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Frame flex countered by Yamaha

2011-03-23 08:59

GREATER CONTROL: Yamaha’s Power Beam controls forces exerted on your bike’s frame by damping the chassis, not only wheel stroke. Very much like a dual-suspension mountain bike’s rear damper.

Although alloy frames may appear strong when in hand, the forces exerted at speed over touch terrain can easily overwhelm suspensions systems, causing flex and depreciating a biker's riding experience.

Engineers at Yamaha have been studying the effects of frame flex and found that excess levels of structural integrity render a bike that is not communicative enough at the limit whilst too much flex leave riders floundering.


In an attempt to find the golden mean with regards to frame flex, Yamaha’s research and development team has produced the Power Beam – a frame damper designed to provide the most comfortable and stable ride so far possible on two-wheels.

The Power Beam operates on a simple dampening concept, converting compression energy into heat – which is dissipated.

Its most interesting feature is its positioning as a chassis damper, not a suspension support as prescribed by traditional mechanical engineering principles. It shadows the technology used in dual-suspension mountain bikes, where the secondary damper often part of frame.

Yamaha is expected to roll out its Power Beam frame damper on various models in the fullness of time, yet for now the new technology will debut with the company’s T-Max scooter range instead of its headline superbikes.

It may appear to be a peculiar marketing strategy yet the T-Max scooters are hugely popular and their owners rampant customisers - something Yamaha is keen to monetise with its new Power Beam, an aftermarket upgrade.

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