In the course of building Monoliner Colin Russell encountered the "Niche Vehicle Network", a branch of the Technology Support Board. This is a British State body tasked with promoting "Disruptive, low Carbon vehicle technology" that will reduce energy use and provide opportunities for British innovation and industry. Promotion, with money - around £1.4billion.
It's not a car, let alone an electric car (looking forward to BMW new E-car appearing on this site any moment) but here's some footage of the 2010 Cmax on it's recent visit to Bristol. This was a major editing job - 75% of the original footage showed it stopped at traffic lights, Bristol Councils "Stop all Traffic" policy starting to "work" here. Visitors to Grat. Rd. may also note the new route needed, but it's the second left turn, not the first. The Genius responsible is one Mark Bradshaw, if he ever gets to be minister of transport you'll need a skateboard.
Germany, Poland and Czech Republic by F650 GS
To many of my age, the memory of the Iron Curtain is fresh; although it is now 24 years since the wall came down and there are many for whom it is as much history as WW2 is to me. The Moto13 Euro-trip was to remind us of both hot and cold past conflicts, in a small way, to our party – Varaderos and my 650 (800) GS. But first, the Ring:
One Ring to rule them all
Last September I had a shake-down run to Monty's place in York, across to Kirby Lonsdale and home. Apart from learning a few things about chain maintenance, that trip reinforced the need to sort the rear end. To make space for the lowered seat, the rear wheel had been moved back. This was done by adding bolt-on swingarm extensions. Extending the swing arm messes with the suspension, so it felt a bit soggy at the back. The effective spring rate changes with a square rule, meaning that the response time to any bump was loooooong.
Are you building a full-on FF racer? Why not? everybody else seems to be!
No sooner has the excitememt caused by the relaxation of the FIMs streamlining rules - and their confirmation that this permits FFs - died way, than Azhar Hussein announces that it's all changed again. According to Azhar, only the World Championship Series, consisting of a few rounds scattered across the world with none in England, will allow what he calls 'prototypes'.
Charles Hennekam, technical co-ordinator and Motorcycle Homologations Officer for the FIM, confirms in an email that it "Is possible to enter FF designs" in the new FIM formula that replaces E-GP.
He goes on to note the "Daunting" challenge of incorporating E-power into race motorcycles without factory support, something that all entrants will have to deal with.
Proving that time changes everything, the FIM have issued rules for their new E-power bike race series that don't actually ban FFs!
I have a problem i need to fix. My workshop "Nest of Dragons" is 150 km from my home. The road is notorious for its trafficjams. I hate paying all that fuel. So ...i need a electric motorbike that can do about 200 km at topspeed, because the roads are all mostly highways.
New problem: no electric motorbikes do that at this time.
My solution: buying a electric motorbike, adding more batteries (in exchange for loosing the passenger), adding fairings to have it more streamlined.
Here's some news to warm your heart!
TTXGP (AKA E-GP) is joining up with the FIM to form a 'unified' series. Other people just call it 'selling out' although I doubt the FIM paid anyone.
Question is, Will the FIM continue to apply the E-GP rules that permit FFs? Really, you only have to ask the question!
Although the FIM lifted the E-GP rules more or less complete (breaching my copyright)when they started 'TT zero', apparantly allowing FFs, they also left in their old rule about max. seat hump height (seat backs in English) of 150mm, outlawing FFs as defined.
With the t-max project slowing down and the prospect of another summer coming and going without an FF to ride – and that summer being in the south of France, I decided it was time to build something – anything (with a low COG and seat-back) – to get me on the road.
When we left Ireland and the truck came to take our stuff to France, I had been planning to sell the GPZ that I had been riding while the T-Max was off the road being FFed, but at the last minute there was room for it, so to France it came.
My name is Roger Dunkley, I live in Wellington, New Zealend and I have been building my enclosed motorcycle for about 3 years now. I have recently tested it at the closest racetrack, this was the first time I have been able to really test it out and I was very happy with the results, rewaching 174 km/h about half way down the main straight with no instability and getting to about 45 degrees of lean round the corners.
February 1987 article in Motorcycle Sport about the Steaming Mango, Gold Wing based, Phasar.
Strictly speaking, it's three FFs and a maxiscooter since the BMW C600Sport is only a potential FF.....
From Left to Right, Arthur Middleton and his VF500FF, PNB and the C600Sport, Peter Fouché and his newly-built GPZ500FF and Graham Robb in his Voyager.
The BMW clearly needs to have its seat lowered by a considerable amount.....PNB
Andy Tribble's 1987 Peraves Ecomobile, driven by PNB, meets Colin Russell's red Voyager and Graham Robb's blue one with an incongruous pre-war AJS V-twin bringing up the rear. One thing the Eco and the AJS do have in common is a hand gear change! Messrs Russell (left) & Robb (with hat) are also in the pic.
Photo: Paul Blezard
A Voyager owner takes his HF BMW 650GS parallel twin to the Alps and back in company with two Honda Varaderos.
Size and quality
Paul Blezard riding a Gurney Alligator on the cover of The Rider's Digest magazine No.165, April 2012 issue. The photo was taken by Alex Gurney with PNB's Canon EOS at Ortega Canyon highway, Southern California in December 2011.
The article about the Gurneys, All American Racers and the Alligator, 'Adventures in LaLa Land' (Part 2) and indeed the whole magazine, can be downloaded for free from www.theridersdigest.co.uk