Composite Clean Snowmobile Chassis
In 2003, work started on a sled based on a 2003 4-stroke Arctic Cat. The Arctic Cat 660 4-Stroke uses a modest engine to produce a good 4-stroke snowmobile. One approach to add interest to the design would be to put a bigger engine in the snowmobile. However this incurs costs in fuel economy. A different approach was taken with British sports cars of the 1950's and 1960's. Cars such as the Lotus 7, the Berkley and others used standard engines as small as the 900cc Austin to produce a car that ran with the super cars of the time. This tradition continues in the Caterham 7 or even the modern Lotus. As the Lotus web site puts it:
These cars are the model for the clean sheet design of the UMaine Clean Snowmobile. The objective is to design a light, strong, and stylish snowmobile chassis using composite materials. Existing engine and front suspension from the 2003 Arctic Cat 4-stroke Trail will be used, however the stock rear suspension may or may not be used due to its weight. Open wheel and sports car racing will influence the design of the composite chassis. Redline Snowmobiles also show some innovation that may be worth reviewing.
This is not a construction oriented project. Final results of this project will be to present the design, fabrication techniques and resources that will need to be obtained or developed. This project will focus primarily on the design aspect rather than construction of the composite sled.