Some interesting stuff here, just like a good thread should be, lots of ideas and knowledge coming out.
The raindrop IMHO changes shape, it does not stay a complete sphere, in slow motion its change is visible. Why it changes shape is well known, and the reasons for its change are also well known, however the concept/theory that is not used in cycling is that the bulk of the weight on the machine is positioned to the front and not the rear. This is "propulsion" and not "drag". The point of the raindrop/teardrop shape is to ephasise that "it is heaviest at the front" and "self streamlines" to the rear. When I say "liquid fairings/skin" this is a euphemistic phrase to highlight the theory of less drag. In reality, a liquid skin would be a surface that allowed air to spill off it as though the skin where a liquid. It is a theory/concept not as yet a doeable reality (not that I'm aware of)
On another note, for all the diagrams about air / turbulence over cigar shapes, the idea as I understand Obree is " where inside this cigar do you place the bulk of the weight ?". All I know for certain is that a bullet is not dragged from the barrel of a gun it is propelled. A bullet is a similar shape to a cigar. Yeah sure it has fluting down the barrel to spin the bullet so it has less drag by cutting through the air, but the bullet does not leave the gun by being dragged out. It was this that caught my imagination, a fundamental change in how weight is carried on a bike.
I only know that in aero-dynamics you can either "avoid drag OR use drag as propulsion" If I add Obrees observation of "propulsion of weight" to "use of drag as propulsion" I have 2 of the main offenders now working For me not Against me. This change in direction re-writes ALL of the previous stuff because for all of the information out there it all relates to dragging weight around and avoiding as much drag as possible. I'm going to take a lot of convincing that its easier to just keep going down the same road knowing all along that "the currect theory is flawed". My simple brain tells me that "if my 2 worst enemies become my friends, friends that help all they can to their max, this has got to be better than designing ways to avoid them and counter act them when I do occur them".
I also know that if for example you drag backwards one of those toy thingies that has a spring loaded set of wheels, then let go, it moves forward, BUT, if you weight it down slightly more, it travels further under its own steam due to better traction. Maximum traction efficiency is governed by an increase in traction per increase in speed ie: rear wheel gravitationally pulling nearer to the road surface the faster you go. Traction does not always create drag, too little traction from the propelling end allows for the power of the proplusion to disipate/not get used to its max. Using all of this as a base for my thoughts caused me to draw that design. I know its hard to see from a simple diagram, but "a bike that funnels oncoming air into a channel that becomes proplusion at the rear + allows for the biggest cog ratios any bike can possibly have + gives maximum traction from power sources = the real equation to be solved.
I am certain that the first bike that abides by those 3 rules will be the fastest cycle on earth. Any deviation from them will increase "ineffeciency".
X + Y + Z = fastest bike
X = Maximum conversion of oncoming air (Drag) into Propulsion
Y = Largest possible cog ratios that can be physically put & kept in motion by a human beings legs /body parts (Energy/Drving Force)
Z = Maximum Traction Efficiency from the Driving Force/Source of Propulsion
The only area I have left in my mind is "to design the flywheel". From what I remember, a fly wheel was a weighted wheel that helped itself via gravitational pull. Any wheel design that incorporates "help" from existing motion can only be beneficial to easing the burden on the cyclists legs. I'm also convinced after a lot of thought that using the drive wheel directly to power motion will give the maximum effeciency to drive the traction wheel, in essence, instead of pulling the motion I'll push it, which = propel & not drag motion. Still, all of this said, I'm not Graeme Obree, and I'm definately not wealthy enough to fund a build around my ideas, I am however moved enough by what Graeme said to sit and ponder & calculate theorems that at present are the opposite to what the current line of thought is
I have been certainly caught by the bug to analyse the concept of Push not Pull. Later everyone, Laz.
PS: "totally Agree with your closing statement and isn't it a refreshing change to have a person and a World Record that isn't constrained by Health and Safety, red tape or regulations that allow's enough freedom to truly invent where the only boundaries are your manufacturing skill and ability to think laterally."
Ditto to this sentiment my friend
I just love that his dream is now fueling my own thoughts. I do like a challenge from time to time
Later John, Laz.
PPS: "Oh sorry, forgot to mention ... the term electro magnets does not mean magnets powered by electricity, I meant Super Charged Magnets, like those found inside computer hardrives ( I've got quite a few and their power is seriously amazing). They weight a few grams each, yet can grip each other through 2 inches of solid wood, they'll squash your finger tips and draw blood if you let them snatch with your fingers in the way. Point is : "put them in opposing poles 1 on the wheel, 1 on the stays and they will generate propulsion. On their own they do not amount to much, but if they reduce drag by 10 percent simply by offering 10 percent more free energy to the drive of the bike then the target of maximum use of drag > proplusion becomes easier to reach.
Total weight increase to the bike is circa 30 - 40 grams. A small price to pay for a 10 percent reduction of drag via extra free output. Also, the hubs can be lined with these magnets, ie: the spindles can be bearing free = counter-drag efficent to their max. Magnetic hubs will alllow the spindle to spin almost in perpetuity and reduce excessive forces on the hub itself. Magnets are wierd things, they don't always do what you'd expect
They are not anti gravitational, but they come close to it