Buell Motorcycle Company
The Buell Motorcycle Company was an American motorcycle manufacturer based in East Troy and was founded in 1983 by ex-Harley-Davidson engineer Erik Buell. Harley-Davidson acquired 49% of Buell in 1993, Buell became a wholly owned subsidiary of Harley-Davidson by 2003. On November 17, 2006, Buell announced that it had shipped its 100,000 th motorcycle. On October 15, 2009, Harley-Davidson announced the discontinuation of the Buell product line as part of its strategy to focus on the Harley-Davidson brand; the last Buell motorcycle was produced on October 30, 2009, bringing the number manufactured to 136,923. In November 2009, Erik Buell announced the launch of Erik Buell Racing, an independent company run by Erik Buell which produced race-only versions of the 1125R model subsequently offered an updated 1190RS model for the street or the track, is producing a further improved 1190RX model, intended for street or track use; the first Buell motorcycle, the RW750, was built in 1983 purely for competition in the AMA Formula 1 motorcycle road racing championship.
At that time, Erik Buell was a top contending privateer motorcycle racer. After completion of the first two RW750 racing machines, one of, sold to another racing team, the Formula 1 series was canceled. Erik Buell turned his focus towards racing-inspired, street-going machines using engines manufactured by Harley. In 1987 Rockville Harley-Davidson in Rockville, MD became the world's first Buell dealership and the owner, Devin Battley has Buell #1, an RR1000 in his personal collection. In 1993, Harley-Davidson purchased 49% of Buell, investing $500,000 and taking Erik Buell's house as security. Erik Buell took the deal, against strong advice from his attorney. Harley-Davidson CEO Jeffrey Bleustein had bought it as a skunkworks development. In 1994, Buell created the Buell Riders Adventure Group. Buell discontinued BRAG in 2006, stating the changes would improve, "the privileges and ownership experience for all Buell owners more than before."In 1998, Harley-Davidson bought a majority stake and took control of Buell Motorcycle Company, the company became a subsidiary.
Since Buell has used modified Harley-Davidson engines from the Sportster, to power its motorcycles. Most Buell motorcycles use four-stroke air-cooled V-twin engines built for XR1000 Sportster. After these were depleted, a basic 1200 Sportster engine was used. In 1995, the engines were upgraded with Buell engineered high-performance parts and further upgraded in 1998; the liquid-cooled Harley V-Rod motor, developed by Harley-Davidson made street legal according to the EPA by Porsche, was an Erik Buell project, designed for a faired AMA Superbike Buell by 1998. Harley decided the engine should be used in a sport-cruiser took over development, making it "too big, too heavy, too expensive and too late" for Buell. Harley-Davidson forced Buell to follow the rigid product planning and distribution process beginning in the 1990s, with the philosophy that Buell was the starter brand, customers would trade up to a Harley. By 2008, Harley's credit arm, Harley-Davidson Financial Services, was struggling, the lower resale value of Buell motorcycles meant that new bike sales were affected.
When Harley CEO Keith Wandell was hired, he questioned why Harley owned Buell. Wandell, who had never been on a Harley before being hired, was heard talking about "Erik's racing hobby", questioned "why anyone would want to ride a sportbike", he organized a team to analyze "the adrenaline market", concluded that sportbikes would encounter high competition and low profits, while cruisers had high returns. On Thursday, October 15, 2009, Harley-Davidson Inc. announced the end of production of Buell Motorcycles in order to focus more on the Harley-Davidson brand. Selling Buell was not legitimately considered, as Harley didn't want their Harley dealerships to sell an outside brand, Harley didn't feel Buell had much value without the dealer network. In a news release on the Buell website the same day, company officials thanked customers and dealers for "an unforgettable ride". Closing the Buell brand was estimated to cost Harley the same as their total investment in Buell over the past 25 years. Erik Buell began looking for outside buyers, finding BRP a good choice since Harley would have to pay Rotax "an eight-figure sum" for the 1,125 cc engine contract.
Erik Buell founded Erik Buell Racing to provide support for 1125 and XB privateer race efforts. Buell XB models incorporated the industry's first Zero Torsional Load perimeter floating front disc brake system, a patented "inside-out" wheel/brake design that puts the brake disc on the outer edge of the wheel, rather than at the hub; this lets the suspension function better, improving control and traction, through reducing unsprung weight on the front wheel, because only a single disc and caliper—with a corresponding reduction in bolts and brake fluid—is needed compared with the conventional dual-disc brake setup on most modern sport bikes. In an exchange in the pages of Motorcyclist magazine between Suzuki engineer James Parker, creator of the GSX-RADD hub-center steering system, Buell's Director of Analysis, Test & Engineering Process, Abraham Askenazi, Parker conceded the ZTL system's advantage in unsprung weight, but he pointed out the remaining weight is located further out on the rim where it is most detrimental to acceleration and braking, that there were potential heat transfer i
Ace Motor Corporation
Ace Motor Corporation was a motorcycle manufacturer in continuous operation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1919 and 1924, intermittently afterward until 1927. Only one model of the large luxury four-cylinder motorcycle, with slight variations, was made from first to last. Having sold Henderson Motorcycle to Ignaz Schwinn's Excelsior Motor Manufacturing & Supply Company, founder William G. Henderson continued to work there until 1919, when differences of opinion regarding the design direction of Henderson motorcycles led to his resignation from Excelsior. In the fall of 1919, with the support of Max M. Sladkin of Haverford Cycle Co. Henderson started the Ace Motor Corporation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; the Ace motorcycle resembled the Henderson in general form, being a longitudinal four-cylinder motorcycle with chain drive, but Henderson had to be careful not to infringe any trademarks or patents that would have been owned by Excelsior at the time. Production began in 1920. On December 11, 1922, shortly after 11 a.m.
William Henderson was hit by a motor vehicle while testing the new Ace Sporting Solo in Philadelphia. He died at the age of 39 in Frankford Hospital without regaining consciousness. Arthur O. Lemon, former Henderson salesman and head of Excelsior and Henderson engineering at Excelsior Motor Manufacturing & Supply, left Excelsior in 1923 to replace Henderson as Chief Engineer at Ace. In 1923, Red Wolverton rode a specially prepared Ace XP-4 at a record speed of 129 mph; the management of Ace Motor Corporation offered the Ace Speed Trophy and a cash prize to anyone who could break the XP-4's record. Neither the trophy nor the prize was claimed. Ace Motor Corporation ceased operation in 1924. In the next two years, ownership of Ace's name and production facilities would change hands at least twice. At least one of these owners, Michigan Motors Corporation, would revive production for a short time; the property of Ace Motor changed hands for the last time in 1927, when it was purchased by the Indian Motocycle Company.
Production was moved to Springfield and the motorcycle was marketed as the Indian Ace for one year. Once the designs began to be modified within Indian, the Ace name was discontinued. Production of four-cylinder Indian motorcycles would continue until 1942. List of motorcycles of the 1920s Wilson, Hugo; the Encyclopedia of the Motorcycle. Dorling-Kindersley. ISBN 0-7513-0206-6. Wilson, Hugo; the Ultimate Motorcycle Book. Dorling-Kindersley. ISBN 0-7513-0043-8
American IronHorse was an American motorcycle manufacturer, founded in 1995 by Tim Edmundson and Bill Rucker. At one time, AIH was the largest factory producer of custom motorcycles in the USA, their 224,000-square-foot factory was located in Fort Worth and housed the complete manufacturing process under a single roof. Although most parts for the bikes were made in-house, such as the seats and wheels, all American IronHorse motorcycles were built with S&S engines and were assembled in-house. In Spring 2008, American Ironhorse ceased production on all motorcycles and most company assets were liquidated at auction. According to company management, In 2004, William Rucker sold his majority interest in the company after failing to convince the board of directors' from proceeding with a public offering of stock and retain the company's private ownership structure. AIH over the next 4 years hired 5 different CEOs in hope of replicating Rucker's success during his tenure. Tim Edmondson the second largest shareholder and director of design sold his ownership in the company the following year subsequent to Rucker's ownership sale.
Customer complaints aimed at quality and design of production motorcycles and challenges with employees, the final CEO Buck Hendricson, who ran the company during its second bankruptcy continued to address major problems after the final purchase by Textron Inc in bankruptcy court. Textron liquidated the company in 2008 according to inside sources due to a lack of operating capital, low demand for its motorcycles, lack of a solid business plan to correct falling custom motorcycle demand in 2008. Several of the company directors continued operating failing dealerships in the custom motorcycle market in Tarrant County Texas. Roadster
Boss Hoss Cycles
Boss Hoss Cycles is an American motorcycle manufacturer, founded by Monte Warne in 1990 and based in Dyersburg, Tennessee. The company manufactures special high-performance motorcycles and trikes equipped with V8 engines, produced by Chevrolet, ranging in size from 350 cubic inches to 502 cubic inches, equipped with semi-automatic transmissions, making them by far the most powerful motorcycles in the world. By the mid-1990s, Boss Hoss was selling 300 vehicles per year; as of 2006, Boss Hoss has sold over 4,000 vehicles. Boss Hoss bikes and trikes are noted not only for their enormous power and size but for their low vibration when compared to that of V-twin or single-cylinder motorcycles; the damping effect of the unusually great mass and high number of engine cylinders combines with the tall gears of the semi-automatic transmission to provide what is described as "vibration-free acceleration". This has led some dealers and riders to affectionately describe the Boss Hoss as a "big scooter". Despite their size and weight, Boss Hoss motorcycles offer outstanding ride comfort and driving dynamics.
For example, the build quality as well as the driving dynamics were cited as follows: "The build quality is comparable to some other major manufacturers' products, the bike functions far better than we expected, reasonably well by any criteria. The motorcycle is not only fun to ride, it's easy to ride; the automatic transmission may make it easier to ride for some people than other big bikes. Many people think that the torque thrust of the engine would make it difficult to handle, but if you crack the throttle it is gone. Boss Hoss motorcycles are exculsive and hand built customizable and bespoke, they are of a high build quality. After extensive review and testing a journal described it as follows: " The components would put some big manufacturers to shame. Everywhere you look you see neat pieces: billet components are plentiful; the only items recognizable as standard motorcycle parts are the chromed Harley-pattern handlebar switches, at least the left one has been modified for this application.
Many pieces have Boss Hoss logos, eliminating any idea that the motorcycle is built from off-the-shelf components." Boss Hoss offers trikes equipped with either a small block or big block V8 engine. Both are equipped with a semi-automatic transmission with reverse, they offer a number of accessories for their bikes and trikes. Despite a car-sized 8.5-US-gallon fuel tank, the bikes only get motorcycle-like distance on a single tank, due to 25 mpg‑US maximum fuel economy for the small block and 18 mpg‑US maximum fuel economy for the big block. The trikes have an additional 3.5 US gallons of reserve. From the creation in 1990, the Boss Hoss bikes were all "kit" bikes meaning a frame and other equipment were shipped to the consumer from Boss Hoss; the consumer was responsible for adding their own engine and additional touches that allowed them to customize the bike. In 1996 Boss Hoss started to manufacture the bikes from their own factory and headquarters located in Dyersburg, TN. From that point no more "kit" bikes were sold.
The "kit bikes" were titled as BHC-2 bikes. The titling difference made a large difference with insurance companies due to liability concerns. In 1996, the Chevrolet ZZ4, a 350 cu in crate motor, was the standard issue engine in the bikes; the standard block is made of cast iron while the heads are aluminum. A factory option for the bike includes a GM "hot cam" which replaces the camshaft, rocker arms, springs in the heads. In 2000, Boss Hoss added the "Stud Hoss" to their line-up, a 502 cu in Chevrolet big block; the "Stud Hoss" 502 was removed from the Boss Hoss line-up in 2008. In 1997 and 1998 models years, Boss Hoss offered a 4.0 L Chevrolet V6 engine in the bikes. They narrowed and shortened the frame for the conversion but sold few bikes due to the popularity of the larger power engines; the engines have always been mounted longitudinally, with the crank pointed to the back of the bike. The first Boss Hosses offered included a one-speed manual transmission with a standard motorcycle hand clutch assisted by a Datsun B210 brake vacuum booster.
The bikes used a standard ten-spline 12-inch disc clutch plate hooked to a Curtis spiral bevel gear box with a Chevrolet input shaft and a 1 3⁄8-inch output shaft that had an attached sprocket. The first bikes were chain changed to 1.5-inch-wide Dayton belts in the early 1990s. The ratio of the gear box used was 1.53:1. In 1999, a one-speed semi-automatic transmission was available for the motorcycles that utilized a torque converter and a pump with a set of clutch plates and steels added to the previous design gearbox, which worked well. In 2001, a two-speed semi-automatic transmission with overdrive became standard with a heel-toe shifter and a reverse gear. Boss Hoss trikes have always offered a three-speed semi-automatic transmission with a real reverse gear. Early Boss Hoss releases were considered unfinished; the bikes were difficult
Brammo, Inc. is an American producer of electric traction motors and traction batteries based in Ashland, United States. Brammo marketed its motorcycles via the company's website, they were available for sale and service at some motorcycle dealers throughout the United States and Asia. On January 15, 2015, Polaris Industries announced that it had purchased the entire electric motorcycle business from Brammo. Production of an electric motorcycle, the rebadged Victory Empulse, commenced at Polaris' factory in Spirit Lake, IA during the second half of 2015, it was announced on October 16, 2017 that Brammo's remaining assets would be acquired by Cummins, with the deal expected to close by the end of the year. Brammo Motorsports began in Craig Bramscher's garage after he visited several Ferrari and Lamborghini dealerships in Hollywood and Los Angeles, looking for a supercar that he could comfortably sit in. Bramscher, a football player at his high school, Shawnee Mission South, is 6 ft 3 in tall but has described himself as "long-waisted, so I sit like I'm 6 ft 6 in tall."
Bramscher set out to design and build a car comparable to the McLaren Formula 1 car, but which would comfortably accommodate a 6 ft 8 in tall person weighing 300 lb. On September 4, 2002, he registered the name "Brammo Motorsports" with the state of Oregon. Brammo began importing the Ultima Can Am in an attempt to understand at a basic level the components and processes needed to manufacture a complete vehicle; the company continued to import the cars from Ultima in component form, assemble them, sell them to customers. Customers were offered "build journals," which enabled them to watch their vehicle being built in near real-time online; the Enertia GT was a car planned for production, intended to be powered by a aspirated Falconer V12 engine. However, it has since been announced that the project has shifted to making the GT a battery electric vehicle to compete with the Tesla Roadster. Brammo applied for a trademark of "Pro GT" in April 2004. Brammo finalized the design for the Brammo Motorsports Pro GT and hired Brian Wismann as the lead designer prior to building the prototype.
The Pro GT prototype had a 600 cu in V12 engine producing 800 hp. Brammo commissioned a six-speed transverse synchro-mesh gearbox with Xtrac, Inc. of Berkshire, England. They built a custom Falconer V12 engine. Brammo changed the name of the Pro GT to the Rogue GT, they imported some Gardner Douglas T70s, but demand for the vehicle was not sufficient. In 2006, Brammo executed an assignment of its interest in the trademark "Rogue" to Nissan Motors, which introduced the Nissan Rogue, a compact crossover SUV in October 2007. In early 2005, Brammo purchased a license to produce the Ariel Atom, an exo-skeletal vehicle designed by Nik Smart while he was a transport design student at Coventry University. Brammo's license allowed the company to produce the vehicle for the North American market only. After it secured the license from Ariel CEO Simon Saunders, Brammo reverse-engineered the vehicle, making several improvements along the way, began production; the company could not secure the Honda engines which were installed in the UK versions of the car, so it approached GM and was able to obtain the supercharged GM Ecotec engine, although a limited run of ten of the Atoms came equipped with Honda K20A engines.
The company sold just over 130 of the cars during a 20 month period. Jay Leno wrote an extensive review of it for Popular Mechanics. Brammo's experience with building supercars, coupled with its research of electric drivetrains and then-current battery technology led to the belief that with the power-to-weight ratio and energy density of lithium batteries, an EV was possible, but that the vehicle's weight was a crucial concern; the decision was made to produce a lighter motorcycle. Brammo focused on building the Enertia powercycle prototype. After completing the prototype, the company met with investors and determined that Brammo Motorsports needed to become Brammo, Inc. and that it would thereafter focus on electric vehicles. The name "Brammo, Inc." was registered in August 2008. In September 2008, Brammo raised a $10 million round from Best Buy, Venture Capital, Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital, others. In February 2009, Brammo announced that the Enertia would be sold at Best Buy stores on the West Coast, with a gradual roll-out to the electronic retailer's stores nationwide.
Bramscher said, "what we're selling is a lot closer to consumer electronics than to transportation." He indicated that basic repairs and maintenance would be carried out by the Geek Squad crew while more intensive work would be performed at various service centers around the country. The Enertia began selling at select Best Buy locations in August 2009. In June 2009, Brammo entered two modified Enertia motorcycles in the Time Trial Xtreme Grand Prix, a motorcycle race billed as "the world's first zero-emissions superbike event." The race took place on June 2009, on the Isle of Man's 37.7-mile Snaefell Mountain Course. Brammo's #26 bike, a model it called the TTR, finished in third place during the final race. Scottish rider Mark Buckley finished with a time of 30 minutes, 2.64 seconds, an average speed of 75.35 mph, reached a top speed of 102 mph. In 2010, Brammo announced the Empulse Trio line of water-cooled electric motorcycles, with models 6.0, 8.0, 10.0 offering an average range of 60, 80 or 100 miles respectively.
Top speed is in excess of 100 miles per hour. Summer 2011 delivery was projected for orders placed in July 2010; the 2011 delivery date was extended into 2012 due to the decision to incorporate a gearbox into
Fischer Motor Company
Fischer Motor Company is a US-based sport motorcycle manufacturer. Their MRX 650 is a sport bike built around a 90-degree V-twin engine and a one-piece, twin spar, aluminum perimeter frame. Alan Cathcart of Motorcyclist magazine in his 2006 test review, called the MRX, "the most important new American motorcycle in generations."Company founder Daniel Fischer developed the company's first motorcycle for mass-production, the MRX 650 using suppliers including an EADS subsidiary for engineering, Harley-Davidson and Michael Jordan Motorsports contractor Gemini Technology Systems for frame development, various companies related to US-based heavy equipment and automotive suppliers for other components. The original platform is based upon a 1990s era Grand Prix chassis. In contrast to Buell Motorcycle Company, Fischer intended not to "reinvent the wheel" with any radical design concepts, but to "just take existing technology and fine-tune it," Fischer told Cycle World in 2003. Styling for the new motorcycle was done by British designer Glynn Kerr.
In earlier stages, there were plans to produce 1,000–1,500 cc Rotax-based 90° V-twins. Rotax subsequently voided an agreement with Fischer in order to supply engines to Harley's Buell, with the Rotax 1000cc v-twin, used in Aprilia products and Fischer's first prototype supplied in a revised version for Buell 1125-series products; as of April 2009, Fischer had begun shipping units, in October 2009 announced a production increase for the 2010 model year. Fischer appears to have ceased production in 2012. A "few dozen" bikes were produced during the Fischer's three years of operation. In 2015, an Indian motorcycle blog reported that Fischer had plans to make an entry into India with its new 150 cc bikes to be named Fischer MRX 150. Official website
Henderson was a manufacturer of 4-cylinder motorcycles from 1912 until 1931. They were the largest and fastest motorcycles of their time, appealed to sport riders and police departments. Police favored them for traffic patrol; the company began during the golden age of motorcycling, ended during the Great Depression. In 1911 the American Henderson Motorcycle Co, 268 Jefferson Ave. Detroit, was formed by William G. Henderson in partnership with his brother Tom W. Henderson. Will had the ideas and enthusiasm for motorcycling, Tom had the better financial acumen; the brothers were inducted to the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1998. The Henderson brothers constructed a single prototype motorcycle during 1911; the prototype had the belt drive typical of the times, but this was changed to chain drive for production models. Henderson Motorcycle promptly announced a new 57 cubic inch IOE four-cylinder 7 hp motorcycle, with the engine mounted inline with the frame and chain drive. Production began in 1911, using the in-line four-cylinder engine and long wheelbase that would become Henderson trademarks, it was available to the public in January 1912.
Advertisements boasted 7 HP and a price of $325. It was the third four-cylinder production motorcycle built in the United States, featured a folding hand-crank starter handle. Improvements included a better brake, lower seating position, improved girder forks and a rectangular fuel tank, which replaced the previous cylindrical tank, it was in this year that Carl Stearns Clancy of New York returned from circling the globe on a 1912 Henderson, armed with many photographs to prove it. The Heath-Henderson B-4 engine was a modified Henderson motorcycle engine produced for use in Heath Parasol aircraft; the 1914 Model C had a two-speed gearbox incorporated in the rear hub, as well as lighter pistons and adjustable seat springs. Shortly after the Model D was announced, it was followed by a Model E, with the wheelbase reduced from 65 to 58 inches, a raised instep on the footboards and a two-speed rear hub. Prices ranged from $295 for $335 for the two-speed model; the shorter wheelbase became the standard, the engine now incorporated a cam gear driven "mechanical oiler", a kick-start.
Prices were dropped but due to the impact of World War I on supplies of material and the costs of production, they were increased by $30, with the standard model costing $295 and the two-speed $325. The old splash lubrication was superseded by wet sump lubrication. A three-speed gearbox was now incorporated a heavy-duty clutch. Sales soared and new dealerships were established. Alan Bedell averaged 48 mph for 1154 miles at Ascot Park in California setting a new 24‑hour record, on June 13, 1917, broke the transcontinental long distance record of 1915 when he rode his 1917 Henderson from Los Angeles to the city of New York in seven days, sixteen hours, fifteen minutes; the roads outside of towns were primitive by today's standards, the ride would have been more like an off road ride than the highway tour of today. The Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash was named in Baker's honor. Roy Artley broke Baker's Canada to Mexico record by nearly nine hours, making the journey in just over seventy-two hours.
Despite record breaking and racing successes, the effects of World War I on sales had damaged their financial position. In 1917 the Hendersons sold the firm to Ignaz Schwinn, owner of Schwinn, the manufacturer of Schwinn bicycles and Excelsior motorbikes. Production was moved to Schwinn's Excelsior Motor Mfg. & Supply Co. 3701 Cortland Street, Illinois. Hendersons were marketed extensively overseas as well as in the United States during the Schwinn years. Today, there are as many extant Hendersons in Europe and Australia/New Zealand as in the United States; the Excelsior name had been used in Germany and Britain, so export models were marketed as the "American-X". When production resumed for the new Model H, the engine serial numbers began with a Z, instead of the older H. Engine: inline IOE Cylinders: Four Displacement: 67 cubic inches Bore & Stroke: 2.53 × 3.0 inches Carburetor: Schebler Ignition: Magneto Transmission: 3-speed Forks: Henderson spring fork Brakes: Band, rear only Tire size: 3.00 × 28 inches Initially Bill and Tom Henderson worked in management at Excelsior, but Tom soon left, early in 1919, to become a Henderson exporter.
The 1919 Model Z included a GE generator on the Z 2 "electric" model. The 70 cubic inch 4-cylinder developed 14.2 H. P; this model had a new Henderson logo which included the red Excelsior "X". In 1915 Arthur O. Lemon had joined Henderson as a salesman, was employed in the Excelsior Engineering Department after the sale of Henderson. Lemon designed an updated motor for the 1920 Model K. Bill Henderson and Arthur Lemon had worked together in the past, but Bill didn't like Lemon's changes toward heavier motorcycles, he left in 1920, before the Model K came into production, to form the Ace Motor Corporation, where he would make the lighter, faster motorcycles he had envisioned. Arthur Lemon was put in charge of engineering for Excelsior and Henderson; the Model K weighed more, produced more power, was more durable and reliable than its predecessors. The 79.4 cubic inch side-valve engine, with 2.6875 inch bore, 3.5 inch stroke, was rated at 18 hp. The K had a top speed of 80 mph; the Henderson Model K was the first motorcycle to use full pr