Research conducted by the Motorcycle Physics Department of the University of Western Japan in association with the All-Japan Vespa Owners and Riders Association has quantified a problem first identified by members of the All Japan Harley-Davidson Adventure Riders Club during rides in city environments. The study was published in the Journal of Motorcycle and Scooter Physical Material Endurance (JMSPME).
In a public address on the occasion of the public release of the report, Professor Neige d’Antan, the lead author of the study, sounded a warning.
“It is almost like snow melting,” said Prof. d’Antan. “The alloy changes colour, becoming glossy as the opaque components fade, before turning transparent and melting away. To put it as simply as possible, this is an ‘infection’ that causes the alloys which make up so much of the structure of modern motorcycles to degrade much more rapidly than they have previously. We have known about this quantum infection effect since the early 1920s but it has previously been seen as such a long-term problem that it has not been considered a threat.
“The quantum source of the problem itself is very simple,” she said. “Alloys are, by their very definition, composed of different metal elements bonded by Podolski-Einstein-Rosen effects. Like all metallic elements except for iron, which is at the ‘bottom’ of the elements and does not transmute into another element because it requires more energy to do so than is liberated in the reaction, over time the different elements will degrade into lower-placed elements in the Periodic Table of Elements. The ‘virus’ causes this to happen in a matter of weeks, and your bike will melt in your garage.
“This is similar to the transmutation of uranium into lead and lithium into face cream. The degradation proceeds at different rates in different elements due to the varying number of proton-electron pairs. That causes a shortage of positive neutrons, which in turn means that the chemical bonds between these elements weaken. As I said before, this has not caused noticeable difficulties except in vintage British motorcycles, in which the alloys were often not correctly mixed.
“The problem now,” she continued, “is partly due to environmental considerations. The particles carrying the metal infection are minuscule enough to be driven by sound pressure alone.
“It is possible to slow the infection by covering the alloy with a sound-proof blanket,” she said. “The lifetime of modern alloys used in motorcycle production is extremely long. It would never become a problem under normal circumstances. Measured in what we call ‘drives’, the number of times a motorcycle is taken out and used on or off the road, this lifetime well exceeds the life of other motorcycle components such as the paint. But to give you an idea of the danger posed by the ‘virus’, consider that driven by that noise pressure, it will infect other motorcycles and reduce that lifetime to well below seven per cent. Loud pipes shave drives.”
We spoke by Skype with Prof d’Antan in her office overlooking the Sea of Japan.
ADVrider: If the ‘virus’ becomes widely-spread enough, this sounds as if it could mean the end of motorcycling! Where did this ‘virus’ come from?
Prof: Well, perhaps motorcycling as we know it.
ADVrider: What do you mean?
Prof: The infection and the ‘virus’ that carries it had to come from somewhere. We have not seen anything like this since the Great Katana Dissolution of 1982, when the incompatibility of German design and Japanese technology caused hundreds of Suzuki Katanas to melt on the wharves. But that was an isolated occurrence more akin to hay fever.
We have traced this virus to a wet scrap metal market in the province of Ping-Pong in North Korea, and more specifically to a pair of alloy laboratory tongs which found their way into scrap in some fashion. Many people know that Kim Young Punk, the next ruler of North Korea, has been driving efforts to weaponize quantum effects, and it looks as if he has succeeded.
ADVrider: So what did you mean by “motorcycling as we know it”?
Prof: North Korea does not use alloys in the production of motorcycle frames, instead utilizing shape-constrained bamboo. This is naturally not affected by the ‘virus’, so North Korea could become the largest manufacturer of motorcycles in the world.
ADVrider: Professor, ah, thank you for your insights.
Prof: My pleasure, if you’ll pardon the expression. You wouldn’t have a smoke for an old Digger, would you?
ADVrider: Here you go. By the way, what do you call this ‘virus’?
Prof: In line with the naming of COVID-19, we call it APRIL-1.