigger wheels and low profile tyres and as someone who is not a tyre or suspension expert I am wondering if these changes are more significant than they first appear?

As I understand it currently the deformation of the tyre wall is a major part of the suspension travel
and all of the teams have had years where they designed suspensions that takes this into account.

It would appear to me that the 2021 suspension is going to need significantly more travel to accommodate the reduced deflection available from the smaller sidewalls , possibly double or even triple the travel of the current setups?

It would seem unlikely that this can be achieved by keeping the existing designs and “tweaking a couple of travel limit screws”, instead this seems to be an opportunity for some teams to do something new and much better than the rest.

Added to the reduction in tyre deformation are F1 tyres going to need to be run at higher pressures than now?

It is certainly true of bike tyres that as you reduce the volume of air you need to increase the pressure to avoid sharp edges causing the tyre to deform so much that the wheel rim is in contact with the ground via some squashed tyre.

Looking at some of the kerbs in F1, including this weekend’s USA GP where the cars went outside of track limits and came back over a fairly high kerb there are some pretty sharp edges around the F1 track edges.

If there going to be a need for increased pressure to avoid this then does that mean even more suspension movement is going to be needed, possibly quadrupled?

I remember the US F1 team, the one that never arrived, talking about coil over damper suspensions as they were cheap to design and make, now there was a blast from the past, but is it now also the future?



Re: Are the 2021 wheel changes more significant than they appear?
rpaloschi 04 November, 2019 17:58
Was thinking about the same... Also, i think wheel to wheel racing is doubtful, touching tyres is one thing, touch wheels... hmm... I hope im wrong, but wouldn't the wheels break way easier than rubber on close racing? Curious to hear what more knowleadgeable people think...

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/11/2019 22:51 by rpaloschi.

Re: Are the 2021 wheel changes more significant than they appear?
andy si 05 November, 2019 16:56
Yes. Tires take a lot of deflection in their current form.
The suspension will have to be changed to compensate some of the lost tire flex with a lower profile.

Re: Are the 2021 wheel changes more significant than they appear?
Mikef1 09 November, 2019 15:52
Having more suspension travel due to the lack of suspension from the tyres will invariably mean either a much firmer ride to keep optimal ride height at all times or having inconsistent performance from the ground effect floors. Certainly, it is a huge deal as the fat tyres f1 currently have are able to hold the chassis steady. You may see as a result that cars are less inclined to run substantially over the kerbs and need a softer ride as it may be more efficient to ride firm, keep on the grey stuff and let the aero do its magic

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