Magpul Ronin

Take a look at the magpul ronin :w00t:

The Magpul Ronin is an experimental motorcycle project based on the Buell 1125R sport bike. The project itself represents the first iteration of a design exercise inspired by interests, hobbies, and passions shared by many within Magpul.

Taken from the Japanese word for a samurai who lost his master, the name “Ronin” was chosen after the Buell Motorcycle Company ceased production and closed its doors in 2009. The model 1125R was selected due to its high level of performance and aesthetic potential that were never fully realized by Buell as a subsidiary of Harley Davidson.*

those bars are beautiful!!! :w00t:









more info

*The most obvious alteration is the linkage fork and its front-mounted radiator. Not only were the stock side-mounted radiators hideously ugly, but they were also inefficient, requiring airflow to bend 90 degrees to both enter and exit. The new radiator is considerably smaller, yet far more efficient at cooling as it’s now directly opposed to airflow and free from the radiant heat of the engine. Mounting it on the fork does turn it into unsprung weight, which isn’t an ideal engineering solution, but the location of the 1125R’s front suspension in relation to the engine leaves no room for a traditional radiator mounted on the front of the engine.

Due to the nature of girder forks, unsprung weight is almost always going to increase in comparison to telescopic items, there’s simply more mass below the spring, and this affects the Ronin too. Even with the addition of the radiator, the entire front end weighs the same as the stock setup and Magpul says they’ve experimented with radiator placement both on and off the forks and there was virtually no effect to the dynamics.

The girder does brings mechanical benefits that overcome the negative of increased unsprung weight, the design increases the leverage ratio acting on the setup’s suspension component: a Penske monoshock. That eliminates stiction, leading to a smoother action. Magpul has also taken the opportunity to add 13mm of trail to the fork, which otherwise follows stock geometry. That brings the front end geometry in line with current sportsbike convention, improving steering feel.

Magpul_Ronin_Parts.jpgThe radiator hoses pass between the girders and under the steering stem, but have been positioned so as not to affect the steering.

“We wanted to eliminate everything that was up and in front of the rider’s view,” says Michael of the new cockpit. On top of all this is a new cast aluminum handlebar and steering yoke with a dinky Motogadget speedometer and the ignition integrated into it. Michael bemoans the loss of the tachometer, but is looking at integrating race-style LED indicators to replace it. The cast aluminum handlebars can be easily replaced with any 1 1/8" tapered bars to alter the riding position, but we like how well these items are integrated in the overall look of the front end.

Since the 1125R uses a fuel-in-frame design, the “tank” is actually a carbon fiber airbox cover that now includes two ram-air intakes on its leading edges. These have been repositioned from in front of the engine, improving both looks and the volume of air flowed. A small tubular steel subframe supports the hand-stitched seat and cast aluminum tail piece. Magpul claims the new airbox cover, subframe and tailpiece are largely responsible for the Ronin’s weight savings.

The effect created by the new bodywork works in conjunction with the rearward-pointing triangle of the frame and swingarm to radically direct the visual emphasis of the Ronin forward to the massive girder fork. The 146bhp Rotax v-twin – unaltered – is also exposed and combines with the angularity of the body and frame to create a look that evokes mechanical function to replace the Buell’s downright awkwardness.

The Ronin is currently a functional prototype and Magpul’s first toe in motorcycle waters. If enough interest can be drummed up, the Ronin will be produced in limited numbers. They won’t say how large a production run could be feasible, but they have “about 25” 1125Rs on hand and could potentially convert customer bikes too. If that happens and if it goes well, the company has discussed spinning of a new brand specifically dedicated to motorcycles. Magpul doesn’t see itself becoming a provider of aftermarket parts, but rather a motorcycle maker. What we could be seeing here is the genesis of a new American motorcycle company. *



I’m not keen on the near vertical rake of the front forks - for aesthetic reasons - they disturb the flow of the bikes profile and ruin it’s ‘stance’ - although I am sure they are like that for sound technical reasons.Nice if you are into the industrial brutalist look.

As for Magpul setting themselves up as a motorcycle manufacturer - if Buell tanked then what hope have they got?

i guess they feel that Buell had loads of followers that would be inclined to buy into a similar brand?

Yeah - I know what you mean - but I can’t help thinking that this is the kind of project that was dreamed up pre-recession, pre Buell tanking etc. The financial/consumer landscape won’t support this niche kind of stuff anymore.

If Buell was a niche bike, then this is a niche within a niche!

It’s a shame because I admire their and Buell’s originality and willingness to challenge engineering orthodoxy - it’s such a shame Buell went down.

Although I wouldn’t be suprised if an outside investor, possibly from S.E. Asia?China etc steps in to resurrect Buell at some point in the future - and that would be a good thing. :slight_smile:

well Buel is down but not out :wink:

looks a bit like an angry bull charging (love the design)

No one mentioned the position of the kill switch!


Erik Buell is still making motorbikes here… just that they’re not for road use. Apparently he can’t even use his own name “Buell” as that is still owned by Harley Davidson. For now.

Pretty sure that is for the lazers rather than a conventional kill switch :smiley: