More used to designing systems for moving loads by hand in warehouse environments, it came as a bit of shock to BIL Group to find themselves working with a new, home-grown land speed record project.
The Laffin Gas rocket car is ten times as powerful as a formula one racing car and has a top speed potential of well over 300mph. However, had it not been for the Calne-based company, this machine may well have never safely made it to the test strip.
A British couple, David Knight and Carolynne Campbell (not related to the famous Donald) designed and built the high speed dragster from scratch in their garden shed. They had to overcome many technical problems involving the reworking and origination of special parts for their rocket-powered car and have spent more than £50,000 on the project to date.
But there was one problem which they could not solve alone, and that was simply how to move the car safely and easily whilst in transit. David and Carolynne had developed their own dolly system on which they installed homemade castors, but it proved to be unstable and hard to steer – no surprise considering the sheer size and length of the 300mph car.
It quickly became evident that the existing trolley would not be able to manoeuvre the car around so Carolynne got in contact with the castors and materials handling experts – BIL Group. They helped solve the problem by using special BIL castors that could carry the rocket car without the instability and poor manoeuvrability of the existing ones.
"BIL came back with an offer to have their experts look at the problem and come up with a solution – for nothing! The wheels are great – they glide really smoothly. What a brilliant company!!" remarked Carolynne.
"Any company would jump at a chance to contribute to such an amazing project – we certainly did,” said BIL Managing Director Mark Farrell when he heard about the project, amazed that someone had been able to create a 300mph rocket car in their back garden. ”Not only were we delighted to help David and Carolynne by donating some of our heavy-duty, high quality castors but we have also offered financial support to assist the future development of the car."
BIL Group’s UK Sales Manager, Tim Murrow, was also very excited about the project from the start and in developing the relationship between BIL and the Laffin Gas team: "Our technical department thoroughly assessed the situation to make sure that David and Carolynne received the best possible castors. The rocket car is a fantastic project and BIL is proud to be a part of it.”
Having successfully solved the castor problem David, Carolynne, and BIL Group are looking forward to the prospect of making history with the Laffin Gas Car. With Carolynne driving, they plan to break the UK land speed record and possibly pass the 400mph mark during the course of next year – a feat as yet unachieved in the UK. But for now, with BIL’s assistance, at least they won’t have to worry about getting the car where it needs to go.
Porte Marsh Road
tel: 01249 822 222