Keeping the postman busy

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 RST Futura hybrid velocity stack 47mm 51mmAfter January’s awful weather – snow, rain, sub-zero temps, earthquakes & landslides, it’s been a very nice balmy February! So much so, that the Capo has squirreled a good few miles under its belt – the last 300 of them with the new snorkel in place. And I have to say, I’m really chuffed at how it performs. No extra induction noise that my aged arthritic lug holes can detect and no detriment to performance even though it’s been nowhere near a dyno to tweak the mapping.

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid cam chain tensioner AP0236253As I write, a swanky set of Futura throttle bodies are winging their way here, as are a nice new pair of Mk2 cam chain tensioners – AP0236253. The velocity stacks are now finished and ready to fit to the throttle bodies and so it just leaves the matter of swapping out the Anakee Wild tyres for a fresh set of Anakee 3’s and a DID ZVM-X chain and Ognibene front/rear sprocket set (courtesy of Motrag) and I think she’ll be ready for a damn good thrashing on Dr Dyno! 🙂

 

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Take a deep breath ……..

Hawker Typhoon air inlet and radiatorWith plans a-foot to assemble a big-cc motor for the Capo, it was time to cast an inquisitive eye over the airbox snorkel, that ugly rubber protrusion at the front of the airbox, sucking in hot air from on top of the radiator. This one object has been debated far and wide over the years – keep it, or remove it? Yes the questionable snorkelectomy!

Only a couple of ways to find out I guess. Dyno the bike with and without it or draw it up and run a flow analysis on it from the comfort of an armchair. Armchair it is then! With the model Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid snorkel restrictioncomplete, here’s a couple of basic facts: Snorkel Inlet area (total) 1,750mm² and outlet area (total) 3,050mm². So the inlet is slightly restricted, the offending area is highlighted in the picture (click to enlarge). In fact, if the restriction were removed, the snorkel would have an inlet nearer to 2,400mm² – about 37% more!

To keep it simple the analysis was run with air at 1013mb and 20C, both with AND without the Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid airbox snorkel air velocity and pressurerestriction in place and at RPM’s ranging from 1,300 to 10,250 – well above Caponord max RPM of 8,750.

I think it’s reasonable to say that the OEM snorkel doesn’t really do badly until it hits 9,000RPM+ and lets face it, by then the whole thing is over for the poor old Capo anyway! Based on a days digital twiddling and some airbox datalogging several years ago, I have to say that I’m planting my flag firmly in the ‘leave it alone’ camp when it comes to the OEM Capo snorkel. It isn’t and never will be an RSV so why try to make it like one ….. the standard bits are designed to work well enough together for the style of bike it is. Yes of course remapping will improve things no end, but why screw up the ride by making it noisier and offering the local mice a HUGE entrance through which to set up an epic knocking shop on Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid airbox snorkel air pressure & velocitythe air filter!

But what about the big-cc conversion? well running the analysis with the 1,103cc and 1,127cc flow certainly seemed to cast doubt on the suitability of the OEM snorkel as the strong pressure drop is now occurring lower down the rev range. So the snorkel design originally drawn up back in October 2012 was dug out of hibernation, modified and polished up for 3D printing and run through the flow software – the green line on the graph above. Overall it seems to offer a cleaner flow, less pressure drop and maintains a similar airflow velocity into the airbox. Unfortunately the one thing the software can’t tell me is how much extra Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid airbox snorkel 3D print printednoise will be generated! The OEM snorkel is made of PVCD (flexible) AND has a foam pad in the roof of each inlet – both presumably are to reduce inlet noise.

With everything looking OK a few test parts were printed to make sure it’s going to fit, then the model was split into two along the mounting plate and both parts printed separately. This was due both to size limitations in the printer and because I didn’t want to use any support material to upset the surface finish. Afterwards both parts were bonded together and the inlet tracts rubbed down with 80/180/400/1200 grit sandpaper to get a reasonable finish.

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid acoustic panel AP8117151With a bead of sealant and 4x M4x12 and 4x M5x12 screws and nyloc-nuts, the snorkel fits into place just fine. Of course only time will tell how well it stands up to the rigours of its new home! The OEM snorkel has a rubber/foam acoustic panel (AP8117151) that fits over it and of course it won’t fit the new one, so I’ve trimmed this one to suit(ish) and placed an order for a similar dual-material sound deadening product to make a new one specifically for this snorkel. However the chopped-about old panel can’t be far off the ball park, as inlet noise just wasn’t noticeable which was a pleasant surprise …… It could well be a different story from the saddle though! 🙄 

So what next? Well the plan is to get a day on a dyno when the weather is more amenable. I’d like to run it as standard, standard + new snorkel and Futura throttle bodies, new velocity stacks and new snorkel and see what the numbers say. Any guesses?

 

 

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Airbox crankcase vent – Mk2

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid engine crankcase vent pipe to airbox and throttle body

With the velocity stacks and snorkel measured up and squirreled away in CAD, it was time to rebuild the airbox …… except billy-butter-fingers here, went and knocked the airbox base off a chair onto the floor – not far – but enough for it to land awkward and break the spigot for the crankcase vent. Unfortunately the spare I’d made, I gave away to a friend last year! So there I am trying to remember where I’d bought the bits to make Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid engine crankcase vent flow analysisanother one, when I had a “Stop the bus!” moment …… don’t waste time and fuel going into town, sit down, draw something in CAD and print that puppy! 😀 

Here’s the finished article …. it has a slightly larger inlet/outlet cross-section, although the previous one worked just fine and this time the fit for the grey pipe is better. internally there is a chamber to help reduce gas flow and (hopefully) convince some of the oil to condense and run back down into the crankcase, not out into the airbox. That’s the theory anyway, but it’ll probably turn out to be complete bollocks! Either way, it looks neater so that’s a positive step forward ……. now, what else can I break today! 😀

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rallyb-Raid engine crankcase airbox vent 3D print

The MK1 vent did well and lasted almost  2 years (37K miles) and in that time I never had a moments issue with oil in the airbox going where it shouldn’t. Let’s hope this one does as well!

 

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Hybrid velocity stacks

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid 47mm and hybrid 51mm velocity stacksIf all goes to plan, later this year the second Rally-Raid that’s currently being rebuilt, will finally get a motor installed. The plan is to use a big-bore motor …. an 1,103cc in place of the standard 998cc. The compression and valve timing will remain bog-standard Caponord (10.5/1  Inlet timing – 25°BTDC/37°ABDC and Exhaust timing – 57°BBDC/5°ATDC). However to accommodate the increase in air-flow, I’ve decided to use Futura 51mm throttle bodies instead of the Caponord 47mm items.

Meanwhile on top of this chunky aluminium marvel sits a pair of velocity stacks. These stacks vary in height (and diameter) depending on the intended tune of the engine. The RSV Mille of course is designed as a race-rep and as such wants high horsepower at high RPM – hence 57mm throttle bodies and very short velocity stacks. On the other hand the Caponord was tuned for improved low-end grunt and so has small throttle bodies (47mm) and tall velocity stacks to maintain good gas flow speed at low RPM. The Futura seems to sit firmly between the two!

Now of course I could simply use the medium height velocity stacks straight off a Futura, but I decided to go a different route and print a new pair of hybrid stacks – Caponord height BUT 51mm diameter to fit the Futura throttle bodies. Unlike ABS, Colorfabb Ngen (Co-Polyester) can’t be vapour polished with Acetone, so I’ll have to sand the venturi down with a variety of grades of wet-and-dry up to 2,000 grit and maybe finish it off with something like Quixx plastic polish – if it works on this stuff! Here’s a couple of pics comparing the original and new version – straight out of the printer!

Unfortunately 3D parts (unless made on high-end machines) don’t typically have the same strength as injection molded or machined parts – but they do make great ‘proof-of-concept’ parts! If these stacks prove to be a positive step forward, but not durable enough for the working environment, I can at least get the drawings to the machine shop and have them made in aluminium … but that’ll be a tad more expensive than 85p each off the printer! 🙁 

UPDATE

Just had a spare half-hour to rub some 100/400 & 1200 grit paper down one of the stacks and all I can say is – WOW! This material rubs up lovely and probably a couple more sessions will see it through. All the print-ridges have gone and I can’t feel anything but a nice smooth surface that retains a print pattern that makes it look quite distinctive.  🙂

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 RST1000 Futura Rally-Raid hybrid velocity stack

 

 

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A little unhinged

The day before the awful January weather hit, I managed to get a nice afternoon ride-out on the Capo. Stopping part way along for a coffee break, I paused for a moment to put helmet and gloves in the top-box – forgetting I had a bungee-cord still attached between the lid and side cases. With my mind wandering away on other things, I flicked the latches and began lifting with finger and thumb. In a heartbeat the cord snatched the lid out of my hand, slamming it hard against the hinge-stops bending the hinges and shearing two rivets. Oh well, after 10 years I guess it could do with a bit of TLC, now it definitely needs it!

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid Hepco Becker top box 3D printed spacersA couple of weeks later, after the snow had finished having its wicked way, I managed to get around to doing a complete strip of the top-box in an uncomfortably cold and damp barn, first straightening the hinges then rebuilding it all with new 4mm stainless steel rivets instead of the feeble aluminium 3mm ones. While I had it stripped down I remembered that I’d had a little 3D printer idea regarding the top-box and now was the perfect time to do it.

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Hepco Becker 45L top box alignment spacersSomething that’s always bugged me with the Hepco-Becker top-box is the lateral play in the mount which allows the box to be fitted off-center – around a half-inch or more (>12.5mm) either way. To take this slop out two plastic blocks modelled on the shape of the existing mount have been added using the same size self-tapping screws as on the main support. These blocks don’t take any load, that’s still handled 100% by the original support, their only job is to ensure the box lines up perfectly every time it’s refitted ….. no bumping, shuffling or tweaking it into place, and this most certainly pleases my mild OCD!

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid Hepco Becker top box support plateWhile doing all this, the bottom galvanised steel support plate was measured and a larger improved design drawn up. The original 1.5mm thick plate has too much flex for my liking (built to a budget) so the idea is to fit a slightly thicker 2mm stainless steel one for improved support, looks and weather resistance. After all this, the top-box should be good for another 10 years + …….as long as I don’t screw up the hinges again that is! 😀

Aprilia Caponord ETV1000 Rally-Raid 3D printed speedo sensor Honeywell 1GP7001And finally, the January backlog of post and parcels are starting to trickle through and with the first batch came the 8mm OD stainless steel sleeves and a couple of Honeywell 1GP7001 speed sensors. So the sensor and case are now assembled and tested. Only the cable strain relief sleeve is missing before I can fit it permanently to the bike. Fingers crossed they’ll be in the next batch of post!

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