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Speed Record S.A. ::: Speed Records ::: Motivator ::: Team Maximum Impulse

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Posted by :
Ray Wakefield - Date: 14 Aug 2002 at 17:07

Steering and front suspension.

This requires some explanation, as the method of steering is a little unusual. It is identical on both Maximum Impulse and Motivator and is generally known as centre hub steering.

Components of centre-hub steering.


Like most things in motorcycling it is not new, and was certainly in use on one motorcycle in the second decade of the last century. It was to be found on the Ner-a-car of the thirties, and later in a more sophisticated form on the Elf endurance racer, John Renwick's "Wedge" sidecar racer, and several "feet first" motorcycles produced by Jack Difazio and Royce Creasey, to name but a few.
As the steering takes place within the hub of the wheel, there is no requirement for any type of conventional fork arrangement or steering head. This then allows for minimum height and for all steering and (where fitted) braking forces to be fed back directly into the chassis by nothing more sophisticated than lightweight tubular links and spherical rod ends (rose joints). It's only disadvantage, apart from the aesthetic one, is a restricted steering lock. This is immaterial in a record contender.

Partly assembled axle assembly.
A steel wheel spindle carries a king-pin perpendicular to its axis across its centre. This has a taper roller bearing on either side, the outer races of which are retained in a substantial transverse bearing carrier by large nuts.
The inner diameter of the bearing carrier is of sufficiently size to allow it to rotate about the king-pin through, in this case, five degrees from the central, or co-axial plane. The bearing carrier supports the inner races of a pair of angular contact wheel bearings, and at one extremity is coupled to a steering yoke via a collar, which is a floating fit against a large spindle nut.
The outer races of the wheel bearings are a press fit into machined retainers which are in turn bolted into the hub of the wheel.
The components that make up this assembly are illustrated above.

The pin through the axle in the lower left of the above picture mates with an adjuster on the swing arm to permit easy alteration of king-pin angle by rotation of the whole assembly.


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