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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I also go to Google to find out stuff, and Youtube videos are cool. But here is a quote from Keanu Reeves who owns a Norton 850.
" Norton was renowned for the Featherbed frame ( that part is correct ) which means it has rubber mounts for the engine " That part is bunk.
The Featherbed frame was replaced by the Isolastic frame, to try and control the engine vibration, which was primarily due to the 360 degree crank, the long stroke, and making it bigger than it ought to be. The Isolastic frame did not handle very well. Norton made a lot of changes to John William's bike for the Isle of Man. I have photos. John Player was paying the bills, and it had an engine from CR Axtell in LA. Basically the same as the one I was running in a Featherbed frame, having sold my piece of junk Isolastic thing.
But folks watch these videos and would not know if it was true or false. After guys like me are gone, I guess you can just make it up as you go along.
None of the folks who made comments noticed a serious error. But they were gaga over Reeves.

I watched a video of a Canadian guy and his IOM ride on a modern inline four 600. He needed to qualify at 95 to be able to race. He just made it. 125 hp, twin discs up front, one on the rear. Modern tyres, and modern everything to average 95. Semi had asked about narrow tyres. In some respect that kept the geometry consistent with more tippy, and some had a wide contact area.
Mike Halewood rode a 500 single Manx Norton making 50 hp at best, with drum brakes, bugger all fairing, skinny tyres, bucket helmet which required a scarf over his nose, and lapped at over 100. All to often modern youth thinks they need the latest set of wheels to go fast around the track. Experience and ability wins.
There is a bit more to the story, but I am saving it. Should mention, Mike the Bike did that before counter steering and trail braking were invented, or had names.

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  1. What’s the matter Krusty. Who got under yer skin?
  2. Face it, new generation coming in. That Reeves even knows what a Featherbed is is kind of remarkable. At least he’s trying, at least he’s on the path lol
  3. What kind of gets me is when the younger ones think they are genetically superior. Like the human race as evolved 10,000 years in 30. Ah, screw em.
  4. Talking about Mike. Is it fair to compare him to any but the elite in motorcycle racing? I mean, he was an enigma. Wish I was there to see him run.
  5. And yes, you are correct. I remember looking at those Norton ads, thinking yup, the girl is a 10, but from what I hear the new rubber frame is a 5.

  6. For the younger guys that don’t know, Mike Hailwood was one of the greats as far as motorcycle racing is concerned. He was the guy that Honda hired to race their 6 cylinder GP bike when they got into Grand Prix racing back in the 60s. A totally different approach, it handled like **** but had hp like no other. Story had photographers were uneasy setting up on the outside of hard braking turns, as Mike would come in so hot, and the bike would get so squirrelly, it would scare the hell out of them?
  7. Here he is. Not a lot come down the pike like him.
  8. 60873
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I just sent a message to Arch Motorcycles to inform them of the error Keanu made in his video. Stay tuned for polite reply.

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Never did any (legal, sanctioned) motorcycle racing, but I remember reading about those that did in my bike magazines.
Seems like there's always a few that are able to get more out of a machine than most would think possible.

I remember reading about a rider winning a race and another rider claiming the winning rider was using an illegal engine. The engine was tore down and not only was it legal, it needed a valve job.
 

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UK, do NOT use Wikipedia to research anything! It'll make your head explode! I get what you mean but I think it's always been that way about... well, just about everything. I hear a lot of crazy stuff when I go to the gun range or when I read the sport bike forums that isn't just wrong but dangerous as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I am aware of the errors that can happen within wiki. It is simply a matter of the input. In this case they are more accurate than Keanu. I have had my input turned down by wiki when I had first hand knowledge. Had to do with the Nippon Clippon. Sometimes however someone, in this case will produce an article on the intelligence of dogs, have it peer reviewed, and it gets accepted in learned society as being pretty darn good. But when the same article goes from the fancy printed version, to the internet it gets dumped on, as you can't believe everything you see on the internet.

But back to my original complaint about the info from Keanu. I know the subject matter. I know what a Featherbed frame is, and I know what an Isolastic frame is. I have owned both. I also know my John Player financed engines.
I just checked. I did not quote wiki.

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Semi had asked about narrow tyres. In some respect that kept the geometry consistent with more tippy, and some had a wide contact area.
I still can't get over those narrow tires. It had to take a special type of bravery to race those bikes back then.
I guess if really wide tires, that provided much better traction, were available back then the frames of the day would flex so badly that it would be next to impossible to predict what the bike would do making the bike dang near unrideable.

In the 1980's frame technology (chassis development) was making leaps and bounds in improvements. By the mid 80's you pretty much had to buy a new bike every year or your machine was obsolete.
We started with backbone type frames, steel outer perimeter frames next, then box section aluminum perimeter. Variations of the box section type with engines being a stressed member component seem to be some of latest thinking now.
Tire technology was about a half step, or maybe a full step, ahead of frame tech back then. You could modify for a wider, better rear tire but if you didn't have a frame (chassis) that could handle the stress caused by the increase in traction you were in for a flexing scary ride.

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Then you get,...ah, old, no, more mature, ah, no,...interested in cruisers and other bikes and as long as the frame can hang on to both wheels and keep the engine off the ground, it's good enough. :cool:
 
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