What is Motorcycle: Definition and 161 Discussions

A motorcycle, often called a motorbike, bike, or cycle, is a two- or three-wheeled motor vehicle. Motorcycle design varies greatly to suit a range of different purposes: long-distance travel, commuting, cruising, sport, including racing, and off-road riding. Motorcycling is riding a motorcycle and being involved in other related social activity such as joining a motorcycle club and attending motorcycle rallies.
The 1885 Daimler Reitwagen made by Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach in Germany was the first internal combustion, petroleum-fueled motorcycle. In 1894, Hildebrand & Wolfmüller became the first series production motorcycle.In 2014, the three top motorcycle producers globally by volume were Honda (28%), Yamaha (17%) (both from Japan), and Hero MotoCorp (India). In developing countries, motorcycles are considered utilitarian due to lower prices and greater fuel economy. Of all the motorcycles in the world, 58% are in the Asia-Pacific and Southern and Eastern Asia regions, excluding car-centric Japan.
According to the US Department of Transportation, the number of fatalities per vehicle mile traveled was 37 times higher for motorcycles than for cars.

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  1. Juanda

    Auto/Motor Honda NT700V Deauville motorcycle maintenence: Drive shaft

    I bought a second-hand Honda NT700V Deauville with 62000 km. I did some basic maintenance (oil, oil filter, and air filter) after the purchase, and it worked more or less OK. At 66000 km a bigger maintenance was due. It was discovered that the drive shaft was obliterated. It's a weird thing...
  2. L

    Help Me Design a Motorcycle Airbox for Charity Racing Series

    How did you find PF?: Google search Hello everyone, thanks for letting me join. I am hoping that some of you would be intrigued and help me design a new motorcycle airbox for a charity moped racing series here in the UK. We take the most common motorcycle ever made the Honda c90 and race it...
  3. S

    Optimizing Vehicle Maintenance: Tips and Tricks from Mechanical Engineers

    Hi guys, i’m always looking to conserve at best my motorcycle and car, i’m here to understand the correct way to do it
  4. L

    Building an Electric Motorcycle from Scratch

    Basically what I need is to figure out what motors I need for a design I am wanting to make for an electric motorcycle. I know that I want it to go around 60-70 mph, 60 could be the max speed if need be, for the motors to be able to move 700 lbs (which is crazy but my idea is crazy so I need it...
  5. S

    A Motorcycle, the force exerted upon from collision

    Synopsis, The insurance company wants to repair this 3-year-old motorcycle with 3400 miles on the odo father taking this hit. The motorcycle was modified with an aftermarket "engine guard," which was made out of powder-coated steel tubing and bolted directly to the frame which is made out of...
  6. PhysicsTest

    Control the speed of a motorcycle

    As the summary indicates I want to control the speed of a petrol bike upto 60Kmph, so that it does not go beyond that. Now my questions are can it be controlled electrically, most probably I may want to control the throttle, but how to do it? What all sensors I may require one I can think of is...
  7. J

    Kinematics chasing problem: Car vs. Motorcycle acceleration question

    Im for some reason getting 1.58 s for time. I found 1.75 m as the head start distance and then I do d=d so: 2.45t^2 = 1.75t^2 +1.75 but the answer for "a" should be 6.45s...
  8. LucaCaiaffa

    I Motorcycle model and tire force

    I'm having issues in the application of tire forces while deriving a multi-body model of a motorcycle via Lagrange. In particular, I considered several bodies that are: swingarm, main frame, front upper fork, front lower fork and wheels. I suppose the wheels to have zero slippage, then...
  9. Feroyn

    Building a motorcycle, need classical mechanics help

    Hi! I am an engineering graduate that took my bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering much too long ago, but I have forgotten a lot of the classical mechanics/mechanics of materials theory that I had learned many years ago. I am building a motorcycle right now, and I want to calculate the...
  10. I

    Gear ratios for this motorcycle

    Hello guys I have a motorcycle engine in which I know the ratios of the transmission. and given the diagram of Power and rpm I made a function of P(ω) which is a polynomial of 6 order. Then I said that F(friction)*u=P(ω) then I substitute ω=u*r/v v(ratio) and have F(u).Next knowing the Pmax...
  11. bkrame429

    Revamp Your Motorcycle's Charging System for 12v DC: Stator Winding Help

    I need help building a charging system for a motorcycle that has been converted to a 12v DC EFI system (formerly carbureted with a CDI ignition). The original full wave system was designed specifically to produce high voltage for the ignition system (32 gauge wire with thousands of turns). My...
  12. A

    Automotive Motorcycle: Flywheel mass and rear wheel torque

    Hello, I made this account to ask this question that I’ve been loosing sleep over. My question is say you have 2 identical motorcycles the engine the exact same and everything the only difference is the mass of the flywheel one bikes engine has a flywheel twice the mass as the other will the...
  13. S

    Motorcycle at max lateral acceleration

    In the case where ground clearence isn't the limiting factor; Since motorycles are steered using countersteering, a motorcycle cornering at constant max g can achieve any decrease of lean angle (bringing the bike up) by turning harder towards the inside of the turn momentarily, which is not...
  14. P

    Clarifying Ambiguities in High School Physics Problems

    I tried using the equation E(k)=1/2mv^2 and isolating for v but no mass was given. Then, I tried W=fd but there is no distance given. I don't know how to solve this.
  15. D

    How does a 1-wheeled motorcycle turn?

    I've witnessed 1st-hand with my own eyeballs this guy riding an S-shaped path through chicane at Thunderhill East+West 5-mile combined course with front-wheel IN THE AIR! I believe bike is a Yamaha TZ250, 100-120bhp and 200-lbs weight. I conducted an experiment to document behavior of single...
  16. K

    Can a cornering motorcycle go faster if the rider puts a knee down?

    I remember this problem from my freshman physics class ~38 years ago. As I recall it was explained to us how a motorcycle rider could actually take a corner faster by putting his inside knee down on the ground. We see this in motorcycle racing where the riders have a knee pad that let's them...
  17. K

    Automotive Why don't motorcycle clutches need torsional damper springs?

    I was reading the difference in construction between a car clutch (dry, single plate) and a motorcycle clutch (wet, multiplate). I understand wet multiplate clutches do not have torsional springs in them. How is the Engine vibration damped then? Can we not use this same arrangement in a car?
  18. solarcat

    Calculating Forces on a Motorcycle Riding in a Transparent Sphere

    Homework Statement A person is riding a motorcycle in a hollow, transparent plastic sphere in a horizontal circle. The radius is 13 m, the mass of the motorcycle is 40 kg, and the mass of the person is 70 kg. The speed is 15 m/s. a) What is the minimum coefficient of static friction for the...
  19. Mark44

    Visit with a fellow old motorcycle aficionado

    I post regularly on several web sites devoted to old motorcycles. A guy who posts on one of these sites was living in Salt Lake City, where my wife and I go to visit her daughter. I tried to get together with the fellow (Fabe) in SLC, but we weren't able to make it happen during one of the...
  20. mec_divi

    Aspect ratio for a motorcycle tire

    can anyone tell me the method by which the aspect ratio for the motorcycle tire can be decided given that load capacity of bike is known.
  21. mec_divi

    Starting torque of a motorcycle and rider

    hey everyone I'm interested in finding the starting torque of a bike weighing 120 kg with a load of 150 kg and having the tire specification of 120/70 R17. starting torque means the amount of torque i need to provide to wheel in order to start moving the bike from rest. power source is a 4kw motor.
  22. HandSolo

    Can the Design of a Motorcycle Airbox Affect Engine Noise Resonance?

    So I'm trying to work out why the inlet port of my 200cc four stroke motorbike looks like this. The box itself is approximately 1.5 litres and encloses a cylindrical foam based air filter. That then feeds into a 25mm diameter carb. I've know car inlet systems be tuned for helmholtz resonance...
  23. H

    Speed/acceleration calculations for an Electric motorcycle

    Good day all, This is my first post here, hope you all are able to help me out here. I am thinking about converting an old Suzuki GS500E from an internal combustion engine to an electric motor. At the moment I am having some difficulties with the physics side of things, I would like to...
  24. E

    Way the cornering forces are felt when riding a motorcycle

    Everybody says when going around a corner on a motorcycle and leaning, you feel the g forces vertically (like pushing down on your spine) as opposed to horizontally when cornering in a car. I can't understand how that can be the case, if the rider corners at 45 degrees, the gravitational force...
  25. Spinnor

    Riding a motorcycle in a circle, power slide

    Say you (a skilled motorcycle racer) ride a motorcycle in a big empty parking lot and ride in a big circle of constant radius and slowly go faster and faster. If you are careful as you go faster will you all of a sudden go from very little power slide to a lot of power slide like the video...
  26. bahtiyar

    Explanation: motorcycle leaning without centrifugal force?

    Hi the question is about bicycle and motorcycle dynamics How can we explain the motorcycle leaning in turn without using the centrifugal force term? You know the correct term for rotational motion is the centripetal force and it is toward the centre. I have a problem with rotational equilibrium...
  27. E

    Motorcycle physics -- Countersteering and Bodysteering

    I didn't want to delete or edit the original thread, since it had a lot of information in it but due to me not being specific enough when asking the question, we got non specific answers. I tried to reach the moderators in the other thread about opening a new thread but could not succeed...
  28. H

    Motorcycle starter safety circuit

    I don't know if it's the same for a car but bikes uses a starter relay to set off a starter motor which cranks the engine. Bikes have a side stand for you to lean the bike against when stationary. In case the rider tries to start the bike with side stand deployed (could cause crash if forget to...
  29. E

    Is Counter-Steering the Only Way to Change Direction on a Motorcycle?

    On a frictionless road and tires, I know the rider wouldn't be able to change the combined center of gravity of the system by moving his weight around. If he pushes the bike to lean to the right, he would go to the left by the amount that would keep the combined cog the same. But a bike with...
  30. C

    Attempt to jump across a river on a motorcycle

    Homework Statement A physics professor did daredevil stunts in his spare time. His last stunt was an attempt to jump across a river on a motorcycle. The takeoff ramp was inclined at 53 degrees, the river was 40 m. wide and the far bank was 15 m lower than the top of the ramp. The river itself...
  31. ckcurtis

    500cc 50hp electric motor swap

    Hi, I own a 1993 ex500 with that is having engine problems, I would like to swap the motor for one that is has more or equal power. The best specs I can come up with are these the motor puts on the rear wheel, HP 50, Torque 31 ft-lbs, top speed 130mph, I am looking into getting a DC-liquid...
  32. E

    Can a rider change the combined center of gravity of a motorcycle by leaning?

    In a closed system, I know the rider wouldn't be able to change the combined center of gravity of the system by moving his weight around. If he pushes the bike to lean to the right, he would go to the left by the amount that would keep the combined cog the same. But a bike with tires and a road...
  33. P

    Automotive Motorcycle engine build plan help needed

    Ok so here it goes, I have a motorbike,and as I am a learning engineer I want to build a second engine for a few reasons, firstly I want to go faster secondly I want to do all the work myself to learn, thirdly I want to become a better engineer and want to do lots of paper work to learn and see...
  34. T

    The physics of braking on a motorcycle (manual transmission)

    When trying to abruptly stop a motorcycle that is in motion, can engine braking actually have a negative effect on the rate of deceleration? Scenario: a motorcycle is traveling down a straight highway at 100mph in 6th gear and needs to perform an emergency stop. The weather is clear and road...
  35. santeria133

    Forces acting on motorcycle swingarm

    Hi all, For my final project at university, I am required to design a new swing arm for a Gs500 Motorcycle. I have come up with a C sectional concept when regarding the side beams and will insert X shaped reinforcement throughout the areas of less strength. My main problem is inputting the...
  36. C

    Possible to convert a three phase motorcycle stator to single phase?

    Hi I have an engine that has three phase 18 pole stator for DC fired cdi system . I want to install it this engine in another bike frame the issue is that that frame has ac fired cdi wiring system. Where there is a special coil for the Ignition, lightning and charging. Can i covert the...
  37. J

    Forces at rear brake caliper of motorcycle

    Looking for some help with a rear brake caliper design. The rear caliper bolts to a carrier that slides onto and rotates around an axle. An torque arm (motorcycle term) or brake stay is required to prevent the caliper from rotating when the rear brake is applied. I have to figure a way to...
  38. N

    Projectile motion motorcycle jump

    Homework Statement The current world-record motorcycle jump is 77.0 m, set by Jason Renie. Assume that he left the take-off ramp at 12.0º to the horizontal and that the take-off and landing heights are the same. Neglecting air drag, determine his take-off speed Homework Equations R =...
  39. A

    Establishing Speed in Motorcycle Accident: Seeking Help

    Hi I'm new to this forum and I might have putted this thread in wrong section. My question i would like to get answered its a bit complicated, I know... I have had very weird accident while riding a motorcycle as a courier in London. I don't know what caused the accident because I lost memory...
  40. tarchuletta

    How to use Moments of Inertia to find Max Acceleration (sportbike pre-wheelie)

    So in this problem there's a lot of leeway as far as parameters go. The numbers I give for weights, dimensions, etc, may not be super realistic, but that's not too important to me because I can plug in realistic numbers later. I more of need help understanding the concept of moments of inertia...
  41. K

    Projectile motion motorcycle question

    Homework Statement A motorcycle daredevil wants to ride up a 50.0m ramp set at a 30.0 θ incline to the ground. It will launch him in the air and he wants to come down so he just misses the last of a number of 1.00 m diameter barrels. If the speed at the instant when he leaves the ramp is 60.0...
  42. T

    Motorcycle Helmet Construction

    Hi everybody, I am new in this forum, and i have to say that i am not the best in physics but, i always loved playing with paint, carbon fiber and fiberglass etc... I had an idea of trying to make a Helmet with a science-fiction look ( halo ) and make it legally to wear it ( In thailand ) I...
  43. O

    Need guidance on pneumatic motorcycle fuel system

    Hello, I'm a physics student at Michigan State and I started an applied physics club. One of our first major projects is converting a 4-stroke combustion engine into a pneumatic engine to drive a motorcycle. We completed the prototype using a 4.5 hp tecumseh 139cc motor, a 5lb CO2 tank, some...
  44. C

    Is the motorcycle charging system storing excess power in the stator?

    Hello, I am please to meet your acquaintances! I registered for the following problem: The system at hand is a motorcycle charging system with a permanent magnet alternator and a shunt rectifier. The common belief is that the regulator/rectifier (R/R) dissipates all surplus power. I think that...
  45. tk24700

    1 dimensional kinematics with car and motorcycle

    Homework Statement Two friends agree to test their physics background in 1D motion. Steve, is a distance d ahead of Jack. Jack is driving at a constant, know velocity v0 when they start their experiment. At this moment, Steve accelerates from rest with his motorcycle in such a way that they...
  46. U

    Motorcycle Police Officer Chasing Car

    This is a practice problem very similar to my homework question just with different values. 1. Homework Statement A motorcycle officer hidden at an intersection observes a car driven by an oblivious driver who ignores a stop sign and continues through the intersection at constant speed. The...
  47. B

    MHB Help Needed: Calculating Speed After Motorcycle Accident

    Hi there Ladies and Gentlemen. My name is Andre, and I am from South Africa and would like if someone could assist me. Im going to admit that maths is not my forte and I am lost when it comes to anything more than plus or minus or times. lol I was in a motorcycle accident recently , and after...
  48. A

    Straight engine vs flat engine on a 1 cyl. motorcycle

    Hello everybody I just got an old underbone bike, which I'm planning to build and finish before the end of this year. I found the engine to be quite pathetic (a 4 stroke, carburetted, 100 cc flat engine) so I'm going to do an engine swap with a more powerful but similar engine configuration...
  49. M

    Exploring the Potential of Gyroscopes for Motorcycle Balance

    Hi, I saw a video online of a self balancing 2 wheeled car. Basically a motorcycle with a body though has a steering wheel rather than handle bars. It uses two gyroscopes spinning in opposite directions to keep it's balance and was wondering if a similar thing could be adapted for regular...