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Old 12-21-2007, 09:51 AM   #1
Kenneth_Moore
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Default Into the Dustbin?

I've been reading quite a few m/c "history" journals lately, and something has come up that I wonder if anyone around here knows more about it (he looks pointedly at MSCUDDY).

Sometime in the 40s or 50s, it appears that "Dustbin" fairings were banned from motorcycle racing. If you're not familiar with them, "dustbin" fairings were very large, very rounded fairings that usually included a long, torpedo shaped nose section and then a quite full faring back around the rider's legs. It seems like it was a very big deal at the time, and had a major impact on racing.

Why did they ban those big, and IMHO, beautiful fairings? Was it a safety issue? Were they trying to make the race bikes more like the bikes they sold? Enquiring minds want to know!
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Old 12-21-2007, 02:25 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenneth_Moore View Post
I've been reading quite a few m/c "history" journals lately, and something has come up that I wonder if anyone around here knows more about it (he looks pointedly at MSCUDDY).

Sometime in the 40s or 50s, it appears that "Dustbin" fairings were banned from motorcycle racing. If you're not familiar with them, "dustbin" fairings were very large, very rounded fairings that usually included a long, torpedo shaped nose section and then a quite full faring back around the rider's legs. It seems like it was a very big deal at the time, and had a major impact on racing.

Why did they ban those big, and IMHO, beautiful fairings? Was it a safety issue? Were they trying to make the race bikes more like the bikes they sold? Enquiring minds want to know!
Ahh it's a sad tail. They were banned for two reasons - to reduce speeds so the tracks would effectively be safer. Second which is the one you usually see is cross winds, they said it made the bikes too unsafe in cross winds.

While I'm sure it made the bikes somewhat less safe in cross winds I think it would only be a big deal at a track with a lot of wind. I race out at Willow Springs and there have been a few times it's been 40 mph winds in those conditions I am glad I haven't had one. But in less extreme conditions I think they'd be fine.

Sadly ever since they banned them in premier racing they're now banned in all the racing I know of. Because of that they're no long put on production bikes and aren't even offered as optional parts.

It's really a shame considering it can really boost high speed performance, it could really be a great help on a low hpr bike like a Ninja 250, or gs 500. It also GREATLY improves mpg. My father helped make one for a friend, mpg doubled on freeway. You can further increase it by changing your gearing to fit your new top speed and putting some good tail bodywork on it. You can look around online there are bikes with modern dustbins that will get 200, 300 mpg.

Maybe someday I'll make one for my 125, thought it's illegal for racing it could be fun for track days Yes I think they've very pretty too, and I'd love to see what a modern production sprotbike OEM one could look like.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:20 PM   #3
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You can look around online there are bikes with modern dustbins that will get 200, 300 mpg.
Hogwash. It's not possible to improve fuel mileage by that much with a simple different fairing.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:37 PM   #4
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Default Dustbins...

Here's an excerpt from a post on Roadracer X. Looks like the Brits did it so their old thumpers could still compete with the German & Italian bikes of the period that used them to great success. The FIM banned dustbin fairings in 1957 btw.

"Dustbin fairings were banned by the FIM in the years after WWII. It was a period of increasingly restrictive rules, as forced induction (i.e., turbo-charging and supercharging) was also banned. Nominally, the fairing rules were put down to ensure that motorcycles had adequate steering lock and were not imperiled by crosswinds. The truth is probably that the rules were British punishment for the Germans’ starting the war and the Italians’ role in it; the restrictions definitely extended the useful life of the British racing singles that made up the bulk of 350 and 500cc grids."

cafe (racer) society (archive): Ode to the Dustbin Fairing:
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Old 12-21-2007, 04:25 PM   #5
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Hogwash. It's not possible to improve fuel mileage by that much with a simple different fairing.
no, I didn't say it was. Just a fairing can double it though.

You can do a lot with out a fairing though, a friend I know has a Blackbird that he's tuned up to get 80 mpg cruising.

It is quite possible to get 200 mph though with tuning, fairing, and gearing. Of course it probably depends some what on the bike.

http://www.craigvetter.com/pages/470...37;20Main.html
That was from 1985, modern bikes are more efficient.
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Last edited by Gluge : 12-21-2007 at 04:40 PM.
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:26 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by mscuddy View Post
Here's an excerpt from a post on Roadracer X. Looks like the Brits did it so their old thumpers could still compete with the German & Italian bikes of the period that used them to great success. The FIM banned dustbin fairings in 1957 btw.

cafe (racer) society (archive): Ode to the Dustbin Fairing:
AHA! I suspect that Gluge's points are correct, but it's also quite believable that "politics" had a role to play. Just look how HD manipulated the AMA rules for decades over here. Thanks for the link Mr. Cuddy! (And, if you ever get the urge to write up some of those gorgeous streamliner bikes, I'd love to read it).
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:28 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by sachiwilson View Post
Hogwash. It's not possible to improve fuel mileage by that much with a simple different fairing.
Don't be so hasty to cast aspersions, Madame Sachi! I read about the work Craig Vetter has done as well. Apparently some of the super-faired bikes are easily capable of the kind of mileage Gluge refers to, perhaps considerably more.
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Last edited by Kenneth_Moore : 12-21-2007 at 06:32 PM. Reason: Cause I found some stuff on Googeloid
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:34 PM   #8
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Yes one sad case of good ideas being banned from motorcycle racing.
At least they didn't F**K it up to the extent of F1.

I think what's most sad though isn't that they were banned in racing it's that when something is banned from racing it's almost never seen in production cars either. Take for example in F1 the first wings on cars were mounted directly to the axles so when you got down force it only pushed the wells down on the ground, it didn't compress your suspension. That would be great for road going sports cars, but none are made like that it's like everyone forgot. Same with dustbin fairings.
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:37 PM   #9
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Here's an interesting quote from Mr. Cuddy's link. The author is promoting a return of the extreme fairings to modern racing:

"Second, fully faired bikes would be a modern sponsor’s dream. Seamless rolling billboards with lots of logo space would make it easier for MotoGP teams to defray costs by attracting outside money."

Money oughta do it!
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:40 PM   #10
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it's like everyone forgot. Same with dustbin fairings.
Not quite everyone! Did you see in Mr. Cuddy's link that a company called Airtec is making the fairings?!?! Wouldn't THAT be cool...make it a B2 stealth configuration and line it with RAM (radar absorbing material) and now you're getting somewhere...
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