Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Testing at Reading Velodrome

Beano at Reading Velodrome
Before the season opener at Hillingdon, Steve and I went to the velodrome at Reading to check all was OK with the Beano and Quattro. This was my first outing with the Scorcher tyres fitted, so I was hoping for good things. This was also an opportunity to test some modifications that Lee Wakefield had kindly done on Steve’s Beano.
Well, the Steve / Beano combination was as swift as ever and everything was working well. In Quattro, I was able to lap at about 26-27mph for a few laps, which was a little disappointing. The new tyres didn’t seem to be giving me the benefits I was expecting.

Steve in Quattro at Reading Velodrome
After the first race at Hillingdon and the discovery that I had tracking issues with Quattro, we decided to go back to Reading and try again, this time with the wheels all pointing in the same direction!
Using the laser spirit levels, I had tracked all four wheels to as near parallel as I could manage. I know you should only change one thing at a time, but I had also taken 32mm out of the height of the head fairing.
On the second trip to Reading, I was at least 10% faster with speeds of 29/30mph for a few laps, compared with 26/27mph last time. Slash was able to lap at about 32.5mph but he was over stretching for the pedals despite some seat padding.
No Add-On Tail
We both seemed to be slightly (1/2mph) faster without the add-on tail which was a surprise.
Without any way of measuring the power input at the moment, these tests are not very scientific, but as long as I am going a bit faster, I am happy.
I imagine the overall improvement is mainly due to the better tracking. It did seem to roll a lot better when free-wheeling. I have done a fair amount of training and the chopped lid must help a little, but I am sure the tracking is the key.
There was a hot plastic sort of smell again, which I noticed last time we came to Reading. It only seemed to happen on one of the banked bends but needs investigating.
Nose Too Low?
Watching Steve going round was interesting; having lifted up the rear of Quattro 1/2deg, for better forward vision, the nose now looks too low. I might try and jack up the front to get the bottom horizontal again.


  1. Miles 3mph faster than the first test/ride is a big step.
    What is the turning circle with the four wheel steering?

    1. Johan. Having four wheels badly tracked seemed to be slowing me down a lot. I still want to do some tests rolling off a small ramp in the workshop to optimise the tracking. I have heard that slight toe in may be benificial?
      From my drawings, I think the outside turning diameter is about 7.5m. It is much too wet here at the moment to confirm that. I will measure it next time Quattro is out.