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Carbon Fiber

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HEALTH
May 3, 2010 | Roy Wallack, Gear
How low can carbon go? Carbon fiber, the ultra-light, ultra-strong, ultra-shock-absorbing and ultra-expensive frame material once limited to exotic, $5,000 bikes, can now be found on dozens of road bikes retailing for around $2,000. This hot-selling category is made possible by manufacturing efficiencies in China and by pairing lower-end components with carbon frames, forks and seat posts often found on pricier machines. With sloping top tubes and taller head tubes/handlebars, these bikes are a bargain both for casual riders moving up to century rides and for serious, over-40 bike geeks looking for more upright-position comfort with no performance penalty.
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AUTOS
March 19, 2013 | By David Undercoffler
Don't say Ralph Gilles isn't competitive. Gilles is the head of Chrysler's SRT division -- the brand that recently introduced the all-new 640-horsepower Viper sports car. Shortly after the Viper was introduced, Motor Trend took it to Laguna Seca racetrack in Monterey for a head-to-head comparison with a rival 2013 Chevy Corvette ZR1. The Corvette beat the Viper and set a course record -- one previously held by an older Viper. Gilles was not pleased. After all, the Viper just got redesigned.
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NEWS
August 18, 2000 | CONNIE KOENENN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
It doesn't look revolutionary, but the new Talon Chair being introduced in the U.S. this summer in upscale contemporary furniture stores is definitely breaking barriers. It's a standard stacking chair but remarkable for being ultra-light and ultra-strong as well as fireproof, weatherproof and recyclable. That's because it's constructed of woven carbon fiber, an advanced composite best known for such uses as the body of the snazzy racing Ferrari F50.
AUTOS
March 4, 2013 | By David Undercoffler
Never one to let rivals like McLaren and Ferrari have all the fun unveiling their $1 million-plus supercars, Lamborghini brought its $3.9 million Veneno to the Geneva Motor Show. The automaker on Monday unveiled the 750-horsepower car to celebrate Lamborghini's 50th anniversary. Only three copies of the Veneno will be made. Sorry, all are spoken for. Two of the buyers live in the U.S., one of whom happens to own a Lamborghini dealership in Long Island. Photos: Highlights of the 2013 Geneva Motor Show So what do these three buyers get for their money?
BUSINESS
August 20, 1999 | From Reuters
The Justice Department's antitrust division is investigating allegations of price-fixing by makers of carbon fiber, known as graphite, used in golf clubs, tennis rackets and other goods, the government said Thursday. "The antitrust division is looking at the possibility of anti-competitive practices in the carbon fibers industry," a department spokeswoman said. Meanwhile, a Los Angeles grand jury is also investigating the industry.
BUSINESS
May 11, 1990 | CRISTINA LEE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Mitsubishi Rayon Co. Ltd. of Tokyo has created a wholly owned subsidiary in Fountain Valley to manufacture and market carbon fiber products in the United States. Mitsubishi Rayon, which is one of the top acrylic fiber manufacturers in the world, said it has acquired and combined two small Orange County chemical companies--Newport Adhesives Inc. of Fountain Valley and Newport Composites Inc. of Santa Ana--into a single firm to be called Newport Adhesives and Composites Inc.
SPORTS
July 6, 1991 | ELLIOTT ALMOND, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Craig Calfee was a sculptor and a performance artist before he knew anything about building bicycles. He worked as a crewman on sailboats in the Mediterranean Sea and the Indian Ocean, and once hitch-hiked across Africa, stowed away on a freighter and landed in South America. Then he came home to Boston and worked as a boat builder, making Olympic racing shells and kayaks with carbon fiber material.
SCIENCE
July 24, 2012 | By Jon Bardin, Los Angeles Times
2008 was a banner year for swimmers: That year, swimmers broke 105 world records in all, including 17 at a single event in Croatia. A full 79 of those 105 records were broken by racers wearing a particular suit: the Speedo LZR Racer. The suit covered the whole body from shoulder to calf and was designed to optimize body compression and hydrodynamics. Its design was informed by tests in a NASA wind tunnel and numerous advanced computational models. The advantage given to racers by the LZR Racer was so great that Japanese authorities decided to break exclusive sponsorship agreements with other companies to allow their racers to use the suits; the decision came after a coach told reporters that "if swimmers don't wear the LZR Racer, they won't be able to compete" in the Beijing Olympics.
BUSINESS
October 27, 2012 | By David Undercoffler
The car: 2013 Chevy Corvette 427 Convertible The power: 505 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque coming from a 7-liter V-8 engine routing power to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual transmission. The photos: 2013 Chevy Corvette 427 Convertible The speed: 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds on its way to a 190+ mph top speed. The price: Base price is $76,900. As tested: $91,320 The details: Recipe for the 427: Take from the Z06 one engine, driveline, rear axle, optional Magnetic Ride Control, optional carbon fiber hood and fenders, mix with ZR-1's rear spoiler and lightweight wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2 rubber.
AUTOS
March 4, 2013 | By David Undercoffler
Never one to let rivals like McLaren and Ferrari have all the fun unveiling their $1 million-plus supercars, Lamborghini brought its $3.9 million Veneno to the Geneva Motor Show. The automaker on Monday unveiled the 750-horsepower car to celebrate Lamborghini's 50th anniversary. Only three copies of the Veneno will be made. Sorry, all are spoken for. Two of the buyers live in the U.S., one of whom happens to own a Lamborghini dealership in Long Island. Photos: Highlights of the 2013 Geneva Motor Show So what do these three buyers get for their money?
AUTOS
February 12, 2013 | By David Undercoffler
McLaren is just weeks away from unveiling at the Geneva Motor Show full details on its next P1 supercar. While we'll have to wait until then to learn of the car's powertrain, we've already seen the exterior up close . Now McLaren is giving us a look at the interior. The automaker released a trio of images of the inside of the million-dollar-plus supercar. Like the chassis and exterior body panels, the minimalist interior is largely constructed from carbon fiber to save weight.
AUTOS
January 21, 2013 | By Jerry Hirsch
Usually, BMW doesn't want its vehicles to slide freely on ice. But that's exactly the goal of its latest project - developing a two-man bobsled for the U.S. men's bobsled team. The sled raced for the first time at the FIBT World Cup in Igls, Austria, on Saturday but didn't put the U.S. on the winner's podium. The Swiss won. The U.S. teams running the BMW sled finished 14th out of 30 entrants. Another U.S. team running a different sled came close to a podium finish in fifth place.
AUTOS
November 28, 2012 | By David Undercoffler
Mercedes-Benz has no mainstream product to show off to the world at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show, so it brought some eye candy instead. The automaker on Wednesday unveiled the SLS AMG Black Series, an ultra-hot version of the company's SLS AMG supercar and seven-passenger GL SUV. That Mercedes would use the L.A. Auto Show for this AMG showcase isn't a coincidence; the company says just under a third of all AMG sales are in California. Only four other production models have had a Black Series variant, an even faster version of already modified AMG cars, the most recent being the 2013 C63 AMG. PHOTOS: Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series "It's the highest expression of AMG performance," said Steve Cannon, president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA. As such, this SLS Black Series boosts the SLS GT's 583 horsepower to 622 horsepower, while torque actually drops from 479 pound-feet to 468 pound-feet.
BUSINESS
October 27, 2012 | By David Undercoffler
The car: 2013 Chevy Corvette 427 Convertible The power: 505 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque coming from a 7-liter V-8 engine routing power to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual transmission. The photos: 2013 Chevy Corvette 427 Convertible The speed: 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds on its way to a 190+ mph top speed. The price: Base price is $76,900. As tested: $91,320 The details: Recipe for the 427: Take from the Z06 one engine, driveline, rear axle, optional Magnetic Ride Control, optional carbon fiber hood and fenders, mix with ZR-1's rear spoiler and lightweight wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2 rubber.
BUSINESS
October 23, 2012 | By David Undercoffler, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
With the 2012 SEMA Show just around the corner, it would appear that Chrysler Group is coming to party. The company released details on many of the 24 modified vehicles it will be bringing to the private aftermarket show. Models from every one of its six brands (Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, SRT and Fiat) will be on display, each featuring parts from Chrysler Group's Mopar aftermarket catalog. SEMA, the Specialty Equipment Market Assn., has thousands of company members and many of them will descend on Las Vegas from Oct. 30 to Nov. 2 to show off products like aftermarket wheels, vehicle body kits, engine upgrades and performance modifications for nearly every aspect of a car. Photos: Chrysler's 2012 SEMA preview Automakers have taken note of the show's reach and use it to showcase one-off designs of existing models as well as aftermarket products they make themselves.
BUSINESS
August 19, 2012 | By David Undercoffler, Los Angeles Times Auto Critic
Ferrari used the Pebble Beach weekend, and the deep pockets it attracts, to unveil to North America its all-new F12berlinetta. And in so doing, tipped its hand for the future of the company's products. Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa was on hand to display the front-engine, rear-wheel-drive brute. The car has a naturally-aspirated, 6.3-liter V-12 engine that makes 731 horsepower and 509 pound-feet of torque, directed through a seven-speed, dual-clutch gearbox. Ferrari says it weighs about 110 pounds lighter than the car it replaces, the 599. But it's not the weight that's noteworthy.
BUSINESS
May 31, 2012
2012 Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Base price: $1.9 million (estimated) Price, model tested: $1.9 million (estimated) Powertrain: 8.0-liter, quadruple-turbocharged, W-16-cylinder engine; seven-speed dual-clutch transmission with paddle shifters; permanent all-wheel drive Horsepower: 1,001 at 6,000 rpm Torque: 922 pound-feet at 2,200-5,500 rpm 0-62: 2.7 seconds according to Bugatti,...
BUSINESS
November 17, 2011 | By Susan Carpenter
There's a lot of redefining going on at this year's Los Angeles Auto Show, particularly among performance- and luxury-oriented auto makers as they fold fuel efficiency and sustainability into their designs. The new direction BMW showcased Wednesday with the North American debut of its i8 plug-in hybrid and i3 all-electric concept cars combines the efficiency of a ho-hum commuter with the exhilaration of a sports car. Both concepts will be going into production. The i3 will have the distinction of being the first premium electric vehicle to come to market in 2013.
SCIENCE
July 24, 2012 | By Jon Bardin, Los Angeles Times
2008 was a banner year for swimmers: That year, swimmers broke 105 world records in all, including 17 at a single event in Croatia. A full 79 of those 105 records were broken by racers wearing a particular suit: the Speedo LZR Racer. The suit covered the whole body from shoulder to calf and was designed to optimize body compression and hydrodynamics. Its design was informed by tests in a NASA wind tunnel and numerous advanced computational models. The advantage given to racers by the LZR Racer was so great that Japanese authorities decided to break exclusive sponsorship agreements with other companies to allow their racers to use the suits; the decision came after a coach told reporters that "if swimmers don't wear the LZR Racer, they won't be able to compete" in the Beijing Olympics.
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