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Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by Farab, Mar 12, 2010.
Makes you wonder what price could you put on these??
They're Hondas, so I'd give about a grand for the satisfaction of putting them in the crusher :wink:.
Seriously, though, when the NR finally happened, ISTR all the magazine road tests panning it for being, frankly, not as great as the whizz-bang spec and phone number price tag suggested it should be.
I do remember everyone being pretty gobsmacked by the (also very expensive) RC though.
Well there's not much they didnt throw into the bike at the time, and Hugely Hi-tech Motor that is quite an eye opener.. But yes.. it is a Honda! (Though a very good looking one)
... Still makes you wonder what price they could put on it now.. un-molested! ???
Doesn't matter. Now it's been removed from its hermetically sealed cocoon, it'll dissolve due to the moisture in the air.
They just killed 34567 kittens
now had it been a Yamaha when unboxing it --- rainbows and butterflies would appear
Worth a few $$$, that dealer knew what he was doing by holding on to them:
A video of the unpacking:
Simply awesome. If I were Jay Leno, these are two of the bikes that'd definitely be my garage.
Even though the oval pistons never proved to be the next great thing, I respect the hell out of HRC for really pushing technology envelope.
Great find, thanks
Yep, I agree. Good find.
Oval pistons were purely developed to get around a race rule limiting the number of cylinders a bike could have. For a road bike, they were utterly pointless. Very much like an awful lot of Honda's "innovations" over the years. Complex technology for the sake of it is not admirable IMHO, particularly when it doesn't actually work very well in the real world.
Whilst I accept that most other bike manufacturers have been similarly guilty on occasion, Honda, historically, are by far the worst offenders. Inboard disc brakes anyone? Or the CX500 Turbo? To name just two. They've always tended to charge like a wounded bull for the privilege of being saddled with a technological white elephant too.
It's one of the contributing factors in my pathological loathing of pretty much every bike over 200cc they've ever made.
Look, I'll go to $2k for the pair if I can film the crushing and post it on YouTube :evil:.
I think testing all limits of engineering is admirable, rather than boringly sticking to the status quo like a stuffy old bastard
Anyhoo, did you read the story linked in the comments? Funny :grin:
I'm not particularly anti-innovation. I just think that, if it doesn't work any better than what it replaces, there is no point. I agree that, with many useful developments, there has been a transition period where the new tchnology is inferior to the old, but following development it becomes superor. Often vastly so. Fuel injection is an example of this. Ask anyone who holed the pistons of their shiney new Triumph 2.5PI in the early 70s, because its dodgy Lucas mechanical PI system went belly up and leaned the mixture excessively. And yet EFI is now standard on four wheels and increasingly common on two and is, in general, absolutely wonderful in every regard compared to carbs.
However, Honda (particularly) don't do this. To take the inboard disc brake as an example, it worked no better than the conventional discs it competed with, was more difficult to work on, noone else adopted it or has used it since and, tellingly, nor do Honda themselves. i could also mention the Comstar wheel, combining all the disadvantages of both wires and alloys, whilst adding one or two of its own. Heavy, ugly, hard to clean and with an endearing tendency to catch crosswinds, it's only possible advantage might have been cheap production, and I'm not even sure about that.
Yes, innovation will see a lot of dead ends, but those dead ends should be found, identified as such and abandoned as part of factory R&D. Instead, if you're Honda, you sell them at a premium price to innocently trusting customers, thus offloading a goodly part of your development costs to the riding public, whilst, at the same time, turning a nice profit for yourself on the back of the same punters' gullibility. Then you get bored/realise it was a crap idea and move onto the next overpriced snipe hunt.
Come on, can you seriously tell me that the NR750 wouldn't have (a) worked just as well if not better as a conventionally round pistoned V8 and (b) not still have been pretty bloody exotic as such? Oval pistons as a rule bender (which IIRC also wasn't blindingly successful but was OK in theory) have some virtue. Oval pistons to sell to the punters as something fantastically exotic and wonderful and worth a telephone number price tag, after their usefulness as a rule bender is exhausted, is fundamentally dishonest and worthy of contempt.
Now that was a more convincing argument. Mainly I agree with the fact that they don't realise it's limits (dead ends) before they put it into production or if they do realise it and produce it anyway. Like imagine if the all the cross-plane R1 engines ends up exploding after 10,000ks - people are gunna be pissed.
But ultimately the market will decide wither or not to try exotic technology or not. The early adopters in any field always realise they pay a premium for something that may not be better. Once they've been proven, then sales pick up.
I do think all these things should totally be built though.
I agree, although I think that such bikes should remain as exotic prototypes or concepts in most cases. As stated, the NR as a rule bending race bike was legitimate. IMHO, the NR being sold as a fantastically expensive road bike was not, because once it left the racetrack, the fundamental reason for its chief claim to fame no longer existed and, as a road bike, a V8 would almost certainly have been better and cheaper (and would probably have turned up several years earlier too).
As to the customer doing the R&D, although Honda are serial offenders in this regard (camchains and top ends being particularly prominent, as well as various hi-tech idiocies), they are by no means the only ones guilty of the practice. The Brits were pretty good at it too. Triumph, for example, killed quite a few riders as they learned how to make a swingarm frame that didn't have a hinge in the middle in the 50s, and Norton should have been strung up by their collective goolies for the Commando, but I'll forgive them that, because the examples of both that I have ridden were, in spite of their deep flaws, absolutely blinding bikes to ride and guaranteed to make anyone with red blood in their veins grin from ear to ear.
Unfortunately, the Hondas I have owned (and, for my sins, there were a few before I learned why SH Hondas were so cheap), apart from their little utility bikes of various flavours, have all been both deeply uninspiring and utter pains in the arse, thus being the worst of all possible worlds. The only exception was a 400/4 which showed signs of having some potential but, by that time, I despised the brand so much that I was only too willing to sell it at a loss to finance petrol and secondhand tyres for my first sidecar outfit.
I see your point, but still its pretty obvious in examples like this, that the people buying them are 99% of the time not your first time buyer and in fact realise the potential for bikes like these to become collectable and / or valuable. This is exactly why the dealership owner stored and example of each in his basement only to be opened 20 years later. I can't image any dealer wanting to do that with any run-of-the-mill bike.
I think its pretty cool being able to buy these type of bikes. No one is forcing these bikes on anyone, they are purchased at free will.
I do agree with your point on stealth R&D being done by the unwitting customer is an unacceptable practice.
Cynicism notwithstanding, I think the NR is a design icon and I'm always glad to set eyes on it. And what a sweet sound - does anyone know what crank timing was used?
How many people did Honda 'rip off' with the NR? Not many, and none of them poor.
I think these come from a time when Honda was far more adventurous than they are now. I can't see them producing anything as ground-breaking at the moment (although I do like the current evolution of the Blade), and the RC shows what happens when the engineers get it right.
Maybe its no coincidence that these bikes and such were developed in the era when Soichiro Honda (and people in the company of his mould) was still alive and still had involvement in the company?
That describes every major Honda release ever.
The recent double clutch bollocks comes to mind.
I remember a few years ago someone found a laverda SFC 750 in a box, that'd never been open.