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Old 08-30-2012, 09:55 AM   #231 (permalink)
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Seems to me, right now, the CBR250R (250cc, single, FI) is the best base for a high mileage project. Unfortunately they are nowhere near as plentiful as the Ninja 250.

Sendler (member here) got better mileage (105.6) at the recent Vetter challenge with a stock CBR than one of the streamlined Ninjas (101.9), and just slightly under one of the diesels (106.4). His CBR wasn't able to carry the cargo, so he was not eligible for awards.

It would be interesting to see what full streamling would do to the CBR's numbers - cause 105 MPG stock ain't too bad!


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Old 08-30-2012, 11:54 AM   #232 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by husasa View Post
Craig Vetter has a point about the best vehicle being your first choice, and for me there is great appeal in a “good-looking” machine. In the few weeks that I have had the C90, my eyes have been reopened about the practicality of motorcycles. Although I have always considered myself a “biker” the truth is that I have not used a bike as regular transport since my teens. They make great toys but no way would I choose one over my car for anything but a “fun” journey.
I think you and Craig have a very valid point here that is the biggest obstacle to overcome for high mileage bikes. Most people in the US think of motorcycles as toys. Not real transportation. Creating a desirable single occupant high mileage vehicle is difficult because they currently don't exist except as conventional motorcycles.

The public psyche needs to be somehow changed to accept these as desirable. In the '70s SUVs didn't exist like they do now. They were rough, utilitarian and functional. These days they are desirable because they are seen as powerful, luxurious, safe, upmarket, bling-ridden, utilitarian (for groceries and kids).

Is that what we need to make these things desirable? Maybe it's the resulting "helmet hair" that scares people away. Maybe it's that it's an "unsafe" motorcycle, which is really about as unsafe as a handgun.

Visionary, judging by your avatar, I think you are on the right track to resolve alot of the public desires. Keep it up!
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Old 08-30-2012, 12:01 PM   #233 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by husasa View Post
Craig Vetter has a point about the best vehicle being your first choice, and for me there is great appeal in a “good-looking” machine. In the few weeks that I have had the C90, my eyes have been reopened about the practicality of motorcycles. Although I have always considered myself a “biker” the truth is that I have not used a bike as regular transport since my teens. They make great toys but no way would I choose one over my car for anything but a “fun” journey.
I think you and Craig have a very valid point here that is the biggest obstacle to overcome for high mileage bikes. Most people in the US think of motorcycles as toys. Not real transportation. Creating a desirable single occupant high mileage vehicle is difficult because they currently don't exist except as conventional motorcycles.

The public psyche needs to be somehow changed to accept these as desirable. In the '70s SUVs didn't exist like they do now. They were rough, utilitarian and functional. These days they are desirable because they are seen as powerful, luxurious, safe, upmarket, bling-ridden, utilitarian (for groceries and kids).

Is that what we need to make these things desirable? Maybe it's the resulting "helmet hair" that scares people away. Maybe it's that it's an "unsafe" motorcycle, which is really about as unsafe as a handgun.

The current younger generation, the analysts tell us, is less concerned about owning a fancy bling vehicle and more concerned about the environmental impact and social connection. Maybe we need to do and apply some more market research to help get this off and running on it's own.

Visionary, judging by your avatar, I think you are on the right track to resolve alot of the public desires. Keep it up!
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:00 PM   #234 (permalink)
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Interesting project! As a comparison for small lightweight enclosed vehicles I have a 1959 Heinkel Kabine 3-wheeler: Heinkel Kabine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
It weighs about 250Kg/550lbs, have a single cylinder 4-stroke 10hp/200cc engine with 4-speed gearbox. It can carry two persons in about 80km/h or 50mph in flat ground without too much wind. The slightest inclination will make the speed drop a lot. A fifth gear would be nice as first gear is to high and the difference between gears is a bit to long.

The body may seem streamlined but the side-by-side configuration and the steeply rounded tail makes the Heinkel slower than it could be. The Messerschmitt KR200 with the same engine performance can reach almost 100km/h or 60mph under the same conditions. Messerschmitt KR200 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Both these vehicles have small 10" wheels and i guess bigger wheels means less rolling resistance.

I´ve been driving small under-motorised cars and 3-wheelers for many years. One thing they seems to have in common is that it may take very long time to reach high speed and the smallest inclination or opposite wind will make it impossible. But while once reached high speed the vehicle seems to be able to keep it for a long time even if I have to go uphill for a shorter distance.

Gear ratio and number of gears are an important factor. The fewer cylinders the peakier engine. Fem cylinders can be compensated for only by more gears. With too few gears the engine can´t reach the revs where it produces the power needed for acceleration. Once at high speed the engine can produce power not only to keep speed but also to continue accelerating! To be honest I´m afraid a 100cc single cylinder engine in a 200kg/400lbs vehicle would need at least five gears to reach highway speed unless a downslope appears.

What I also have learned from my three-wheeler and two tiny fiats is that low weight isn´t always the best. To maintain speed it can actually help to have some extra weight that acts like a kind of "linear flywheel", at least when the vehicle have to few gears. What is the best depends on what type of road you mostly travel. For city traffic, low weight is mostly a winner.
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Old 10-06-2012, 10:55 AM   #235 (permalink)
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yes he really did a nice job,and the body he constructed is very efficient at slicing through the think air.It will be interesting when large scale 3D printer's become available to all of us,what if any surface effects have on aerodynamics, realizing that just because mother nature made it work in a certain animal for a specific reason,doesn't mean it will work on a race car or motorcycle,but we will be able to try it.I don't think we could pay a body man enough money to dimple a car or motorcycle body like a golf ball,and I really don't see it working,but the fact we will be able to experiment in the future is really cool,and hey you never know.Somebody somewhere may hit on something,aerodynamics are a really big deal when you can double your mileage and or range of a electric.Just my 2 cents,keep up the good work.I believe someone else is working on a enclosed motorcycle,I will get the link and post it.
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:19 AM   #236 (permalink)
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Let me re introduce the basics as I understand things: We - the folks on this forum - believe consuming less fuel is important. We wonder why others don't see this. The answer is simple:

"Fuel is not precious"

Will it ever be precious?

Well, it has been precious twice in my lifetime. Once - as a baby in WW2 while my dad was keeping B-24s flying in England. My grand dad had a fuel ration card to buy gas. Once again in the early 70s when you could buy a limited amount of fuel every other day. It is interesting that the price was not an issue. Availability was the issue. Lack of fuel made it precious.

What would make fuel precious today?

Well, as I write, fuel is precious in San Diego. Even at $6/gallon, gas stations cannot get gas and are closing.

The 100 mpg Vetter bikes are looking pretty good, aren't they? The criteria I have set:

70 mph into a 30 mph headwind, sitting up and comfortable, able to carry a useful load like 4 bags of groceries - has resulted in machines that be very significant if and when.
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Old 10-06-2012, 05:41 PM   #237 (permalink)
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Interim Update

Thanks to everyone who has contributed recently, I’ve been a bit sparse with my postings, as I wanted to document the airfield test, and it took ages to organise. But, today I ran the C90 on the airfield, with mixed results.
The day got off to a bad start when the bike refused to start and delayed our schedule by a couple of hours. This made me very tense and caused me to abandon some of my plans for the session, which meant running the bike in a hastily prepared state. However, it did run for about an hour, on and off, as I worked through a programme of tests. There was good and bad, and I’m only now getting my head around the lessons (this is written two hours after my return).

The positives – the machine is very stable at speed and safe to ride, which means I can push forward with my plans to run it on the road. Steering effort is all done by push and pull in the arms – there is no weight shifting or body movement of any (other) type, and because you don’t use your torso to brace against the frame, it has a different “feel” to a normal motorcycle.
Driving position and visibility are both good. My first tests were in a very confined environment (post #209) and my appreciation of proximity to objects was affected by this. On the wide, open strip I was able to evaluate my view of the road more carefully. Currently I have some components mounted quite high in front of me, but they did not affect vision at all – it was just like my car!

The negatives – engine cooling will be very dependant on the fan. Due to time constraints I did not run the cooling fan, and only had the internal engine cover loosely in place. I had hoped that this would provide sufficient cooling for the motor during these low-power and undemanding tests, but the thermocouple read-out from the engine barrel showed that the airflow that got to the engine was incapable of keeping a reasonable temperature. I need to finish this system and retest it
Gearing is too high, or power too low. The spacing of three 3 ratios does make it quite hard work, but acceleration in top is poor. I always knew it would be difficult, but I think I will need to drop down one tooth before using it on the road.

There are probably many other small issues that I will find when I do a check-over this week, but that’s the big picture.

On the subject of pictures – a family friend shot video this time. Hopefully better quality that last time. I will give him a week or two to cut it into a decent youtube posting, then I will link to it next time.
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Old 10-06-2012, 06:03 PM   #238 (permalink)
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Well, as I write, fuel is precious in San Diego. Even at $6/gallon, gas stations cannot get gas and are closing.
Less than 50¢ increase and there's already talk of truckers who may simply stop driving ...

One minor problem of limited duration at a refinery and the oil addicts are sent running for the fuel stations.
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Old 10-12-2012, 05:19 PM   #239 (permalink)
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relevant link to your project

I haven't been folowing the thread so if this is redundant forgive me.
Here is a link to an enclosed recumbant motorcycle in NZ.

AeroBike Enclosed Motorcycle

Regards

Stephen
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:08 PM   #240 (permalink)
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Wow !! That's worthy of a thread of it's own ... very impressive .

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