Eva Håkansson - with passion for electric drive

Eva Håkansson - with passion for electric drive

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Summary of BUB Speed Trials: “Success – but more to come!"

Blog - in EnglishPosted by Eva Håkansson 05 Sep, 2011 06:45:40

With a successful shake-down of the motorcycle chassis and the first land speed world record for electric sidecar streamliner motorcycles (138.586 mph (222.98 km/h), pending FIM ratification), the summary of the BUB Speed Trials last week is: “Success – but more to come”!

Picture: KillaJoule in a spectacular sunrise over the salt flats.
Many more photos on our Facebook page (
you don't have to be a Facebook member): http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.241600439209885.52277.134690893234174

Back home and summarizing the past week. The week had its ups and downs. The first half of the event was great (except some loooong waiting in the baking sun). KillaJoule was inspected by the legendary Tom Burkland (fastest piston-engine car with records over 418 mph) and passed the inspection with flying colors. Tom really praised us for the design and workmanship, and gave us invaluable advice for further improvement of for example belts, tires and brake parachutes. The other inspector Curtis Smith had seen the naked chassis in Flagstaff AZ in June when we were still building the new steering linkage and bodywork, and he was blown away that we managed to get it all together in just two months, and that it looked so good!

Picture: KillaJoule with rider and builder Eva.

The first days we performed the required speed increment runs for a new vehicle (you are not allowed to just go out there and try to go 200 mph, both the rider and the vehicle is required to increase the speed in increments). The first day we set a record of 110.707 mph (178.13 km/h) (average over the flying mile), and bumped it to 138.586 mph (222.98 km/h) the second day with a top speed of 151 mph (243 km/h).

The third day we were ready to open the throttle more, but we discovered that we were up against the limitations of the DC drive, which held us below ~150 mph. It would have been fun to be able to keep bumping up the MPH in the second half of the event, but we had found the weakest link (and it was weaker than we expected). Luckily, we have the fix: a gorgeous state-of-the-art EVO Electric AC motor (www.evo-electric.com) and two Rinehart Motion Systems controllers (www.rinehartmotion.com) , together capable of 500 HP.

Photo: A streamliner sidecar is indeed a weird looking creation. Photo: Anthony Olway/TTxGP

The original plan was to enter KillaJoule in the “World of Speed” September 14-17th, but since the limitations of the DC drivetrain was greater than we expected, we will install the new AC drivetrain and instead enter the “World Finals” October 5-8th (www.scta-bni.org).

Building a streamliner is a long and very labor-intensive process that takes several years, particularly if you build it in spare time out of your own pockets. (There are internal combustion land speed racing teams that have worked for 20 years and are only going slightly faster than we are). Tom Burkland took 23 years of work before he managed to take the overall piston-engine record.

A few people have expressed criticism that we didn't reach 200 mph this time out. These people just don't understand how difficult a streamliner motorcycle is to build. It is a completely different world than just converting a Suzuki GSXR or similar bike where the manufacturer already has invested 50 years of development to make it suitable for over 200 mph. In a scratch-built vehicle like a streamliner, we have to do this engineering and development ourselves. On the other hand, a streamliner will give the possibility to go much faster if we succeed. (An open/sit-on bike is speed-limited by the air resistance, it was only a few months ago that someone finally managed to exceed 300 mph on an open bike, but it was on pavement not salt where the low traction would prevent such a feat. We believe the record on the salt is somewhere around 250-270 mph for sit-on bikes, but don't please quote us as we can easily be mistaken.)

Of course, we always want to go faster, but 150 mph the first time out is a very good result. The tech inspectors and fellow racers were blown away how much we have accomplished with minimal budget in the 18 months that have passed since we cut the first frame tubes (and how good looking to bike was ;-). From this point of view, last week’s shake-down and sidecar debut can only be summarized as: “Success – but more to come!”

Picture: Really busy charging in "impound"; after a record attempt the return run has to be completed within two hours. Photo: Anthony Olway/TTxGP

Many thanks to our great crew:

Kent Singleton
Mike Stockert
Alicia Kelly
Anthony Olway (photographer for TTxGP)

Many thanks to our sponsors and supporters that made this possible:

University of Denver
NovaKinetics Aerosystems
Cummins Onan
Woody’s Wheel Works
Faster Motorsports
Riders Discount
Tyco Electronics
Sherwin Williams Paint
High-Tech Systems LLC
Manzanita Micro
Fire Safety Services, Aurora
Avon Aero
CF Design
NSK Bearings
Boulder EV
Grin Technologies
A-1 Mobile Mechanics Inc.
Greenstage NZ
Kelly Controls LLC
Mars Electric LLC
Cafe Electric
Gardner Carburettor
M&H Tires
Miyachi Unitek

And our latest sponsors:
EVO Electric
Rinehart Motion Systems

Special thanks to the following people that have supported KillaJoule in different ways:
Jim & Michelle Corning
Mike Stockert & Alicia Kelly
Joe Sellars
Bo Hall
Mattias Pilv
Chriss Horstman
Vic R. Nittolo
Jaan Verendel
Woody & Chris Witte
Andrew Roddy
Richard Jesch
George Smirnoff
Brent & Kent Singleton
John Bruszenski
Tracy Helmhold
Scotty & Susan Pollacheck
Sven & Lena Håkansson
Clay & Gary Gardiner
Philip Court
Norm Smith
Karl, Matt & George at Nova Kinetics
Ray & Mary – our wonderful neighbors
Rocky Robinson
Athol Williams
And everybody else I have forgotten....

Despite the help from all these wonderful people and companies, KillaJoule is still to a great extent paid by Bill’s governmental salary so there is lots of space for more names and logos on the side of KillaJoule. If you want to be a part of history – contact Eva at eva@killacycle.com or make a donation though PayPal here http://www.facebook.com/killacycle?sk=app_7146470109 or buy “Good Karma Points” in our webstore www.killagear.com. For all donations over $50 you will get your name on the side of KillaJoule.