bouncing up and down. There are accelerometers in the front and rear to record measurements. An Andreani employee starts the bike up so that the front and rear wheels are spinning. There are independent engines—one in the front and another in the rear—that move the suspension up and down with telemetry data collected straight from real tracks. The technician can duplicate the terrain with the simulator and, thanks to helmet-cam footage, sync the motion with video that is displayed on a large screen. There are also animated shock and fork cutaways on the same projector screen. They move up and down simultaneously with the motorcycle so that you can see the suspension working. Illustrations on the screen reinforce the idea. An independent fork and shock slide out on tracks in front of the motorcycle at the push of a button. The shock is shown on the left, with the fork on the right. Imagine watching a motorcycle moving precisely the way it would on a track
JUNE 2013 / MOTOCROSS ACTION 157
The man & his very special machine
Today, the Andreani Group specializes in suspension develop- ment and supply, stocking many brands of forks, shocks and steering dampers. They also carry spare parts for Showa, Kayaba, Marzocchi, Ohlins, Sachs and Hagon suspension. Essentially, suspension is what the Andreani Group is all about. Ever the technology enthusiasts, the MXA gang yearned to find out how Andreani approached suspension. Upon hearing that the company had a simulator using engines developed by NASA, we gleefully punched our tickets to Pesaro, Italy, to learn more. ANDREANI AND HIS SUSPENSION SIMULATOR The 10-year-old Andreani Simulator sits on a clear glass plate. Underneath are the inner mechanical workings, using two independent engines (costing 30,000 Euro each, not including hardware and soft- ware). The custom-built machine can simulate bumps to a higher resolution than a dyno test bench. There are six sensors in the seat to measure rider comfort as the bike is T he town of Pesaro hugs the Adriatic Sea and is most notable as a holiday destination for Italian tourists. Founded in 184 BC by the Romans, Pesaro boasts beauty and grandeur that are hard to surpass. Tourists swarm to the shores in summer, displacing the 100,000 or so year- round inhabitants that call the Marche region home. To the European motocross faithful, Pesaro is much more than a place to dig their feet in the sand. It is home to the Andreani Group, a stalwart of Grand Prix racing. Headed by famed former GP racer Giuseppe Andreani, the company is at the forefront of suspension research and development. In 1988, after more than 10 years of racing at the FIM World Championship level, Andreani focused his attention on the aftermarket business. Initially, he became the Italian importer for White Power (WP) Suspension products. Then, in 2004-2005, Giuseppe brought Marzocchi and Ohlins oboard. Old motocross racers don’t have to fade away. Giuseppe Andreani proves that the skill sets of a racer can be put to good use in business.