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Bike (Technology) You Should Know: Modern Motorcycle Technology by Massimo Clarke

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Hooniverse is generally not about motorcycles. Yes, there’s a good-sized minority of regulars who ride, but Hooniverse is overwhelmingly an automotive site. I pitched the idea behind Bikes You Should Know to Jeff as “helping our readers have something intelligent to say when the conversation at a backyard barbeque turns to motorcycles.” However, Hooniverse readers are a curious lot. For most of our non-riding visitors, motorcycles are still interesting in the same way that six-wheeled and tracked vehicles and gyrocopters are interesting, even if they have no desire to own any of them. (Although it seems that everyone wants a ‘Busa-powered something.)

I read Hooniverse from the point of view of someone who knows a fair amount about bikes, and not a whole lot about cars beyond being a decent car-spotter. In technical discussions, I am often struck by just how differently car and bike engines and transmissions are constructed. That’s why today I am recommending a book to my non-riding Hooniversalist brethren: Modern Motorcycle Technology by Massimo Clarke. This is a great means to learn all the way bike drivetrains are different than what you’re used to, and why. … Continue Reading

Driving a ’81 ‘Vette for the first time and smashing head-on into reality.

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It seemed like a damn good idea at the time. I was drawn to the Stingray like the proverbial moth to a flame; the scarcity of these cars in the UK combined with extrovert looks and all-American hero image aligns it with pure exotica, even in the minds of those who should really know better.

I had never, ever driven a Chevrolet Corvette of any description, so when I found this cocaine white ’81 example just sitting there, keys in the ignition, I saw no reason to not tick another life box.

… Continue Reading

Which Motorsport Is For You? – A Helpful Flowchart

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We’ve all been there, pondering what form of motorsport would suit our abilities, as well as the abilities of our respective cars, in the best fashion. This helpful flowchart can help you to eliminate at least one of the variables, by determining which method of four-wheeled fun is most suited to your personal characteristics, which can help you choose the race car (or bike) that fits with your alignment.

While the chart was likely intended to be taken in a joking fashion, I think there is a lot of honesty to it. Each bubble determines a defining part of your thought processes, and in turn leads you in the right direction. Sure, there are some stereotypes at play here. For example, ‘All drifters are sitzpinklers’,  ‘All TSD Rallyists are aged and pedantic’, or ‘Scandawegians with a death-wish are all good at Stage Rally’. Take it with a grain of salt, answer truthfully, and you’ll be motorsporting in no time.

[Source: Autophiliac]

Picture Books for Little Hoons

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Being a car guy (or car girl) doesn’t stop when your little one takes his or her first breath. Being a well-rested car guy? Well, that’s something else entirely.

But having kids in your life isn’t the complete life-altering experience that movies and television make it out to be. Sure, you might start taking better care of yourself healthwise, perhaps exercising more and drinking less – or drinking more: people, it’s parenting fluid – but the essential things that are important to you don’t change. Instead, you get to share them with a new, miniature person. One who has lots of questions.

When my daughter was born, I felt my heart grow three sizes in a single day. I held her fragile, warm form close and whispered in her tiny, perfect ear, “Kid, I am going to buy you so many Hot Wheels. Seriously.” But I was also going to do all the other daddy things like changing diapers, and cooking her meals, and chasing her around the playground, and fitting a child seat into a Series II Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead.

I was also going to read to her, and to encourage her to read. I started making a list of books. Here are a few. … Continue Reading

Speed Reads: ‘Classic Racing Cars’

Eric Rood February 3, 2014 Speed Reads

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This book’s cover wears one of those crinkly dust jackets just like they put on library books. This book wears a crinkly dust jacket because it is a library book. Cyril Posthumus’ Classic Racing Cars caught my eye when I investigated my municipality’s cheap DVD rental place that also loans free books. As someone loathe to pass up free anything (Are you going to eat those peanut shells?), I decided maybe I should check out the “Cars” section, being a semi-responsible automotive journalist and all. I wandered for a good bit looking for it, being both ignorant of the library filing system (No wonder you lost to Truman, you useless bastard, Dewey) and too stubborn to ask for directions. When I found the section, the bold red print on the book’s spine leapt out among the boring volumes about collector cars. As someone who–in addition to being loathe to pass up free things–likes bright colors, I naturally picked up the volume and leafed through it.

… Continue Reading

Porsche 962 Driver Control Diagram: Who’s In Control?

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Oh the days gone by.  I’ve had cellular telephones that are more complex than the driver control layout of a Porsche 962.  With the loud pedal supplying a healthy wallop in the back when footed, I’m not sure that I would want to have to pay attention to many other switches and dials, however.  A certain level of finesse was required to really drive a 962 quickly, balancing the boost pressures, the throttle input, and the insane ground-effect supplied downforce.  That said, however, this dash layout (and the car the dash is attached to) won a lot of races through the 80s and early 90s, and was driven by some of the most respectable drivers in the history of the sport.

… Continue Reading

Swedish Turbo Tractor Burnouts And Drifting

I wasn’t sure how to title this post.  I went with “Swedish Turbo Tractor Burnouts And Drifting”, but it could very well have been, “All The Gods In All Of The Hooniverse Are Welling Up With Pride” or, “Holy Meatballs!  Swedish Fantasmo Tractor!” 

Basically, the story is, a man in Sweden has adapted a 400 hp Volvo 240 Volvo motor into his tractor, and now he’s hooning the hell out of it.  Click through for the video, which is the best thing you will watch today. 

… Continue Reading

Random File: Doily Car

Scott Ith November 8, 2012 In General, Speed Reads

It looks so warm in there.  This is located at a museum in Prague, as well it should be.  Extra points if you can name the year, make and model.  (Not you, Antti.)

Click it for one more shot of this beauty. 

… Continue Reading

Obligatory: Ken Block Gymkhana 5 – Streets Of San Francisco

Ken Block and his driving skills are amazing. The 650 HP Ford Fiesta he drives is also amazing. What could be cooler than watching Block performing his long list of automotive parlor tricks? Watching him perform them in one of the coolest cities in the world, that’s what. What better place to make this type of video than San Francisco, with its famous vistas and hilly streets?

Hit the jump for 10 minutes of City shredding.

… Continue Reading

Car Vandalism: You Hurt My Feelings But I’m a Nice Person Edition

Kamil Kaluski April 16, 2012 Speed Reads

No one likes car vandalism. The people who do the vandalism are the shittiest of shitty people, total cowards… and I’m specifically talking to certain two Bruins fans who like to park their shitty white Altima in my reserved spot, throw beer cans from their car, and evidently drive back to their mom’s house in the suburbs drunk. But I digress.

When in comes to the matters of the heart, ladies, I know one thing – you always knew he was going to cheat on you, you just didn’t know when. This girl, whose feelings were evidently hurt, wanted revenge and for it she stoop down to the level of the shittiest. Or did she?

[Thanks for the pics Vinny!]

… Continue Reading

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