I got the engine finished and weathered. The triple Stromberg 97’s are from my stash of resin pieces by the late Ron Royston at Early Years Resin. The “doghouse” over them is a strip of styrene finished in Testors Metalizer paint and the pre-wired resin magneto is by Morgan Automotive Detail, adapted to fit the molded in kit distributor drive. For those who are curious, the Chrysler Corp. P series flathead sixes had the inner 4 exhaust ports siamesed in pairs which makes the exhaust layout look like a 4 banger. The intake ports were siamesed in pairs which explains the carburetor layout. As mentioned earlier the intake manifold is scratch built and the exhaust manifold is from the kit, it’s one side of the wedge V8 pair, bent to fit the six’s exhaust layout. I’m on the home stretch now and should be done soon… Thanx for lookin;, B.
Yes, nice save. I would love to know more about this kit and its history. I assume it's a curbside but just the exposed portion of the birdcage would be a tour de force of kit design. Doing it justice, as you have, must be very satisfying.
It could be an advertising shoot. Although the rights to use it explicitly requires serious $$$$$. I assume Zemeckis and company copyrighted the image of the tricked out DeLorean. Chris Lloyd (Doc) has been in the press recently saying he would do another BTTF in a heartbeat if it was with the same team.
Actually, the teams run the same frames sold to the public. Make-up weight is primarily in ballast-like areas like axles, seat frames, handlebar thickness, etc. Structural failures are fairly rare these days. In the 1970s when the first carbon fiber frames were being tested structural failures were endemic and fractures due to cracking from gravel impact, for example., was a constant threat. As layups of carbon went from being unidirectional to today's sophisticated patterns this went away. I'm sure there's a limit to how light a bike can be made and still hold up, particularly in top end competition, but the current weight limit is far from there. probably on the order of 2-3 kg. That's why the motors would be a hard sell for the pros due to their weight, etc. if the limit was lowered or done away with and a certification program substituted.
Actually, I think it's time to do away with the minimum weight, or at least lower it drastically. It would make the team bikes more technically in synch with what's already available to well healed enthusiasts.
Yeah. I used to use the Microcale stuff, applying it with a broad, soft brush. It worked fine. Recently I switched to a craft store clear acrylic in a spray can. Far more even in its coating properties, allowing for a somewhat thinner decal thickness. I suspect your aerosol urethane should work every bit as well. One trick to use in order to conserve decal paper, which can be expensive, is to put a cut line above and below the area that will be printed.Cut your strip of decal and only then spray your sealer coat. This will allow you to gradually use up your sheet of decal paper in a systematic way. In this case I had about 5 inches of vertical height left on my decal stock. After cutting the strip I need I'll still have about 4 inches of paper left to use.
The competitive drive can easily cloud the mind... It occurs to me that if the UCI wants to stop the specter of mechanical doping dead in its tracks, at least at the highest levels of the sport, they have simply to eliminate the minimum weight rule and substitute an F1 style equipment certification program. The 1-2 kilogram penalty of the motor and batteries would disqualify them from consideration instantly. The manufacturers have been clamoring for exactly that and the UCI is said to be seriously reviewing the change. With top-of-the-line bikes costing easily $10-12K or more such a program could be readily funded by certification fees. After all, genuine Team Issue bikes are no longer the state-of-art they once were!
Nice analysis Bill. All competitions are won at the margin, so 200 watts for a matter of seconds is huge if you have it and others don't. Recent live tracking of rider output in UCI World Tour competition, the top level, has shown peak outputs for as long as a minute, of as much as a full kilowatt (1,000 watts) when climbing grades of as much as 20% or more. For riders incapable of such peaks that extra 200 watts can be the difference between blowing up and going to the showers or being in on the finish. For those with the 1,000 watts on tap, well..... Most of this hype is being driven currently by an Italian journalist named Claudio Ghisalberti reporting for the Gazzetta dello Sport, the pink colored daily sports newspaper which sponsors the Giro d'Italia (the 3-week Tour of Italy, second only to the Tour de France among major professional bicycle races). and which can benefit from a little controversy. In 2010 Ghisalberti authored a series or articles claiming the dominant time trialist and TT World Champion at the time, the Swiss rider Fabian Cancellara, whose "superhuman" performances is the stuff of legend, was in fact using "mechanical doping" in lieu of chemical means. Ghisalberti even had a YouTube video showing "evidence" - a video which was quickly debunked by several sources - and the whole thing caused quite a sensation. Ghisalberti is now back with a series of new articles claiming a thriving underground among amateur cyclists wishing to prevail in various large international semi-competitive events, sometimes marketed as Gran Fondo, where small amounts of money and prizes, and a good deal of notoriety, are to be had. He claims about 1200 high-end bikes per year are being cut open and retrofitted with this technology - obviously a tiny number, but significant enough to trickle into the lower ranks of the pros and to possibly be used for an occasional critical "boost" by switching bikes, etc. In the end most observers say that the complexity and awkwardness at this point, combined with severely limited battery life, argues against it as much of a problem. Ghisalberti has just come out with a new article claiming a new technology, electromagnetic wheels, which offer 60 watts per wheel of boost, and are completely undetectable, all for a mere 200,000 Euros ($210.000) a set! The deal here is that you could arrange to have a "flat", switch wheels, get the tactical boost, "flat" again, and ride away clean! Ghisalberti is serious about his 15 minutes of fame! The young woman who got busted, 19 year old Belgian Femke Van den Driessche, turns out to be an interesting character. She claims the bike that got tested is not hers, but instead belongs to a friend, Nico Van Muylder,,who bought the bike from her last year. Van Muylder has come out to confirm the bike is his. Van den Driessche, in a fairly dubious story, claims the bike is identical in appearance to the bike she was to use in the Under-23 World Cyclo Cross Championships and was mistakenly prepared by her mechanic that morning for her use. Someone must have tipped officials off because they inspected her bikes before the race and she did not use it in the competition. Interestingly, although she was among the favorites, she did not finish. But wait! There's more. It seems the Van den Driessche family are a pretty unsavory bunch. Here brother Niels Van den Driessche, also a competitive cyclist, is currently under suspension for chemical doping. And her father Frank and dear brother Niels are currently under investigation for stealing some exotic and expensive parakeets from a pet shop last February! They were recorded on security cameras and face almost certain conviction, now that the shop owner has seen their mugs in the local papers and has been able to confirm it was them...
For UCI (the world governing body) sanctioned competitive events there is a minimum weight for the bicycles of 6.8 kg (14.99 pounds) which has been in place for many years. It was first establish because bikes were getting too fragile and mechanical failures were a danger to the riders. With modern composites far lighter machines, weighing as little 5 kg can be built with no compromise to safety at all. So it's fairly simply to build an underweight bike and then add the motor and power pack to it. But there's no way to get around the mass and density of all the equipment. That's why, as soon as the rumours about "mechanical doping" began flying now more than 5 years ago the UCI moved quickly to scan bikes at the end of competitions. As I said, it's relatively easy and very quick to check. But again, for a young competitor, as in this example, the temptation can be huge and she may simply have been too naïve to resist. Chemical doping, on the o0ther hand, isn't so simple, and requires the cooperation of the athletes, the organizers and the sponsors to police it. For this reason in professional sports where the sanctioning body has chosen to look the other way chemical doping remains endemic, often to the detriment of the athlete's long-term health (i.e. American football, professional tennis, professional track and field, etc.).
Think of it in terms of supplementary power, rather than as a substitute for the rider's muscles. For the young cyclo-cross competitor riding at the world champiosnips in Belgium referred to in the article it was the difference between dropping out and perhaps finishing. When Armstrong was using EPO it only ever increased his strength and endurance by a factor of perhaps 2%, but at the margin it can make the difference between victory and defeat.
Thank you everyone. You are all very generous... This is a small update. I’m making good progress and close to final assembly. The window glass was weathered and installed. I included door glass since otherwise the car would have been rusted through and through. With full weathered glass the car looks even more far gone! I also installed the grill and headlights. The motor parts are completed. I scratch built a ribbed cast log-style manifold to hold three Stromberg 97’s. The exhaust manifold is adapted from the kit’s wedge-head Plymouth V8. Still to do is installation of the engine accessories and magneto ignition and, of course, the weathering, which has actually been started but does show up in the low-light workbench pictures. I hope to have this completed by the weekend. Thanx for lookin’, B.
Harry, see my comment above. Electric batteries either housed externally if there's nothing to conceal, in which case they can be fairly large, or hidden in the frame tubes. The mass and density of the motor cartridge and the batteries is one reason why detection is quite easy.
The motors are electric, housed in the seat tube of the frame, and connected to the axle shaft of the crankset by small gears. Output is fairly small, a couple of hundred watts at the very most, and often much less. in most cases and available in brief bursts. The point is that it provides a small marginal increase in power output at critical moments. Switches and controls are relatively easy to miniaturize and conceal. The challenge remains both the size/duration of batteries and the size/output/efficiency of the motor. A small company has recently had a breakthrough in these areas and seems to have been promoting the use of their products among athletes, which may prove to be a doubtful call on their part. With top male professionals peaking at close to 1,000 watts during competition most pros are still dubious about the small outputs of these motors relative to the additional weight which can run to a kilogram (2.2 lbs.) or more. But for everyday cyclists this weight is a small price to pay for the difference between a pleasant ride up hitherto difficult hills and an afternoon of suffering. Detecting the motors in the bikes is relatively easy using various scanning techniques. That's why up to now it has seemed to be a mythical beast, at least in the professional ranks. Hardly worth the risk since detection would almost certainly result in a lifetime ban. But, again, for pleasure riders or for bragging rights on a club run the appeal is there...