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The Pub - Off Topic

Speed~~and Relativity!!!!

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Denny Graham Gold Member Dennis Graham
Sandwich, IL, USA   USA
1950 Chevrolet 3600 "Old Blue"
1954 Chevrolet 3600
Now don’t that me the wrong way and go flying off without digesting the whole
dissertation. I’m not bragging or advocating for anyone to speed thru their neighborhood,
or blow thru a school zone or weave thru traffic on the freeway. Nor am I trying to
encourage the idea with anyone who doesn’t feel comfortable with it.
But I like speed, always did and even at my advanced age, I still like the sensation of
speed. I don’t speed when there are other cars or bicycles or kids or people or animals
roaming alongside the road. But put me out on a stretch of clear open country road and
I like to cu-cu-cut-er-loose.
03:30 this morning I took the Silverado into town to get a big mug of store bought
coffee and a couple of sweeties at the all night quick mart. Part way there we’ve got
a stretch of two lane with no side roads, no drives, no crops in the field, no deer or antelope
crossing over….i.e., nothin’ to block my view for three or four miles ahead.
The bright’s are on, the sky CVU, full moon and I kicked her up to right around 100 for
a stretch. She felt good and amazingly solid for a PU at that speed and it got me to thinking
how speed is a relative thing.
Some years back, we bought a Chrysler Sebring. When they first came out they were a
pretty sporty car that had plenty of power and handled very well. That was before
they morphed them into the 4-door family sedan they are today. One night on an open
stretch of I-355 retuning from Iowa, again, at 03:00 AM, I seem to be the most alert at that
time of day, having the road to myself with nary a car or bear in sight, I let out the reins to
see what she was capable of doing and I touched 130 before I ran out of road. I don’t
know how accurate the speedo is on a new Chrysler but I’d say it was fairly close.
Surprisingly….that car also was very stable at that speed.
After I built my Pitts biplane and flew the limitations off on it, I’d built up a trust that my
workmanship was up to par. I would on many occasions, in a dive, hit 230 with it. Talk
about the thrill of speed. The controls at that speed were quite heavy and felt like they
were made of lead. Now that was a good thing, because sudden movements are not
recommended at those speeds in a tube and spruce plane least you leave the wings
behind you.
Even though I’m about to hit 76 , I still like to take the Triumph Bonneville out for a ride in
the country on a nice warm summer evening. 100 is an easy number to hit with it and I’ll
often push it up there for a short burst. It’s got plenty of throttle left at that speed and I
have had it up touching 120 and more to go, but anything over 100 doesn’t feel comfortable
on that bike.
Slowing things down a bit, I’ve got a stock 1950 Chevy pickup that I drive on a regular
basis, weather permitting. I completely restored “all” of the mechanicals on about 15K ago
from the engine down to the tires that touch the ground. That vehicle I’ve run up to 70 but
it and I don’t like it there, 55 is a real nice number which makes it and I both happy.
I was fortunate enough to stumble on to nice little Suzuki TU250X last year with less than
500 miles on it. A nice little town bike which tops out at about 70 also, but it’s sweet spot is
right around 45-50.
Now we’re getting’ down to the Cyclekart’s. I hear a lot of feedback from the regulars here
on the forum, who have been running these for some years now, about how 40 or 50 is
plenty fast for one. I don’t have one finished yet, but I think I can put two and two together
and come up with a vision of what to expect from it. And I’m thinking that due to the
makeup of a Cyclekart, I’d bet the feel and performance is gonna be quite similar to
the little Suzuki TU250X in the garage.
So….that’s my take on relativity this morning. All speed is relative to your surroundings or
the vehicle you’re riding in.
That thar Barn should be warm by now, dang, t's 18°F out there this moning!!!!!
Ya’ll have a good day.
dg



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-07 07:23 AM by Denny Graham.

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chrisenamels Avatar
chrisenamels Silver Member Chris Brown
Llangadog, Carmarthenshire, UK   GBR
Agreed Denny, it all depends what you are driving: 70mph was pretty quick in the 1975 1100cc driving school Mini Clubman I drove briefly (until I found a decent driving school); it was easy in Mam's 1980 1500 TC Triumph Dolomite 90+ was comfortable in that; it was a pain in my 1972 Reliant Scimitar as it's natural cruising speed was 90, did touch 130 once, just to establish what it would do.

It's really to do with the size of the car, and how far off the ground you are, the Mini is the closest match to a cyclekart, small with your backside inches off the ground.

The Berlingo I've got now is simply a practical all rounder, plenty of space easy to load, decent towcar, and plenty quick enough for the driving I do now (mostly Welsh A roads, and you looked at the A4069 I recall).

Chris

Denny Graham Gold Member Dennis Graham
Sandwich, IL, USA   USA
1950 Chevrolet 3600 "Old Blue"
1954 Chevrolet 3600
Had to come in to thaw my hands out. Dang cold out there in the barn and I
used up all my split fire wood a couple of weeks ago.
Never been across the pond Chris, but from what I've seen in the movies and on line
it looks like 90% or your roads in the UK are narrow, twisty, hilly country roads. So I
suppose it's kind of rare to find any high speed open road. We are quite fortunate
over here. Eisenhower saw the autobahn while in Germany and when he
returned from the war he pushed to build the interstate highway system,
which crisis crosses the states now.
Denny G
Sandwich, IL

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CmdBentaxle Avatar
CmdBentaxle Dave D
Federal Way, WA, USA   USA
1950 CycleKart Italian "1950 Ferrari 166 F2"
This conversation seems to ring a bell to me.
Anyway, I'd say the difference between your Suzuki and how your kart will feel at speed is in 2 main factors;
1st. The height of your eyes above the road, being roughly twice on the bike what it is in the kart. Besides the increased sensation of speed from being low, compared with the bike, the view down the road is far inferior in the kart, especially if it's hilly. Even the Gopro footage is from about 8" higher.
2nd. Your Suzuki has a properly engineered and dampened suspension system that will soak up irregularities as it encounters them. Not as good as the Triumph certainly, but still pretty good. The cyclekart? Just undampened springs rebounding away up front, and in the back? Whatever air you happen to have in the tires.
It's actually amazing that they are reasonably controllable at 50mph. But it does make them a great thrill per dollar value!

Denny Graham Gold Member Dennis Graham
Sandwich, IL, USA   USA
1950 Chevrolet 3600 "Old Blue"
1954 Chevrolet 3600
Good point Dave. The front will have working friction shocks but still....a pretty primitive
suspension system. And the solid rear, you're absolutely right, bout the same as riding
my Craftsman lawn tractor at 50, scary thought indeed.
Just some thoughts as I took a ride in the middle of the night.
Thanks
Denny G

chrisenamels Avatar
chrisenamels Silver Member Chris Brown
Llangadog, Carmarthenshire, UK   GBR
It depends which bit of the UK you're looking at Denny, even in Wales 90% narrow and twisty is too high. We do have fast motorways, dual carriageways, and A roads. There again I suppose it depends on your definition of "narrow and twisty" I've seen US programmes where roads are described as "narrow and twisty", and they’re wide with gentle curves from my side of the Atlantic.

Denny Graham Gold Member Dennis Graham
Sandwich, IL, USA   USA
1950 Chevrolet 3600 "Old Blue"
1954 Chevrolet 3600
See...."narrow and twisty", "wide with gentle curves", it's that Relativity thing again. All relative to
how you look at it.
Headin' out to the shop, have a good day.
dg

TheGIantTribble Avatar
Chelmsford, Essex, UK   GBR
Definitely relative to what you are driving and ware.
Now we have a max speed of 70...I'll just point that bit out.
80 MPH in a friends formula ford, things where only just getting started.
80 MPH in my Toyota Corolla I feel I can switch 80 percent of the brain off, it feels settled, planted, and safe. Read boring! Actually through the twisty bit of country lanes it's a very nice fun drive. But motorways/straight roads no fun.
Now I only touched 80 MPH in my Triumph Herald once, that was quite enough. Down a long hill and trying to slip stream as much as possible the car in front.
The 80 bit is estimate since it had an official top speed of 78, and the needle was vibrating between 75 and 85, and quite frankly was a blur, not that I was looking at it as my attention was on just hanging on.
Every panel was vibrating especially the bonnet, the doors felt like they would fly off at any moment, the rear end felt like it was going to go off on it's own at any point.
I was very much living in the moment and feeling very alive.
Everything depends on the situation.

I expect the CK when it's finished to very much like the Herald but at 40 MPH and that's kinda the appeal.

Carty McCartFace Robert J
Fresno, CA, USA   USA
Dennis,

You are so right!
60 mph on a motorcycle does not equate to 60 mph on a bicycle. smiling smiley

I do believe this is the effect with these carts. My neighbor kid has a regular kart, and that thing seems like it goes 1000 mph, even though it only about 40. I think having my butt 3/8” (9mm) from the ground makes it seem so much faster.
I’m stuck on this pedal car, but have already begun amassing parts for cyclecart. They just look too fun, even though I don’t ever plan to race or compete.

Peace,
Robert

P.S. Nothing I’ve experienced yet feels as fast as 10 miles an hour on my legs for 2 1/2 hours... winking smiley

CmdBentaxle Avatar
CmdBentaxle Dave D
Federal Way, WA, USA   USA
1950 CycleKart Italian "1950 Ferrari 166 F2"
I expect the CK when it's finished to very much like the Herald but at 40 MPH and that's kinda the appeal.
[/quote]

Bill, I'd say your expectations are not too far off.
The good news is, you'll need to hit about 50mph to recapture that authentic "Herald" experience.


Robert.
You pedal car guys put a lot of engineering into your drive systems to make them work inside
the enclosed space. I think you'll really enjoy how quickly that cyclkart goes together by comparison.

Carty McCartFace Robert J
Fresno, CA, USA   USA
Dave,

Except I’m the idiot who just HAS to have a front engine, and a bevel drive, and external chain drive to the rear wheels...
Stupid Lion Peugeot, making me all lustfull for a machine. smiling smiley

Peace,
Robert

CmdBentaxle Avatar
CmdBentaxle Dave D
Federal Way, WA, USA   USA
1950 CycleKart Italian "1950 Ferrari 166 F2"
Oohhh!
I kind of have to take that back, then.

Carty McCartFace Robert J
Fresno, CA, USA   USA
Yes. I’m that guy. smiling smiley

I do also plan a very simple Quadrillette build. That will be plywood coffin, rear engine, etc. But I want two seats and opening doors and lights, because...

I’m that guy.

The pedal car, for example, will have a running and separate brake light rear, and single headlamp up front. (They’re already made, they just need a body to mount on.smiling smiley)

My ultimate dream cart, though, is more of a car. I’d love to replicate a particular GN from long ago... See attached photo.

Shoot, and I have that aero tail section form I made for the pedal car and abandoned... I should probably use that to make a cart. Maybe that Mercedes from the MarioKart series of games. Not the real one, the video game one. Hmmm.

Well, I am an inveterate builder, and only recently discovered these carts. Sky’s the limit. smiling smiley

Peace,
Robert


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Woodysrods Avatar
Woodysrods Silver Member Brian Woods
Westbank B.C., Canada   CAN
Cool choice!thumbs up

rctankboy2 Keith G
Leesburg, VA, USA   USA
As a kid, I had a go kart my dad found somewhere and he put a 3.5 hp brigs on it with an old school friction clutch. I would race around the yard, wearing trails in the lawn with a huge grin on my face. We added some old handtruck wheels to the front to get it a tad bit higher so it wouldn't scrape furrows into the yard. If I had been good, he would let me drive it on Saturdays on our L shaped Yawn 500 race track.

I think I was barely half an inch off the ground and felt so FAST! We did once sneak down to the juinior high school before the running track was fenced in, and I took it out for some laps. Suddenly, it didn't feel as fast. I pulled over and asked my dad what was wrong with the kart, and he looked it over and said "Nothin boy, you're learning to drive finally." I had no idea what he meant at the time, but he went ahead and did *something* and turned me loose again and it was a good bit faster, and my grin came back.

So many things affect our perception of speed. I've owned cars and motorcycles where 55mph was terrifying, and others where 130mph felt like 60mph.

Im also sure my memories of that time as a kid with that kart are a bit more generous to the event than reality but hey, the smile is still there.

Is there a support group for old speed addicts?

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