What's Erik Buell up to now?

Flawed genius or madman? Erik Buell files another interesting patent

Posted: 25 November 2010
by Visordown News
Buell 1125R ... exhaust not pictured

ERIK BUELL has filed another patent and this time it's an exhaust that runs through the motorcycle's swingarm.

In the patent, Buell list's the design as being: "A motorcycle including a swingarm that movable mounts a rear wheel to a main frame of the motorcycle and defines a hollow portion through which exhaust gases are passed before being expelled from an outlet of the swingarm."

The standard downpipe is connected to the swingarm using a flexible pipe that channels exhaust gases into the swingarm where they then exit. The idea, presumably, is to save weight. Although it would potentially add unsprung weight to the swingarm, if the swingarm required extra bracing to support the channels for exhaust gases.

It's a typically Buell design, solving a problem that no-one had in the first place.

Buell filed this patent in April 2009, which means that technically it's owned by Harley-Davidson, Buell's former parent company and not Erik Buell Racing, Erik Buell's new company. However, we don't see Harley-Davidson challenging Buell for the rights to this one.

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It's just a shame that Confederate have already done this!


Posted: 25/11/2010 at 11:15

Something like this will solve a lot of problems for EU legislators who do not want you changing your exhausts anymore. Will be expensive fitting an akrapovic designed swingarm!

Posted: 25/11/2010 at 11:18

Hum hot gases on your back tyre, and any un-burnt oil/ fuel as well for good measure.

I do like the thought of an akrapovic swingarm in Carbon!

Posted: 25/11/2010 at 12:12

"It's a typically Buell design, solving a problem that no-one had in the first place."

Mass, and its distribution on a motorcycle, is not a problem that we had in the first place?  Making more power without a massive muffler is not a problem we had in the first place? Getting more muffler volume in less space is not a problem for motorcycle manufacturers?  Keeping down noise to satisfy regulations while limiting power loss is not a problem?  Maybe not on your home planet, but here on Earth, those are real problems.

Try reading the patent application:

"In some constructions, the hollow portion of the swingarm is divided into at least three chambers, and a plurality of pipes is configured to provide at least two flow direction reversals within the swingarm between an inlet and an outlet, with multiple volumetric expansions between the inlet and the outlet."

I guess you think that Buell's use of an inverted fork way back in 1990 was answering a problem that didn't exist, too, right?  And the underslung muffler was answering a non-existent problem, also?  Then maybe you can explain why the sport bikes from the major players are now all sporting inverted forks and many are tucking the muffler as low as they can under the bike.  And I guess the Buell ZTL brake was addressing the non-problem of unsprung mass, right?

Maybe you need to stick to writing news instead of making snarky comments about a subject you don't know much about (sportbike engineering). 

Posted: 25/11/2010 at 22:01

The motorcycle design world needs men like Buell to think differently and challenge the way things are done.

Posted: 26/11/2010 at 00:36

modern motorcycle design has become boring - we need more mad inventers

Posted: 30/11/2010 at 14:42

Agreed, there aren't enough creative solutions to engineering problems in the bike world. Keep it up Eric!

Posted: 30/11/2010 at 20:22

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