Thursday, January 18, 2007

Some Groups of Interest: Tilters and feet first fans

Have been having some very interesting communications lately from folks in two Yahoo Groups that have some overlapping interest in gyro vehicles. If you are not familiar with Yahoo Groups they are an interesting hybrid of forum and mailing list that can be very useful for several different communication needs.

(For example, I belong to one computer security related group that sends out one email per week to all members. That's all. Other people use the Yahoo group system as more of an opt-in discussion list--membership can be more tightly controlled than many forums. The nice thing is that you don't have to you get every single message that goes out to the list, you can get a weekly digest of all postings.)

With that in mind, you might want to consider these two groups:

Tilting: "This group is for sharing information and ideas about Tilting vehicles. HPV and all power source enthusiasts are welcome, but please focus on the CHASSIS."

Feet Forward: "This mailing list is for the discussion of Feet Forward motorcycles in all their shapes and forms. This covers both the various mega-scooters such as the Honda Helix, Foresight, Yamaha Majesty, Suzuki Burgman and Piaggio Hexagon but also the various low volume and prototype FFs such as the Ecomobile, Quasar, Phasar, Voyager and so on."

There is also an interesting web site that focuses on feet forward designs.

Happy surfing!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Gyro Hawk: What was it and where did it go?

My thanks to Roger Crier of Birmingham, England (home of BSA Motorbikes and a lot of other great engineering) for reminding me of the Gyro Hawk.

A video and "info pak" featuring this machine were advertised in several magazines in the 1990s. In fact, I ordered the video and still have it somewhere. Along with the video came a copy of the 1967 article in Science and Mechanics about the Gyro-X. The video itself was not terribly impressive. I haven't watched it in a while but as I recall it was basically a machine--looking like the one pictured in the ad--making slow turns in a parking lot. No thrilling chase shots of a highway-ready vehicle. I didn't resent paying for thing as it clued me in to the Gyro-X. Over the years, a number of people have asked for more info on the Gryo Hawk but I don't have any. And as people have pointed out, the Roadhawk company is not reachable at the address listed. (There was phone number in the ad but I have clipped that to avoid bothering whoever owns that number now.)

If you can shed any light, please leave a comment. I have had an intriguing email from someone who may have spotted a Gyro Hawk and has promised to send pictures the next time they see it. Fingers crossed.