The Racing Motorcycle - A technical guide for constructors

Magazine Reviews (Volume 2)  (This page will be updated as further reviews become available)

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'It's not heavy reading, particularly for anyone with an engineering background, but it is extremely detailed.  No race boffin should be without it.' - Old Bike Mart  - 5 February 2004/Classic Racer - March/April 2004.
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'...an almost overwhelming source of detailed and relevant information, laid out simply with information suitably at hand...'     '...as relevant to karters as it is to any two wheel fans...' - KARTING Magazine - March 2004.
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'If you need these books at all, they're indispensable.' - MCN Sport - Issue 13 June 2004.
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'...of the highest quality...'  'Well worth the money.' - Fast Bikes - August 2004.
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'...serious engineering books for anyone who wants to build a special,go faster on what they already have, or simply find out how good bikes work.'' - Bike Sport News - August 2004.
 (Read full review )

'...it's not bargain basement stuff, but something this good won't be...'  '...an investment you'll be referring to long after you've forgotten the price.' - Classic Bike Guide - September 2004.
 (Read full review )

'...a wealth of technical information just waiting to be exploited.' - Motorcycle Sport & Leisure - August 2004.
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'...this book is an absolute necessity...' - Streetfighters - Issue 129 November 2004.
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Old Bike Mart - February 2004 and Classic Racer - March/April 2004

Anyone into the serious technicalities of racing motorcycle design will already be familiar with John Bradley's first work of the same name.  Volume two is now available.  Whereas the first book dealt with engine, gearbox, chassis geometry etc, the second goes into detail on issues regarding chassis stiffness, causes of structural failure etc.  For example, there are comprehensive chapters on frame building, from the choice of material, steel, alloy etc, stresses involved in cornering, acceleration and braking, to the manufacture of jigs, types of welding, bending and preparation of tubes, fabricating fuel tanks, illustrations of set up, details of stressed areas around certain joints, headstock etc, where and where not to lay weld and in what order to weld tubes in order to avoid distortion.  There's a detailed chapter on anodizing and other finishes, exhaust manufacture, alloy casting, magnesium, titanium, carbon fibre, plastics etc.  It's not heavy reading, particularly for anyone with an engineering background but it is extremely detailed.  No race boffin should be without it.

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Karting Magazine - March 2004

The Racing Motorcycle - A technical guide for constructors - Volume 2 is the book to own before you even consider fabricating components or indeed entire machines in your own workshop.  And this new book is as relevant to karters as it is to any two wheel fans, covering steel chassis construction techniques, exhaust fabrication and identifying and dealing with stresses with detailed ventures into construction with alloys and more 'exotic' materials.
 Volume 1 of The Racing Motorcycle concerned itself with the mechanics and physics of engines, gearboxes, suspension and drivetrains.  Each book on its own is an almost overwhelming source of detailed and relevant information, laid out simply with information suitably at hand and easily absorbed by anyone with even a small amount of engineering aptitude.
 Volume 2's 464 black and white pages (214mm x 279mm) are perfectly illustrated with 326 photographs and over 400 diagrams and charts.  The price of £38 plus P&P may worry you a bit but the prospect of not owning this book will certainly keep you awake at night.

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MCN Sport - Issue 13, June 2004

For anyone seriously considering building a bike from scratch, or who simply wants to understand how bikes behave, there are perhaps four books on the planet. With these two volumes (the second one newly published), make that five.

John Bradley is an engineer and author who's spent over 30 years building and racing bikes. He knows enough for many world championship teams and factories to have bought his books. Volume 1 deals with what bikes do, and how to make them do it better; volume 2 is all about construction methods. Both are chock full of practical advice - and written with a dry humour you'd never expect. If you need these books at all, they're indispensable.

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Bike Sport News - August 2004

The Racing Motorcycle, a technical guide for constructors, by John Bradley, is undoubtedly one of the most successful technical books of recent years.
 First published in 1996, volume one has been sold in over 30 countries and is now on its sixth reprint.  It has been bought by most of the major motorcycle manufacturers and graces the pit wall of numerous GP/WSB teams including current world champions.
 Volume one covers performance issues, including engine characteristics, gearing and gear ratios, chassis geometry, weight distribution, suspension and aerodynamics using 405 extensively illustrated pages, just under A4 size.
 Manufacturers have ordered as many as 20 copies at a time to help their race mechanics and technicians.
 Now, the long-awaited second volume has been released.  With 464 pages, 326 photographs and over 400 drawings/tables and graphs it provides masses of information on materials, construction techniques, chassis stiffness and structural issues.
 If you are going to make frames, tanks, exhausts, etc., the second volume is essential background reading.  Like volume one, the reaction of the press and top teams has been very enthusiastic.
 These are serious engineering books for anyone who wants to build a special, go faster on what they already have, or simply find out how good bikes work.

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Classic Bike Guide - September 2004

Don’t judge a book by its cover.  Never has this been more true than about Volume Two of John Bradley’s  ‘The Racing Motorcycle’, which shows the wonderfully talented Valentino Rossi on the front.  But inside there is information to help anyone who’s rebuilding a bike or thinking about it.  In fact, scan this work and you realise that there’s so much information available that you can get just about anything done.
 John’s first book was about power units, while this one concentrates on the rolling chasses.  He says that both of them were written to make the subject understood by both traditional and modern builders, which means a bonus for the classic man because he tells about alternative ways of producing something like a moulding in a lighter material.
 Bradley has been around bikes for a long time, from grass tracking through to road racing, using his own ideas on frame design and looking and learning along the way.  His standing now is such that the major race teams and factories have his work as a reference source.  One renowned tuner told him that he’d gladly pay twice the cover price for the list of sources he gives.
 At £38 plus p&p it’s not bargain basement stuff, but something this good won’t be.  464 pages, 326 photos and over 400 line drawings - he does them himself, he’s very talented - makes this an investment you’ll be referring to long after you’ve forgotten the price.

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Motorcycle Sport & Leisure - August 2004

If you’ve ever wondered about what exactly makes a world class race bike tick, or even if you just want to get the most out of your own machine, The Racing Motorcycle Volume 1 and The Racing Motorcycle Volume 2 are a wealth of technical information just waiting to be exploited.  Volume 1 is now in its sixth reprint and now Volume 2 is here - covering such topics as materials, construction techniques, chassis stiffness and much, much more over some 464 pages, complete with 326 photographs, tables and graphs.

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Fast Bikes - August 2004

These two books, by author John Bradley, are of the highest quality. Paper back but beautifully bound, they are titled 'The Racing Motorcycle, a technical guide for constructors' Volume 1 and 2. Press and race teams alike have described these books with such words as, 'indispensable', 'invaluable' and 'awesome'. Well worth the money.

 Streetfighters - Issue 129 November 2004

For anyone who's even contemplated building, or modifying, their own bike then this book is an absolute necessity - 'The Racing Motorcycle - a technical guide for constructors Volume 2' by John Bradley, is even more comprehensive than the first volume, and certainly contains just as much, if not more, information pertinent to the specials builder.  From materials specifications, to welding procedures, materials, construction techniques, causes of structural failure, testing and reducing structural failures, and structural stiffness characteristics.

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© 2004 Broadland Leisure, last update for this page 22 September 2004.