Saturday, June 26, 2010

26th annual Michigan HPV Rally - June 12-13, 2010

In the Saturday morning one-hour time trial at the Michigan HPV Rally are, from left, Jeff Hunn on his titanium TiCuda, Bruce Gordon on his front-wheel-drive Zox and Mike Mowett on his Challenge Baron. (Dan Lonowski photo. All other photos by Mike Eliasohn.)

TODD REICHERT powered the University of Toronto's streamliner to the fastest speed ever in the 200-foot flying start sprints, 47.02 mph. A graduate engineering student, he was one of six members of the university's HPV team to make top-speed runs in the streamliner.

To see the charts showing complete results, go to

By MIKE ELIASOHN, MHPVA vice president

The 26th annual Michigan Human Powered Vehicle Rally, June 12-13 at the Waterford Hills sports car racing track drew at least 40 competitors and several records were set.
Two university teams – a first for the rally – had several riders riding their vehicles over the two days and some riders who long since graduated from high school or college rode more than one vehicle over the two days.
The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology HPV team came from Terre Haute, Ind., with three vehicles and seven people (three undergraduates, two graduate students, one alumni and one professor). One vehicle wasn't raced due to mechanical problems.
This was the fifth year Rose-Hulman has competed in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers HPV competition.
In contrast, this was the first year for the University of Toronto's team, which came to Waterford Hills with nine graduate and undergratuate students and two vehicles. Garrie Hill loaned the team a tricycle so more students would have the opportunity to race.
Dennis Grelk of Donnellson, Iowa, may have set a record by competing in/on four vehicles -- in one event, the hill climb/coast down. MHPVA President Mike Mowett of St. Clair Shores completed in/on three vehicles, including for the first time, the Norus streamliner that he bought three years ago.
A total of $200 in prize money was distributed to the top finishers in each class. First and second in each class were:
Streamliners (14 entries on Saturday, 12 on Sunday) - 1) John Simon, Moby streamliner, Portland, 120; 2) Dennis Grelk, Barracuda streamliner, 110.
Superstreet (five on Saturday, two on Sunday) - 1) Bill Hannon, Springfield, Ohio, Lightning F40, 120; 2) Tedd Wheeler, Reed City, Alleweder velomobile, 100.
Superstock (one both days) - 1) Bruce Gordon, Zox FWD low racer, Centralia, Ill.
Stock (16 entries on Saturday, 13 on Sunday) - 1) Sean Costin, NoCom low racer, Arlington Heights, Ill., 120; 2) Dennis Grelk, homebuilt lowracer, 110.
Junior (one entry both days) - 1) Jonathan Costin (son of Sean), upright bike, 120.
Women (three entries both days) - 1) Dora Cortez, Chicago, Chicago, Ill., low racer built by Rick Gritters, 120; 2) Ariel Young, Rose-Hulman team member, Dennis Grelk-built low racer, 110.
Tricycles (seven entries both days) - 1) Dennis Grelk, homebuilt low racer, 120; 2) Jeff Hunn, North Manchester, Ind., Catrike Expedition, 110. Dennis races the same homebuilt front-wheel-drive low racer in the stock and tricycle classes, swapping the single rear wheel for the tilting two-wheel setup he built for trike races.

MHPVA PRESIDENT Mike Mowett bought the used Norus streamliner in April 2007, then endured three years of ribbing from fellow HPVers for owning it, but not riding it. Finally, at this year's rally, he rode some practice laps on Saturday evening and then on Sunday morning, shown here, pedaled it to 41.45 mph in the 200-foot sprints. (Mike Eliasohn photo)

IN ADDITION to his Baron low racer and Norus streamliner, "Upright Mike" Mowett raced his carbon fiber Cervelo. He bought the frame off Craigslist for $700 from a fellow in New Orleans, mounted all the components the same week as the Michigan rally, then on the Tuesday before the rally raced it in a time trial at Waterford Hills. He's shown here during the one-hour time trial. In the hill climb, Mike finished first in the superstreet class and second overall with a time of 21.37 seconds.

Here's the top two in each event:
One-hour time trials: Streamliner - 1) Dennis Grelk, 31.7 miles (first place overall; 2) John Simon, 29.0 miles. Superstreet - 1) Bill Hannon, 26.3 miles; 2) Jim Iwaskow, Richmond Hill, Ontario, WAW velomobile, 20.7 miles. Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon, 19.9 miles. Stock - 1) Dennis Grelk, 26.7 miles; 2) Sean Costin, 25.8 miles. Junior - 1) Jonathan Costin, 11.5 miles. Women - 1) Ariel Young, 18.2 miles (class record); 2) Dora Cortez, 17.9 miles. Tricycles - 1) Amanda Chu, Univ. of Toronto, Catrike, 14.6 miles; 2) Marj Branch, Xenia, Ohio, Catrike, 10.3 miles.
Hill climb: Streamliner - 1) Todd Reichert, Univ. of Toronto, 22.7 sec., 2) Danny Sing, Univ. of Toronto, 24.1. Superstreet - 1) Mike Mowett, St. Clair Shores, Cervelo upright with body sock fairing, 21.4; 2) Bill Hannon, 25.6. Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon, 26.7. Stock - 1) Sean Costin, 20 sec. (first place overall); 2) Robert Palmer, Walled Lake, Volae high racer, 23.2. Junior - 1) Jonathan Costin, 44.3. Women - 1) Dora Cortez, 33.4; 2) Jane Hunn, North Manchester, Ind., Specialized Sequoia upright bike, 33.8. Tricycles - 1) Dennis Grelk, 24.6. 2) Jeff Hunn, 26.3. Dennis Grelk also had to make a run up the hill on his Surly Big Dummy cargo bike for the urban transportation contest, 27.1 sec.
Coast-down: Streamliners - 1) John Simon (first place overall); 2) Dennis Grelk. Superstreet - 1) Bill Hannon, 2) Jim Iwaskow. Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon. Stock - 1) Sean Costin, 2) Dennis Grelk. Junior - 1) Jonathan Costin. Women - 1) Dora Cortez, 2) Ariel Young. Tricycles - 1) Dennis Grelk, 2) M. Jensen Didulo, London, Ont., homebuilt tilting trike.
Standing start kilometer: Streamliners - 1) Todd Reichert, 1:11.7 (first place overall), 2) Dennis Grelk, 1:14.9. Superstreet - 1) Bill Hannon, 1:24.8, 2) Mike Mowett, 1:32.1. Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon, 1:44.7. Stock - 1) Sean Costin, 1:13 (class record), 2) Dennis Grelk, 1:19.9. Junior - 1) Jonathan Costin, 2:58.9. Women - 1) Dora Cortez, 1:45.03 (class record), 2) Ariel Young, 1:54.5. Tricycles - 1) Dennis Grelk, 1:24.97 (class record), 2) Jeff Hunn, 1:42.3.

SEAN COSTIN on his NoCom low racer won the stock class, which had the most entries (16). He also set the fastest time ever for the stock class (no streamlining added except for wheel covers) in the 200-foot sprints, 42.75 mph. Notice the lonnnnnnng chain.

Flying start 200-foot sprints: Streamliners - 1) Todd Reichert, 47.02 mph (class record; previous record held by Rick Gritters, 45.9 mph ); 2) Alex Rankin, Univ. of Toronto, 43.6 mph. Amanda Chu of the Univ. of Toronto rode its streamliner 41.57 mph to become the fastest-ever female rider at Waterford. Superstreet - 1) Bill Hanon, 37.1 mph, 2) Tedd Wheeler, Reed City, Alleweder velomobile, 34.9 mph. Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon, 32.4. Stock - 1) Sean Costin, 42.75 mph (class record), 2) Thom Ollinger, West Milton, Ohio, homebuilt low racer, 40.6 mph. Junior - 1) Jonathan Costin, 17.8 mph. Women - Dora Cortez, 40.95 mph (class record), 2) Ariel Young, 26 mph. Tricycles - 1) Dennis Grelk, 36.76 mph (class record), 2) Jeff Hunn, 30.8 mph.
Road race (twenty 1 km laps): 1) Streamliner - 1) Dennis Grelk, 27.8 mph average, 2) John Simon, 27.5 mph. Superstreet - 1) Bill Hannon, 24.8 mph (18 laps completed). Superstock - 1) Bruce Gordon, 20.6 mph (13 laps completed).
Road race (fifteen 1 km laps): Stock - 1) Sean Costin, 25.7 mph, 2) Dennis Grelk, 24.9 mph. Women - 1) Dora Cortez, 20.2 mph (12 laps completed), 2) Ariel Young, 17.8 mph (11 laps completed).
Tricycle road race (ten 1/3rd mile laps): 1) Dennis Grelk, 27.6 mph, 2) Jeff Hunn, 26.4 mph.
Thanks to Luke Gilbert, Bill Frey and Garrie Hill for doing timing; Terry Gerweck and Ann Roeske for score keeping; Terry for doing vehicle inspections; Mike Mowett for compiling the results; Paul Pancella for running the urban transportation contest; and John Simon, Chris and Dora Cortez, Jeff and Jane Hunn, Tedd Wheeler, Brian Stevens, Dennis Grelk, Bruce Gordon, Jim Iwaskow, Wally Kiehler and many others for assisting in running the events.

ON SUNDAY MORNING, before the racing started, members of the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology and University of Toronto human powered vehicle teams were talking HPV technology, of course. This is the Rose-Hulman streamliner that's being dissected.

HERE'S THE Rose-Hulman streamliner. I (Mike E.) think the photo was taken during the one-hour time trial, which would mean the rider is Daniel Sing. He was one of four team members to race the streamliner during various events.

VICTOR RAGUSILA, University of Toronto HPV team leader, on the team's front-wheel-drive low racer.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Terry Gerweck's new recumbent

TERRY GERWECK intended his new recumbent as an around-town errand runner. He's shown here at the Michigan HPV Rally. He is a co-founder of the MHPVA.

Terry Gerweck of Monroe built his first recumbent about 30 years ago and several since then, but hadn't built anything in recent years, but has now made up for the deficit. He had his latest recumbent in unfinished form at the MHPVA winter meeting in February. Except for a few refinements, it's now done. He had it at the Michigan HPV Rally June 12-13, where these photos were taken.
Here's Terry's description:
The bike was designed (I dislike that term) as a 'round town errand runner with a reasonably upright seating position and as short a wheelbase as possible on a long wheelbase recumbent with a 20-inch front and 26-inch rear wheel.

I wanted to get away from tiller steering to simplify mounting of a small fairing eventually. Besides, I like the way remote steering feels.
The bike should accommodate inseams from 28 to 32 inches. Seat height is 23 inches and wheelbase is 64 inches.
It is truly a recycled bike, with frame parts from five or six bikes, home furniture, and commercial store fixtures. Seat parts include used seat parts and assorted wheelchair parts. (Editor: The seat bottom is from a used Sun EZ-1 recumbent. Terry made the seat back.) Drive and other components are from the assorted collection of accumulated parts in my garage.
The crankset, a Campagnolo Record triple, is worth more than the rest of bike. Pedals also are Campagnolo.
Paintings was done using rattle/spray cans. The color scheme just happened. The stem I used was already green, so I picked out a can of matching gloss engine enamel from AutoZone for the accents. The rest of the frame was covered with satin black Rustoleum. Satin covers a whole host of "less than perfect" preparations and still has a serviceable finish that a flat paint lacks.

TERRY PREFERS this remote steering, using universal joints, over a conventional handlebars/stem arrangement, which can result in a "tiller" effect.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dan Lonowski's Quadster HPV

DAN AND BRENDA LONOWSKI on their Quadster top the hill during the hill climb-coast down portion of the Urban Transportation Contest on June 12. (Mike Eliasohn photos)

Dan and Brenda Lonowski of Novi participated in the Urban Transportation Contest on their Quadster HPV, which Dan designed and built. Construction started in July 2009 and he finished in December. "I've had the idea for probably 10 years," he said.
There are two separate 21-speed (3x7) drivetrains, one for each rider. The rider on the left does the steering and braking. Both pedal independently at their own cadence.

Dan welded the frame from 1- by 1-1/2 inch 16 gauge mild steel tubing. With its long wheelbase, the frame flexes slightly to provide passive suspension. Front wheels are 20x1-3/4; rears are 700c. There's an Avid disk brake for each rear wheel.
Dan also made the rear wheel hubs. Each short rear axle is supported by two pillow bearings.
He plans to replace the seats shown with mesh seats. Position of each seat is adjustable to accomodate various sized riders.
Some dimensions: Weight, 73 lbs. (33.2kg) ; wheelbase, 68 in. (1725mm); width, 47.2 in. (1200mm); length, 92 in. (2330mm).
Dan and Brenda have undertaken 10- to 20-mile rides on the Quadster, including some on unpaved trails.
Dan says the Quadster is another aspect of human-powered vehicles -- for utility and recreation, rather than speed. He said some day there might be a market for such vehicles, starting with bicycle rentals in tourism areas and pedestrian communities.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Urban transportation contest - June 12, 2010

Former MHPVA President WALLY KIEHLER, shown here during one of the Sunday morning road races, won the urban transportation contest Saturday on his carbon fiber Lightning R-84. (Mike Eliasohn photo)

By Paul Pancella, UTC organizer

This year, six vehicles were entered in the urban transportation contest at the Michigan Human Powered Vehicle Rally. Despite this small sample, there was great variety among the vehicles and competitors, including veterans and first-time participants. All seemed to have fun with the event, taking on the various tasks with the proper attitude.
Contestants, vehicle numbers, their vehicles, and their final scores were:

1) Wally Kiehler (345), Grosse Pointe Woods, Lightning R-84 carbon fiber short wheelbase recumbent, 69.4 points.
2) Dennis Grelk (820), Donnellson, Iowa, Surly Big Dummy upright cargo bike, 68.9.
3) Daniel Sing (12), Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Terre Haute, Ind., partially faired leaning recumbent trike, 51.4.
4) Dan and Brenda Lonowski (816), Novi, homebuilt Quadster HPV side-by-side quadricycle, 49.2.
5) Jim Iwaskow (110), Richmond Hill, Ontario, WAW velomobile, 47.6.
6) Miguel Jensen Didulo (967), London, Ontario, homebuilt recumbent leaning trike, 40.7.

It was a close finish between Dennis and Wally, both veterans of past UTC events. Wally won with a score close to what he earned in previous years riding a different Lightning bike, while the powerful Grelk improved considerably over his score in 2008, using a similar upright bike.
Wally's carbon fiber R-84 scored much better on weight (27 lbs vs. the Surly's 57) and aerodynamics, of course, while vision, visibility, and a small passenger bonus allowed the cargo bike to make up most of the difference. These two competitors also had the best times in the simulated grocery run, which helped separate them from the rest of the field. The top two finishers each received a modest cash prize.
Grocery abuse was unfortunately widespread this year, which caused three of the four other competitors to fall off the lead. Multiple items were actually ejected from one vehicle during its exit from the slalom part of the course.
It was very unusual to have two leaning tricycles in the contest. These vehicles demonstrated the two shortest braking distances, but in each case their relatively low rider position decreased their scores. A high ratio of vehicle to operator weight and rather large turn radius hurt the Rose-Hulman entry, while Jensen's trike was not well adapted for carrying groceries. The long time required to repack the grocery items (only a single bag’s worth) caused his entry to post the lowest score in the grocery run.
The Lonowski side-by-side quadricycle was competitive, despite its large size and weight. It performed very poorly on the coast down test, which might have been due to a correctible mechanical problem. Its braking was excellent, stopping only a foot and a half farther than the best vehicle this year, at the end of a pretty fast grocery run.
The velomobile entered by Jim Iwaskow could have ranked higher if it had lights, but its turning radius was huge. While it may be a nice feature, I do not award points specifically for the fact that a cigarette stays lit within the WAW fairing while underway, and the small bonus for carrying a pencil was not enough to overtake fourth place.
I want to thank all of the contestants for their enthusiastic participation, the MHPVA for its support, and especially Rick Wianecki for helping to run the grocery errand part of the event. Even with a late start we were able to run all six contestants and finish before the start of the kilometer runs.

DANIEL SING rode the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology entry to third place. The rear axle assembly, which enables the machine to lean when cornering, can easily be replaced with a single rear wheel. Cargo capability was built in behind the seat. (Paul Pancella photo)