Why do I need indicator fluid
This is how the actual "blinker fluid" could work
I'm pretty sure anyone reading this is familiar with the old jokes about "blinker fluid". In case you aren't, it's one of the oldest, most worn, and tired gags in the entire automotive industry. It is so old that it has become a tradition. We even named our signature cocktail after it. So I decided it was time to see if turn signal fluid could really be a thing.
The basic idea of all turn signal fluid is based on the idea that your car's turn signals require a specific fluid, the mythical turn signal fluid. People who know even a little about cars like to prank people who don't by getting them to ask for turn signal fluid at auto parts stores. It has jumped the shark so many times, and with such grace and power, that mothers are now doing it to their sons.
You can even buy joke bottles from Amazon. Turn signal fluid is part of the collective culture of transmissions.
It is all the more surprising that, as far as I know, no one has ever tried to develop a flasher system that uses a liquid instead of a flashing electric light.
I will correct this oversight now. So get ready
I don't have one, not three, but two designed liquid turning systems for automobiles and I want to describe them to you now.
First we need to determine exactly what turn signal fluid is is. I think the most sensible liquid is the material used in glow sticks, which glows brightly and can glow in the correct amber color required for blinkers.
There are actually two chemicals in glow sticks that trigger the reaction: diphenyl oxalate and hydrogen peroxide. When these two substances are combined there is a reaction that “Produces phenol and 1,2-dioxetanedione ,  that excites the dye and releases a photon as it decomposes Carbon dioxide .“
In our system, the amber dye would be mixed with the diphenyl oxalate and these two chemicals would be placed in a pair of reservoirs that are grouped together in a flasher fluid reservoir. This reservoir would have an injector nozzle that mixes the two chemicals. So when the turn signal fluid is injected into the system, the chemical reaction takes place and the fluid lights up.
In addition, my system requires the use of a clear mineral oil that does not mix with the turn signal fluid.
The system would work as follows: There is a central pump with three possible locations to pump liquid to: left and right indicator loops and a central set of holding loops when the turn signals are inactive.
The system would work as follows: when the car is started, the valves to the indicator loops are closed and the valves to the holding loops are opened. The turn signal fluid reservoir and clear oil reservoir would be instructed to inject their respective fluids into the loop holder in alternating bursts, creating a "trail" of alternating glowing amber turn signal fluid and clear oil-filled sections of the indicator loop holder tube.
When a rotation is indicated, the valves open either left or right and the combination of turn signal fluid and clear oil fluid is pumped through the loop where it is eventually passed through sections of clear tubing behind the indicator lenses that allow the turn signal fluid to light up seen outside through the car's display lenses.
The alternating blinking liquid / clear oil, which is pumped past the lens, appears as a blinking light from the outside of the vehicle and fulfills the blinker function.
Now the glow plug liquid only remains luminescent for a few hours. Ideally, new formulations are developed to extend the life of the liquid. In its current form, however, the liquid needs to be pumped into a liquid waste tank (or, if you're an idiot, just sprayed on the floor) and the system needs to be topped up from the turn signal fluid and oil reservoirs.
So if you're really into a joke and are looking for a car with turn signals that actually actually use turn signal fluid, look for a system that requires at least one main pump, three electronically operated valves, a two-chamber tank with a combined injector, a single-chamber tank with one Injector, a waste tank and plenty of water.
It's a hell of a lot more complicated than four lightbulbs and some wire, but damn it, it's worth it.
If that's too much for you, I have a plan for a quick and dirty liquid-based display system, but with the current state of the art in lightstick technology, there are some limitations. Here it is:
This system couldn't be simpler: an ampoule of glowing, mixed blinker fluid surrounded by an electrically rotating drum with a window cut into it. A weak magnet keeps the drum in the closed, window-hidden position when not in use.
When the display is activated, the drum rotates and periodically displays the ampoule filled with glowing blinker fluid, which gives the appearance of blinking. When the display is off, the magnet ensures that the vial is not visible.
Of course, with this setup you'd have to replace your turn signal fluid at least daily, probably more often. You could set up a pumping system to automatically purge and refill the vials after a set time, but until then you are approaching the dual circuit pumping system described above.
This should tell you that using blinker fluid if you have it is a terrible, terrible idea. Flashing lightbulbs are absolutely awesome.
A flasher fluid-based system would arguably be more exciting on wrecks, as broken power lines would bleed bright orange on any road that you know would look amazing at night.
Overall, I think the blinker fluid joke could in reality, but, of course, it would not, however, vastly be an overly complicated idea.
I'm sure British Leyland tried it at least once and found that while it was more reliable than the Lucas indicators, it was a bit more expensive.
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