Building the Varnator Streamliner HPV

Building The Varnator Streamliner

Brain Romano raced the Rotator Frankenstein at the WHPSC races in Battle Mountain, in various configurations, and decided he wanted to go faster. This page shows the construction of the Varna clone that Brian Romano and Steve Delaire were building for Battle Mountain 2005, and then Jason Erickson purchased and finished for Battle Mountain 2007.
Pictures and text by Brian Romano

Here are some photos of the new Varna-tator Varna clone. The frame is chrome moly steel but is pretty light. The frame is quite simple and it will be possible to remove it from the body for training purposes. The transmission is a nexus seven and the bike is the usual front drive layout. Steve Delaire built this bike very simple and the frame is of course the usual Rotator quality craftsmanship.

The frame by itself very short and is capable of qualifying for a USCF time trial with the upright guys. I plan to take it out there and see what I can do with it just for fun. The bike with the body mounted may be able to run in some events that do not have any sharp corners as well as being capable of decent speeds on SR305. 
When I saw the Vector trike streamliner pull up in front of the mall near my home in Santa Rosa at the
age of nine years old I never would have thought that I would be racing the same streamlined bikes 27 years later. The owner of the Vector let me sit
inside it, I guess it made an impression.
Close up up the Shimano Nexus 7 speed hub. 

You can click on all of these pictures for a higher resolution view.

 Close up of the giant mid-drive / step up gear.
A very simple rear end completes the bike.
This streamliner was built from Joe Kochinowski's Varna "varnowski" molds. Steve and I built the body in a hand lay up. Steve taught me how to work with carbon for the first time when we built this body. 
The bike frame and wheel are being narrowed in the rear end at this time. The frame will sit back about three more inches when it's done. I sat in the mold once and it seemed cavernous. There was obviously
plenty of room inside with arms outstretched in a forward position. 
 The chance to train on this and then race it is a really exciting idea to me. There may be plans for a more advanced thin skinned body if we can ever get
those molds again. 
The Varna shell is molded in 2 parts. Top half and Bottom half. Here, the bike sits in the  bottom of the molded shell.
The shell is constructed of four layers of carbon lined with two layers of Kevlar. The Kevlar acts as a liner to protect the rider from carbon shards in an impact.
4/5/05
I am also interested in a set of Simpson harnesses from a racecar if I can make that work somehow.

The rear end has been narrowed and a short axle monocoque solid disk rear wheel has been added.

The rear end of this frame is now very narrow.



The rear tire now reaches as deep into the fairing as possible with plenty of room on either side.
The rear wheel appears to sit in the fairing by itself due to the extremely low frame. This frame is a low rider for sure!!

The frame now sits back several inches from where it was previously.

Unfortunately, Brian never made it to Battle Mountain 2005, and sold all his streamliners. Fast forward to 2007, when Jason Erickson purchases the Varnator and finishes the work that Steve and Brian started.

This next section contains pictures and text by Jason Erickson

The first thing I did when I got the bike was adapt it to my trainer. I added the Teflon chain guide as a temporary fix to chain derailments. I also added the seat, with Duct tape of course.
Test fitting the Bike. By this time I trimmed the two halves.
 
Notice anything different? This is a 24 inch frame that more closely copies the Varna. I was trying to decide which chassis would be less work to get operational.

Looks like the original chassis works out better.
 

Exploring Q-factor. In order to fit my large feet into the bike, I used the following combination of parts. The cranks Steve/Brian used are re-tapped old road cranks and are slightly less then 150mm. They are narrower than euro-lite black widows. I also ended up swapping the original 110 Shimano bottom bracket for a Ritchey 107. And I purchased some shoes 1 size too small.
 
Trying to get reference points to align the frame to the fairing.
Test fitting. Much time was spent cutting sanding and test fitting. I am still not happy with the fit.
Do I fit?
Bonding the joggle which aligns the top and bottom halves of the fairing.

Later I "unbonded" the joggle.

Adding the rear mount, very early in the morning before driving to the 2007 Casa Grande 1 hour TT event at the Nissan test track.

The CG event had already started...

See pictures of Jason at the CG event event at the above link.

Home from Casa Grande.
Before Battle Mountain 2007 I broke off the seam and added a few more layers to the joggle with a cheap venture vacuum pump. The event had already started...

I also added reinforcements and a couple of plies to the seat. The seat was a broken and delaminated seat from UNR that was very dry wet layup.

I changed the gearing for Battle Mountain which luckily worked with chain guides I had made up for V-Clone, then I hacked together some gear charts.


Before Battle Mountain, this is the only method I could find for the cockpit with two brakes and not hitting the top of the fairing. The cable lines are really smooth.
 
This pictures is from a video of my run at Battle Mountain 2007.

Now on Youtube under WHPSC07. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBdfBqE70

If anybody has photos from Battle Mountain they would like to share email me at:
jerickson01 AT gmail  com

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