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faffi

Anticipated 34 yrs ago, still not here

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In 1984, Kevin Cameron wrote an article in Cycle magazine about active suspension, how Lotus was testing real world models. Cameron considered it the future. Not the least because the systems we use today are quite inferior, even the suspension used in MotoGP. Simply put they cannot follow the road and they come with a harshness as well as harmonics detriment to handling, grip and stability. He also expected the active suspension to lower the bike under acceleration and braking and raising it for cornering clearance and bigger bumps. Not only for racing, but for everyday riding.

 

Cameron also expected to see power steering and stabilizing systems that allowed radical steering geometries far beyond what a human can control by him/her self. Like fighter airplanes that would shake apart in seconds if left alone to be controlled by a human with no computer assistance. He also wrote about putting multiple 'puters in the bikes to make sure that if one went down, there would still be several working - the bad one would simply be shut off together with an error message, but without disturbing performance. Furthermore, he expected the fork to be replaced by better systems (which only BMW have tried on a large scale) and traction control more sophisticated than even the best we see today.

 

Not everything happens as quickly as we (some) anticipate.

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In car tests I still read about the compromise between suspension that works on the track and that which is comfortable for the commute/leisure. Why is there still that situation? You would think there must be enough control systems around to have sorted that by now. 

 

Kevin currently writes in 'Motorcycle Sport & Leisure'. Always interesting.

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4 hours ago, topazsparrow said:

Ultimately even the best ideas in the world fall to the bean counters in corporate.

Boy do they ever. I wrote a rant about the Kaw Z900. It has *worse* suspension than the preceeding Z800 and Kaw whent out of their way to cripple it to boot. Just asinine.

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5 minutes ago, pattonme said:

Boy do they ever. I wrote a rant about the Kaw Z900. It has *worse* suspension than the preceeding Z800 and Kaw whent out of their way to cripple it to boot. Just asinine.

Can you imagine the eager young engineers tasked with making a great motorcycle... only to present their masterpiece of engineering and modern speed, perfectly specced within the constraints of the project... to the bean counters and smarmy sales fvckwads to butcher?

 

 

 

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11 hours ago, topazsparrow said:

Ultimately even the best ideas in the world fall to the bean counters in corporate.

 

 

I think that likely is the answer in that so far, the cost is higher than the benefit. Mostly, I guess, because the volume has been so low that development cost is prohibitive. And the fact that it was banned in F1 25 years ago. Fuel efficiency may also play a part since the power to operate the hydraulics must come from somewhere.

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18 hours ago, robbo10 said:

In car tests I still read about the compromise between suspension that works on the track and that which is comfortable for the commute/leisure. Why is there still that situation? You would think there must be enough control systems around to have sorted that by now. 

 

Kevin currently writes in 'Motorcycle Sport & Leisure'. Always interesting.

GM perfected a magnetorheological damper that they then licensed to Ferrari and other brands. It uses iron particles suspended in the shock oil and a nearby electromagnet. As the magnetic field increases, the fluid stiffens. It is expensive and not something the average buyer would ever actually notice though. Buyer (and dealer) ignorance are huge obstacles. Why add a feature when so many competitors have it that customer assume you already do, too? I read an article recently where a Mercedes owner thought it was faulty because they didn't have an option they assumed was standard. That sort of situation makes it very hard for even the bean counters that are enthusiasts. 

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6 minutes ago, bornagainbiker said:

Wow, not sure what to think.  Kinda looks like a jet lifting it's nose just before takeoff. :o

This was Vetters design, I remember seeing one years ago.  Even back then I thought "Thats F**ked up

 

Never understood how everyone touted his designs as revolutionary, I thought they all were fugly as fu*k

Edited by r1limited

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