Tom's Tech Treasures: Yamaha's New Exhaust And Swingarm, Aprilia's Holeshot Device

Thomas Morsellino is a French freelance journalist and photographer, with keen eye for the technical details of MotoGP bikes. You may have seen some of his work on Twitter, where he runs the @Off_Bikes account. Peter Bom is a world championship winning former crew chief, with a deep and abiding knowledge of every aspect of motorcycle racing. Peter has worked with such riders as Cal Crutchlow, Danny Kent, and Stefan Bradl. After every race, MotoMatters.com will be publishing a selection of Tom's photos of MotoGP bikes, together with extensive technical explanations of the details by Peter Bom. MotoMatters.com subscribers will get access to the full resolution photos, which they can download and study in detail, and all of Peter's technical explanations of the photos. Readers who do not support the site will be limited to the 800x600 resolution photos, and an explanation of two photos.


Rear wheel cover on the GP19 and carbon swingarm.
David Emmett: The full set of rear aerodynamics on the Ducati Desmosedici GP19, from the swingarm spoiler to the rear wheel covers. The rear wheel cover mounting points are clearly visible: at the rear of the chain tensioner, and at the front below the aluminum bracket with holes. The rear swingarm spoiler caused huge controversy at the start of the year, and now all manufacturers bar KTM have one.
Ducati used a loophole in the regulations to use the swingarm spoiler and wheel covers, but this loophole will be closed for 2020. For next season, all parts which are not part of the structural part of the motorcycle will be classified as part of the aero body, and so their designs will have to be homologated, with one update allowed during the season. So Ducati can start the season with one spoiler, and alter it once during the year.


Lighter front mudguard on the KTM RC16.
Peter Bom: Although it is a little bit difficult to see in this photo, the mudguard ends immediately after the double L of Bull. This leaves more of the front tire exposed, helping it to run a little cooler and prevent overheating. Some KTM riders have complained of this previously.


The electronics hub behind the fairing on Aron Canet's KTM Moto3 machine To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Andrea Dovizioso's GP19, second version of the aero fairing To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Michele Pirro's triple clamp with the holeshot device. To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Ducati GP19 carbon swingarm. To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Rotary steering damper and special head fork fixation (Zarco's RC16) To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


KTM RC16 carbon swingarm. To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Yamaha front wheel cover (Valentino Rossi)


Yamaha front wheel cover (Valentino Rossi)


Yamaha front wheel cover (Valentino Rossi) To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Yamaha carbon swingarm and dual exhaust (Valentino Rossi).


Yamaha carbon swingarm and dual exhaust (Valentino Rossi). To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Valentino Rossi's thumb operated rear brake. To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


Aprilia's holeshot device. To see the technical explanation for this photo, sign up to be a site supporter.


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Comments

Wonderful photos and explanations. Loads of fun for old engineers and riders. 

This sort of thing could help make those long winter months without racing more bareable. 

Thanks!

This is a result of Murphy's Law. Murphy was an engineer with NACA who was asked to investigate a rocket explosion and found that it occurred because the fuel line had been attached to the oxidiser tank and vice versa. The original formulation of Murphy's Law is, approximately, 'If components can be connected wrongly, eventually they will be'. Hence opposite threads on oxygen and acetylene bottles and KTM's connector designs. 

I've rechecked and it was actually strain gauges connected back to front during rocket sled tests to find out how much acceleration a human body could tolerate. The results indicated that the test pilot, who had suffered bleeding into his retinas and broken ribs during the tests, had experienced zero g forces. 

I'm not surprised to see keyed connections, it's the best way, even if it costs more.

We spilt 200 tonnes of molten steel because the open and close hydraulics were the wrong way round and when it started leaking, the operator kept pressing close. Millions of dollars damage and weeks to rebuild all of the steel encased and burnt equipment.