TWMX All Access: Engine Ice’s Dave Kimmey

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Dave Kimmey, the President of Cyclelogic, is a 39-year-old spark plug…one of those guys who you’d swear drinks Red Bull lattes to calm down. “My background is sales, but I’ve been in the motorcycle industry in many different levels, whether it was a racer, working at shops, working for a distributor, parts counter, bike sales, I’ve basically done it all. I’ve been in this industry since ’73 or ’74.”

Dave’s high-performance coolant product, Engine Ice, has been in production for three-and-a-half years, and it’s something that he’s also sampled. But we’ll let him tell that story later on…

TransWorld MX: How’d you get started doing Engine Ice?

Dave Kimmey: Basically I got involved in an earlier company that did something similar to Engine Ice. That essentially fell apart. I took the base idea of Engine Ice and went to a friend of mine who’s a chemist in the automotive industry. Over about six months of testing with some of the top riders in Florida including James Stewart, we came up with the final product of Engine Ice. That would have been four years ago.

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TWMX: How have the sales been over that time?

DK: In sales we continue to grow and grow. It’s incredible how much we’ve grown every year. Actually, it caught me off guard this year. I was actually backordered a large part of the year. Constantly putting out product, but constantly having orders to fill.

We subcontract with the chemist friend of mine who handles all of our blending and packaging of the product, as well as our shipping, so for me personally, it’s pretty much a hands-off deal. I don’t really do much of anything, except for the day-to-day operations.

Engine Ice is completely made by hand. It’s blended by hand, and it’s even colored by hand, and that’s why sometimes you’ll see a difference in color from bottle to bottle or batch-to-batch. Sometimes it’s purplish, and sometimes it’s blue.

TWMX: What are the performance benefits of Engine Ice?

DK: Engine Ice offers a lot of different benefits. One that a lot of people do like is that it’s biodegradable, and non-toxic. If you’re a trail rider or a person who rides in an area where the enviro people keep an eye on you, if you spill some or overheat some and drop some onto the ground it’s not going to kill any animals or plant life. Most people don’t really care about that.

The other benefits to Engine Ice is the fact that it has a tendency to run cooler than many of the other products on the market, as well as one of the things we’re most proud of, it’s more stable, which means it’ll lower the operating temperature, but maintain that lower temperature for a longer period of time. That basically means you’re going to have more power at the end of a moto than you would with some other conventional coolants.

Individual results vary wildly. Some of the variable could be altitude. Air temperature. Air pressure. Humidity. Your riding style. This is why we don’t publish results. Individual results vary.

Compared to most conventional coolants, a conventional coolant could be ethylene glycol. Normally you’ll have a temperature reduction from anywhere from about 10 to 20 degrees on average.ompared to say water and Water Wetter, you might have a five to 15 degree temperature difference. However, with the Water Wetter, you’re giving something up. You’re giving up freeze protection, which not everybody worries about, but the big thing you have to worry about, especially in the four-strokes is, you’re giving up your boil point. Water and Water Wetter is basically still water. Water Wetter is not an anti-freeze. It does not raise the boil point of water. That’s the difference there.

Actually, all of our competitors make good products. We make it a point not to bash our competitors, or say anything foul about their products, because for the most part, they all make good products. It’s just there are differences between the products.

The base load of Engine Ice is what’s called propylene glycol. You find propylene glycol in your everyday life, you just never looked for it, and never noticed. It’s in your hair conditioner, your hand lotion, in soap. It’s used in medication; it’s in food products. What we do is blend propylene glycol with deionized water, which is water in its most pure form. It’s the same water they use in DNA testing. Then we also blend in our own inhibitors, as well as anti-corrosion properties, and surfactants.

Basically surfactants are what Water Wetter is. Water Wetter is a surfactant. As a matter of fact, and I don’t mind saying so, Maxima has a new product coming out called Cool Aid. Cool Aid is basically a water and Water Wetter-like product. They kind of made that to compete with me and Water Wetter, so they’d have a product legal for road racing.

A surfactant basically reduces the surface tension of the fluid, within the system. In simple terms that means it makes the water flow more smoothly. The more smoothly you can make the water flow through a closed system, the more effective it be at drawing off heat. Water doesn’t flow smoothly. It turbulates, bounces, and resonates through a cooling system as it goes around corners and through tubing and pipes and the radiator itself, it bounces around. The more you can smooth that flow out, the better it can do its job. That’s what a surfactant is, it reduces the surface tension of the fluid within the system.

TWMX: I know you’ve mentioned that you’ve drank a sample…

DK: I did that once, when I first started the company. Basically I was talking to some riders locally and I said it’s biodegradable, and non-toxic, you can even drink it. They said, “Well, then do it.” Well, when you’re new, and you’re desperate, you’ll do anything, and I did. I drank about an ounce-and-a-half. It was nasty. If I had to describe the taste, it’s like a combination of the worst cough syrup you can imagine, mixed with rubbing alcohol. I wouldn’t do it again, and no, I did not pee blue or green.

TWMX: What else do we need to know about Engine Ice?

DK: We are the originators of the propylene glycol high-performance coolant. Don’t be fooled by imitators. We’ve been out there for three-and-a-half years, and riders using our product have won over 350 national championships, both amateur and professional.

At Loretta Lynn’s, Ponca, World Minis, just about every amateur national event, plus we’ve won with Yamaha of Troy, the 125cc East Supercross with Chad Reed, and the 125cc West with Ernesto Fonseca. Many of the top teams use the product, some of which we’re not even allowed to tell you.

For 2004, were going to be sponsoring MotoXXX; and JARacing, which is the new Steve Hatch Factory Kawasaki Team Green GNCC team. Team Subway, as well as James Povolny and the new team he’s putting together. And a few other things in the works as well.

The product works well. What we try to do is prove the product through championships, not through the silly data. The other thing is that’s real important, is that we don’t pay people to use our product. Honestly, there’s only one team that we’ve ever really paid, and that was Troy.

We concentrate a lot of our sales and marketing in off-road, and a lot of our race support in off-road, especially in the amateur levels. That’s one thing I’m very big on is supporting amateur-level racing.

TWMX: How is the product sold?

DK: We’re distributed through Parts Unlimited, Motorcycle Stuff, Tucker Rocky, Western Powersports, Southern Motorcycle Supply, and Magnum Distributing. We have a small distributor in Canada, and would like to hook up with one of the larger Canadian distributors if they’d pick up a phone and call. (Laughs)

TWMX: Are you still a single-product company?

DK: We’re still a single-product company, even though we’re testing and trying new things. I have several products with that we’ve already developed that we’re very satisfied with, that we wouldn’t mind putting on the market, but it’s just something we’re not ready to do right now. I’d like to have a little bigger market share with the coolant, even though according to several distributors, Engine Ice is the number one selling coolant/anti-freeze in the motorcycle industry. I think the big thing that I might do is a kit to help the four-strokes with their vapor-lock problem.

TWMX: Is it kind of scary being a single-product company?

DK: It is kind of strange, even though we have a large volume in sales, our seasonality fluctuates quite a bit. For example, we’re coming into our slowest part of the year, and I don’t have another product to pick up the slack. That does bring its own set of problems, but I guess that’s where I can be proud…we don’t drop off that much during the off-season. Being that we have the best product out there, it still does sell year-round, and a lot of snowmobile people use it. It’ll go down to -26° Fahrenheit

I’ve had people using it in everything from ultra-light aircraft to race cars and passenger cars, to antique cars. There’s really no limit to what you can put it in. However, I did get a call one time, and this is no joke, a guy asked me if he could use it in his Maico.

TWMX: What’s suggested retail on a bottle?

DK: Suggested retail is $16.95 per half-gallon. A half-gallon will do most any off-road bike, with a little left over. An 80cc bike will get maybe two uses out of it, and a pee-wee or 60 will get three uses.

TWMX: Any parting shots?

DK: One of the most neglected things on a motorcycle…same thing with a car, is the cooling system. People have no problem changing their oil every ride or every few rides, but they’ll leave the same anti-freeze in there for a year. You should change your radiator fluid, especially in a race machine, more often than you probably do. What we recommend is whenever you do a top end, you should change the radiator fluid. In a four-stroke, you should change it at least twice a year…probably fall and spring. You are pushing a fluid, through a metal-based system, under high pressure, and high extreme temperatures. It’s going to get dirty. The best way to make your cooling system work for you is to keep it as clean as you can keep it.

Contact:
Cyclelogic Products, Inc.
707 SW 3rd Ave.
Boyton Beach, FL 33426
(877) 806-9377
www.engineice.cc

Sponsored by:
ct. Honestly, there’s only one team that we’ve ever really paid, and that was Troy.

We concentrate a lot of our sales and marketing in off-road, and a lot of our race support in off-road, especially in the amateur levels. That’s one thing I’m very big on is supporting amateur-level racing.

TWMX: How is the product sold?

DK: We’re distributed through Parts Unlimited, Motorcycle Stuff, Tucker Rocky, Western Powersports, Southern Motorcycle Supply, and Magnum Distributing. We have a small distributor in Canada, and would like to hook up with one of the larger Canadian distributors if they’d pick up a phone and call. (Laughs)

TWMX: Are you still a single-product company?

DK: We’re still a single-product company, even though we’re testing and trying new things. I have several products with that we’ve already developed that we’re very satisfied with, that we wouldn’t mind putting on the market, but it’s just something we’re not ready to do right now. I’d like to have a little bigger market share with the coolant, even though according to several distributors, Engine Ice is the number one selling coolant/anti-freeze in the motorcycle industry. I think the big thing that I might do is a kit to help the four-strokes with their vapor-lock problem.

TWMX: Is it kind of scary being a single-product company?

DK: It is kind of strange, even though we have a large volume in sales, our seasonality fluctuates quite a bit. For example, we’re coming into our slowest part of the year, and I don’t have another product to pick up the slack. That does bring its own set of problems, but I guess that’s where I can be proud…we don’t drop off that much during the off-season. Being that we have the best product out there, it still does sell year-round, and a lot of snowmobile people use it. It’ll go down to -26° Fahrenheit

I’ve had people using it in everything from ultra-light aircraft to race cars and passenger cars, to antique cars. There’s really no limit to what you can put it in. However, I did get a call one time, and this is no joke, a guy asked me if he could use it in his Maico.

TWMX: What’s suggested retail on a bottle?

DK: Suggested retail is $16.95 per half-gallon. A half-gallon will do most any off-road bike, with a little left over. An 80cc bike will get maybe two uses out of it, and a pee-wee or 60 will get three uses.

TWMX: Any parting shots?

DK: One of the most neglected things on a motorcycle…same thing with a car, is the cooling system. People have no problem changing their oil every ride or every few rides, but they’ll leave the same anti-freeze in there for a year. You should change your radiator fluid, especially in a race machine, more often than you probably do. What we recommend is whenever you do a top end, you should change the radiator fluid. In a four-stroke, you should change it at least twice a year…probably fall and spring. You are pushing a fluid, through a metal-based system, under high pressure, and high extreme temperatures. It’s going to get dirty. The best way to make your cooling system work for you is to keep it as clean as you can keep it.

Contact:
Cyclelogic Products, Inc.
707 SW 3rd Ave.
Boyton Beach, FL 33426
(877) 806-9377
www.engineice.cc

Sponsored by: