Originally Posted by Ivan Rider
Don't go too light or you will not be able to keep the wheel on the ground. I've had several Airheads with Ural sidecars and I'm pleased with that combination. I had a sputkin cargo hack on my R80 and it was almost too light. If you thought right turn the chair would fly.
+1- Ivan has great pics of his airhead rigs somewhere.....
This is my favorite subject, so excuse the long reply:
Check out Vostok Motors- they have a shipment of Dnepr chairs and frames just arrived in CA.
There's another guy on EBay called Cold War Trophies that has Dnepr and Ural chair kits sometimes too.
I saw a steel Jupiter chair on the IBMWR site not so long ago. http://marketplace.ibmwr.org/
The United Sidecar Association has a For Sale section- http://www.sidecar.com/
Your local Craigslist is a source.
The Soviet chairs seem to be going for $1200-2000, so shop around.
In the Hacks Fleamarket section there was a sub-frame for sale- you'll need one of those. $400 was a good deal for that, BTW. They come up on the IBMWRA site too sometimes. Inmate BMWEuro (Chris) knows a source in Europe- I got my subframe from him. Perry's Sidecars in Texas has a setup for airheads, so does DMC.
I have a Dnepr chair on my R80/7- it's been the most fun I've had since I started riding.....
Plenty of room for a dog, too.
If you just want to get started, you can use a fork brace and wide bars and the steering is OK. You can switch to a leading link setup later- it's pricey, though. I have a tube style lower fork brace, ToasterTan upper clamp, and wide GS handlebars and I don't think the steering is hard at all, and that was only $200 total and easy to put back to original. A VW or junkyard damper is another $25.00. I have an old GSX1100 damper on mine and it's just enough to take the edge off. I can take my hands off the bars all the way down to about 10 MPH without any shake.
I did spend some dough to upgrade my brakes to duel disks, but I'm not sure it was entirely necessary. No brake on the car. I noticed that the Avon sidecar tire I put on the front improved the handling, and I put a cheapo enduro tire on the back with no problems, after the Metzlers that were on there wore out (they go quick!).
Point is, not counting the bike you could probably build an airhead rig for $2000, and I highly recommend it!