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ASK KEVIN: Do MotoGP Fuel Limits Apply When Riders Switch to Their Rain Bikes During the Race?

ASK KEVIN: Do MotoGP Fuel Limits Apply When Riders Switch to Their Rain Bikes During the Race?

by Kevin CameronPhotographer: Scott JonesQUESTION: During this year's MotoGP race at Misano, Italy, the riders were switching bikes as the weather changed from dry to wet and back to dry again. As each entrant is limited to a fixed fuel quantity for every race, what procedures are in place to keep track of the total fuel used among the bikes?A.S. SmithCycleWorld.COMANSWER: When I asked MotoGP's Tech Director, Mike Webb, this question, he replied that no fuel controls are imposed when there are [...]

September 29, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs

ASK KEVIN: Will Motorcycles Get Pneumatic Valve Actuators?

ASK KEVIN: Will Motorcycles Get Pneumatic Valve Actuators?

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: I've read and heard much about pneumatic valve actuators from people like supercar manufacturer Christian von Koenigsegg, and I am intrigued. These are not pneumatic valve springs as are already in use in MotoGP and F1, but would be a replacement for the camshaft itself. The possibilities seem fantastic; things like infinitely and dynamically variable cam profiles and timings would only be the beginning. Is this a technology that is likely to find its way into [...]

August 24, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs

ASK KEVIN: Why is Valentino Rossi So Fast?

ASK KEVIN: Why is Valentino Rossi So Fast?

by Kevin CameronIs it because the Italian MotoGP pilot switched crew chiefs?QUESTION: If memory serves, Valentino Rossi's decision to end his long collaboration with crew chief Jeremy Burgess at the end of the 2013 season was fairly commonly dismissed as the desperate act of a fading star. It no longer looks that way now. Is Rossi's performance in the time since a coincidence or was there a method to his seeming madness?Bill ReberStevens, PAANSWER: During Valentino Rossi's “time in the [...]

July 10, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs

ASK KEVIN: Why Aren't There More Diesel Motorcycles?

ASK KEVIN: Why Aren't There More Diesel Motorcycles?

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: I can't understand why no one has produced a diesel motorcycle (besides military) and made it available to the public. Seems like the BMW R1200GS would be the perfect platform for such a bike. The benefits are many, especially when diesel is the most available petro in the world for those who like to travel to obscure places. The mileage on such a beast should be north of 80 mpg, with better reliability. Thanks for your thoughts.ANSWER: When I talk with friends in the [...]

June 10, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs

ASK KEVIN: Replacing Rotted Exhaust

ASK KEVIN: Replacing Rotted Exhaust

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: My 1975 Suzuki GT550 exhaust rotted out, and I, being the tinkering type, wanted to try something different. The motorcycle gets about 46 mpg in town and 38 mpg on the highway. My question: Can I replace the exhaust system with something that will “come on the pipe” at highway rpm (and perhaps increase the efficiency at this speed) instead of 6,500 rpm where peak horsepower is at? I ran the numbers to determine the length, but I would like to know your [...]

May 13, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs

ASK KEVIN: Why Don't Motorcycles Have Eight- or Nine-Speed Gearboxes?

ASK KEVIN: Why Don't Motorcycles Have Eight- or Nine-Speed Gearboxes?

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: Why are motorcycle manufacturers not making more gears for motorcycles? Cars have gone from six speeds to eight and 10 for better acceleration and fuel economy. For example, a Kawasaki ZX10 has six gears. First gear goes to 100 mph, which means the bike runs like crap 10-15 mph because of the tall gearing. Sixth gear runs such high rpm because the manufacturer wants the bike to be in its powerband. Now imagine an eight-speed transmission. Make one gear (first) lower [...]

April 21, 2015 admin Ask Kevin

ASK KEVIN: Why Does It Take So Long to Build a MotoGP Crankshaft?

ASK KEVIN: Why Does It Take So Long to Build a MotoGP Crankshaft?

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: In your Ignition section in the March issue, you mention that it takes 12 to 15 weeks to produce a finished crankshaft for the Yamaha M1 MotoGP engine. It would be fascinating to have Kevin Cameron explain why it takes so long.Scott Saunders Binghamton, New YorkANSWER: At first it seems strange that it would take so long to build the one-piece plain-bearing crankshaft of a MotoGP machine because we have all seen YouTube videos of CNC machines milling and turning a [...]

March 04, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Highlights, MotoGP Racing, motorcycle roadracing, motorcycle racing engine analysis

ASK KEVIN: Why All That Wasted Sound Energy in MotoGP?

ASK KEVIN: Why All That Wasted Sound Energy in MotoGP?

by Kevin CameronQUESTION: At Phillip Island last month I was once again reminded of the huge and glorious noise made by the MotoGP bikes. It’s loud enough to deafen the crowd and shake your insides even standing well back from the track. Why aren’t bigger efforts made to use this energy for forward motion?Rhys DaniellTullera, New South Wales, AustraliaANSWER: When Alison Balsom plays the trumpet part in “Sound the Trumpet,” it is quite loud even though the pressure she [...]

February 13, 2015 admin Ask Kevin, Blogs, Highlights, MotoGP Racing, motorcycle roadracing, motorcycle racing engine analysis