This project comes to us from Melissa Howard who is a Mom, Blogger, and photographer. This project nicely demonstrates how real-life geodes are formed in igneous and sedimentary rock. It also demonstrates super-saturated solutions and shows a nice variety of crystal shapes and formations.
YOU WILL NEED:
a variety of soluble solids: table salt, rock salt, sugar, baking soda, Epsom salts, sea salt, borax, or cream of tartar
small heat proof containers (coffee cups work well)
egg cartons and wax paper or mini-muffin tins
WHAT TO DO:
Crack the eggs for this project as close to the narrow end as possible. This preserves more egg to use as a container for the solution.
Clean the eggshells using hot water. The hot water cooks the lining and allows you to pull the skin (egg membrane) out of the inside of the egg using your fingers. Make sure to remove all the egg membrane, if any membrane stays inside the shell it is possible that your eggshell will grow mold and your crystals will turn black.
Use an egg carton lined with waxed paper or mini-muffin tins to hold the eggs upright.
Use a saucepan to heat the water to boiling. .
Pour half a cup to a cup of water into your heatproof container. If you poured half a cup of water into the container, add about a ¼ cup of solid to the water. Stir it until it dissolves. Likewise if you used a cup of water, add about ½ a cup of solid to the water. You wanted to add about half again the volume of the water as a solid to the mixture. When the initial amount of solid is dissolved continue adding small amounts of the solid until the water is super-saturated. Super-saturated simply means the water has absorbed all it is able to absorb and any solid you add will not dissolve.
Add food coloring.
Carefully pour your solution into the eggshell, filling it as full as possible without over-flowing it or causing it to tip.
Find a safe place to put your shells while the water evaporates. Crystals will form inside the eggshells as the water evaporates.
HOW DOES IT WORK? Dissolving the crystals in hot water created what is called a “super-saturated solution.” This basically means that the salts took advantage of the energy of the hot water to help them dissolve until there was no more space between molecules in the solution. As the solution cooled, the water lost its energy and the crystals are forced from the solution to become a solid again. Since this happens slowly along with the evaporation, the crystals have time to grow larger than they were when the experiment started. Natural geodes in rock are form in much the same way as mineralized water seeps into air pockets in rock. This is also how rock candy crystals are formed.
Looking for the right motorcycle for your little ones? Well, Suzuki has got your back. The Japanese bikemaker has launched the DR-Z50 mini-bike in India at a price of Rs 2.55 lakh (ex-showroom New Delhi).
Aimed at young riders looking to hone their riding skills.
The DR-Z50 sports a motocross-like design.
Will be available at select Suzuki dealerships.
Planning to introduce your young ones to the world of motorcycling? Suzuki has got you covered. The Japanese company has launched the DR-Z50 mini-bike in India for Rs 2.55 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).
Motorcycles can be intimidating for some, especially for young novice riders. The Suzuki’s DR-Z50 is designed to counter this exact problem. Sporting an MX-style design, the DR-Z50 boasts of compact dimensions – 1320mmx580mmx790mm (length x width x height) – a seat height of just 560mm and a kerb weight is 54kg, which should help young riders gain the skills required to be fast yet safe on two wheels.
Powering the bike is a 49cc, single-cylinder engine equipped with a 3-speed gearbox with an automatic clutch. It gets long-travel upside down forks at the front and an oil-damped coil spring monoshock at the rear. In addition to this, it sports 10-inch wheels shod with knobby tyres. Braking is via drum units on both ends.
The DR-Z50 is offered via the CBU route, which should explain the high price tag. While it doesn’t have any direct rivals, its closest competitor is the Kawasaki KLX 110, which is priced at Rs 2.99 lakh (ex-showroom).
The motorcycle packs a really mean-looking headlight cowl that doubles up as a hand guard too
Yamaha’s design language has always been quite aggressive. There are complex, angular lines melding into sleek bodywork in many of its motorcycles. Case in point is the new Yamaha MT range. While a lot of us enthusiasts are eagerly waiting for the launch of the MT-15 in India, check out this sweet mod job from Thailand:
They seem to have used a custom cowl above the headlamp whose shape is similar to that of a buffalo’s horns. It doubles up as protection for the knuckles too, just like the Yamaha Ray ZR Street Rally edition’s handlebar cowl. Conventional mirrors will come in the way of the feral look, so they’ve opted for bar-end units, which frankly further accentuates the bike’s look! Plus there are body-coloured full-length engine guards with a little bit of carbon fibre garnishing too. The carbon fibre finish is there on the fuel tank too, but we aren’t sure if they’re real or just for aesthetics. Either way, they look cool.
Also Read: Yamaha MT-15 Vs KTM 125 Duke Vs Bajaj NS 200: Spec Comparison
Complementing the front is the sleek rear which reminds us of the old-gen MT-09’s tail section. They’ve essentially eliminated all the ‘unnecessary’ bits like the indicators, fender and licence plate assembly. Other than that the motorcycle appears to be stock. The Thai-spec MT-15 comes with inverted forks up front with gold finish, and an aluminium swingarm whereas the India-bound model makes do with conventional forks and a box-section swingarm. Powering the bike is a R15 v3.0-derived 155cc single-cylinder liquid-cooled engine with VVA (Variable Valve Actuation). It generates 19.3PS at 10,000rpm and 14.7Nm at 8500rpm, working alongside a 6-speed with assist and slipper clutch.
Yamaha will be launching the MT-15 on March 15, and we believe the motorcycle would be priced around Rs 1.2 lakh
Hero ZIR 150 is expected to be priced around INR 85,000 in India (ex-showroom). Power source for the Hero ZIR will be a 157 cc single-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine coupled with a CVT. This engine is well capable of churning out 13.9 bhp of peak power at 8,500 rpm and 12.7 Nm of peak torque at 7,000 rpm.
New RC125 is expected to be priced around INR 1.45 lakh in India (ex-showroom). KTM RC 125 is expected to launch in India by the end of 2019. KTM RC125 is available in 0ne colour – Orange with White.
This RC uses a 124.7 cc single cylinder, 4-stroke liquid cooled engine which churns out 11 kW (14. 75 HP) @ 9500 RPM and 11.8 NM of torque @8000 RPM.
It is a liquid cooled unit with continuous circulation of cooling liquid with a water pump.
Although the torque is placed high up the rev range, the 33 mm throttle body and the precise fuel injection, amplifies the single cylinder nature of the motorcycle and delivers instant low-down torque.
He bike only weighs 135 kg (dry), so even the 11 Nm of torque feels sufficient enough for corners as well as traffic.
The top end of the bike is also strong due to the DOHC setup and 4-valves, which allow the engine to perform at its best for long.
Triumph Street Triple RS is priced at Rs. 11.13 lakh in India (ex-showroom). Triumph Street Triple RS is available in 2 different colours – Silver, Black.
It comes powered by a 765cc engine producing 123 PS at 11700 rpm and 77 Nm at 10800 rpm. The engine comes mated to a 6-speed gearbox while Triumph offers premium components like Brembo brakes and Show suspension for even better ride quality.
This article was originally published on Cycle World
Are you looking to transition to two wheels but feel a bit intimidated by the complexity of shifting? You’re in luck. Even though the overwhelming majority of motorcycles today use manual transmissions, there’s a growing segment of bikes that don’t require any shifting or clutch operation by the rider. And, no, they’re not scooters.
Yes, we’ve been down this road before: back in 2006, Yamaha’s FJR1300AE/AS model had a semi-auto clutch with electronic shifting, while a few years ago, Aprilia’s Mana 850 GT came with a CVT transmission with the option of either full-auto or manual shift. Of course Honda was already doing its Hondamatic thing on the CB750A way back in the 1970s, and Ridley Motorcycle had its three-quarter scale V-twin Speedster and Auto-Glide cruisers with CVT automatic transmissions. But today, it’s all (or mostly) DCT.
The DCT (dual clutch transmission) still uses clutches, but ditches the clutch lever—the bike’s onboard computer does the shifting for you (though you can usually manually override the computer shift via handlebar-mounted switches). We hear die-hards scoffing, but the net result is a smoother shift, more stable launches, and better fuel economy.
Lastly, we should mention that the only truly automatic bikes on the road today are electric motorcycles with a single speed or gear set controlled by an electrical current flowing through the electric motor (instead of mechanical energy acting on many gears). But we’ll sort the electric bikes out there in an upcoming article.
In North America, Honda is leading the charge in the automatic arena, and it has a diverse group to choose from—everything from ADVs to cruisers to touring bikes, and, yes, a maxi (or mega) scooter. Flip through for a list of motorcycles that you don’t have to shift.
The 2019 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports model brings more robust suspension, a bigger tank, and other upgrades, and also is available with DCT.
Honda Africa Twin DCT/Africa Twin Adventure Sports
Adventurers or touring riders looking for a little less stress on the next expedition might want to check out Honda’s ADV machines, both powered by a 998cc, SOHC, eight-valve, parallel-twin engine. You’ll find automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) as an option on the base-model Africa Twin as well as the more premium Africa Twin Adventure Sports trim, which gets a bigger fuel tank and upgraded suspension. Big Red touts “consistent, rapid, seamless gear changes” from the now-familiar system, which deploys two clutches—one for start-up and first, third, and fifth gears, the other for second, fourth, and sixth—each independently controlled by its own circuit. You can also swap between three modes; Manual for when you want to shift (with the handlebar triggers), Automatic Drive mode for longer hauls, or Automatic Sport when you want to wick it up in the canyons. Off-road functionality gets a boost with the addition of a G switch, which reduces clutch slip during gear changes. The Africa Twin DCT retails for $14,399, while the up-spec Adventure Sports rings in at $15,899.
This 2018 Honda CTX700N DCT claims to be a cruiser, but you can be the final judge of that.
Honda CTX700N DCT/CTX700 DCT
With its unconventional styling and utilitarian bent, it should probably come as no surprise that Honda’s CTX700 DCT models share the six-speed automatic dual-clutch transmission with another offbeat Honda model, the NM4 Vultus. Laugh all you want though; the easygoing, 670cc parallel-twin engine and DCT transmission make the CTX about as easy to ride as any middleweight bike you can think of. The DCT system allows riders to go fully automatic, or shift manually using thumb paddles on the left handgrip. Honda calls the CTX700N a “modern cruiser,” but then that’s Honda for you; about the only thing cruisery about it is the relaxed riding position. The ’N is the naked version, while the straight 700 is ID’d by its protective fairing. While it’s not offered in Honda’s 2019 cruiser lineup, you can probably still find a new 2018 CTX700N model for its original $7,399 MSRP.
The 2019 Honda Gold Wing was once known as the F6B. The Gold Wing Tour carries the top trunk these days.
Honda Gold Wing/Gold Wing Tour DCT
The flagship Honda Gold Wing got a much-needed reimagining last year as well as a new naming convention. In addition to the cosmetic reconstruction and a heap of new tech, this iconic heavyweight tourer also received a dual-clutch transmission (DCT) option and a seven-speed one at that (the seventh gear is overdrive). On a bike with this much mass, that can only be a good thing. The Wings share a common engine and chassis platform, but the more naked of the two is considered the base model GL1800 Gold Wing (formerly known as the F6B), while as a Tour variation gets the top box (there’s also a DCT/airbag option). The 2019 base model Gold Wing rings in at $25,000.
Honda’s “crossover” bike, the 2019 NC750X positions itself as a good choice for commuters and weekend warriors, with DCT available to ease the stress of urban runs.
Honda NC750X DCT
Crossovers are big in the car world, so why not aim for the same on two wheels? On its website, Honda tags the NC750X as one bike to “do it all” and you could argue that mission gets easier with a liquid-cooled, two-cylinder, 745cc engine that has available selectable torque control as well as the automatic DCT option, allowing for fully auto operation or manual shifting. With a neutral, semi-upright riding position, a tallish windscreen, integrated storage, and fairly low center of gravity, the NC750X ticks enough boxes for riders looking to commute during the week yet still have enough punch for weekend bombing runs or sporty canyon duty. The engine has been tweaked and styling smartened up since the bike’s introduction as a 700 years ago; the NC750X is looking fully formed these days. Pricing is yet to be announced for 2019, but we’d expect it to come in around $9K for the DCT version.
The radical Honda NM4 isn’t officially listed as a 2019 model, but we’d bet it’ll be back.
The Honda NM4 is kind of an unclassifiable freak. Your eyes will clearly tell you this is no conventional motorcycle, but would it be fair to call it a maxi-scooter? Even the Honda catalog agrees that the radical NM4 “is all about riding a bike that doesn’t look like it came out of someone else’s cookie-cutter idea.” The motivational chops come in the form of a 670cc fuel-injected parallel-twin engine designed for a wide power spread and easy automatic operation thanks to that ubiquitous DCT transmission. Those roomy saddlebags are integrated, as is the windscreen and flip-down passenger seat, which is probably why Honda lists this model under its Touring category. The NM4 doesn’t look to have made Honda’s 2019 lineup, but it is listed as an available 2018 model for a hefty $11,299. Futuristic styling and advanced design don’t come cheap, but you can rest easy knowing you won’t look like anyone else on the road.
KTM’s Freeride E-XC is the first electric dirt bike from a major motorcycle manufacturer. Plus, single-speed transmission.
KTM Freeride E-XC
Electric, yes, but, hey, it’s not a Honda. We’re also mentioning the KTM Freeride E-XC because dirt riders need options in the automatic category, don’t they? Not only that, but the Freeride E-XC is the first electric off-road motorcycle from a mainstream motorcycle brand, and it’s propelled by KTM’s E-Ride technology. The E-XC may look like a straight-up dirt bike, but its electric motor also comes with a single-speed transmission so you can focus on the single-track rather than the gear you’re in. On the down side, range is pretty sparse and the sticker price of $8,299 (for the 2018 model) is a hefty bit of coin for a playbike; extra PowerPacks will set you back another $3,600. But if you consider the cost of gas, fluids, and other maintenance items you’ll go through in a season with an internal combustion bike, it’ll probably work out to be close in total price.
For 2019, all Zero motorcycles received better range, improved charging, and an increased top speed. Plus, still no clutch to worry about.
Again we’re including an electric bike here, but then all Zero motorcycles come with a single-speed transmission that doesn’t require shifting. And because Zeros have been recently used in rider training scenarios around the country, we know they’re not intimidating but extremely user-friendly. The top-of-the-range Zero DS and DSR are dual-sports, which means you’ll be as comfortable riding off-road as on the street, and for 2019 the entire Zero Motorcycles lineup received a host of upgrades, including better range, improved charging, and a higher top speed. Those are all good things in our book, regardless of the absence of a clutch lever. A short-range base-model FX can be had for under $9 grand, while the up-spec DSR will run you $16,495.
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Not really a scooter, not quite a full-fledged motorcycle, just a whole lot of fun in a non-intimidating package
Honda Super Cub 125
Yes, the new Super Cub has a step-through design, but Honda wanted to be clear that it didn’t see the machine as a scooter so it listed the bike as a Motorcycle on its website. After all, motorcycles require a manual or semi-automatic transmission, while scooters are all automatic. But regardless of how you categorize it, c’mon now, it’s pretty cool. With its small, efficient engine, wallet-friendly price, and vintage styling, the 2019 Honda Super Cub C125 ABS may be the best way for some beginner types to start off on a motorcycle. At its heart is a fuel-injected, air-cooled, single-cylinder engine propelling a wet weight of just 240 pounds with standard ABS. Which makes it an ideal setup for commuters too. And because it’s semi-automatic, with a centrifugal clutch (no clutch lever, but you still have to select the gear) that makes it easy on new riders while still letting veterans get a little bit looser (but not by much). The $3,600 price tag might seem a bit steep for a beginner bike, but it still looks like a winner to us.
The next generation Maruti Alto could feature a 660cc petrol engine with fuel efficiency of over 30 kmpl
The Maruti Alto is among the most recognized names in the Indian auto market. The successor of the Maruti 800, the original people’s mover in India, is currently in its second generation and has been available in both 800cc and 1000cc formats. Now, the company is developing the third generation of the Maruti Alto, which will be launched around the end of this year.
The current Maruti Alto will be discontinued by October this year. This will be because of its inability to meet the advanced safety norms that will be released later this year. Spied recently for the first time ever, the new Alto will look a lot different than the current version. Its design will be based on the Future S concept model that was presented at the last year’s Auto Expo.
The new Maruti Alto will have an SUV-like design that will help it compete with the Renault Kwid. Going by the Future-S concept, the new Alto will have several muscular design features and a high ground clearance. The SUV-styled hatchback will also look a lot more modern than the current version.
However, the new Maruti Alto will retain its basic qualities. It will continue to have small dimensions and will be launched at an attractive price. It will be based on the company’s lightweight Heartect platform that will help it comply with the new safety standards. Other than this, the car will also offer a driver-side airbag, ABS with EBD and rear parking sensors on all the variants.
On the inside, the new Maruti Alto will be more spacious and will have a 7.0-inch SmartPlay Studio touchscreen infotainment unit that will offer Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Even the cabin will have a more modern look and the driver will enjoy a commanding view of the road due to a high seating. The new platform should lead to a significant increase in the width of the new car, which means the rear seat will be finally able to accommodate three passengers.
Not much is known about the engine options but the 796cc three-cylinder engine seems to be on its way out. Instead, the company could offer a 660cc motor in the new Maruti Alto. This engine will be as powerful as the outgoing engine but will offer a much higher fuel efficiency. We expect the bigger 1.0-litre engine, which is available with a 5-speed manual and an AMT, to continue.
Royal Touch Legend 125 is priced at Rs. 50,375 (Ex-showroom Delhi). Royal Touch Legend 125 is a Commuter Bike class. It is powered by Single Cylinder 4 Stroke. Fuel economy of Royal Touch Legend 125 is in city.