Rants and comments on the world of auto repair, cars, and motorcycles from the other side of the wrench. Funny stories, apocryphal legends, and other shit too ...
30 August 2007
29 August 2007
F&G, Alternate Brain honored by USPS
Click for even Superer Heroes
Fixer, of course, is top row right. I'm 2d row left. Wordsmith is 2d row, 2d from the right. Jersey Guy and Bustednuckles, and our Illustrious Emeritæ can identify themselves, but in 'Nuck's case, I'm holdin' out for right next to the F-Man. Mechanic, you know.
Cross-posted at the other "Best Blog in the World".
Tongue, meet cheek.
27 August 2007
Because I love old cars trucks and equipment, I am going to run some by once in a while.
This is a 1941 Plymouth pick up.
My buddy has one of these and I just get a huge kick out of it.
I think the top speed on the thing is 35 to 40 mph.
His is green with black fenders. The tail lights even say Plymouth on them.
Another friend found a 1:24 steel model for him that even has the same paint scheme.
It has the old push the switch to start under the gas pedal and everything.
Just a sweet old pick up that he takes to parades and sometimes farts around town in.Nothin' fancy.
17 August 2007
This Is My Kind Of Ride
I have seen this around for a few years now. I have always loved old iron, they just don't build 'em like this anymore, haven't for going on 35 years now. If I was to build a rod, you can bet your ass it would be one of these. I can not stand trailer queens. If you are going to build the damn thing, run it, HARD.
A fancy paint job does not make it run better and out of the forty odd cars I've had, only two or three were good looking, nice cars. All the rest were beaters, barely legal, sometimes not even close. You know the type, you see it coming in the rearview mirror and bail into another lane, hoping nothing came flying off as I wizzed by. Any way, I was surfing the net and found this site, Rat Rods, there are some nice ones and there are some terrible ones. I think I was born 15 years too late.
Rat rod is a newly developed name for the original hot rod style of the early 1950's. A rat rod is usually a vehicle that has had many of its non-critical parts removed. They are usually finished in primer-like paints and are often period correct. They are very often the conglomeration of parts and pieces of different makes and models.
Link to more pics.
16 August 2007
Cross-posted at Alternate Brain.
14 August 2007
I Learn A New Word
I immediately Googled it because I was researching another Alternate Engine piece and it stopped me in my tracks.
Even with a degree in automotive technology it was a new one for me, to wit;
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Tribology is the science and technology of friction, lubrication, and wear, derived from the Greek 'Τριβο' ("tribo") meaning 'I rub'. Formally defined, it is the science and technology of interacting surfaces in relative motion and all practices related thereto.
The study of tribology is commonly applied in bearing design but extends into other almost any aspect of modern technology, even to such unlikely areas as hair conditioners and cosmetics such as lipstick, powders and lipgloss.
Any product where one material slides or rubs over another is affected by complex tribological interactions, whether lubricated (e.g. hip implants and other artificial prosthesis) or unlubricated (some studies, for example, have looked at high temperature sliding wear in which conventional lubricants can no longer be used and the formation of compacted oxide layer glazes have been observed to protect against wear).
I will leave the literal translation of 'I rub', alone.
Fascinating stuff, this goes all the way into molecular motors and other exotic things like viscosity and God only knows what else.
Not a term I think would be easy to drop into a conversation though.
13 August 2007
Thousands more at CartoonStock.com.
10 August 2007
Impressions, observations, and wild-ass guesses...
Clicking will make it HUGE!
So how come I didn't notice that my yard needed weeding until I saw it in that picture? Where's that Meskin...but I digress.
That's Mrs. G's new '06 Buell Blast (backstory here and here). By now I've had a chance to think about it, look it over, poke it and and prod it some, and even ride it a little. Here we go...
I think it's a very pretty bike. It's got modern styling, which doesn't always work for me on some bikes, but on this one it does. It's a small bike, but everything's in proportion. A lot of new bikes are pretty angular, but this one's round. In my view, motorcycles should be round in styling, more pleasant to my eye than a buncha harsh angles. Score one for the styling department. I like the color, too.
The heart of any bike is the engine. This one is conventional and unconventioal at the same time. It's coventional in the sense that it's an air-cooled pushrod-operated overhead valve 500cc single-cylinder layout with two valves. It's unconventional in the sense that this is a traditional layout since the dawn of time which fell out of favor over thirty years ago in favor of overhead-camshaft engines, which make more power because they can rev higher and have less moving parts in the valve train to have to throw around.
It also departs from OHV tradition in that the bore/stroke relationship is undersquare, meaning the stroke is shorter than the bore diameter, which lets it rev higher than the old long-stroke singles, which had bags of torque but only produced a power stroke about every other phone pole. Redline comes at 6500RPM, fairly high revs. There's no tach, but revs are limited electronically by a spark randomizer, which is a pretty common way these days to avoid over-revving and the resultant attempts of the engine internals to exit stage any whichaway, or as us pros say in techspeak, "go blooey".
The Buell company is owned by Harley-Davidson. The engine was derived from the Sportster V-twin and pushrod engines are the only type of four-strokes that H-D has built for about the last hundred years until the recent OHC V-Rod. That's not new. Vincent made a line of singles such as the Comet model out of their V-twin Rapide sixty years ago.
We can leave H-D's old ('40s-'60s) 2-smokes out of this for now, but just as a point of historical interest, they were copied from the German DKW as spoils of WWII, along with the BSA Bantam and early Yamaha 125s. Hey, why design an engine when you can liberate one?
The Blast engine is 'dry sump' which means it has an external oil reservoir and a separate gearbox/primary oil supply. That, too, is old-fashioned and it works. It has an added benefit of helping to cool the oil as well.
On to the Frame. The Blast barely has one. It has a rectangular steel tubing backbone, which doubles as the oil tank, from which the engine is hung. There's a short stub extending downward from the steering head which connects to the engine via a Heim joint rod, which, along with one to the rear, serves as a top motor mount.
Since there's no frame tubes under the engine, a no doubt truly expensive set of crankcases are left vulnerable to damage from running over curbs, pedestrians, etc., Buell has protected the mill in a very clever way, I think. The exhaust pipe segués neatly into the muffler directly under the engine. The line of the pipe follows the curvature of the front wheel for eye appeal, and resembles a 'chin' fairing used on some bikes as an an air intake for various purposes. A little dab of 'fool the eye' put to good use. The muffler is triangular in shape, which makes it look aerodynamic and won't high center on anyone you run over.
Speaking of engine protection, take a look at the footpeg support, the Y-shaped pressed steel bracket extending downward from just under the front of the seat. Since this a supposed to be a 'beginner' or 'starter' bike, this is a real good idea. It won't do much good at anything over walking speed, but that's when beginners tend to tip over. Bikes self-stabilize once they get going. Don't ask me how I know this, but they actually work. The slight drawback is that they need to be removed for some service work, like adjusting the clutch or changing the gearbox oil, but it's only two bolts per side.
I've got more to say about this neat little sled, but the pups are clamoring to get emptied and then it'll be lunchtime. Later.
I go on vacation and come back to a dysfunctional computer.
Took damn near a week to get up and running again. I have never heard of an IP address expiring.
After pestering my buddy the computer guru, he finally got through to the bastards that run our service.
Come to find out, all he had to do was unplug something and plug it back in.Jesus Christ on a crutch.
No fucking email, no toobz period.
In all of my bitching and whining I did manage to score a faster computer,heh ,squeaky wheel and all that.
I am afraid to find out how much spam is waiting for me,oh well, the boss is gone today and I am the only one in the shop so I think I'll have plenty of time to find out.
I will do some surfing and see if I can find any new gizmo's out there we can talk about. Back soon.