Originally Posted by Wolfgang55
Thanks Barry, I always wanted to understand the lean & what really was moving, but never heard it explained in such a simple form.
Before the introduction of the electric TILT system that Pete Smith designed when we started Champion Sidecars, the only option was to stop and adjust the length of the upper struts to eliminate the pull/push of the sidecar going down the road when conditions changed. (Load, crosswinds,road crown etc.)
As anyone that has gotten into sidecars can attest to, getting the rig set up correctly the first time can be an adventure. Because of this a lot of sidecars ended up sitting at the back of the garage and declared unrideable. The new TILT system helped make some of those first time situations acceptable at the touch of a button. The first time user was more likely to keep it on the road until they figured it out. I think that one improvement alone really helped the growth of sidecars.
I have to admit that although I have driven a lot of different rigs all over the country for years and enjoyed the instant adjustability of the TILT system, I have never had one on my personal rigs. In my case unless I'm heading out on a long trip the weight of my sidecar does not change much. The installation of some type of trail reduction lightens the steering enough that I am not bothered by the push/pull effect. My current old Guzzi rig has a Leading Link that I built. It gave me a chance to experiment with a couple different ideas and I think I'm finally happy with it now. I might still make some changes just to improve how it looks to me. It never ends!
General Manager, designer, installer, test rider, problem solver. Generally whatever needs doing.
37 YEARS PLAYING WITH SIDECARS
Myths and misinformation are more seductive than the truth.