Silodrome https://silodrome.com Gasoline Culture Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:04:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 18077751 Gasoline Motorcycle Co x Sailor Jerry Custom Triumph Scrambler https://silodrome.com/custom-triumph-scrambler-bike/ Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:01:50 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76338 Gasoline Motorcycle Co x Sailor Jerry Custom Triumph Scrambler

The Triumph Scrambler was first released in 2006, it was based on the already popular Triumph Bonneville, but it added a series of modifications to give it some off-road ability. Not off-road ability on the level of an enduro or motocross racer of course, but enough dirt road capability to have adventures down fire roads and up the occasional forest trail.

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Gasoline Motorcycle Co x Sailor Jerry Custom Triumph Scrambler

The Triumph Scrambler

The Triumph Scrambler was first released in 2006, it was based on the already popular Triumph Bonneville, but it added a series of modifications to give it some off-road ability. Not off-road ability on the level of an enduro or motocross racer of course, but enough dirt road capability to have adventures down fire roads and up the occasional forest trail.

The most noticeable change between the Bonneville and the Scrambler is the addition of twin high exhaust pipes down the side – a common sight on classic scramblers from the 1950s and ’60s as it keeps them up away from the terrain, and has the added bonus of keeping them dry when crossing streams.

This wasn’t the only change though, the Scrambler sounds notably different to the Bonneville as it’s fitted with a 270° crank rather than the 360° crank. This helped shift torque down the rev range, giving more bottom end power at the expense of a little high end horsepower – however owners quickly realized they could get back this horsepower and gain quite a bit more with a simple series of carburetor and exhaust upgrades (often with an airbox delete).

For 10 years after its release the Scrambler became one of the most popular platforms for custom bike building in the world – so much so that many bought Bonnevilles and turned them into Scramblers. In the years since many of Triumph’s competitors have brought out their own scrambler models, and today the retro dual sport category is one of the most popular niches.

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

The Gasoline Motorcycle Co x Sailor Jerry Custom Triumph Scrambler

The Scrambler you see here actually started life as a factory-stock 2008 Triumph Bonneville, it was bought by Sydney-based custom motorcycle garage Gasoline Motor Co. as the base for a new build that had been commissioned by Sailor Jerry.

Once the bike had been wheeled into the garage and jacked up on the hydraulic lift the disassembly began – it was stripped back to a bare engine-in-frame with all the factory plastic removed. The subframe was modified for the new seat and an LED taillight was added (with built-in indicators). The wider rims were laced to the original hubs, before being fitted with new chunky off-road tires, and the stock fenders were tossed into the recycling pile.

A new set of scrambler-height rear shocks were fitted to lift the tail a little and improve ground clearance over the stock road shocks. A new braced, off-road handlebar was added, along with twin high-performance exhausts, high-flow pod air filters, and a new lower profile headlight (from BMW).

The clean midsection is thanks to an airbox delete and a hidden battery compartment to tidy the electrics tucked away out of eyesight. Once completed the bike was fitted with a tank by Retroline in Australia based on the racing stripes used on Premier motorcycle helmets. A second tank was created by highly-regarded tattoo artist Rhys Gordon, this will bee the tank that is fitted to the bike during regular use (and you an see a few shots of it below).

The completed bike is due to be given away as a prize by Sailor Jerry later this year, if you’d like to see more from Gasoline Motor Co you can click here to visit their website.

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Custom Triumph Scrambler 1

Triumph Scrambler

Triumph Scrambler

Triumph Scrambler

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Qwart Helmets – The Phoenix: A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet https://silodrome.com/qwart-phoenix-helmet/ Fri, 20 Apr 2018 05:00:52 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76319 Qwart Helmets – The Phoenix: A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet

Qwart Helmets The Qwart Phoenix is a new, modular motorcycle helmet from Qwart – a European company based in the South of France. Each helmet has a full grade 8 carbon fiber shell with a double density EPS impact absorbing liner that meets or exceeds the ECE R22-05 helmet safety certification standard. There are two...

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Qwart Helmets – The Phoenix: A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet

Qwart Helmets

The Qwart Phoenix is a new, modular motorcycle helmet from Qwart – a European company based in the South of France. Each helmet has a full grade 8 carbon fiber shell with a double density EPS impact absorbing liner that meets or exceeds the ECE R22-05 helmet safety certification standard.

There are two main versions of the Qwart Phoenix, the “Slick” and the “Std”. The former has no visor fitted for those who want to use goggles or ride with an open eye port, and the latter has a built in flip-up polycarbonate visor. Both the Slick and the Std have a carbon fiber trellis chinbar for face protection, with a removable carbon fiber cover that can be swapped out for other colors.

The EPS liner contains a series of hidden channels for airflow that are linked to external ports – allowing airflow across the wearers head to keep them cool. The chin bar also contains twin vents on either side, to keep fresh air flowing into the nose/mouth area and to assist with helmet demisting.

The Qwart Phoenix Modular System

The most significant design feature of the Qwart Phoenix is its modular nature. Designer Xavier Marigo spent 5 years designing and prototyping the helmet, taking great care to ensure that parts are owner replaceable.

You can swap out (almost) every element of the helmet and replace it with aftermarket parts in different colors – this allows riders to match their helmets to their bikes (and/or gear), and it allows them to change up the look of their helmet with nothing more than an Allen key (also known as a Hex key).

Once you have your Qwart you’re able to order the custom trim and vents from your local (or internet) distributor, and the helmet’s removable lining can also be replaced by the owner – in a variety of colors and materials.

Buy Here

Qwart Helmets - A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet Parts

Qwart Helmet

Qwart Helmets - A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet

Qwart Helmets - A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet

Qwart Helmets - A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet

Qwart Helmets - A Modular Carbon Fiber Motorcycle Helmet Red

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An Early High-Speed Police Pursuit Motorcycle – The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 https://silodrome.com/coventry-eagle-flying-8/ Thu, 19 Apr 2018 06:01:04 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76267 An Early High-Speed Police Pursuit Motorcycle – The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 was a high-performance motorcycle designed to compete directly with the offerings from Brough-Superior – a company that was building the fastest and most expensive production motorcycles in the world at the time. The similarity in looks between the Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 and the Brough-Superior SS80 and SS100 was no mistake, George Brough and...

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An Early High-Speed Police Pursuit Motorcycle – The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 was a high-performance motorcycle designed to compete directly with the offerings from Brough-Superior – a company that was building the fastest and most expensive production motorcycles in the world at the time.

The similarity in looks between the Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 and the Brough-Superior SS80 and SS100 was no mistake, George Brough and Coventry-Eagle founder Percy Mayo spent some time together towards the end of the First World War and discussed their ideas for the kind of high-performance motorcycle they’d like to make. As it happens, the men had very similar tastes, and it’s likely that they influenced each other to some degree.

The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

The Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 was the fastest and most luxurious motorcycle produced by the marque, it was essentially a two-wheeled grand tourer – designed to be fast but not at the expense of long-distance riding comfort. The Flying-8 was offered with two engine options over its lifespan, with both engines coming from the pre-eminent motorcycle engine manufacturer in the world at the time JAP (J.A. Prestwich Industries).

Funnily enough, both of these engines would also be used in the two top models produced by Brough-Superior – the SS80 and SS100, so named for their guaranteed top speeds of 80 mph and 100 mph respectively.

Coventry-Eagle

With swept capacities of 980cc and 976cc there was not a lot of difference between the two V-twins size-wise, the major difference was above the barrels – the 980cc engine had a more advanced OHV system with the 976cc engine using the common but less advanced sidevalve arrangement.

In 1929 the global stock markets tanked as the Great Depression descended, high-end motorcycles like the Flying-8 saw their market dry up almost overnight. Coventry-Eagle stopped selling the OHV Flying-8 in 1930, but kept the sidevalve version (which was a little cheaper) in production for another year or so.

As it became clear that the markets weren’t going to bounce back as some had been hoping, Coventry-Eagle focussed their production line on building lightweight, smaller-capacity two stroke motorcycles that were still selling, albeit in limited numbers.

By 1939 motorcycle production had slowed to a crawl and even the outbreak of WWII, with the resulting government contracts, couldn’t save the company. The last motorcycles were built in 1940, and sadly Coventry-Eagle ceased trading shortly thereafter.

Coventry-Eagle

The 1930 Coventry-Eagle Model F150 Flying-8 Police Shown Here

The example you see here was sent new to Melbourne in Australia, where it became part of the Victorian Police Force. Back when it arrived in 1930 its unlikely that there was much on the road that could outpace the Flying-8, making it an excellent high-speed pursuit vehicle for motorists who fancied their chances at outrunning the boys in blue.

The Model F150 Flying-8 Police was fitted with a high-performance JAP 8/30hp 4-cam sidevalve engine, coupled to a Sturmey Archer 3-speed gearbox, with a Webb center-spring front fork, with Royal Enfield front and rear drum brakes.

This Coventry-Eagle would remain in Australia for much of its life, it was restored 30 years ago and has only seen intermittent club use in the subsequent years. It was imported into the UK and road-registered in 2014, and in 2015 it completed an 80-mile VMCC run.

Bonhams will be offering the bike at the Spring Stafford Sale on the 22nd of April, the current price estimate is £40,000 to £50,000, and if you’d like to read more you can click here to visit the listing.

Coventry-Eagle

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8

Images courtesy of Bonhams

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The Art of Adam Ambro https://silodrome.com/art-adam-ambro/ Thu, 19 Apr 2018 03:00:23 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76243 The Art of Adam Ambro

Adam Ambro is an architect based in Golden, Colorado, with a passion for both art and cars. His day job keeps him busy, and in 2013 he won the AIA Denver Young Architect of the Year Award, followed in 2014 with him being named an Engineering News Record Mountain States Top 20 Under 40 Professional....

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The Art of Adam Ambro

Adam Ambro is an architect based in Golden, Colorado, with a passion for both art and cars. His day job keeps him busy, and in 2013 he won the AIA Denver Young Architect of the Year Award, followed in 2014 with him being named an Engineering News Record Mountain States Top 20 Under 40 Professional.

Adam’s art is immediately recognizable due to the fact that he frequently uses newspaper as his canvas, he draws the automotive icons using pens and markers, and then scans in the original artwork to create a series of prints – each poster is a digital press print on long-lasting 111 lbs cover stock.

Each of Adam’s pieces can be ordered in sizes ranging from 8×10, 13×19, or 20×30, and you can choose to have your print framed or unframed – with both black and white frames on offer.

Buy Here

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1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 Lightweight – Factory Built For Finnish Racing Driver Leo Kinnunen https://silodrome.com/porsche-911-carrera-rs-2-7-car/ Wed, 18 Apr 2018 08:00:35 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76206 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 Lightweight – Factory Built For Finnish Racing Driver Leo Kinnunen

All surviving examples of the Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 are special, but this one is more special than most. It was built to a specification laid out by legendary Finnish racing driver Leo Kinnunen, who used it as a personal car while competing in Germany in the Interserie – a popular European motorsport series. The...

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1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 Lightweight – Factory Built For Finnish Racing Driver Leo Kinnunen

All surviving examples of the Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 are special, but this one is more special than most. It was built to a specification laid out by legendary Finnish racing driver Leo Kinnunen, who used it as a personal car while competing in Germany in the Interserie – a popular European motorsport series.

The Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7

The Porsche 911 Carrera RS is considered by many in the motoring fraternity to be the pinnacle of the 911. Porsche have built many extraordinary cars since 1973 of course, but so far as the 911 goes, the Carrera RS set the bar in both looks and performance.

500 cars were required for Porsche to homologate the 911 Carrera RS 2.7 for touring car racing in Europe, and it wasn’t known at the time if the company would be able to sell them all – they had a price tag well in excess of $10,000 USD and the executives at Porsche weren’t at all sure that demand for the car existed. They needn’t have worried. The model sold out less than a week after first being displayed at the Paris Motor Show, and Porsche would go on to build 1,590 examples over the course of the production run.

Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7

Porsche offered the Carrera RS in two trim packages – Touring and Sport Lightweight. The Touring package included things like carpeting, a radio and other modern amenities whereas the Sport Lightweight variant was a stripped out racing car designed to be just barely road legal.

The list of celebrity owners of Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7s is too long to list here, Jay Leno, Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Kay, and Jenson Button are all either owners or former owners – and the list goes on a long way from there.

The performance of the RS (an abbreviation of Rennsport, German for race sport) is remarkable, especially when you consider that this is an air-cooled car build in the early ’70s. The 2687cc flat-6 was capable of 210 bhp and 182 ft lbs of torque, giving it a 219 bhp per tonne, a top speed of 150 mph and a 0-60 mph time of just 5.6 seconds.

Porsche 911 Carrera Side

The 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 Lightweight Shown Here

The tangerine example of the Carrera RS 2.7 Lightweight you see here is special for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it was built for 24 Hours of Daytona winner Leo Kinnunen.

The story goes that Leo ordered the car to do practice runs for the 1973 1000 Lakes Rally in which he was to compete, and perhaps also to practice ahead of the Targa Florio. It must’ve worked, because Leo still holds the all-time lap record for the Targa Florio – beating the previous record by 90 seconds.

When specifying this car, Leo ordered it with larger ‘ST’-style wheel arches to accommodate wider wheels and tires. This would be the only 2.7 RS fitted with a “tea-tray” spoiler (as used on the latter Carrera 3.0 RS), it was also fitted with a limited-slip differential, a Matter alloy roll cage, a pair of Recaro rally seats (with thumbscrew-adjustable backrests), Repa racing harnesses, a larger-than-normal steering wheel to allow better control on loose surfaces and a raised passenger seat to improve co-driver vision.

In the years since it passed from Leo’s ownership, the car has belonged to a small number of enthusiasts, and it’s now due to roll across the auction block with RM Sotheby’s on the 12th of May in Monaco. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can click here to visit the listing.

Porsche 911 Carrera Rear

Porsche 911 Carrera Window

Porsche 911 Carrera Main

Porsche 911 Carrera Interior

Porsche 911 Carrera Interior

Porsche 911 Carrera Gear Knob

Porsche 911 Carrera Front

Porsche 911 Carrera Bumper

Porsche 911 Carrera

Porsche 911 Carrera Engine

Porsche 911 Carrera Dash

Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7

Porsche 911 Carrera Back

Porsche 911 Carrera Wheels

Porsche 911 Carrera U Joint

Porsche 911 Carrera Trunk

Images: Remi Dargegen ©2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

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Chapal Leather Driver’s Helmet – Race Like It’s 1939 https://silodrome.com/chapal-leather-drivers-helmet/ Wed, 18 Apr 2018 04:00:42 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76257 Chapal Leather Driver’s Helmet – Race Like It’s 1939

Chapal is a Paris-based company founded in 1832, Charles Lindbergh famously wore a Chapal jacket when he became the first person to fly across the Atlantic in 1927 from Long Island to Paris, taking 33 1⁄2-hours. The French company developed a line of jackets and leather helmets for early aviators, these were later repurposed by...

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Chapal Leather Driver’s Helmet – Race Like It’s 1939

Chapal is a Paris-based company founded in 1832, Charles Lindbergh famously wore a Chapal jacket when he became the first person to fly across the Atlantic in 1927 from Long Island to Paris, taking 33 1⁄2-hours.

The French company developed a line of jackets and leather helmets for early aviators, these were later repurposed by racing drivers and put to use on the race tracks of the 1930s. Chapal would be commissioned by the US Military to produce sheepskin leather jackets for pilots during WWII, and as a testament to their build quality many of these jackets have survived to the modern day.

The Chapal Leather Driver’s Helmet is designed to be true to the helmets worn by many of the greatest racing drivers of the early to mid 20th century – men like Juan Manuel Fangio and Stirling Moss. Each helmet is made from high-quality sheepskin leather lined with quitled cotton jersey for comfort – even after hours of racing. As these helmets were first worn by pilots they keep their ear flaps – designed to allow you to wear a radio headset for communicating with ground control.

The helmet is fastened with a double-D ring, there’s also a loop in the back for goggles, and a tightening buckle along the brow. Each Chapal helmet is made bespoke on demand, in sizes from 54 to 61, and in colors including red, tan, blue, and white.

Buy Here

Chapal Leather Driver's Helmet Red

Chapal Leather Driver's Helmet Tan

Chapal Leather Driver's Helmet Blue

Chapal Leather Driver's Helmet White

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The Rare German Batmobile: An Unrestored 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL “Batmobile” https://silodrome.com/bmw-3-0-csl-batmobile-car/ Tue, 17 Apr 2018 07:01:50 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76137 The Rare German Batmobile: An Unrestored 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL “Batmobile”

The original BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile is an almost mythological car that has graced countless teenager’s bedrooms walls in poster form, and features prominently in many adult’s automotive bucket lists. The BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile BMW introduced the 3.0 CSL in 1972 as an homologation special based on the popular 3.0 CS/CSi sporting coupe. The...

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The Rare German Batmobile: An Unrestored 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL “Batmobile”

The original BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile is an almost mythological car that has graced countless teenager’s bedrooms walls in poster form, and features prominently in many adult’s automotive bucket lists.

The BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile

BMW introduced the 3.0 CSL in 1972 as an homologation special based on the popular 3.0 CS/CSi sporting coupe. The addition of the “L” to the model name meant “leicht” (German for light), as the entire unibody structure was built from thinner gauge steel for weight savings, accompanied by deleted trim and soundproofing, aluminium alloy doors, bonnet, and boot lid, and Perspex side windows.

This lowered the weight of the 3.0 CSL by almost 200 kilograms (440+ lbs) compared to the 3.0 CS – 1,270 kgs vs 1,420 kgs. The engine fitted to the first series of 3.0 CSL vehicles was the standard 2,985 cc BMW M30 inline-6, producing 180 hp at 6,000 rpm and 192 lb-ft of torque at 3,700 rpm.

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile

The nickname “Batmobile” has now become almost an official model designation for the car thanks to an eye-catching aerodynamic package – this included a large front air dam, fins running along the top of the front fenders, a spoiler on the trailing edge of the roof, and a tall rear wing. Interestingly, the rear wing was never installed at the factory, but it was left in the trunk in three parts for the owner to install, as wings were illegal on German roads at the time.

The second generation version was fitted with a Bosch fuel injection system in place of dual Zenith carburetors, and the displacement was increased slightly to 3,003 cc to allow the car to compete in the over-3 litre class. Power was increased to 200 hp at 5,500 rpm and torque was increased to 204 lb-ft at 4,300 rpm.

The third and final generation had its displacement further increased to 3,153 cc thanks to a longer stroke, giving an additional power boost to 206 hp at 5,600 rpm and 215 lb-ft at 4,200 rpm.

BMW Badge Logo

All versions of the BMW 3.0 CSL were fitted with a Getrag four-speed manual gearbox, sending power back through a limited slip rear differential. Disc brakes were fitted to all four corners, encompassed by Alpina 7 x 14 inch alloy wheels, shod with Michelin XWX tires.

Although the horsepower and weight figures may not seem particularly impressive by modern standards, the competition version of the 3.0 CSL proved almost unbeatable on track – it won the European Touring Car Championship in 1973, and then again every year from 1975 to 1979. In 1973 it took a popular class victory at Le Mans, it won a slew of races in the IMSA GT Championship in 1975, and countless victories in sports racing car competition around the world in the mid-to-late 1970s.

The 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Shown Here

The car you see here is one of the first 110 Batmobiles built, and remarkably it’s still in largely original condition throughout thanks to its low mileage and gentle use over the decades since it was first delivered to the BMW dealer in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in 1973.

The car retains its original Chamonix Metallic exterior paint with which it left the factory, as well as the original “Batmobile” aerodynamics package (including the front air dam, twin front fender spoilers, roof spoiler, and three-piece rear wing). The interior retains its original black and red Scheel sport seats remain along with the original three-arm steering wheel (which is specific to this model). Most importantly, the original numbers-matching engine, reading just 39,072 km from new, remains installed in the recently tidied engine bay.

It’s entirely likely that this is the best preserved original BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile in the world, so it’ll be interesting to see what it sells for when it crosses the auction block with RM Sotheby’s on the 12 of May in Monaco. If you’d like to read more about the car or register to bid you can click here to visit the listing.

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile 2

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Interior 2

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Steering Wheel

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Back

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Front

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Interior

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile Engine

BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile 1

Images: ©2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

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Anker PowerPort Solar Charger – 3 Panel – 21 Watt – Dual USB https://silodrome.com/anker-powerport-solar-charger/ Tue, 17 Apr 2018 04:00:36 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=75395 Anker PowerPort Solar Charger – 3 Panel – 21 Watt – Dual USB

The Anker PowerPort Solar Charger is designed to keep your devices charged when camping, traveling overland, or otherwise off the grid. It has dual USB ports capable of charging almost any portable device including iPhones, Android devices, iPads and tablets, cameras, GPS units, flashlights and more. With an MSRP of $59.99 USD it offers an affordable,...

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Anker PowerPort Solar Charger – 3 Panel – 21 Watt – Dual USB

The Anker PowerPort Solar Charger is designed to keep your devices charged when camping, traveling overland, or otherwise off the grid. It has dual USB ports capable of charging almost any portable device including iPhones, Android devices, iPads and tablets, cameras, GPS units, flashlights and more.

With an MSRP of $59.99 USD it offers an affordable, compact solution for staying charged in the field – when folded up the unit measures in at 11.1″ × 6.3″, and when folded out it measures in at 26.4″ x 11.1″.

It’s designed with stainless-steel eye-holes on each corner so that it can be opened and attached vertically to your backpack to charge devices on the go, whether you’re hiking, riding a motorcycle, or your bag is stowed on a roof-rack.

The main body of the Anker Powerport is rugged polyester canvas, and the PET polymer-faced solar panels are sewn directly into it. These 21 Watt SunPower solar panels are 21.5 to 23.5% efficient, giving enough power to charge two devices simultaneously.

When laid out ready to charge, the Anker PowerPort Solar Charger has a sleeve on the righthand side that allows you to tuck your devices out of direct sunlight whilst charging. It also comes with an 18-month warranty, and importantly it has built-in short circuit and surge protection.

Buy Here

Anker PowerPort Solar Charger Collage

Anker PowerPort Solar Charger

Anker PowerPort Solar Charger

Anker PowerPort Solar Charger

Anker PowerPort Solar Charger

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The JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 – Project Rhodium Omega https://silodrome.com/yamaha-gts-1000-custom/ Mon, 16 Apr 2018 06:01:35 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=76164 The JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 – Project Rhodium Omega

James Parker and RADD Inc. Suspension The Yamaha GTS 1000 was released in 1993 with unusual forkless front suspension designed by James Parker, a Stanford University trained Industrial Designer with an innate engineering ability – which he used to develop oftentimes unusual motorcycles. In 1971 when he ran a Hodaka dealership Parker created a 120...

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The JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 – Project Rhodium Omega

James Parker and RADD Inc. Suspension

The Yamaha GTS 1000 was released in 1993 with unusual forkless front suspension designed by James Parker, a Stanford University trained Industrial Designer with an innate engineering ability – which he used to develop oftentimes unusual motorcycles.

In 1971 when he ran a Hodaka dealership Parker created a 120 pound riveted-aluminum monocoque-chassis Hodaka racer, in 1975 he developed a rising-rate single-shock rear suspension, and incorporated it into a trellis frame design for a Yamaha 500 cc four-stroke single. During this time he was racing RD350s at club level and riding for Motorcyclist Magazine’s endurance racing team.

James Parker’s RADD hub-centre steering was inspired by the ELF X prototype racing motorcycle, which in turn was insured by a slew of other hub-centre steering systems that had been slowly developed since they first appeared in 1910 when developed by the British James Cycle Co.

Yamaha GTS 1000

Parker’s system was state-of-the-art in the early 1990s, and it’s still notably more advanced that the front suspension systems used on many modern, high-end superbikes. With hub-centre steering systems the steering happens within the hub of the front wheel, not up at the steering head where the forks attach to the frame. We’ve become so accustomed to hydraulic motorcycle forks that hub-centre systems (HCS) tend to look almost alien – but they have a series of significant benefits over their simpler brethren.

HCS solves a number of the major problems with hydraulic motorcycle forks in one fell swoop. They separate the steering, braking, and suspension functions, which results in a significant reduction in dive under braking as braking forces are redirected horizontally along the arms into the frame, where they can help to counteract weight shift. Additional benefits include the fact that (in most HCS systems) the steering geometry remains the same over the full upward and downward movement of the suspension – instead of the wheel moving slightly closer to the frame on compression and further away on release as with traditional forks.

There are two primary achilles heels to HCS systems – steering feel is often reduced, and the systems are expensive to develop and manufacture – resulting in a much higher sticker price on the showroom floor. James Parker’s RADD Inc. HCS system was engineered to maintain solid road-feel, and with a few years of development would possibly have matched or exceeding the feel in even the best modern forks.

Yamaha GTS 1000

The JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 – Project Rhodium Omega

The motorcycle you see here is a labor of love from one of the custom motorcycle world’s most talented minds – Samuel Kao of the JSK Moto Co, based in La Puente, California. Samuel was approached by successful businessman and certified petrolhead James Chen in April 2015 with an idea – he wanted to take the motorcycle that sparked his imagination as a child and create a thoroughly modern version of it, as a way of showcasing what might have happened with the model’s progression if it had been kept in production longer than its 1993 – 1999 run.

This motorcycle was the Yamaha GTS 1000, one of the biggest what-ifs of its era, with many wondering what could have been if Yamaha (or other major motorcycle manufacturers) had further developed the concept rather than reverting to traditional hydraulic forks.

With this new custom build, named Project Rhodium Omega, James said “give this motorcycle a re-appearance in-line with the 21st century so a new generation of young people can open their imagination the same way it did when introduced on 1993”

The Yamaha GTS 1000 was originally designed as a touring motorcycle, it had an comfortable upright seating position, and it tipped the scales at 274 kilograms (604 lbs). Samuel and his team realized from the outset that they would have to both lower the weight and lower the handlebars if they were to achieve their goal of creating a sleek, modern version.

Once the basic sketches were down on paper, the body work was stripped from the donor bike, and a wireframe was painstakingly constructed to create a real-life 3D model of what the finished bike’s dimensions would be. Final body design was shaped in clay on the original chassis, the vents were all designed to be fully functional, and they were each mocked up in card paper before having vector files created so they could be individually laser cut.

Yamaha GTS 1000

The new design required a custom fuel tank and radiator, it was also decided to remove the original ABS assembly to save weight, and the original lead acid battery was swapped out for a much smaller lithium-ion unit for the same reason.

Once of the most challenging aspects of the design was the headlight assembly, countless designs were penned and discarded before the final 6-light was settled on. The headlight hides an air intake for the engine too – the 1000cc 4-cylinder needs to be fed as much air as possible.

The minimalist seat design was designed in-house and then milled by the Black Smith CNC Co, with upholstery by Kingsman Seat’s Sara Dai. One of the most significant difficulties with a custom like this is always going to be the suspension – the team at Gears Racing stepped up and created new front and rear shock absorbers specifically for this bike to match, weight, performance, and rider weight giving optimal handling while remaining fully adjustable.

The complete bike is a testament to what can be done with overlooked, unusual bikes from recent history. I dare say this will be the most extreme looking custom we feature this year – but its Gundam-inspired looks are only a small part of the story – the engineering that went into the original Yamaha GTS1000 and into this modern version are fascinating, and I doubt there’s a gas station from Los Angeles to Laos that wouldn’t see a crowd gather when this thing pulls up for fuel.

If you’d like to see more from JSK Moto Co. you can click here to visit their website, here to follow them on Facebook, or here to follow them on Instagram.

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

Yamaha GTS 1000

JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 Concept and Construction Gallery Below

The post The JSK Moto Co. Custom Yamaha GTS 1000 – Project Rhodium Omega appeared first on Silodrome.

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Bolwell Nagari – The Essential Buying Guide For The Australian Classic https://silodrome.com/bolwell-nagari/ Mon, 16 Apr 2018 04:00:52 +0000 https://silodrome.com/?p=74425 Bolwell Nagari – The Essential Buying Guide For The Australian Classic

The Bolwell Nagari is a car that few people outside Australia have heard of, much less seen or driven. Bolwell were, and still are, Australia’s sports GT car, designed and made by a group of brothers who built their first car whilst ditching school as teenagers. This is a GT car that reflects the Australian...

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Bolwell Nagari – The Essential Buying Guide For The Australian Classic

The Bolwell Nagari is a car that few people outside Australia have heard of, much less seen or driven. Bolwell were, and still are, Australia’s sports GT car, designed and made by a group of brothers who built their first car whilst ditching school as teenagers.

This is a GT car that reflects the Australian “Jack’s as good as his master” culture in which it is expected that everybody will be given a fair go. For the Bolwell brothers that fair go meant that Australia’s GT car should be made using Australian made parts that were affordable and accessible: and that the car should be kept inexpensive so that an average bloke could afford one.

Early cars were made available as kits for an owner to build themselves: the last of the original Bolwells, the Mark VIII Nagari, started out as a kit, but soon the kit car option was taken away and customers could only buy a complete car.

Bolwell Nagari kit

To put the cost of the kit car version into late 1960’s perspective, a new Ford Cortina or Datsun 1600 (i.e. Datsun 510) cost around AUD$2,000.00. The Bolwell Nagari kit cost AUD$2,795.00: so if you could afford a new four cylinder Ford or Datsun you could probably afford a Bolwell kit. This was a GT car for the ordinary guy, and it offered the performance and handling of some of the more exciting Italian exotics, being similar in many ways to the Bizzarrini GT Strada (aka. Bizzarrini GT America and Iso Grifo Competizione), except with Australian characteristics.

To put the driving experience of the Bolwell Nagari into perspective consider that the car used the same engine and transmission as that of the Ford Falcon GT, but installed all that lovely power into a fiberglass bodied GT car that weighed quite a bit less than the four door sedan.

I first came to appreciate the power of the Falcon GT in 1970 when I did a competition driver’s course at the local race track, and one of the course participants had a somewhat tweaked Falcon GT Phase I sedan. That car would smoke its tires in first and second gear, and you could hear the tires howling as they tried to get grip in third. So if you can then imagine that sort of power in a lightweight fiberglass sports car you have an idea of what driving the Nagari was like.

Bolwell only recommended British Avon tires for the Nagari to keep the power under control. Behind the wheel for a “brisk” drive the first impression was of being glad it had headrests as the acceleration was everything one could have hoped for. Despite its having a live rear axle the car was stable, controllable, and enormous fun, and you could build that fun for yourself for AUD$2,795.00.

The History of the Bolwell Nagari and Bolwell Sports Cars

The history of Bolwell sports cars has humble, almost Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn beginnings. A sixteen year old Campbell Bolwell along with his brother Graeme, skipped school to get into building a sports car. This the sort of scenario that a few of the major sports car makers have come from: Bruce MacLaren started out with a tweaked Austin 7, which you can see to this day on display at the MacLaren Technology Centre.

In the case of the Bolwell brothers it was not an Austin 7 but a 1937 Ford V8 chassis. The body panels were hand fabricated and the boys discovered that the car could actually outperform the Austin-Healeys, which were one of the premier affordable sports cars in Australia at the time. That first car survived for a couple of years and then Campbell and Graeme got stuck into their second creation based on a MG chassis. The MG chassis was low, light, and because it had been designed as a sports car it had good weight distribution. To their surprise the boys discovered that his new creation was a tad quicker than the first car despite the fact that it only had a four cylinder engine.

Campbell worked in the Public Service and then at Coles as a trainee and by 1962 a twenty year old Campbell Bolwell had amassed the sum of two hundred pounds. This might not sound like much nowadays but back then a good wage was about twenty pounds per week and most people got rather less than that. With that two hundred pounds behind him Campbell Bolwell quit his job with Coles and started his own car building business. It is a story not unlike that of Bill Harley and the Davidson brothers.

The first kit car built by Campbell and Graeme was called the Bolwell Mark IV. It was built on a space frame chassis with a fiberglass body and was powered by either a Ford Cortina four cylinder engine of 1,600cc capacity, a Peugeot four cylinder, or Australia’s own Holden 6 cylinder “grey” engine.

The body was supplied to be built as either a coupé with gull-wing doors or as a convertible. The Mark IV was succeeded by the Mark V and Mark VI. In 1966 Campbell and Graeme Bolwell went for a short working holiday in the UK and spent some time at Lotus Cars. The time there convinced them of the need to graduate from just producing kit cars to building fully built cars. On their return to Australia the brothers designed what they hoped to be their last kit car, the Bolwell Mark VII. This car was built on a backbone chassis whilst the engine was the relatively new Holden “red” engine, which was an in-line six cylinder with a seven main bearing crankshaft. That engine was made in a number of versions with capacities of 149 cu. in., 179 cu. in., 161 cu. in., and the 186cu. in.

Bolwell Mark VII

It was the Mark VII that really established Bolwell as Australia’s sports car maker, an Australian equivalent of Britain’s TVR and Lotus. Bolwell had by this time become expert in fiberglass fabrication and the quality of their fiberglass work was excellent. The Mark VII was made to use off the shelf Holden components except for the gearbox which was initially a Ford unit as Holden were not yet making a suitable four speed, and the Holden three speed with no synchromesh on first gear was not a worthwhile choice for a sports car. Because it used such common generic parts the Mark VII became a popular choice for motor racing as well as for road use. About 600 Bolwell Mark VII kits were sold between 1966 and 1972.

Campbell Bolwell had a vision to create something that might just prove to be a world beater however, and that meant creating a car that would be the equal of the famed AC Shelby Cobra. This was to become the Mark VIII, better known as the Nagari. The Bolwell Nagari was based on a backbone chassis made of 14 gauge steel, similar to the Mark VII, but made to accommodate a Ford 302 cu. in. Windsor V8 engine. This was the engine fitted to the Ford Falcon GT Phase I that had been making quite a name for itself as the “Broadmeadows Bogan”: Broadmeadows being the location of Ford’s Australian factory and “Bogan” being an Australian colloquial word similar in meaning to the English word “hooligan”. So if a fast British car might be described as being suitable for a “gentleman thug” then the Falcon GT was being given a similar epithet. This was the car that Campbell Bolwell would take the engine and transmission from and insert them into his lightweight sports car to create Australia’s answer to the AC Cobra.

Bolwell Nagari Specifications

The Bolwell Nagari did not use the Falcon GT suspension however, but Bolwell created their own with a view to making the car handle at least as well as a Shelby Cobra, even if it wouldn’t be able to compete with a Bizzarrini 5300 GT (which had an American V8 engine and gearbox, but used an independent rear suspension). To this end the front suspension was by unequal length wishbones with coil springs and telescopic shock absorbers, whilst at the rear the Ford Falcon’s leaf springs and live axle were replaced by trailing arms, coil springs and telescopic shock absorbers to much better locate the Ford live axle. Over the top of that technically promising foundation Bolwell fitted a svelte fiberglass body that made the car look like a world class GT.

Bolwell Nagari coupe roadster

The Bolwell Nagari (Mark VIII) entered small scale production in 1969: initially available as either a kit or a fully built car with a hard-top coupé body style. A soft-top convertible style was also offered but these are much more scarce than the hard-tops. The kit car option was phased out as quickly as Bolwell could manage it however. There isn’t an exact known number of the Nagaris produced, but probably around 130 give or take a few. This was the era when the US government was introducing emissions controls regulations for automobiles, and safety standards. The Australian Government decided to follow suit and brought in emissions controls and the “Australian Design Rules” (ADR) which mandated crash performance for automobiles. No provision was made for small scale specialist makers such as Bolwell to be exempted from crash testing etc. and so it became simply uneconomic for Bolwell to continue to build cars. Production of the Nagari ceased in 1974, and Bolwell moved on to creating fiberglass moldings for a variety of industries.

Bolwell Models and Specifications

Bolwell Nagari 301 cubic inch V8

The Bolwell Nagari was made as one basic model with the main difference between the early and later cars being that the early production cars were fitted with the Ford “Windsor” 301 cu. in. V8, but when that ceased production Bolwell began fitting the Ford 351 cu. in. V8. In the interest of getting the best possible front to rear weight distribution the heavy V8 engine was placed as far back in the backbone chassis as possible, so far back in fact that the flywheel was located behind the windscreen line. Getting the weight distribution even was going to be important to the Nagari because it was going to be pushing a lot of power through the back wheels and there needed to be weight there to ensure the car kept traction. The location of the engine was quite like that of the Bizzarini GT 5300 and both cars suffered from the same problem, heat in the passenger compartment. Insulation can only achieve so much and to really make a Nagari comfortable air-conditioning is a good idea.

The Ford 301 cu. in. (5 liter) V8 was fitted with a Holley 2 barrel 500 cfm carburettor and produced 220bhp @ 4,600rpm with torque of 300lb/ft @ 2,600rpm. This engine gave the Bolwell Nagari a standing to 60mph time of 7 seconds and a top speed in the vicinity of 130mph. The later 351 cu. in. Ford V8 engine produced more power but shoehorning it into the Nagari’s chassis required some modifications. With a 351 cu. in. V8 under the hood one road tester claimed the top speed was 147mph. We suspect that finding that out was a bit of a “white knuckle” experience.

The engine and carburettor fitted determines the bonnet/hood profile. The 301 cu. in. cars have a modest air-scoop on the bonnet and one very early one appears in photographs with that small air-scoop reversed. The earliest display Nagari for the 1969 Melbourne Show had a flat bonnet/hood which was only made possible because the carburettor was removed from the engine. There are a few variations on the hood bulge depending on the carburettor(s) and engine fitted.

Bolwell Nagari 351 cubic inch V8

The front suspension was fully independent by unequal length wishbones and coil springs, this being mounted on the front of the “Y” fork of the backbone chassis (see diagram above). The rear suspension was mounted on a “T” section at the rear of the backbone chassis incorporating trailing arms to provide positive location of the beam rear axle with limited slip differential. Again coil springs were used. The propeller shaft passed through the chassis backbone to the rear axle. The steering was originally a rack and pinion unit from the Austin 1800 sedan which Bolwell listed as having 3.3 turns lock to lock: this was subsequently replaced with an Austin Kimberley steering box with 4.2 turns lock to lock. Turning circle was 34′.

Brakes of the early Nagaris fitted with the 301 cu. in. V8 were 11¼” vented discs at the front and 10″ drums at the rear, the brakes being servo assisted with dual hydraulic circuits as was mandated by the ADI at the time. Brakes of the later 351 cu. in. V8 cars were discs all around. The Nagari was also fitted with alloy wheels which Bolwell described as “heat dissipating wheels”. Original wheel size was 14″x6″ and the tires were 185×14 radials. With the light weight of the car and the tires available on the market back then, Bolwell advised Avon tires for the car. Having the wrong tires on a Nagari did not help its handling, nor its handling of power at the rear wheels. The Nagari with the Ford Windsor V8 weighed 18cwt/2016lb, so it was about the same weight as a Ford Cortina of the late sixties or a Datsun 1600 (Datsun 510). It was a car that would benefit from twenty-first century wheels and tire technology.

The Nagari was only 44″ high, comparable to the Bizzarrini GT 5300 which was 43″ high: consequently neither car is particularly easy to get in and out of. For those of us who are not 6′ tall it is perhaps a bit easier, but those of Jeremy Clarkson proportions may find it more of a challenge. Once in the car one becomes aware of the limited room in the foot well: the backbone chassis construction pretty much ensures there is just not quite enough space there. All the Bolwell Nagaris bar one were made in right hand drive. The one exception was made for an American client who didn’t take delivery of the ordered car, so it was purchased by someone in Australia who used it for racing where the fact that it was left hand drive was not a big issue.

Buying a Bolwell Nagari

Bolwell Nagari Body and Interior

When looking for a Bolwell Nagari your best first port of call will be one of the Bolwell car clubs. With so few Nagaris in existence and almost all of those located in Australia they will tend to know of most cars still in existence. The backbone chassis was made of 14 gauge steel and steel can rust so it is your first concern, although you also need to look for cracks and the integrity of welds. A new chassis can be constructed but there is a significant cost in doing that. Pay particular attention to the rear box section as that is a rust trouble-spot on both Nagaris and Mark VII cars. You must get the car up on a hoist and check for corrosion and accident damage. Check all suspension mounting points, suspension bushings etc. Most Australians live in coastal cities and regularly visit the beach so expect that the car you are looking at has been exposed to salt air.

Bolwell Nagari advertisement

On a test drive you are looking for signs of shock absorber failure (knocks, vibration), steering wandering or excess steering free play, movement or rattles in doors or body panels. Check door operation and fit. Jacking up the car and checking the opening and closing of the doors can provide tell tale signs of chassis flexing.

Check tire wear patterns. Chassis or suspension/steering problems will often show up in unusual tire wear patterns.

The fiberglass bodywork on Bolwell cars was very good, better than many, so you are mainly looking for damage from accidents or collisions with wildlife such as kangaroos or wombats. A collision with a kangaroo will tend to result in its going over the hood/bonnet and if the windscreen is not laminated it can finish up in the car on the driver’s lap. The end result of such a scenario is damage to both car and driver, the kangaroo often survives and hops off once out of the vehicle. Wombats will cause low front damage and they normally finish up going under the car, as do road-kill kangaroo carcases. So look for damage consistent with collision with animals as well as traffic accident damage.

The quality of the paint will depend on how recently the car has been painted. The old gel-coat finish was not as good as modern finishes and getting a good re-finishing on a tatty looking car will do some wonders. For replacement body panels contact your Bolwell club. The Victorian club has original molds for the fiberglass panels of some Bolwell car models.

Bolwell Nagari cockpit interior

The interior of the Nagari poses no great difficulty for an automotive trimmer. Instrumentation was generic and should prove to be repairable or replaceable. If the car does not yet have inertia reel seat belts they will be a worthwhile fitting for the additional comfort they provide. The Nagari was made to be a kit car or production car and so everything is made to be owner fixable.

Check the that the door seals actually seal, on the original cars they sometimes didn’t. Your first trip through a car wash is often the time you find out whether there are leaks or not.

Bolwell Nagari Engine and Transmission

Whichever of the original engines the Nagari has these units are solid and pretty agricultural. Normal checks will be for leaking oil seals front and back, rocker cover seals etc. Check for rattles or sounds that should not be there. Check for exhaust blue smoke indicating piston ring problems or valve guide problems. Do a cylinder leakage test. Check the radiator coolant for milky deposits indicating oil in the coolant. Check for signs of water in the oil, again, if oil and water come together there will be milky deposits.

Check the transmission for operation, the four speed Ford gearbox is a joy to use. The most common place for gearbox problems to show up is on second gear because it gets so much use. Make sure second gear engages smoothly on the over-run, such as slowing down for a right angle left hand corner, and that it has no tendency to pop out of gear. check for excess play in the propeller shaft joints. When driving the car listen for knocks from the transmission.

Bolwell Nagari Electrical System

If the electrical system is original then it is decades old and due for replacement. If the car has been re-wired then things should be all working perfectly. Whichever scenario check that everything does in fact work as it should, an auto electrician can do the necessary testing better than most of the rest of us can.

Documentation

Look for service records and documentation of work done. The Bolwell club will often be a good source for the history of the car you are looking at.

Conclusion

The Bolwell Nagari had the potential to be a great success not only in Australia, but also in world markets such as Europe and the United States. The design and engineering is perhaps not at the sophisticated level of an Italian thoroughbred but it is about the equal of a Shelby Cobra, and the Nagari is a great driver’s car, it’s enormous fun to drive. If you are looking for a car that provides AC Cobra excitement and owner tweak-ability then a Bolwell Nagari is a car you’ll without doubt enjoy.

The Bolwell Car Company still exists and they have a new model, the Bolwell Nagari 300. At time of publication the list price was AUD$197,000, so it is not so much a car for the average bloke as the original Nagari was. But if you are looking for something exotic and unique then you will find the Bolwell Nagari 300 on the Bolwell Car Company website.

Bolwell Nagari roadster

Editor’s Note: If you have tips, suggestions, or hard earned experience that you’d like to add to this buying guide please shoot us an email (the address is in the footer). We’re always looking to add to our guides, and your advice could be very helpful to other enthusiasts, allowing them to make a better decision.

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