Newsletter - 2007 Archive

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Ray's Custom Mud Flap
by Raymond Parker

Some weather watchers are predicting rain for the 2007. Better think about putting a good mud flap on your fender. Ray Parker has a few thoughts on the matter. See his own web pages [Eric F]:

How to make a "safety" mud-flap
(in Ray's Velo Garage Section)

January 5, 2007

Some additional thoughts by Harold Bridge:

Ray has produced a good looking mud flap. One thing I have learned about these things is that if they are at all flexible they are only suitable for use with a slick tyre. When I have tried to use a flexible mudflap with my Avocet Cross tyres the end of the flap gets caught in the tread pattern and gets dragged up under the mudguard.

In 1980 when doing tool and facility design for Boeing's 767/757 program we had to design a trolley for moving a wing section around the plant. They sent us a humungous outline of the wing section drawn on 8 mil mylar. Once we had plotted the curve from the drawing the sheet of mylar was put out with the garbage. I could see many uses for it, including making mudflaps. The material has a grain and is very flexible in one direction, but not in the other. By gluing 2 pieces together at rightangles to each other I had a good base for a mudflap. I just stuck a strip of red reflective tape down the centre of the mylar.

HNY folks.

January 5, 2007

And one more comment from Ray...

Allow me an addendum to the addendum:

The thickness of the "flexible" product I have recommended for the mud flap (further reinforced by the reflective tape)is such that the risk of it being sucked under the mudguard – by any tyre – is infinitesimally small to nonexistent.

If the flap is made to my length specification, this also puts the end nearest the road about 3 inches from the tyre on your average 700c wheel, with minimal-clearance mudguards.

I have about 15,000 kms field-testing on one of these in all conditions, without incident.

I know exactly what ‘Arold is on about: I used to run Avocet Cross tyres and experienced the flap-suck phenomenon with an inferior prototype.

To recap: The carpet-runner vinyl is a robust, fairly thick material, ideal for flap-making, not prone to flapping – a characteristic that will please all but worrying weight-weenies.


January 10, 2007