The Slug & Z13 together!

The fastest FFs Malcolm Newell ever built, together in their new home in East Anglia.
In yellow, the rear-engined GPz1100-powered 'Slug'. In white, the Z13 Quasar which has been roofless for a couple of decades now. Compare and contrast with other photos of both machines here on bikeweb. Both were built in the 1980s and both are fitted with Bob Tait's hub centre steering system.
Sadly, neither is in running order at present, but it should not take too much work to get them both going again. PNB
Photo: © Paul Blezard 2017

The Slug & Z13 together!

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'Thirteen' has joined 'Sev'?

Is the "thirteen" actually roofless now, Like the "SEV"? Or are they possibly being mixed up? Obviously I don't keep up with the various non-functioning FFs and I'd lost track of the "Thirteen" the Quasar-bodied Z13000 Phazar, but I know Mark Crowson has the roofless "SEV", the other Z1300 Phazar that Malcolm modelled on a sheeps skull. Mark brought it back from Oz after it had had a frontal collision and last time I talked to him he was trying to find a Tait front end to replace the damaged unit fitted. So, just out of curiosity, who has the Thirteen now? As it's living with the Slug I'd guess it was Tudor, or has that moved on too?

Both the Z1300-powered Phazars were well beyond anything resembling normalacy, my experience of the Thirteen was limited to a 'demonstration' outing at Goodwood during a Moto Vechia track day, Malcome's track prpearation included boiling out the front brakes and half an inch of free play on the twist grip but it accelerated fast enough to go light on the slight rise onto the main staight, dropping a Laverda Jota for dead when I changed into fifth - shortly before the speedo went off the clock. Unfortunately the lack of front brakes moderated the lap times but I observed that it was easy to power-slide it out of the chicane - which was handy as I'd run out of ground clearance and the armco was looming a bit.

I did a few more road miles in the SEV - so called because SEV, the French vehicle lighting company displayed it on one of their show stands, suitably decalled. SEV owned Cibie who made the excellent 5" headlights used on many FFs, including some Quasars and the Voyagers. The SEV had an interesting tendancy to fishtail gently at around 150mph which we concluded was an aerodynamic issue caused by the lack of tail. You could hold the steering column where it entered the bodywork and feel no movement, but still it fishtailed... At lower speeds it was a brute. It may have damaged it's HCS in a frontal collision but I doubt if whatever it hit is still around...

The difference between Malcome's and my approach to FF design was pretty stark - He was interested in doing something extraordinary, Going beyond the edge of known space. I was attempting to do something really quite ordinary, better. In the process we had some truely great street races.

Z13 roofless for more than 23 years.

As I said, the Z13 has been roofless for decades, as can be seen from the photo of it in this same folder which I took of Tudor and Suzy on board way back in 1994, by which time it had already been roofless for several years. See here:
Tudor still owns both of these machines, but has recently moved house. PNB


Oh right. Another 'Targa' Quasar conversion like Verdens (RIP). Like I said, I Don't keep up with non-functioning FFs - there are so many and it's not like any of it matters any more. Verdens targa conversion was a bit of a disaster, the loss of stiffness in the chassis made it almost unusable. How was it with the Thirteen? It wasn't exactly an everyday ride originally!

Roof removal: effects on handling

I confess I'm puzzled by your comments on the 'disastrous' effects of removing the roof from Mark Verden's Quasar, since the frame rails remained firmly in place, as can be seen in this photo taken during the Top Gear shoot at Wroughton,, here:
I certainly didn't detect any loss of stiffness when I took it for a spin, albeit a gentle ride in town rather than an open road or track thrash.
I only ever rode the Z13 with the roof intact, but if I recall correctly, it never actually had any frame rails in the first place, just fibre glass, unlike the original Quasars.
FWIW, to me, the word 'Targa' implies a roof that can be removed, but also carried on board and put back whenever required or desired.
As seen not only in Porsche 911s but also the Fiat X1/9.
I thought the roof removals on the Verden Quasar and the Z13 were both once-and-for-ever deals...but Tudor may yet prove me wrong about the Z13 – see below!PNB
Update 9/8/2017: I've just learned from Bob Winsper, on the Facebook FF group, that Mark Verden rashly cut the roof frame tubes out of his Quasar later, and that's when it all went pear-shaped, so to speak...PNB

Roof Removal on the Z13

I can confirm the Z13 roof had been chopped out before I got it but I have still got the bits and intend to put them back in in Targa Style. They came out as two sawn sections and the remaining raw edges were bondo-ed to tidy them up. The reason for this was the guy I bought the bike off in Basingstoke was quite tall and fed up with smashing his helmet against the roof.I have a short body so it should be ok with a thin helmet. A decent fit and location posts would get back most of the stiffness and reinforcement of the albeit only fibreglass structure especially in compression. It would also be easy to bond in some metal rails. I never felt aware of much in the way of flex whilst I was riding it, though I didn't push it that hard even on the "Rich Bastards" track day at Oulton Park, when the ground clearance on both sides was regularly challenged.However it used to rattle like shit over harsh surfaces.
What I was aware of was a small crack developing in the petrol tank structure which may have begun as the result of flexing and weld quality. A continuous roof may have reduced this.
All this talk and review of the pics have reminded me of what an amazing machine it was, so I am going to do more restoration and development on it in combination with my Stoopidboy project.It will rise again but don't hold your breath as I only have one pair on hands and many sets of projects.I still have the luxury ashtray I intended fitting!