Dear John, By the time you read this letter, I’ll be gone...
I CAME ACROSS this chap today at a packaging exhibition at the NEC. He has built this land speed record bike in his shed! Its an amazing bit of kit and is powered by a steam rocket. It works by heating the water in the pressure vessel to 250°C then discharges the steam out of the two funnels at 1.5 mach. This propels the bike to 200mph in six seconds (the time it takes to empty the tank)!
I work in engineering and the quality of his work is excellent, with some really clever touches. (I am reminded of John Britten from New Zealand) He has even made the carbon body work; the more you look, the better it is. He’s doesn’t promote himself so I thought I would drop you a mail. Not sure if it fits into PB but maybe you can think of somewhere that could use the story? John Roberts CN: Great find: we’re on with a feature. See that next month – have some oil in return for the tip-off.
Regulate your output
With reference to Maurice Hog’s letter about Chris’s MV, I seem to recall Honda and Suzuki and Triumph all having charging issues, which if not caught early enough would cause very expensive problems. So consider that before condemning MVs. Nigel Eastland CN: My thoughts exactly. It’s been no more trouble than I’d expect any other 15-year-old bike to be: the only issue can be less-than-immediate parts availability, but it’s all resolvable. Buy one; live a little.
Cream for the Kat
As it goes, I think Suzuki’s new Katana is better than the original. Everyone seems to have forgotten that the original bike was horrible to ride in anything like standard condition. I made the mistake of buying one; I didn’t keep it long, and ended up buying a GPZ900R instead. Much better. At least the new Kat starts with a reasonable enough bike as its basis, though it looks a bit dull as it comes. Hopefully they’ll sell it cheap enough to leave some cash for a Racefit pipe, a nitrous kit and some spoked wheels. Now we need a GPZ-styled H2 to compete with it. Gareth Hurt
Ref: Suzuki SV650 Mod Squad (PB November 2018). All reasonable enough bikes, but maybe the rider in the photo would be better handed a bucket and sponge first? That yellow SV caked in mud is a disgrace. Shaun Marks CN: Thankfully, that’s archive photography: it’s an historical act of motorcycle neglect.
Face only a mother could love
Johnny’s test of the new KTM Super Duke GT last month nearly convinced me to buy one. My back’s knackered and I’m going to have to part with my Fireblade soon. There’s only one problem – the looks of the thing. I quite like edgy modern designs, but the way it has the headlight from another bike just sort of tacked into the fairing, it looks like it’s had some cut-price plastic surgery in a thirdworld country. I can’t spend that much on a bike with a £50 nose job. Rob Ferrino
WSB: zero f***s given
I think I’ve figured out the problem with WSB. I was reading all the fallout from Gregorio Lavilla’s TV interview where he said Johnny Rea didn’t have personality. I didn’t see it, because I don’t watch WSB. But I used to – when Foggy got his fourth title, I was well in to it, and it was incredible. Now Rea has surpassed all of his records, but I’m still not excited. The problem is the rider personality, or rather the personality they’re prepared to share with us. Whether you liked Foggy, Corser, Kocinski, Edwards, etc, you knew they wanted to win, and bad. The passion was clear – being a role model, a professional and a sponsorpleaser didn’t come in to it. Why not ungag the riders, let them wear their heart on their sleeve? We’d probably stop blaming Johnny Rea for being too good, too predictable and ruining the series then. Alex Shannon
200mph on a steam rocket? Count us in...You’ll have no time to pay the boost dials any attention
New Katana: at least it’ll handle
Brakes. Yep, they’ll be coming in handy
Charging problems aren’t unique to MVs
‘Nose job’ KTM: would you buy it?
PB knows the business end of a sponge