KillaCycle on the Salt

= KillaJoule (+sidecar?)

Sounds like the guys need some good sleep- but they learned a lot and aren’t backing down.  Great work, and I can’t wait to see what happens in October!  The results?  “You’re Officially Recorded in the 130 Club for 9/17/10:
ELBIKE/Hakansson/43.1 mph/65.27 mph/88.82 mph- Triumph!”

Final update- Monday AM:
KillaCycle Racing Just came home after a loooong drive back. (Why doesn’t it always feel longer driving home…?)

Simply too tired to write a long report, but the conclusion is that we at least reached our goal to keep the shiny side up and rubber side down. Unfortunately no official record (our successful runs were on the wrong course)…, but we will be back!

Seriously consider going back for the World Finals in October (in 2.5 weeks… gaah!)
Because of the handling problems, we plan to make a side car for it. That will give it three wheels and at least it won’t fall over.

It will be really hard work getting it ready in 2.5 weeks, but we think it is possible.
If anybody know where we can find a small side car wheel rated for over 200 mph (could be solid aluminum), or know somebody that has raced fast sidecars – pleeeease contact me immediately.

Friday night:
Got permission to run the bike on the very short “130 mph Club” course thanks to the wonderful race official Jim (who also drove the BYU electric streamliner a few weeks ago. What a wonderful guy). This course is less than 2 miles including run-out compared to the real track that is 7 miles long. On the 130 mph track they run normal street cars and street bikes with the goal to reach 130 or 150 mph. You can’t set a record on this track, but you can join the 130 mph Club and 150 mph Club. Real race vehicles are usually not allowed on the 130 mph track, but we managed to get permission provided that we didn’t run too fast.

The first run went perfect. Accelerated very gently, kept the bike straight and reached 88 mph on the 1 mile marked. Released the parachute and slowed down very nicely. Everything was looking bright….

(11AM EST Friday)- KillaCycle Racing During tow testing this morning we found the bike still pulling to the left. We can see a quite obvious cant of the front wheel wrt the headtube. Eva and Bill are trying to figure out how to adjust that out.

Ever since I saw The World’s Fastest Indian I’ve wanted to see what it’s like to run on the salt. Eva and the KillaCycle team took to it this season, and here’s the first report, from KillaCycle’s Facebook page. If you’re on the Facebook, go here for updates, and a similar post from Mike. If you’re not, here’s Eva’s post from late last night:

KillaCycle Racing Spent the day tuning in the bike and learn how to balance it. Streamliner motorcycles is a _very_ weird breed – they behave like nothing else. They kind of counter-steer, but they don’t listen to body English since you are strapped in on the inside.

Made one run on the long course (after 3-4 hours in line) , but retrac…ted the landing gear too early. The bike was obviously not at high enough speed to balance so it turned a sharp right and before I flipped the switch and got the wheels down again I was already outside the track, however still upright.

Talked to Max Lambky, builder of the beautiful Vincent streamliner (link below) and he gave the very, very helpful advice to raise the landing gear so I could feel when it really balanced. He also told me to keep the landing gear down to much higher speed, some streamliners don’t get stable to well above 60 mph.

We followed Max’s advice and raised the landing gear and believe it or not – we manged to get permission from the race officials to go out and practice behind the pits. Running back and forth at 50-65 mph a few times really gave a much better feel for the machine. However, I discovered another problem – it was pulling to the left. Not insanely much, but enough to keep in trouble keeping it straight over a 7 mile course. Back to Max Lambky, and he told us how to adjust the wheel alignment. Discovered that the rear wheel was pointing a touch to the left. On a normal motorcycle it probably wouldn’t have noticeable, but streamliners are apparently very sensitive to very small mis-alignments. With help from our extremely helpful and skilled pick-up crew (we didn’t come here with a crew, but picked up quite a few crew members at the track) we managed to align the rear wheel. Fingers crossed (or thumbs hold that you do in Sweden) that this will solve the problem. We hope that we can take it out for another test ride early tomorrow morning before we line up for the real course.

The small driver’s compartment also gives us grief and problems with the steering linkage, but that is nothing we can fix at the track. When we get back home, we will cut it off just in front of the roll cage and extend it 6-12 inches (as much as we can but still fit it in the trailer….) That will make it easier to get in and out (I really need a shoehorn as it is now), it will be easier to steer, more comfortable and we can fit a much greater steering ratio.

Anyway, we are having a great time at the Salt. People are extremely friendly and helpful (could also come from all the hot dogs and water bottles that we are handing out to everybody that comes by our pit…. 😉 It is the nicest race event we ever been to. Both Bill and I definitely have salt fever – we are going to continue doing this! (And if we can’t get the KillaJoule to balance – we are turning it into a side car by just adding an outrigger with a wheel and run it as a side car streamliner. 🙂

// Eva (& Bill & Mike Willmon)



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