Sunday, January 17, 2010

AMD championship

I have to admit that I've always looked at the AMD chamionship as yet another cruiser contest where admitance was limited to fat moustache large tatooed arms beer drinkers.
Well I changed my mind and it can only mean two things : I'm getting older and as the years past on, I've become a cruiser fan. This simple idea is still frightening me, so even if it's probably partially true, this can't be the main reason.

The reason why I changed my mind about the AMD championship is without a doubt because of last year's competitors list. Here are some of the bikes that were battling there to win the prize in 2009. Look at these hand made motorcycles and dare to tell me you're just simply not impressed.
Ok I know, some of the bikes in the competitors list are still the ugliest in the world (check the whole list here), but hey that makes the others even greater.

These are the brakes

(Kurtis Blow, anyone ? "break it up ! break it up ! break it up !" ? Nope ? Forget it ...)

One of the key points to weight loss on the current track bike project is to get rid of the ABS. Back in 2001, the ABS option on the R1100S is the "integral" version of the system. It is actually the second genetation wich is smarter and applies on both front and rear wheels. So it keeps the standard feature of the ABS by preventing the wheels from blocking, but it adds the ability to balance some brake power from front to rear.

But I'm still going to remove the system anyway ... Mainly because of its weight, but also because I don't want the system to trigger on the track when applying full brake. In order to combine front and rear brake power, the second generation ABS uses of a special central unit and a lot of braided brake hoses that go all around the bike. Once wholy removed, the bike should be a little lighter.

The central unit controls both front and rear brakes

Once removed, the bike will be fitted with braided hoses all along to replace the partial rubber sections. I chose to buy this complete Goodridge kit from eBay and I must admit that's certainly the weirdest one I've ever come across for a motorcycle. It's not designed to replace the whole line but only the rubber sections, so the pipes are really short and at first I even thought I did a mistake when ordering.

The brake system should soon be a mix between ABS orentied parts (like brake pads as calipers should remain on the bike) with non-ABS oriented parts (derived and short braided lines, for instance).

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Nicky's new year's gift

Has Nicky fucked up with this picture ? Well from my point of view yes, a little. I like Nicky Hayden for the way he is even if some of his personnality is sometimes too much of an american's lampoon. Anyway, he's a talented and stylish rider - let's not forget he's been the MotoGP champion, plus he's the only Stoner teammate to actually tame the MotoGP Ducati - and looks like a good chap out of the track.
But when he went to Ducati's racing facilities late in last December to meet his new racing motorcycle, he took some pics of the bike for the memories. The problem is that he thought that would be cool to share them with the fans and uploaded the pictures on his website, revealing the whole new Desmosedici to the planet, including every other MotoGP teams. That was a very nice idea for the fans, but that wasn't very smart from a Ducati manager's perspective.

Now the japanese teams have the whole winter to study Ducati's new MotoGP weapon. I hope it hasn't ruined Ducati's efforts too much.

Happy new year

I guess I should start this new year by wishing you all a happy new one. It's probably a bit laconic, but trust me when I say it is very sincere. I wish the best for this new year to any reader, especially to those I know personnaly. We may not spend a lot of time working on our bikes together, we may have taken separate directions or we may not meet as often as we (I ?) would like to but you're all in my thoughts.

I'm starting the year with this big teutonic project in my garage. There's still a lot of work on it before it even runs and I won't be at ease before I fix a couple of fixable issues. I promised to practice a lot more on track than last year - that'll be peace of cake as I've cancelled most of my rides - and to spend a lot more time having fun than working - again that shouldn't be too hard.

Hope too read or see you soon lads.