RCF (Ruined Carbon Fiber):
Exciting New Motorcycling Solution
Promises Dramatic Weight,
DATELINE, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON (March 13, 2010)
In an exciting joint venture with Moto Guzzi, Australia, and Carbon Nightmare of Lezfuggitup, Italy, Motointernazionale of Seattle Washington has announced a dramatic new motorcyclng technology solution, “RCF” (Ruined Carbon Fiber), which promises significant weight and cost savings for both street and track applications. The announcement was made at a press gathering, which nobody attended, held during regular afternoon coffee break at the sleepy Motointernazionale service department.
“We believe this breakthrough may be as revolutionary as that of the vulcanization of rubber,” according to Greg Maladvicio, Manager of Cutting Edge Solutions and Customer Aggravation for Motointernazionale. “It all started when we shipped a carbon fiber ‘dash cover’ for a Moto Guzzi Griso to a customer in Santa Fe, New Mexico, without any instructions or mounting hardware. In truth, all he needed was a few small, fine-threaded metric screws, and I should have said as much.
“But I must have had one of those brain farts you get every once in awhile in this crazy business, you know? So when the customer asked me for mounting advice, I wrote back, saying he should just use the original, larger, coarsely-threaded screws like a ‘tap’ to create new threads in the carbon fiber.
“Of course, the poor sap didn’t stand a bastard’s chance of mounting it that way — in fact, he was well and truly screwed when he tried it — no pun intended. How could an ordinary screw be used to cut newer, bigger threads into a material like carbon fiber? Duhhh, what was I thinking?
“All that happened is, the original threads in the carbon fiber were ruined, and so was the piece itself, and so would have been the customer’s original Guzzi mounting screws, had he kept at it!
“In fact, it was a regular motorcycle accessory holocaust, when you get right down to it,” said Maladvicio, smirking.
You Have To Break Some Eggs…
Like a Phoenix rising from the flames, however, this sad story of bad information, careless problem diagnostics, and poor customer service led to the development of RCF.
“We got to thinking — for many motorcycling applications — why bother with plastic, or metal, or plastic that looks like metal, or carbon fiber, or aluminum, or (here, Maladvicio paused for dramatic effect) — ANY MATERIAL AT ALL? Why not just leave the thing naked? You know, like a naked bike?”
Of course, throughout engineering history, the best solutions have often been simple ones, and the RCF Solution — pictured above, in its first commercial application, on the subject customer’s brand new $16,000 2009 Moto Guzzi Griso 8V — led to a 100% weight savings and a 100% cost savings over the expensive carbon fiber accessory item, and even greater savings when compared to the original plastic chrome piece, “which we always thought looked kind of junky anyhow,” says Maladvicio.
A vast new development programme has now been launched, exploring the potential applications of RCF in various racing and ordinary motorcycle commuting scenarios. Motointernazionale is even putting out feelers to the Aerospace and Automotive industries, confident that the new technology will find widespread acceptance in many industrial applications.
Detractors, however, have pointed out problems such as aesthetics, lack of weather protection, poor aerodynamics, rampant electrical system failures, and other potential glitches in the widespread embracing of RCF technology.
Candace Coveryerass, Manager of Document Shredding for Motointernazionale and Former Chief of Government and Press Relations for the Bush Administration, guffaws at these objections.
“In these tight times, when the industry is scrambling to cut costs and deliver greater value to customers, I ask you — how many individual components comprising a typical production motorcycle are actually, fully and truly, NEEDED? If you absolutely had to, couldn’t you get by with far fewer parts — and save tons of money — by simply leaving them off?
“I think that motorcycle engineers really have to go back to the drawing board, adopting a new engineering paradigm — minimalism,” Coveryerass continued, warming to her subject. “They should all watch that ‘World’s Fastest Indian’ movie. I mean, look what that guy did on a shoestring budget! He made his own PISTONS!,” she gushes.
Steven Salemi, the passionate motorcycle enthusiast, historian, blogger, collector, rider, industry observer — and “Acting Development Victim” in the thrilling RCF saga — is now working a joint financing venture with a major Credit Card Company to help defray the significant costs of RCF development.
“If you’re a baker working with dough, and you don’t like the way the thing looks, you just grab the stuff, pound it back into a ball, and try something else,” Salemi explained. “But carbon fiber is a far less forgiving and malleable material. Believe you me, when you start throwing out hunks of carbon fiber, you’re really throwing out hunks of your hard-earned money,” he said, a tear forming in the corner of one eye. “I hope to defray the costs of RCF development to the very greatest extent possible.
“As Billy Joel sang, ‘Get it right the first time,'” Salemi concluded. “Joel rides motorcycles, did you know that?”
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