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dholaday 08-21-2012 03:21 PM

New [to me] Rig
If all goes according to plan, I will buying Abenteuerfaher's rig on Friday.

My plan is to ride it to SC to visit my son, then up to PA to see Claude, and then head west for home.

The Hacks forum has a been a great resource for me - but could use some additional help.

Since this will be my first trip on a sidecar [I've ridden MCs across country many times] I'd appreciate some advice on whether I should use primarily interstates or blue highways. Time is not factor - I'd just like the drive to be as easy and uneventful as possible. :wink:

Thanks in advance -

TouringDave 08-21-2012 03:35 PM

Congrats! :clap That's a nice rig of Elmers.

claude 08-21-2012 03:47 PM

Hey, take your time getting here. No hurry. I would suggest you practice as much as you can prior to getting away from Elmer's. He can help you get going pretty good. Oh, and say hello to Elmer and his wife for us here in Pa. Great folks!!!
Looking forward to meeting you!!

kailuasurfer 08-21-2012 07:05 PM

Congratulations, and a "wow" for taking a cross-country trip as your first long trip on a sidecar! I suggest taking it easy. For getting up to Claude, I suggest taking US29 up to Culpepper VA and getting on US15 to Harrisburg PA. Many opportunities for taking short side trips along this route (both colonial, revolutionary, and civil war historical sites) but the roads are fast enough to make decent time up to Claude. I wish you a safe and fun trip - please feel free to PM me if you are interested specific sites, lodging, or eating options along this route.

Alaskahack 08-21-2012 07:10 PM

Congrats on picking up Elmers rig
I read all of his reports, when he came up to Alaska and his latest about the TAT.

Reading those reports convinced me to take my 2009 GS and put a DMC car on mine.

I would use some secondary roads to get use to the rig and then choose if your in a hurry or not that GS will go as long as you wat at interstate speed

Have fun

Want to hear about yor trip cross country


If you ever get to Alaska give me a call ( that includes anyone that reads this)

DRONE 08-21-2012 07:39 PM

Somehow I had a feeling Elmer's rig would end up here in the PNW. :evil

If it was me, and this time of year, I'd head north from Claude's to Sault St. Marie and take the Trans-Can all the way to Medicine Hat, then Rt 3 to Trail, then south to the Gorge.

Just don't forget your passport. :D

WU7X 08-21-2012 09:58 PM

I'd follow Drone's advice. But hit Spokane on your way to the Gorge. By that time you'll be sick of the hack. I'll gladly let you store it permanently in my garage.

In reality, I'm very happy to hear that you bought this wonderful rig. Get a copy of the Yellow Book before you try riding a hack, if you can. read it and then take your time learning how to ride the new bike. Wish you had the opportunity to take Vernon Wade's "Adventure Sidecar" class down in Hood River. I took it last fall and have never looked back. Sorry to tell you that now you'll be an addict just like the rest of us. Ride safe and have fun!

dholaday 08-22-2012 12:33 PM

Claude: Thanks - will say hi to Elmer and Sharon for you. Will give you a call when I get near you.

Kailuasurfer: Good idea on 29 & 15. I used to live in VA and took both roads many times. A lot more fun than the slab, for sure. I still smile about the look on the VA HP officer's face when he clocked me at almost twice the posted speed on 29 just north of Charlottesville on my R100RT. Didn't know the RT could go that fast. That was in my younger days and I'm a little more sensible now.

Alaskahack: Thanks, and back at you if you get down this way.

DRONE: I was thinking about US 2 across the UP and then maybe into Canada at International Falls, or staying on 2 to Spokane. I'll have a better idea about how well I can handle the rig by the time I leave Claude's and can make a better choice then. Thanks for reminding me about my passport.

On the other hand, I don't have Elmer's mechanical skills - so I need to stay within cell phone range of tow trucks and BMW service shops. :D

WU7X: Thanks for the offer of garage space. Very kind of you.:wink:
I have the Yellow Book and have read it twice. Hopefully that will help a little. I live about 1 mile, as the crow flies, from Hood River. Took Vernon's course last year, and the Evergreen course this summer. Managed to pass both times - mostly due to the instructors taking pity on me. I have my WA sidecar license endorsement so am even legal.
I was hoping to spend some time with Vernon before I left for the east coast, but our schedules didn't mesh right.

FWIW, Vernon thinks I'm dumber than dirt for riding the rig back instead of shipping it. He's probably right but this will be more fun.

Thanks to all for your help. I'll try to post updates as I go along. Maybe even some pictures if I can figure out how to get them from my phone to the forum.

jaydmc 08-22-2012 02:22 PM

You might if time and your travel plans allow hit up the big foot sidecar clubs rally in Mirror Lake BC.
Jay G
DMC sidecars

DRONE 08-22-2012 08:42 PM


Originally Posted by dholaday (Post 19419734)
FWIW, Vernon thinks I'm dumber than dirt for riding the rig back instead of shipping it. He's probably right but this will be more fun.

I took Vernon's class, passed it, got my WA endorsement, then flew to Phoenix and bought my first sidecar rig and rode it 1500 miles back home--my first sidecar drive. Not dumb--it was fun! Suggestion though is don't listen to the people who say don't use ballast. Use ballast. I bought about 60 pounds of bottled water in Phoenix and used that for my maiden voyage. It helped. But do watch those right-handers. There will be at least a few between NC and WA that you will misjudge and come into them too hot. Follow Vernon's advice and get your butt hanging off on EVERY right-hander so yer ready for when it happens.

dholaday 08-22-2012 08:59 PM

Ballast and butt-hanging: +10

Plus I'm planning on going s-l-o-w this trip. Even in left-handers. I watched Vernon do a left turn too hot and flip the bike over the sidecar. Pretty scary. A teaching moment.

dholaday 08-22-2012 09:05 PM

Jay: Thanks for the info. Doubt I'll make it that far in time for the Rally - but good to know.

BeeMaa 08-23-2012 12:20 PM

Congrats on the new (to you) rig and enjoy the s-l-o-w trip home.

DavePave 08-23-2012 04:10 PM

GREAT rig!!! Congrats!!!!!

I really like to take the U.S. Routes. I don't really like the Interstates, even in a car. I have to be in a real hurry to take an interstate. Whatever route you take - take your time, enjoy the voyage, stop and visit in the little towns where people are friendly..... with the fast pace of life these days, you may not get many opportunities like this....

OH..... you might look a "Macadam drifters" ride report. He did something way up North like that with a TW200 pulling a DMC trailer. Though you may not go that particular route, you might like the ride report anyway.....



ootpik 08-24-2012 03:41 PM

NOT the route over the top of the lakes
Hello from Manitoba Canada. I have done Pacific to Atlantic numerous times, U.S. and Canada. The most dangerous road in Canada is the one over the top of the lake, from the Sault to Thunder Bay. Hwy 17/#1 from Sudbury to the Sault is usually good, but still might be some construction. The price of gas is rediculous. Go south from the Sault into the U.S. Sault Michigan and use secondary highways until your well schooled in sidecar driving. The northern route is a truckers route, usually lots of road construction and very dangerous. Just ask Claude if I KNOW WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT. MANITOBA MANNY as I am known in his part ot the country. Have a safe trip. OOtpik of the Great White Frozen North of Manitoba Canada. Also use a GPS so you can see where the off major state highways are going. Small motels are cheaper and the small cafes have great food. A good idea is a volks stabilizer from the sidecar front top mount to the forks for construction areas. ootpik

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