Saturday, November 29, 2008

Puchavus Gets Faster

Still having trouble with the points arking, but found a loose ground that made a lot of difference. Now at least it isn't misfiring. Went in to the shop around ten last night and after swapping out two stator plates decided that wasn't the problem. By midnight I established a new ground off the lighting coil and the Puchavus came to life. I rejetted to a 92 and set the needle one notch up from the richest setting, which is what Sue is running. I also threw on an air filter just to be safe. This actually pulled out more rpm's so I figure I'm still running a little lean. As a result of inverting the second speed clutch it slips quite a bit stretching the first gear out to a screaming shift. It's a little jittery at the top of 1st gear, but the second gear is smooth all the way through the power band. I can definitely feel it hit a wall at the top end, so I hope with a little more tuning of the carb and maybe a 93 or 94 jet I can see an extra couple of mph's. This is one LOUD bike... You think you're going fast... and then you hit the Simonini's power band!!!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Quick Bikes in Santa Cruz

Just listen to it... ahhhh two strokes. I'd say they're topping out at about 40-45 or so.

Santa Cruz Sunday Race from Calvin Crockett on Vimeo.

The Puchavus Returns with More Power

Today I decided to open up the transmission on the Puchavus just to see how much damage there was. I was pretty sure the problem was that one of the clutch ribbons (perhaps the one I had "modified" to engage later) had slipped off and destroyed something important... I was right.

Sure enough this little piece of metal had wreaked havoc upon my main drive gear.

Lots of teeth missing...

Here are the teeth...

So I cleaned out the cases, installed a new main drive gear, which was the wrong size so I had to also replace the gear it meshes with to match.

Then I went ahead and replaced my retarded old 19mm Dellorto with the new 21mm PHBG race edition...

After I replaced the fractious second speed clutch I now have a first gear! I also installed it backwards which is supposed to require higher rpm's for it to open... It works!

Definitely sounds like a new bike and put some life into the kit. Now it goes waaaahhhhh!!!! instead of weeneneeeneeeeeee.....

And voila!

And here she is in action...

Hello 60mph!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Meh chosen for 30th anniversary of Collins English Dictionary

From The Times November 17, 2008

Ben Hoyle, Arts Reporter

There is nothing meh about the journey of the latest entry in the Collins English Dictionary. Rather, it illustrates how e-mail and the internet are creating language.
“Meh” started out in the US and Canada as an interjection signifying mediocrity or indifference and has evolved, via the internet and an episode of The Simpsons, into a common adjective meaning boring, apathetic or unimpressive in British English.
The word was chosen over hundreds of others nominated by the public for inclusion in the 30th anniversary edition of the dictionary, to be published next year. Jargonaut, frenemy and huggles were among entries suggested to the Word of Mouth campaign, run in conjunction with Waterstone’s. The panel that made the final selection chose meh because of its frequent use today.
Meh was submitted by Erin Whyte, from Nottingham, who defined it as “an expression of utter boredom or an indication of how little you care for an idea”. The dictionary will say that meh can be used as an interjection to suggest indifference or boredom – or as an adjective to say something is mediocre or a person is unimpressed.
Collins has been aware for some time of the growing use of meh in written and spoken language. The word is widely used on the internet and is appearing in British spoken English as well as in print media.
Cormac McKeown, head of content at Collins Dictionaries, said: “This is a new interjection from the US that seems to have inveigled its way into common speech over here.
“It was actually spelt out in The Simpsons, when Homer is trying to prise the kids away from the TV with a suggestion for a day trip. They both just reply ‘meh’ and keep watching TV; he asks again and Lisa says, ‘We said MEH! – MEH, meh!’
“Internet and e-mail are playing a big part in formalising the spellings of vocal interjections like these. Other examples would be hmm and heh, which are both now ubiquitous online and in e-mails. People are increasingly writing in a register somewhere in between spoken and written English.”
Elaine Higgleton, the editorial director at Collins Dictionaries, said: “We ran this campaign to encourage the public to tell us about the words that they use every day, but that aren’t in the dictionary.
“We want to make sure that Collins dictionaries include everyone’s words.”

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I have been asked to design an office building in South Bend for my studio project. The facade (let us not speak here of the plan...) has taken many forms.

So I decided to approach this in a Westallian manner and asked myself which of the six types an office building fell under.
My conclusion was that the office building is almost directly related to the:

Here is a really good regia:

So while I was flipping through books I forgot that I was supposed to be designing a regia and was like oh look at those arches.... cool.... I'll take those. (They are pretty nice.)

Then I got really side-tracked looking at some of the architect Louis Sullivan's work. I thought that a Logia on top of a low rise building would be wonderful, and remembered seeing something like that somewhere.

Using Lheureux's arches my loggia and Sullivan's tall building I wipped up this design:

But then I realized Sullivan was a complete moron (as you can see in this picture), and through out all his nonesense.

I decided to turn instead to somethign grounded in good architecture, and who better than Vignola? I found this Palazzo by Vignola to be especially interesting because it was declaring itself to be a three story building while actually containing seven or more floors. Remember a regia shouldn't be any more than three floors, even for a prince.

I also realized that I didn't like Lheureux's arches in this project after all. They seemed a bit too Beaux-Artes. I needed something more graceful and airy for the top of the building....
Something like this:

However, it needed to have at least a little bit of strength at the corners so I looked around and found this beautiful loggia and fell in love.
The Loggia Rucellai:

This is what I arrived at:

The middle section, however, became very difficult. I decided to use superimposed orders like at the Colosseum:

But only in the middle section between the two loggias, as at the Palazzo Farnese at Piacenza:

This is what it looked like:

But was this just too many columns? and was I following the typology of the regia too literally?

Apparently not.... Here is a strait up little Palazzo two blocks from my site.... And nothing I could come up up with could rival the level of ornamentation of the South Bend court house.

Palazzo Indiana: It's quite good! minus the windows...

Next I wondered what would happen if I combined the loggia as a single element with the columner center:

I drafted this up with a great deal of puzzlement due to the window placement:

But this just didn't work. It was too vertical. The base I had added provided more ceiling room for the shop fronts, but made the entrance portico too formidable. So I scratched the base and moved the loggias back to the sides. This is what the revised facade looked like:

After I had finished congratulating myself on such a wonderful solution I realized that I had arrived at a giant wedding cake (or tick-tack-toe board as my professors were so quick to point out).
I had to get rid of the layered and overly tripartite appearance, but I was running out of ideas. then I ran accross McKim, Meade and White's Tiffany's in New York, and noticed how they had proportioned the upper entablature to fit the whole top two stories and heightened the base:
What a wonderful building!

I quickly sketched out a corner with a larger cornice:

But this too didn't quite work out. There was too much going on. As Professor Economakis says, "A building can only handle one good idea." There were too many ideas, each good on their own, but together creating an ugly jumble. There was too much top and not enough middle too much centrality and not enough fucus. And so I continued to look through McKim, Meade and White. Here surely I could find one good idea that would answer my question.
Not My favorite building, but at least one that directly answered my problem... (Notice the strenth of the corners.)

And so I quickly heightened the middle, reduced the loggia height, increased the cornice to fit the whole upper portion (above the rusticated base) and eliminated Vignola's columner center.

Who knows where this will lead tomorrow, but for the moment I still have a building that reads as three, if not floors, at least rememberances of floors, with a light, graceful loggia at top, a powerful, unifying cornice, rusticated base with a grand, but not too formidable portico. (Oh, and ignore the tripartition, I'm still not able to let myself erase it.)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

New Cases

Here are my new cases:

They look to be in excellent condition. Apparently Motion Left has found a new welder who can add a lot of material reliably without warping the cases. As I will be running the large transfer Metra a lot of material will be needed just to match the transfers as well as to provide a sealing surface.

Here's the Parmakit race crank I will be using:

Not stuffed but these cranks are apparently bullet-proof. Needle bearings etc. Only downside is I have to find a weird sized bearing for the clutch side.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Puchavus Cases

Here's the first picture of the Puchavus in a while. It still has the Za50 on it right now with a retarded old untunable Dellorto 19mm. It was still seeing low fifties at BroBQ, but was overheating like crazy and then blew up the transmission.

I just got E50 cases this weekend. Goodby 200 part engine, Hello 20 piece work of art!

Ready to Be Built:
80cc Large-Transfer Metrakit (with chip out of skirt...)
Bored and Case-Matched E50
Parmakit Race Crank
21mm PHBG Race Edition Carb
Simonini Exhaust

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008