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Motorcycles Archives — Page 16 of 25 — Bikernet Blog - Online Biker Magazine

Motorcycle Legend Colin Seeley Dead At 84

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by Janaki Jitchotvisut from https://www.rideapart.com

Legendary British motorcycle frame builder and racer Colin Seeley passed away after a long illness on January 7, 2020, at the age of 84. A lifelong engineering genius, Seeley’s seemingly endless curiosity combined with a passionate love for motorcycles meant he figured out his life’s general direction from an early age. The motorcycle world was better for it, and indeed, would not be what it is today without his contributions.

Seeley did all kinds of racing from 1954 to 1967, but made a name for himself in sidecar racing. Once retired from that phase of his career, he took up residence in his workshop—and might perhaps be most well-known for the incomparable frames he made for Nortons and other British motorcycles of the day.

However, of significant note as well were the frames he eventually made for ‘70s Japanese motorcycles, such as this sumptuous 1973 Seeley-Kawasaki H2A. By this point, Kawasaki’s engine-building prowess far outstripped the torsional rigidity of its available frames—but Seeley’s excellent engineering and execution handily solved that problem.

Stick these powerful, technically-exemplary-for-their-time engines inside a frame that can properly direct all that power, and you’re in business! Privateer racers loved Seeley frames as well, and he did a thriving business in both road-going and racing machines.

Even now, in the first quarter of the 21st century, vintage racers still win events by riding Seeley-framed machines, including twelve wins at the Manx Grand Prix. In later life, Seeley dedicated his time to charity work, founding the Joan Seeley Pain Relief Memorial Trust in 1979, in honor of his late first wife.

Seeley’s contributions to the motorcycling world will always be valued, and he will be greatly missed. We at RideApart extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends in this difficult time.

Bill’s Bikes

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Four Decades of a Dedicated Rider’s Rides

Here’s some of the bikes I’ve had since the late ‘70s. There were several more, but they were just something to roll over and make a few bucks. I am currently buying a ‘98 1200 Sportster slightly wrecked for $1000. I’ll send pictures of what I am doing to it to make money to build my rigid project.

CLICK HERE TO READ THIS PHOTO FEATURE AT BIKERNET

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AI-Driven Electric Motorcycle Shows Self-Driving Tech Is About More Than Autonomous Driving

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by John Koetsier from https://www.forbes.com/

Damon Motorcycles unveiled its new electric motorcycle today at CES in Las Vegas, calling it “the world’s smartest, safest and most powerful electric motorcycle.”

My first thought: it can’t be both the most powerful and the safest.

Then I kept reading.

And I started believing it might be possible.

First off: the power. The Damon Hypersport has “over 200” horsepower, which is a lot for a motorcycle. But even more impressively, it delivers 200nm of torque at zero RPMs … the classic electric vehicle advantage. (Although how RPM means something in an electric motor is a mystery to me.) Thanks to that power, the bike has a top speed of 200 miles/hour.

Which, by the way, doesn’t sound very safe.

But the safety features are impressive.

As you’d expect in a motorcycle, they’re not about crumple zones or air bags.

Instead, they’re about intelligence. Specifically, predictive intelligence: what’s around me, where is it going and what do I need to avoid? The Hypersport will track the speed, direction and acceleration of up to 64 moving objects around the bike, Damon says.

Damon calls it the “CoPilot 360º advanced warning system.” CoPilot 360 uses cameras, radar and “other sensors” to know what’s around and alert riders to threats, the company says.

“We spent the last three years developing an AI-powered, fully connected, e-motorcycle platform that incorporates CoPilot, our proprietary 360º warning system … Damon motorcycles will be the safest, most advanced electric motorcycles on the market.”
– Jay Giraud, co-founder and CEO, Damon Motorcycles

That’s not just about what’s ahead of you. The system “looks around corners,” although I’m sure it’s not bending any laws of physics, and keeps an “eye” on the rear to see what might be coming from behind.

And, it will learn your driving habits and adjust accordingly, using onboard artificial intelligence.

“We prioritized data-driven thinking at the epicenter of the company, employing radical innovations in sensor fusion, robotics and AI,” Dom Kwong, the co-founder and CTO of Damon Motorcycles, said in a statement. “This level of deep learning and connectivity are unprecedented, ensuring each rider a smarter, safer and connected ride; not only for individuals but for entire communities, with the goal to reduce incidents worldwide.”

To connect riders and power the bike’s AI and other advanced features, it includes 4G, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Of course, there are two big questions:

One: will riders actually be safer with warnings about oncoming objects, or will they prioritize what they see on the screen versus watching the road? Will a flood of alerts distract them or make them safer?

And secondly: with software, the devil’s in the details. Few transportation companies that aren’t named Tesla do it well. Will this startup be able to ship these advanced technologies in a usable, friendly and safe way?

Damon says yes, citing the foundation of their software:

“By building it on BlackBerry’s best-in-class technology that is safety certified, Damon motorcycles will be the safest, most advanced electric motorcycles on the market,” says CEO Giraud.

That’s BlackBerry QNX, which is built by the former mobile giant, now re-focused on software solutions.

Ultimately, we’ll know when the bike ships.

The Hypersport is available for pre-order now on the Damon website. Pricing begins at $24,995 before any applicable EV tax credits.

And the range? 200 miles on the highway, 300 miles in the city, according to the company.

Why A Car Tire On A Motorcycle Is A Bad Idea

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by Justin Hughes from https://www.rideapart.com/

They call it the “dark side” for a reason.

A while back, Kate discussed the perils and pitfalls of using a car tire on the back of your motorcycle, a practice known as “the dark side.” A video just came across a Facebook group I’m on demonstrating, clear as day (the daylight you actually see under the tread), why this isn’t good.

Where The Rubber Meets The Road:

What it comes down to is simple. Bikes lean. Cars don’t. OK, yes, cars do lean a little due to weight transfer and suspension loading and unloading. I autocrossed for years—I get it. In the car world, though, we fight against this lean as much as we can with stiffer springs and sway bars. We’ll even dial some negative camber into the alignment so that when the car goes around a corner at full tilt, the tire is straight up and down for maximum grip. A car tire has its maximum grip when its full tread width is in contact with the road.

Motorcycles, on the other hand, need to lean in order to turn at any speed faster than walking. It’s the fundamental way that bikes work. Motorcycle tires are made to lean. Their profile is round, not square like a car tire. In most cases, you’re either going to drag hard parts while leaning hard or chicken out before you lean hard enough to get onto the tire’s sidewall.

Here, though, we have a perfect view of a car tire on the back of a Honda Valkyrie. On the surface this may seem like a good idea for such a big, heavy bike, especially if it does a lot of highway travel where it doesn’t lean much. Here, though, it’s on the Tail of the Dragon, a stretch of US 129 on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee with 318 curves in just 11 miles. It’s a twisty paradise for motorcyclists and sports car drivers, but the worst-case scenario for a car tire on a motorcycle.

I encourage you to watch the video, but even the thumbnail says it all. When the bike is leaned over, that car tire is on its edge, with only about one-third of the tread contacting the road. This is the exact situation that autocrossers strive to avoid. Even worse, the harder you turn, the more you lean, and the less tread contacts the road precisely when you need grip the most. In particularly hard turns, the car tire rolls up onto the sidewall, which is never intended to contact the road. I’ve had road debris puncture tires on my cars without much difficulty. You don’t want to vastly increase the chance of this happening by placing the sidewalls directly on the road.

If the only riding you do is long stretches of highway with no turning at all, I suppose a car tire could work. They do last much longer than motorcycle tires, though if you’re leaning hard through the turns the edges of the tread will wear extremely quickly. Ask this former autocrosser how I know. Personally, I find the turns to be the most fun and challenging part of riding. If I’m going to attack the twisties, I want a back tire that’s designed for the job, and that won’t give up its grip right when I need it most.

 

Damon Motorcycles and BlackBerry QNX Revolutionize Motorcycling with the Introduction of Hypersport Pro Electric Superbike

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– Damon to unveil flagship motorcycle, the ‘Hypersport Pro at CES 2020 in BlackBerry Limited’s (NYSE: BB; TSX: BB) booth #7515, North Hall.

– #FutureOfMotorcycling Interactive Experience will be open to all CES attendees in the BlackBerry booth from January 7 – 10, 2020

VANCOUVER, British Columbia and WATERLOO, Ontario, Jan. 3, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Damon Motorcycles announced today that its CoPilot™ advanced warning system will be powered by BlackBerry QNX technology across its entire line-up of advanced electric motorcycles.

As part of the agreement, Damon has licensed BlackBerry QNX technology, including its industry-leading real-time operating system to serve as the safe and secure foundation for the Damon CoPilot warning system on its new flagship electric motorcycle.

Damon will unveil this disruptive, limited edition superbike, the Hypersport Pro™, and open reservations to the public online and at CES at 10:00am PST, January 7th. In BlackBerry’s booth, attendees will also be able to experience Damon’s next generation motorcycle first-hand in the #FutureOfMotorcycling Interactive Experience, a rideable, leaning stationary motorcycle that uses virtual reality to showcase the motorcycle’s unique features on the show floor.These features include its powerful all-electric performance, its CoPilot advanced warning system, and Shift™, its patented rider ergonomics that lets riders electronically adjust the Hypersport’s riding position while in motion. CoPilot uses radar, cameras and non-visual sensors to track the speed, direction and velocity of moving objects around the motorcycle. Attendees can book a time slot to experience it at CES by visiting damonmotorcycles.com/VR.

“We’re on a mission to unleash the full potential of personal mobility for the world’s commuters,” said Jay Giraud, Chief Executive Officer of Damon Motorcycles. “To address this, we spent the last three years developing an AI-powered, fully connected, e-motorcycle platform that incorporates CoPilot, our proprietary 360º warning system. By building it on BlackBerry’s best-in-class technology that is safety certified, Damon motorcycles will be the safest, most advanced electric motorcycle in the market.”

“With its advanced collision warning system, Damon’s new Hypersport Pro is a game-changing model for the motorcycle industry,” said Grant Courville, VP, Product Management and Strategy, BlackBerry QNX. “We’re absolutely thrilled to have them in our booth and look forward to showing off the highly-secure software that delivers enhanced situational awareness and increased peace of mind for riders. BlackBerry QNX is leading the way in next-generation mobility systems by providing a safe and secure platform for connected vehicles and beyond and we’re proud to work with Damon on this exciting advancement.”

BlackBerry QNX is a leader in delivering trusted embedded operating systems and development tools to companies for which failure is not an option. Committed to the highest safety, reliability and security standards, BlackBerry QNX has developed a portfolio of software and services with a proven record of helping developers deliver complex and connected next generation products. BlackBerry QNX technology is trusted in over 150 million vehicles and millions of embedded systems, including medical, industrial automation, robotics, energy, defense and aerospace applications. For more information on BlackBerry QNX, please visit blackberry.qnx.com.

With performance specs to be released at CES 2020, Damon’s industry-leading advanced prototypes are set to hit the roads in mid-2020 to the world’s largest mobility segment well overdue for a safer, smarter, zero emission solution. For more information on Damon Motorcycles, please visit damonmotorcycles.com.

Upbeat Bikernet Weekly News for January 2, 2020

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Hey,

I like this year already. It’s going to be whacky and wonderful. It’s just the 2nd day of January and the world is back in business. We’re all doing what we did a couple of weeks ago, going about taking the trash out, feeding the dog and heading off to work.

Hell, I have all the Deadlines for Cycle Source Magazine etched into my 2020 Pin-Up calendar. We need to break the mold for 2020. Do something crazy. I’m going to go back to Bonneville this year with something completely different.

And I’m trying to buy a little place in Deadwood, SD and change up my life some. I hope everyone finds new challenges, new hope, new adventures and new love in 2020.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE BIKERNET WEEKLY NEWS

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2020 National Motorcycle Profiling Survey

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The 2020 National Motorcycle Profiling Survey has only 6 questions that are designed to help define the profiling trends so we can focus our resources in the areas that need it the most. Your participation will have a long lasting, positive impact on the community.This survey on average will take 4 minutes to complete.

The information collected in these surveys has been an essential part in lobbying efforts at both state and national levels, and without a doubt provide critical data points for the grassroots activist to intelligently communicate issues impacting the motorcycle community and influence change.

With over 23,000 survey participants from all walks of life, the National Motorcycle Profiling Surveys, with 99% accuracy, has proven that many motorcyclists are being targeted by law enforcement based on appearance. This information was the foundation of the argument that resulted in the Motorcycle Profiling Resolution (S. Res. 154) passing in the U.S. Senate with unanimous consent on December 11, 2018.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE THE SURVEY

Notes:

**NO PERSONAL DATA IS REQUIRED. YOUR PRIVACY AND ANONYMITY ARE IMPORTANT AND RESPECTED. By asking for no more than your zip code, which is also voluntary, there is no personal information to maintain or protect.

**If you or your organization are interested in cosponsoring this survey, or would like to get survey results specific to your state, please contact David “Double D” Devereaux at:
doubled@motorcycleprofilingproject.com

Going electric could help revive the motorcycle industry

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by Peter Valdes-Dapena from https://edition.cnn.com/

Motorcycle sales, particularly in the United States, have been struggling ever since the Great Recession. As older riders lose interest, or simply become unable to ride any longer, the younger generation hasn’t been showing the same kind of enthusiasm.

But the industry is hoping that electric motorcycles — with a quieter, simpler experience — might be the key to attracting new riders.

For one thing, electric motorcycles are easier to ride. With an electric motor, there’s no need to shift gears. To experienced riders, that’s no big deal, but most Americans today have become accustomed to automatic transmissions and don’t know how to shift gears.

“It’s just a lot easier learning curve,” said Susan Carpenter, a writer and radio host specializing in motorcycles. “You just hop on and twist the throttle. If you can balance, you can go.”

Another benefit is that electric motorcycles are much less noisy than gasoline-powered motorcycles. To many veteran riders, the roar of the engine is part of the excitement. But a lot of other people would prefer to enjoy their surroundings much more peacefully. The bikes also don’t have hot engines and exhaust pipes that can become burn hazards, especially when parked around kids.

Electric motorcycles also qualify for federal and state tax credits, similar to those for electric cars, although in smaller amounts.

There are tradeoffs, of course. Electric motorcycles have the same disadvantages as electric cars, namely cost and range. Motorcycles can only accommodate small batteries so they have a lot less range than gas-powered bikes. And that range diminishes greatly during high-speed highway riding because the bike’s electric motor has to compensate for increased wind resistance pressing against the rider’s not-so-aerodynamic body.

Hoping to get the attention of a new generation of riders, Harley-Davidson introduced the LiveWire electric motorcycle earlier this year.

But with a starting price of nearly $30,000 — more than three times the cost of an entry level motorcycle — it’s unlikely to attract many novice riders. With its extreme performance capabilities — it can go from zero to 60 miles per hour in just three seconds — the LiveWire doesn’t appear to be for first-time riders. (The bike does have selectable performance modes so it can be set up for less aggressive riding.)

“LiveWire sets the stage and sets the tone and is designed and priced to be a halo vehicle,” said Harley-Davidson spokesman Paul James, explaining that the LiveWire is aimed at establishing an image for the brand’s electric offerings rather than being a big seller. “And we’ll quickly follow that up with other form factors and other electric two-wheelers that will be in various price points and aimed at different customers.”

Harley-Davidson (HOG) wanted this bike to get people used to the idea of a motorcycle that doesn’t have the brand’s signature engine burble, said James. The LiveWire does make its own distinct sound, though. It comes from the gears that carry power from the electric motor to the belt that spins the back wheel. Harley-Davidson engineers spent time specifically tuning the naturally occurring whirring sound, much as they would the rumble of a gasoline engine.

For the real novices, Harley-Davidson offers the IronE, which targets tiny riders aged three to seven. The teeny off-road bike is powered by a small detachable battery similar to ones used for electric power tools and starts at around $650. Harley-Davidson has also shown pedaled e-bikes and scooters as concepts.

California-based Zero offers electric motorcycles like the Zero FX ZF3.6 for around $9,000. That bike has an estimated 27 miles of riding range from a small battery that can be easily changed for a fully charged one when it runs low on power. For about twice that amount, or around $20,000, bikes like the Zero SR/F can get about 123 miles in combined city and highway riding. (That compares to the 95 miles Harley-Davidson estimates for the LiveWire.) Buyers can also add battery power using a “Power Tank” accessory.

Zero’s bikes are used in a program called Discover the Ride, which introduces novice riders to motorcycle riding and takes place at Progressive International Motorcycle Shows across the United States. Riders demonstrate their basic two-wheeler skills on an electrically-assisted bicycle, then they are offered a ride on a Zero electric motorcycle.

Cake, a Swedish company, has models starting at a slightly more affordable $8,500. For that price, a buyer can get Cake’s ultra-minimalist Ösa+ model. Its design was inspired by a workbench and it looks like it. With detachable clamps, the owner can quickly customize the bike with cargo racks or an additional seat. The Ösa+ has a top speed of just 60 miles an hour. It’s intended as an urban workhorse.

Cake also makes the slightly faster and pricier Kalk& with a more traditional, but still distinctively spare, design.

With their emphasis on light weight and simplicity, Cake bikes take the idea that electric motorcycling should be different from riding a gas-powered bike to an extreme. The models are particularly popular with new riders, according to a company spokesman. After being available in the US for a little over a year, there’s a three-month waiting list for the bikes, Cake claims.

Alternet Systems Highlights African $4 Billion Motorcycle Ride Hail Market

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DALLAS, Dec. 31, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — via OTC PR WIRE — Alternet Systems, Inc. (USOTC: ALYI) today highlighted Africa’s $4 billion motorcycle ride hail market featured in a recent TechCrunch article emphasizing the anticipated explosive growth in Africa over the next decade.  ALYI management sees ALYI as well positioned leader prepared to capture the wave of investment and growth coming to Africa in 2020 and beyond.

ALYI is currently developing $300 million in electric vehicle projects in Africa targeting the shared-ride market, leading with electric motorcycles for the shared-ride market.  The company has signed orders for electric motorcycles with a side car to be produced in Kenya for shared ride providers in Kenya.  ALYI has also recently announced a $100 million cryptocurrency investment strategy targeted at expanding beyond the company’s existing $300 million in electric vehicle projects in Africa.

ALYI has secured institutional commitment to support an annual African electric mobility technology conference and symposium to advance the deployment of electric powered transportation solutions specific to Africa.  The focus includes environmental sustainability but also overall transportation efficiency applicable to the African transportation infrastructure, economy, and consumer.  ALYI CEO, Dr. Randell Torno, contends that the immediate opportunity for electric powered transportation growth in Africa by far exceeds the electric powered transportation opportunity anywhere else in the world and that the electric mobility technology innovations that will be developed for Africa will ultimately form the foundation of commercial electric powered transportation everywhere.  In short, Africa is the global proving ground for electric powered transportation. Dr. Torno just concluded meetings in London last week where he secured institutional brand name commitment that will serve as the anchor event and attraction at the annual African electric mobility technology conference and symposium.  The planed conference and symposium location is Nairobi, Kenya.

For more information, please visit: http://www.alternetsystemsinc.com