Physics for Gearheads
What people are saying about Physics for Gearheads
"Beikmann explains the hows and whys of racing in a depth rarely probed by the non-engineer reader. Beikmann is your guide to the intricacies of physics on the track and in the car. He goes in depth on his subjects, but he doesn't go so far that you're overwhelmed and your eyes glaze over. Non-engineers will never really lose track of what Beikmann is saying. Even the equations make sense to the average schmoe (i.e. us). This would be a great textbook for a high school physics class, making the complex subject accessible to a wider audience and getting more kids interested science."
December 15, 2015
"If looking for something not written decades ago, the new Physics for Gearheads should be the only physics book needed for automotive enthusiasts."
November 17, 2015
"As a driver, the information [in Physics for Gearheads] is invaluable. As a gearhead, it's detailed, and deeply fascinating. As a car owner it's instrumental to understanding what your car does and why. As an armchair physicist, it's just a lot of fun!
The book is a true lesson in physics. So if you haven't thought about physics since high school, and high school was a while back, this is a refresher course made interesting by our mutual obsession with cars. If you're a racer or DE driver, and physics is way, way back in your rearview mirror, you're seriously missing out on the advantage true understanding of every aspect of what you're doing out there, because it is ALL physics. When you understand the dynamics of a torque curve, mixed with the centrifugal force applied in a corner to eeek out every millisecond of power, you're way, way ahead of the game. And the name of the game is speed.
So if you are at all precision inclined, and you own, race or drive a high performance car, this book is indispensable. Get it on your list!"
"Author Randy Beikmann has a Ph. D. in mechanical engineering and has taken the complex subject matter of how physics relates to the automotive world...this book is enormously helpful with hundreds of formulas intended to guide you through the math when faced with a question that can only be solved with numbers..."
If you have always wondered about the real origins of how the physics is applied when it comes to high-performance automobiles, chances are your questions are covered in this book. I know it has already earned a prime spot as a valued reference on my bookshelf."
Fall / Winter 2015
"If you never took physics in high school, perhaps you're a little intimidated by it. When your reviewer studied it, few of the calculations really explained how the laws of nature apply to how things work in the real world. [Physics for Gearheads] lays out hundreds of practical applications as to how they work in the world of cars and motorcycles...We peg this as a challenging lesson plan for car enthusiasts who really want to acquire some in-depth knowledge. This is one of the most provocative and fascinating tech books we've encountered in quite some time."
"Mathematics, much less calculus, trigonometry and physics, always seemed a struggle for your commentator despite being fascinated by their logic and ability to interpret and make use of nature's laws. Thus my askance at reading, much less commentating on this book turned to delight finding Randy Beikmann's explanations- enhanced by Bentley Publishers' graphics- and page-designers-not just clear and understandable but actually useable, applicable! And the half-dozen appendices that augment the already clear and useful text illustrated, as mentioned, with graphs, sidebar boxes and the like are the proverbial cake's frosting...with its clear explanations and applications, [Physics for Gearheads] will gratify your efforts to understand."
"This would be a terrific textbook for a college-level course in automotive engineering, learning how to compute how kinetic energy of a vehicle in motion is converted to heat in the braking process, how the heat in a fuel is turned into power, or how to predict the force on a suspension pushrod."
July 12, 2015
"Whether your interest might be increasing shaving a few tenths off lap times or increasing the power of your engine, Physics for Gearheads explains the physics concepts at play, and demonstrates how one might better harness them for your benefit...While Beikmann explains complicated concepts in ordinary language, it is still a weighty tome more geared (pardon the pun) towards the automotive engineer or racer.
That being said, if you are looking for a primer in physics that covers the major aspects and principles, and are also an automotive enthusiast, Beikmann's book will make an invaluable contribution to your science education...and perhaps make you a better driver too."
July 14, 2015
"Physics for Gearheads is an awesome resource for bringing relevance to an introductory physics class. The pictures and corresponding text truly bring the concepts to life. I would use this as a companion text for a general physics class or as a curriculum text for an elective or choice class."
July 7, 2015
"This book is destined to become the new bible of performance engineering for the regular guy. You will refer to it over and over again and it will likely become thoroughly dog-eared addition to the rule books and cam cards in the top of your tool box. The author's style is engaging without the intimidation that often accompanies a read of this nature.
This book is a "Must Read" for every gearhead, car guy and performance enthusiast."
June 14, 2015
"Physics for Gearheads is a full-on textbook of answers to the questions we motorheads have every single day...
This could all be pretty dry stuff if Beikmann didn't write in such a friendly, helpful tone. It's a book that takes complex physical explanations and puts them in the real world, relating them to experiences we've all had behind the wheel, or under the hood.
If you've ever really wanted to understand how a car works...this is the book for you. Lots of books exist about cars, and lots of books exist about physics, but none of them pull the two ideas together in a practical volume like this one. Think of this as "Physics for Dummies" for people who aren't dummies."
June 10, 2015
"The Physics for Gearheads topics are standard ones: Kinematics (movement in a straight line), Dynamics (forces, mass and acceleration), Energy (work, motion, heat and the First Law of Thermodynamics), Power (getting work done), and Statics and quasi-statics (center of gravity, weight distribution and load transfer). Chapters of non-trivial motorsports applications follow the theory, and these make Beikmann's book even more special...
I like Beikmann's approach to learning: "Regardless of your background, 'soak time' is important... So while a lot of this book is about speed, reading it is not. Take your time, and enjoy it!"
June 1, 2015
"The book has many positive features. It emphasizes the importance of visualizing and conceptualizing a physical situation, rather than 'blindly plugging numbers into formulas'. It also locates physics concepts either in the historical context from which they arose, or in real problems where applying a physics analysis gives insight and leads to solutions. Throughout the book there are fully worked examples of calculations. Diagrams are generally clear and helpful. The narrative style sounds personally addressed to the reader. Every chapter has its boxes identifying a 'key concept' and ends with a useful 'summary' plus relevant equations. Calculus-based derivations, for those who wish to go further, are placed in an appendix."
"Physics for Gearheads, by Randy Beikmann, is a superbly presented 590 page volume, crammed full of everything a car enthusiast might need if they wish to go beyond the performance figures in the sales brochure. Starting at first principles, the book provides theory and equations to analyse all aspects of the performance of road and racing cars, in a way that is easily accessed...
The author has used his teaching experience to lay out each subject matter in an extremely clear way, and provided illustrations to assist in understanding the text and equations. The book is eminently readable."
May 15, 2015
"Love cars? And love physics? Then this is the book for you. Its author, mechanical engineer Randy Beikmann, wanted to write an introduction to vehicle dynamics, energy and power with examples from motorsports, and he does a grand job of it, too...an informative, well-executed publication that works a treat."
"...are you interested in understanding the physics of cars and racing? If so, you'll love Randy Beikmann's book, Physics for Gearheads.
This is the book that I wish I'd had when taking physics classes in school. In fact, if you have a kid studying physics, and he has even a passing interest in cars, get a copy of this book.
But understand: this is not just for kids or physics class. It could be for you, the gearhead. I'll guarantee one thing: you'll learn a ton from it (and probably understand what a "ton" of learning is!)."
April 21, 2015
"The text is extremely well laid out with colorful chapter subheadings, key concepts, formula highlights and plenty of diagrams. The level of the text would be appropriate for early engineering undergrads however an advanced high school student could easily go through the book. Advanced engineers could also use this as a very handy reference for vehicle dynamics."
April 3, 2015
"...if you've ever wondered what forces are at work to make your Corvette behave the way it does in certain situations, you'll find it in this book. Because Corvettes, like everything else on this planet, are obliged to comply with the laws of physics. Sit down with the book, read it and look at the visuals that dynamically illustrate the text, and the mysteries of physics will be unveiled for you. Most highly recommended!"
"Everything is explained, and that's just what Physics for Gearheads trying to achieve on a fairly entertaining and above all petrol minded manner."
March 4, 2015
"If, like me, you are a gearhead who enjoys building things, this book is a godsend of practical equations that, once understood, will allow you to raise your intuitive abilities to a higher level...This book is written so well that you don't have to be a math wiz to understand what you're being told. You do need to want to learn, and it will require some thinking. But if you are of average intelligence and willing to make an effort, then it's all here, and the secrets of physics will be revealed."
February 26, 2015
"Now here's a book all the know-it-alls on the MINI forums should read! Physics For Gearheads, written by a genuine Ph.D that works for GM's Milford Proving Grounds, is 600 pages of fascinating facts, information on vehicle dynamics, energy, aero and other "egghead" stuff. Great read- but you have to think about it! ...a reference book that will be with you for years."
February 26, 2015
"... I found the book to be very well written and accurately covers the physics associated with all motorsports and racing."
February 25, 2015
"...there's lots of good material in the book...cleanly and attractively laid out and gets a lot of material in, usually giving a thorough and well-paced run through. Reading it was work rather than pleasure, but it was useful work if you want to have the tools to work out all the kinds of mechanical forces and energies and such involved in making a car go...it would be a great primer for would-be American auto engineers, and as such I will glowingly recommend it."
February 14, 2015