A look at the team taking the dream of the electric car onto the racetrack
by Katharine Erwin in Design on 29 July 2014
"We are feeding it right now. It's hungry," says project manager and chief engineer of Electric Vehicle Sports Racer (EVSR) Charlie Greenhaus, referring to his electric racecar's appetite for a charge. Greenhaus, who founded EVSR, has spent over 25 years in motorsports—as a racer, director, and engineer—and simultaneously spearheads Independent Motorsports Group (aka IMG, a race series dedicated to camaraderie) and Entropy Racing (a full race service providing car rentals, instruction and servicing).
Today EVSR demands most of his and fellow Entropy driver and EVSR chief programmer Charles Turano's attention. The EVSR program, which consists of two fully electric sports racing cars, began this year and has already broken records after being the first full electric to complete the Mt. Washington Hillclimb. EVSR also holds the electric record at Summit Point, Thompson Speedway, Virginia International Raceway (VIR) and the infamous Lime Rock Park. (They are also the first team to field two electric cars against gas cars.) Greenhaus and Turano came up with the idea to make fuel alternative racecars to create a fully electric race series. "We want to have a 10-20 car field," says Turano.
The EVSR cars were developed and made in just three months, in a two-person shop in Pennsylvania. "I started looking at it from the technical perspective, what we needed to do to complete it," says Turano regarding the process. "What is the wiring going to be like in the car? How are we going to hook all these components up? What kinds of things we can do with the controllers? Charlie is really amazing with racecars. When we were building out the car, he was managing and arranging everything the entire time. Every time he checked the corner weights on the car, they were within a couple pounds of each other after each component was added and put in place. He came up with a bunch of tweaks to the suspension that make it ergonomically feasible," he says.
The cars have a light steel tube frame and a motor that turns out 160 horsepower (located in the back) and have two lithium battery packs tucked neatly on either side of the cockpit providing even weight distribution. The only telltale sign of the EVSR, is its almost stealth whine, which the team is in the process of changing. "The acceleration is so smooth that you don't have a power peak, so it comes on and stays on strong. There is no feeling of acceleration once the initial burst of power has started. So people were going into a corner way faster than they expected because the car kept accelerating. So what we want to give is some sort of auditory clue similar to what you are used to with a gas engine," says Turano. For their first sound machine, they are—somewhat humorously yet aptly—using a sample of the Jetson's car noise.
For more information on the cars and the engineering that goes into them, visit EVSR online.
Images by Katharine Erwin
The Miami-based accessories brand launches a timepiece line featuring a Ronda
by David Graver in Design on 29 July 2014
In addition to furthering their beautiful core watch designs, today, Miami-based accessories brand Miansai has upgraded their insides with a Swiss-made Ronda quartz movement. This latest line, the M12 Swiss, comes in stainless steel and PVD copper versions—not to mention, a choice between the premium Italian vintage leather strap or the sportier strap cut from durable rock climbing webbing. At 39mm, they're a comfortable, classic size for many men's wrists. Coupling that with a slender 6mm thickness and clean face, there's a design resonance with watches from the '50s. Altogether, they're a perfect option for those seeking something smaller—and with a Swiss movement as opposed to a Japanese one.
Miansai launched back in 2008, by founder and Creative Director Michael Saiger, who wanted to craft handmade accessories for fashionable men. In 2010, their brass and nylon bracelets made a splash, but the lifestyle-oriented label also produces everything from wallets and belts to cuffs and necklaces. While they've been making watches for years now, this is their first iteration featuring a Swiss movement, a nice touch that adds a depth of reliability beneath the handsome facade.
Miansai watches from the M12 Swiss line are available online for $495.
Images courtesy of Miansai
The Brooklyn-based illustrator manifests her flower and cat obsession onto dishes and vases to charming result
For a while now, Brooklyn-based illustrator Leah Reena Goren has caused waves due to her cat-influenced prints on tees, scarves and totes. In between working on her zine, Sad Girls and producing limited edition patterns for Anthropologie, however, Goren—who happens to share a studio with fellow artist and recent CH video subject Rachel Levit—has also produced some pretty unique ceramics that are equally eye-catching. Because she's first and foremost an illustrator, Goren plays with patterns and colors that aren't typical of the medium, resulting in flat cat dishes, rose-patterned cups (evoking vintage carpet bags), 3D heads sticking out of vases, bikini babe figurines and much more.
Goren started making ceramics around two years ago—her mother, an art teacher, has a kiln in her classroom but Goren only began taking advantage of it recently, enjoying it enough to take classes in NYC. "Since my commercial illustration work is mostly 2D and then put onto products [or] 3D surfaces by clients, it feels really good to make a solid, functional piece on my own," Goren tells CH.
She continues, "I do work in textiles a lot for my shop, but there's something more satisfying about how tangible and lasting ceramics feel. I like to try and translate the style of my illustration and surface pattern (cats and flowers mostly!) into the medium, which can be challenging because there are a lot of limitations with painting in multiple colors, fine detail, etc. I do sell most of what I make, but I try to keep it just for fun—it's a nice break from client work so I don't think I'd ever call myself a professional ceramicist. Most pieces are one of a kind for the same reason: I always want to try new things and not get bored!"
While about half of the designs are sold out due to their one-of-a-kind nature, you can snag what's available by visiting Goren's online shop, where pieces range in price from $40 up to $250.
Images courtesy of the designer