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Lighter and Faster

As any readers of my blog know. I am a big fan of weight reduction of my bike. Whilst the fireblade is not a member of the 190+ bhp club or the Kwak, Aprillia or the uber ugly S1000RR I have tackled the issue in my own style.

There are many ways to give you more BHP.  Most mortals go for air filters, exhausts and power commanders and a trip to the dyno centre to smooth things out. This solution is just fine and does release a few horses. 

Professional racers opt for engine tuning. In many cases pull out the Official race engine parts catalogues for high revs, blueprinting and tweaks to the engine design. These provide the biggest gains but not necessarily good for the road. Why I say not good for the road is the HUGE costs and the need to regularly rebuild and replace components. That said its entirely possible that a weekend rocket with all this might be happy blasting around the odd weekend with an occasion check. 

The point I am getting to very slowly is the old term power to weight ratio. My bike was dyno'd several years ago and showed 174 BHP. and weight about 190 kg. With all the effort made to reduce the weight of the bike and gearing changes, this bike can keep up with the best.

Don't get me wrong, my aim has not been to keep up with the next generation of bikes but to build something well thought and special. Here are a list of items I have changed that will change the fireblade for the better and not all of them cost the earth (but some do!)

This is a quick list of things that can be done. It is no particular order and is here to help reduce weight and improve handling, acceleration and braking.

1) Alloy tank - A great way to lose several kilos 
2) Lithium Battery - Lost a kilo and now starts every time
3) Marchesini wheels - Lost kilos of unsprung weight so improves steering
4) Sp Subframe - Lighter and looks better than stock
5) Carbon Front Hugger - nearly 1/2 kilo saved doing this alone
6) Titanium axles - nearly 1 1/2 kilos saved by replacing all three and helps unsprung weight
7) Titanium Engine bolts - 1/3rd of the weight. whats not to like?
8) Emissions kit & Block offs - tubes plugs etc fill the fairing and are pointless for riders
9) 520 Chain conversion - Much lighter but does require replacement sooner.
10) Michelin Pilot Power Pure - Now superceded so cheap but very light
11) Electrex Generator - Saves a couple of kilos and frees up a few horses
12) Power Commander V - Helps smooth the power curve.
13) Exhaust - The taylormade is cosmetic  but seems to give a couple of horses
14) Ohlins! need I say any more. 
15) Brembo!
16) Quickshifter - Seemless gear changes + Better acceleration = Happy Rider!
17) Titanium rear spring - Performs the same at a third of the weight!
18) HRC Breather Kit - Yes its race kit but reduces back pressure and cools the Generator
19) HRC Swingarm - Again race kit but stiffens up the bike rear end.
20) Titanium nuts and bolts - Yes its boring but they don't rust and will last. Suppose a bike has 10 kilos of nuts and bolts, replacing them will save 3 kilos in weight. 

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