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Serious Wieght Reduction?

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I started thinking about the small, incrimental weight savings the factories have been making, year by year. It brought to mind the HUGE weight savings the springless suspension, V-twin, and linkageless suspension allow. What if some guru put all of that together in an aluminum frame? Why hasn't somebody, already? Or have they? Are there more HUGE weight loss opportunities out there? I'm thinking you could dump about 20-25 lbs. Wouldn't that be a kick? Why don't the factories go BIG?

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They use air as a spring by managing its compression. I'm no expert on it, but I've read about it before. If I remember correctly, they said it worked very well.

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There is a YZ450F running that stuff in Europe. I read that the forks are 7#s lighter than standard. and the shock is like 4#s I believe lighter. That is actually a gigantic difference especially at those locations on the chassis. I would imagine that stuff is years off though from actual production.

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Fox sold air shocks that were popular in the last 1980's. These were twin shocks, not a single one like today. Fox is again making air shocks today, for snowmobiles.

One of the dirt magazines recently had a linkless rear suspension on a CRF450, didn't read the test, just looked at the pictures.

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Fox sold air shocks that were popular in the last 1980's. These were twin shocks, not a single one like today.

A slight correction; that was the late 70's. There were no twin-shock race bikes in the late 80's. (No mainstream ones, anyway).

The biggest problem I saw with these bikes was the inconsistent springing when the air heated up. Seems like nitrogen would address that, though.

But I believe they were air only, no oil damping. I was a teenager then, so I never got any real experience working on them. They fell out of favor for a reason, though. What those reasons were, I don't remember exactly. Probably better oil units came along, most likely the single-shocks.

Seems like the pressures would have to be very high to duplicate the support provided by a spring (you should be able to calculate it, given the required surface area of the components). That would require special seals to handle that and not put such a "grab" (or stiction) on the shaft.

Or they may have a design that is totally different and eliminates this concern.

:thumbsup:

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I started thinking about the small, incrimental weight savings the factories have been making, year by year. It brought to mind the HUGE weight savings the springless suspension, V-twin, and linkageless suspension allow. What if some guru put all of that together in an aluminum frame? Why hasn't somebody, already? Or have they? Are there more HUGE weight loss opportunities out there? I'm thinking you could dump about 20-25 lbs. Wouldn't that be a kick? Why don't the factories go BIG?

i think mostly b/c u can only go so light. the ama's weight limit for 125 class is 196lbs and 216lbs for the 250 class. unless the bike comes under the works bike introductory 1-year rule. like kawi and zook will b for '05 w/ thier 450. these bikes are already super light. the 2005 yz125 is lighter than the factory 125 that john dowd used 2 win the '98 weset regional sx title.

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Stalling innovation due to current AMA rules would be unfortunate. The AMA is supposed to be supporting the riders and the sport, not preventing progress. So, I don't think that's a legitimate reason. The bikes were much lighter in the '70s and the sky didn't fall. The AMA adjusts to what's needed. If it didn't, no one would support it and it'd have no say. If you have the potential to produce bikes that are MUCH lighter, the AMA wouldn't keep the same rules.

The bikes aren't currently all that that light. Some people just think they are. Watch; the bikes will continue to lose weight in the future and the sky won't fall. People are resistant and ssslllooooowwww to accept new ideas. The thought paridigm is powerful, indeed. I think new breakthroughs are great. They keep me looking forward.

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