The IoW FF: Left Hand Side

A blurry snap-scan of the original colour print photo of the left hand side of the Isle of Wight FF, with the seat off to reveal the twin carburettors of the Yamaha engine. It was probably an XS650 twin – that had to be kick-started! The single-sided steering system is from a Reliant 3-wheeler. The fuel tank is above the rear wheel and rear light lens looks as if it came from a Honda CX500. PNB
Photo: © Paul Blezard

The IoW FF: Left Hand Side

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It would be interesting to see more of the front end, particularly the wheel, disc and steering arrangement. Is this the only example of the Reliant single-arm system being used on an FF? What did you think of the steering/suspension performance in action?

The Reliant system is a good example of the way steel is not only stronger then you think, it's stronger than you can imagine. It seems incredible that this crude and assymetrical system can possibly keep the front wheel aligned on a PTW, let alone a car. But it obviously does. Very interesting footage of 'the Stig' thrashing a Reliant on Top Gear, very good stability under braking - of course he ultimately threw it on it's roof.

That Reliant steering system

These are the best 3 photos I have of the beast. The head-on shot of the bike and its creator gives another view of the steering system. I'm pretty sure this is the only FF with Reliant steering! Definitely looks like a hub front brake though, rather than a disc. I really can't remember very much at all about what it was like to ride, apart from the fact that it was very cramped and too vertical! PNB


I've never heard of anyone using a Reliant front end either (in an FF). Must have worked pretty well through, otherwise you'd have noticed. Building the deeply offset wheel would have been the challenge.