The Roarer

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My friend Dan Smith is at it again. He likes to build things that there are none of or perhaps one of in the world. There is one Roarer, Velo built it and Ivan Rhodes now has it. Dan will have his own Roarer soon.
Just the supercharger to go and then the motor is complete.
The entire motor and gearbox was created by Dan from raw materials, either from solid blocks of alloy or from castings made by him.

 
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Once the motor and trans are done he'll build a Roarer Replica frame. That'll be the easy part. I've offered to build the tank as payback for some parts Dan gave me.
Brent is right, it is quite amazing just how advanced this thing was in 1939.

Glen
 
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It would be a real pain building something like that. If it is wrong in any single detail, the project is compromised. Your friend obviously has easy access to the real deal, however even so it would not be easy.
 
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The Roarer was none too successful, why would you want to slavishly copy every exact detail ?
What is there is stunning beautiful work, it must be said.

Don't know about those rear exhaust ports though, he surely is going to find that cooling is somewhat compromised (unless it can run alcohol ?).
Manxs with reversed exhaust were prone to dropping valves or valve seats in long races... ??
 
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Rohan said:
The Roarer was none too successful, why would you want to slavishly copy every exact detail ?
That's a bit stiff Rohan, seeing as the original only had the shortest amount of running before WW2 got in the way.

You are right that it's beautiful work. Very handsome prototype too!!

cheers
wakeup
 

Chris

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Ha

Fantastic piece of engineering. If you ever see the bike run with Ian or his son on it, (they can both ride) you can believe how good it would have been in the day.
Lots of fascinating bikes disappeared after the ban on charging came in.
I believe there is a clip of it on U tube.

Chris
 
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Have you seen the Type 35 C Bugatti replicas which are made in Brazil ? If you are not going to build a replica nut and bolt perfect, don't start. I think the Paul Smart Replica Ducati is a disappointment, also the ELR 1000 Kawasaki. If I want a replica, it has to be a replica and not some jumped up modern machine . Have a look at the MV Evoluzione 500-3 . I think a new replica costs $300,000 and it is perfect in detail.

http://www.motorcycleclassics.com/class ... z2hWztlUWU
 
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If you want a 'perfect' replica, then buy the real thing.
Its still not a real one if its only a replica.
Its the history that is worth all the $$$. ?

If folks didn't think they could build a better mousetrap, then we'd all still be riding penny farthings.

And if the Roarer had been any good, they would have raced it, and it would have had wins to its record.... ?!?
 
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Very few people are capable of building something like this, but for Dan it is pure entertainment. He also built a replica of the 1939 AJS OHC V4, simply because it is an interesting bike, none are left in existance, and he could do it. I have ridden that bike and it is an exceptionally smooth runner.
If I had the necessary skills to do something like this, I would be all over it.

Glen
 
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Glen,

Your friend creates stunning results. Please reveal how he gets sizes right. I trust he hasn't obtained the works drawings?
Does he use a CAD system?

-Knut
 
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Rohan said:
And if the Roarer had been any good, they would have raced it, and it would have had wins to its record.... ?!?
Apparently the only race meeting for the Roarer was the 1939 TT, where it was taken to give it a shake down run in practice, although not described as such. The designer Harold Willis had contracted meningitis in early 1939 and was not present in the IoM, in fact he died during TT fortnight. The Roarer was run in practice but it seems that it was too new to be run in the race, also Willis' death not surprisingly cast a pall over the team. Apparently by the time that development was stopped, the motor was more than competitive powerwise, and the handling was described by the great Stanley Woods as "the best "

TT fortnight then as now, is in June, the war in Europe started in September 1939, just a matter of a few weeks after the TT. The Velocette racing department ran on the thinnest of shoestrings, and Harold Willis was its kingpin. Velocettes plan was to run it in the Grand Prix in 1940. Sadly that was not possible, then after the war the FIA banned the use of superchargers.

So there.
cheers
wakeup
 
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Rohan said:
If you want a 'perfect' replica, then buy the real thing.
Its still not a real one if its only a replica.
Its the history that is worth all the $$$. ?

If folks didn't think they could build a better mousetrap, then we'd all still be riding penny farthings.

And if the Roarer had been any good, they would have raced it, and it would have had wins to its record.... ?!?
Maybe Dan Smith just enjoys making things. At the end of the day it's his money, time, and considerable talent that he's using. At the end of the project hopefully he will have a beautiful, running motorcycle that is a copy of one of the rarest motorcycles ever made, you certainly couldn't get any rarer. Personally I think the man is a legend for embarking on such a project, and his efforts should be applauded. Maybe he wants to sit it in his lounge and look at it, rather than sell it. It's his choice after all
cheers
wakeup
 
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worntorn said:
Very few people are capable of building something like this, but for Dan it is pure entertainment. He also built a replica of the 1939 AJS OHC V4,
Glen
Don't get me wrong, I am certainly not knocking his skills or keen-ness for building these things, they are truly outstanding.

But, the "1939" aircooled AJS V4 that he built a 'copy' of didn't actually exist in the first place ?!
AND, the building method built it as 4 little AJS 7R's, which is not quite a copy of how that V4 was envisioned to be made either.
(An AJS V4, watercooled, was built, and raced, quite successfully by AJS back in the 1930s.
It set the first ever 100+ mph of a GP race circuit, in the Ulster TT, ridden by the blonde bombshell Walter Rusk.
The story goes that when he found out the supercharger could provide more urge if the chain gearing was altered,
he wanted 'more puff' - that gave him the 100+ mph lap.)

AJS had found out, quite rapidly, that their supercharged engines needed water cooling for the power to not fade away - and it is very likely that Velo's would have found out the Roarer needed similar, those rearward facing exhaust ports were a sure recipe for overheating problems. And in fact were why it was not raced... ??
 
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Rohan said:
- and it is very likely that Velo's would have found out the Roarer needed similar, those rearward facing exhaust ports were a sure recipe for overheating problems. And in fact were why it was not raced... ??
Its possible but it's not a fact.

One of the photos I have shows the Roarer with some ducting to direct the air over the cylinder head, so it's likely that they were onto the overheating possibility

What is more likely is that the Velocette team simply ran out of time between the TT and wherever/whenever the next Grand Prix was to be run. You have to bear in mind the low morale at the factory, after Willis' death. Bearing in mind also, that there was (I am told) a lot of concern in England generally, that Europe would soon be at war, which really did turn out to be a fact. When war started Velocette were pretty soon involved in wartime production and racing was pushed into the background.

Personally I wouldn't say that any of the above was fact, just a likelihood. Apart from the bit about "concern that Europe would soon be at war", that really is a fact.

Oh, by the way, according to the book "AJS - The history of a great motorcycle", AJS built a 50degree air cooled V4 designed by Bert Collier, it was exhibited at the 1935 Motorcycle Show at Olympia (that's in London) as a road bike. The racing potential was fairly obvious and two entries were made in the 1936 TT, to be ridden by Harold Daniel and George Rowley. They were not very successful. They were quietly pushed into a dark corner in the factory. A supercharger was added, with the motors still being aircooled. It took until Matt Wright got involved for the 1939 season for the air cooling to be replaced with watercooling. On the bench they claimed 55 b.h.p., but the bike handled like a sack of diarrhoea. It did indeed do a 100mph lap at the Ulster, but Rusk had his hands full keeping it between the hedgerows as it handled so badly. True heroes in those days.

Hope that clears up some of your uncertainty

cheers
wakeup
 
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Rohan said:
worntorn said:
Very few people are capable of building something like this, but for Dan it is pure entertainment. He also built a replica of the 1939 AJS OHC V4,
Glen
Don't get me wrong, I am certainly not knocking his skills or keen-ness for building these things, they are truly outstanding.

But, the "1939" aircooled AJS V4 that he built a 'copy' of didn't actually exist in the first place ?!
It did exist, although I was incorrect on the model year, the aircooled model was first shown in 1935.
This article explains:

http://www.motorcycleclassics.com/class ... z2hcA8fKOS

Glen
 
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That is a very nice photo, it gives a glimpse of what could have been but for a few psychotic idiots who wanted to control mankind.
 
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worntorn said:
It did exist, although I was incorrect on the model year, the aircooled model was first shown in 1935.
It was announced, sure - but none were built for road use.
And your linked article does mention 'unique'.
That adds up to it being a copy of something that didn't exist.??

Lovely work though.

The aircooled race version, that WAS built, was hopeless - overheating and blowing head gaskets as soon as it was worked hard.
It then became watercoooled - and became one of the icons of the motorcycle racing world, for all time...
http://westgatewanderers.org.au/wandere ... 4-1939.jpg

In watercooled format, the rearward facing exhausts make sense...
 
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