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20175/1

3-Wheeler Photo Update III

The 3-wheeler has hit a bit of a hiatus recently.

Not because Haruyama-san hasn’t been working on it and not because I haven’t been following its progress; Haruyama-san has been bashing aluminium sheet whenever he gets a spare moment and I have been out at his workshop almost every weekend. The hold-up has been the centre side-panel, which needs to incorporate the air inlet for cooling the rear-mounted engine and is a convoluted 3-dimensional shape which folds back in on itself – difficult to hammer out from a flat sheet.

We are now on the third and probably final iteration, although nothing is guaranteed with Haruyama-san. The first looked like this:

This version got quite advanced, including flanges for the adjacent panels rolled out on this machine, another treasure in Haruyama-san’s collection. He tells me it is at least 80 years old.

The first iteration was close in form to the image we are looking for but a bit gooey overall. I had told Haruyama-san how I thought it could be improved, but next time I visited he had scrapped it and started on the second iteration, on the other side of the chassis:

This version had a better sized intake and Haruyama-san had come up with the idea of completing the inner surface of the intake with an insert. He was mocking that up in cardboard:

The overall panel still looked a bit off and the aluminium had started to split in the most difficult areas.

So, when I went back on Sunday he was back working on a completely new panel on the left side again. Now it is really starting to look the business.

The overall surfacing is much cleaner, the intake is enlarged and the insert is in place and can be used to adjust the airflow to the cylinder block.

It still needs a lot more work and will have to be adjusted in plan shape to match the front and rear panels, but that will have to wait until they are in place.

Watch this space.

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