Tinkering School

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Day Three - Tuesday Stands for Test Track


Should you wake up one day and find yourself mysteriously transported to a breakfast table somewhere in Northern California, one clue that you are at Tinkering School may be the abundance of knife-wielding children.IMG 9445

There's a mere three work hours until we head to the track, so everyone is eager to get back to work in the barn. Griffin stabilizes the Nooi chariot hitch. IMG 9448

Lauren works on the Kablooi wheel mounts (with rakish caster angle). IMG 9458

Harry measures the post length for the Kablooi hitch. IMG 9460

Liora and Eloise try another variation on their flexible hitch bar design for the Piki chariot. IMG 9480

Noah takes Liora for a test ride through the barn on the Piki chariot. IMG 9492

And out into the world, down the road to the chicken coop! IMG 9511

Harry lays in the elbow grease and hacksaws through the Kablooi hitch bolt. IMG 9565

Serena gives Griffin a hand as he attaches the (ill-fated) back rest to the Nooi chariot. IMG 9576

Brigid and Griffin carry the Nooi prototype down to the asphalt flats by the chicken coop for testing. IMG 9595

Flat out flabbergasted by the (minor) destruction of the Nooi chariot during testing, Brigid hangs on to the inner tube for comfort. IMG 9612

Lauren (the indefatigable) employs clamps enthusiastically. IMG 9614

Harry's chair continues to serve him well. IMG 9630

Liora's mastery of the chop saw is visible in the precision of her cuts and the confidence with which she announces "ready to cut!" IMG 9634

Lorena says that Mori looks a little like a bandit from the hills of Venezuela. IMG 9647

Adam, Josh, and Emma diagnose a Panda steering problem. IMG 9663

"Where is that scraping sound coming from?" IMG 9665

We all arrive at the kitchen hungry and happy to see such a delicious spread. IMG 9675 X

Enjoy the sleek lines of the Kablooi chariot. IMG 9680

Piki team mates Eloise and Liora put the final, final, touches on their hitch bar mounting bracket. IMG 9683

After being stripped down to bare bones, the Nooi chariot is up on blocks and getting a full re-build in the hour before we load up for the trip to the test track. IMG 9695

A loaded trailer is just an excuse to ride down on the outside of the truck as we head to the track for testing. IMG 9701

Then, much fooling around commences as the teams try their chariots for the first time on good smooth paving. IMG 9708

With all the chariots rolling, it's time to line up for the first official test laps! IMG 9730

With words of advice from Lauren, Mori takes the first leg of the race with Harry riding in the chariot. IMG 9733

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Banner flying, Noah and Liora take the Piki (the very best team according to Liora, who is up late after her adventures tonight helping Serena and I write the blog) chariot out on it's first race lap. IMG 9753

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Then, it's Josh and Emma's (Panda) turn to join the try a test lap. IMG 9776

Griffin and Brigid (Nooi) take a lap on our asphalt hippodrome. IMG 9787

Griffin pulls hard as he and Brigid cross the finish line. IMG 9803

Then it's time for real racing. In the first heat, Mori gets up on the pedals for a jack-rabbit start. The Kablooi set the time to beat with 01:53. IMG 9811

And Lauren takes over for the second lap. IMG 9817

Noah and Eloise (Piki) at the start line. IMG 9830

Noah picked up Liora at the lap turn and brings her across the finish line. IMG 9852 X

Emma and Josh carry speed across the finish line. IMG 9894

Griffin and Zachary take off on the newly re-built Nooi chariot. IMG 9904

And then execute a perfect relay transition as Brigid leaps on board the moving chariot. IMG 9920

"He put a lot of heart into that run," spectators will later say about Griffin's spectacular effort. IMG 9932

Liora, native of Istanbul, checks to see if she still remembers how to ride a bike - turns out she's a boss! IMG 9939

Between heats, Emma and her teammates decide that their chariot is just too heavy. IMG 9947

Making the first lap turn of the second heat, Mori and Harry keep up the blistering pace of their first heat. IMG 9972

And a high-speed hand-off to Lauren for the second lap. IMG 9974

Which she polishes off with a blazing run down the final straight stretch to the finish line. IMG 9989

Lauren tries to psyche out the competition by challenging Brigid to a staring contest. IMG 9994

Liora pulls into the relay turn with Noah holding down the chariot. IMG 0003

And, in a first for the race, Noah moves from the chariot to the bike and Eloise takes over in the tail seat. IMG 0007

Losing a bit of steam, Noah coasts across the finish line as Eloise goes hands-up - wheee! IMG 0018

Griffin sets up his patented power-stroke for the start and Zachary double checks the cantilevered shock absorber. IMG 0043

The axle on the Nooi started to bow upward on the start of the lap and allowed the wheels to rub on the supports necessitating a new strategy most accurately described as "get out and push." IMG 0061

Determined to complete the course and get a valid time, and with Brigid sitting this one out due to a bad shin scrape from the first heat, Griffin and Zachary swing through the relay turn and press on for another lap. IMG 0066

A heroic effort and an inspiring, but very late, finish. IMG 0070

Exhilarated after a day of amazing racing, Mori leaps on to the truck for the ride home. IMG 0107

Noah and Griffin talking smack on the parking lot rails after the truck is loaded. IMG 0116

------ Official Results ------
Piki	- Liora, Eloise, Noah
Nooi	- Griffin, Brigid, Zachary
Kablooi	- Lauren, Mori, Harry
Panda	- Emma, Josh, Adam

First Heat Results:
Kablooi - 01:53
Piki	- 01:56
Panda	- 02:08
Nooi	- 02:45

Second Heat Results:
Kablooi	- 01:53
Piki	- 01:35
Nooi	- 03:54 (running)
Panda	- DQ (chariot broke)

Kablooi - Most Consistent on the Track
Piki	- Fastest Time Overall (01:35)
Panda	- Most Changed Cart Between Rounds
Nooi	- Most Determined (running)

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