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Things we like


Air Guns

Algal Fuels


Baja California







New Zealand

Primitive Skills

Rocket Elbow Stoves
Sailing Canoes

Sterling Engines


Tensioned Fabrics 




Welcome to Kestrel Design !

Design         Research         Development         Fabrication

KESTREL DESIGN develops ideas and products in areas that interest us. In a few cases the ideas are developed for outright sale or licensed for development and marketing by an outside party. Mostly, however, ideas and projects are developed in house as either custom executions for individual buyers or as proof of concept prototypes for small-scale series production.


Alpinas & GSs concentrates on the design & fabrication of motorcycles and sidecars. Although we like and appreciate most all aspects of motorcycling, the concept that most appeals to us is the idea that the most widely useful execution is the all-road motorcycle. There are a lot of terms in use that describe motorcycles for this type of riding - Adventure, Dual Sport, Dual Purpose are the most common but we just think that All-Road is more descriptive of the concept we have in mind. We use the term road here loosely to include basically any existing pathway that a motorcycle will transverse, from the super slab of the interstate highway system to a high mountain single track goat trail. 


Off-Road Homes specializes in vehicles that serve multiple purposes. Moving us from place to place would be number one, since this is, after all, essentially the definition of the word vehicle. Second, it should have enough cargo capacity to haul our toys and camping gear around with us. Third, it must function as a shelter, if only in an emergency. We have a preference for vintage vehicles as foundations for our projects, but our ideas are generally applicable to any era of vehicle and we have to admit that Dodge Cummins trucks frequently end up on our design sketchpads.


Green Sun Electric Vehicles pursues a small corner of electric vehicle design which focuses on keeping the build relatively inexpensive and using the EV fun. The key here is to keep the vehicle weight low and the battery pack as a high percentage of total weight. Most of our designs are open air, tube framed vehicles, that dispense with the weight and complexity of exterior and interior body work, double wall doors full of lock and window mechanisms, glassed in interior boxes with upholstered interiors, HVAC systems, etc. Motorcycle riders may be particularly comfortable with our approach as they are very familiar with dressing to deal with the weather as it is rather than sitting in a weather tight, climate controlled box. We also have a watercraft design or two on the drawing board.


Cornucopia conducts investigative research and development ideas in any field that we find interesting. Many of the projects are conceived with the intent of feeding into the larger scale projects in the other three divisions. There is always something going on here and this is where we sometimes explore the bleeding edge of current technologies.


Intellectual property rights can be a really messy subject. Hard to say what really constitutes a truly original idea. If someone had never had contact with any intellectual information outside of that which formed inside their own mind I could buy that concept. Otherwise I'm inclined to think of the mind as a soup pot that receives a continual inflow of ingredients over a lifetime. In our society intellectual property is legally yours, and yours alone only when you go through the hoops to secure it as such, and even then the hoops vary with the political jurisdiction in which you seek protection. The objective of going through the legal hoops is to “guarantee” the owner of the intellectual property the right to determine who participates in any financial benefits derived from the property.

We would be hard-pressed to identify the original sources for all of the information that has gone into our personal soup pot, but we certainly owe a huge debt of gratitude to countless individuals whose ideas we have viewed over the years. With very few exceptions, we don't go to much trouble trying to protect the ideas we present here. We're more interested in generally promoting the exchange of information in the hopes that somebody, somewhere, puts two and two together and comes up with something ever more interesting. So, feel free to adapt anything you see here to your own project. Do us a favor though, let us know about your project so we can follow your progress and maybe that will create yet another feedback loop into the projects we are developing here - and so on and so on. In many cases we might ask if it is OK to post a link to your project.