2015 TKM Regulations have been largely set in stone. The good news is that the changes for 2015 are aimed at making life easier for everyone
Whether driver, engine builder, or scrutineer the new rules should not cause concern for anyone. Arguably the most significant change centres on something that will affect many but hopefully in a positive way. It concerns the way that cylinder exhaust ports are checked and comes in the wake of the problems created by one rogue engine builder who this year decided to make up his own rules. If you are not an engine expert let me just say that the size and position of the exhaust ports is very important to the overall performance of the engine. Checking them has always been quite a detail and tricky job requiring specialist measuring tools. Tal-Ko have previously supplied a ‘no go’ gauge to test with but it was made to the maximum height size listed for the port at 21.15mm and the reality is no engine has ever been made with ports anything like that big. So to make life easier and more real world, there’s a two-step revision. First the maximum size port has been reduced to 21.06mm.
Second a new port height gauge has been made by Tal-Ko to check at that size. The important point is that in a normal standard engine that tool won’t go into the port but on an illegally modified engine it will drop in easily making it simple to identify. This new gauge will be supplied free to all relevant eligibility scrutineers and recognised engine builders. And if you want one for yourself then it will be available for £20 + vat. The old 21.15mm port height gauge will now become obsolete. The same will also be happening with the inlet port height dimension and I’ll bring you news on that next month. Note too in the new regulations Tal-Ko now has unprecedented powers to permanently mark any component that is illegal and cannot be made legal again. Another step towards killing anyone thinking of cheating, this will help ensure that parts don’t get sold on or raced that are not compliant with the regulations. Moving on you’ll also see in the regs new words added which follow up the clarification on rear bumpers and their fitting to make sure no-one tries to slip in another adjustable one.
Also clarified is the regulation that TAG engines must at all times be capable of being started on the button. The next issue is on Senior weight. A further weight/power band has been added, with a gold restrictor of 20.5mm and weight level: 139kg. This is to help lighter drivers (especially women) competing in the class without the need to carry excess lead. Minimum driver weight will be 44kg. To help reduce the problem of 50mm rear axle cracking you will also be allowed to make use of an axle insert which slides up the inside of the axle to help reduce stress at key areas. Reports say it works well. And then we come to bodywork where as I explained last month the CIK have managed to drop everyone into a tricky situation. What a caring, thoughtful governing body they are! The positive news is that as a result of pressure levied by myself and others in the UK, the MSA have put pressure on the CIK to help make the situation somewhat simpler. Though as of the day I write this at the back of October the situation is still somewhat floaty. But hope that new droopy front noses will be able to be fitted with a converter which stops them drooping. And some sort of compromise will be reached on the side bars to make them sensibly compatible. If you can buy a current stuff then do so – it will make a perfectly useable spare for less hassle!