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Old 11-18-2007, 07:26 AM   #1
BigJohnD OP
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Side car opinions...jump in here...

I respect the opinion of youse guys/gals. I been kicking around an idea to get a side car that I can use with the KLR or the GS.

Found one that looks like it might be in great shape and would work. It seems to be a Ural or similar.

I would want it to be fairly easily detached so I can ride two wheel when I want. But mostly cause I wanna go up to Alaska in the next year or so.

So what do you think? Side car? Pro's & Con's.

I expect and want to hear your opinions...especially from Hotair...let him know Don, since he has the experience.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:35 AM   #2
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First off, driving a car is *very* different than riding a bike. The adjectives I chose there are on purpose. THe skills are completely different. Instincts from years of bike riding will screw you up on a hack.

Second, a hack isnt an accessory that can be added and removed at will. Any set up that allows for that will be a compromise that downgrades the performance and handling in either configuration. Do a little reading on sidecar geometry. A tiny adjustment makes a big difference in handling. Even my small experience with them has learned me that quite well. Improper adjustment at best leads to shredded tires and abruptly worn bearings. At worst it will be an evil handling dangerous machine that will try to kill you at every turn. From what I can tell, convertible hacks are less than fun to use.

I would suggest you save yourself a lot of aggravation and time by setting up a rig for that purpose and leaving it that way.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:41 AM   #3
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If you get a side car on your bike your definitely going to be unique, as there very rare nowadays. If its somthing you want get it. It might be kinda fun to take a 3 person road trip (3's a crowd?) via motorcycle, or if you want to take some extra luxuries with you when you tour or tour two up. But from what I've seen I don't think there's quick disconect or connect rigs out there, everythings bolted on and some share an axel between the two, which you'd have to swap out the rear wheel, to get it back to one wheel drive? I honestly don't know much about it, other than I've allways thought it'd be cool to have a motorcycle with a side car.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:49 AM   #4
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I have a Ural Gear-Up and I love it. It is my work vehicle and grocery getter. Side cars are a hoot but the learning curve is a bit steep.

Have an experience hac go with you to look over the Ural side car to give advice. Ural side cars are great but maybe too heavy for a KLR, or at least a stock one.

To look over some very nice hac's and get some ideas try:
http://www.dauntlessmotors.com/Sidecars/sidecars.htm

Mr Cob (Dave) to the white courtesy phone please!
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firestorm
If you get a side car on your bike your definitely going to be unique, as there very rare nowadays. If its somthing you want get it. It might be kinda fun to take a 3 person road trip (3's a crowd?) via motorcycle, or if you want to take some extra luxuries with you when you tour or tour two up. But from what I've seen I don't think there's quick disconect or connect rigs out there, everythings bolted on and some share an axel between the two, which you'd have to swap out the rear wheel, to get it back to one wheel drive? I honestly don't know much about it, other than I've allways thought it'd be cool to have a motorcycle with a side car.

The hacks come off and go back on the Urals real easy. Takes 15 minutes tops. And with the telescoping fork models, you can ride them solo.

But, the handling on those bikes solo is real vague and funky. Also the tires are different. At the very least, the tires are really squared off from hack duty.

And, slapping the car back on is more than just doing up some bolts. You gotta at least check the toe-in and lean-out adjustments.

IMO it isnt worth it. Dedicate the bike to hack duty. Make it handle like a hack. They are fun as hell.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwanacswan
I have a Ural Gear-Up and I love it. It is my work vehicle and grocery getter. Side cars are a hoot but the learning curve is a bit steep.

Have an experience hac go with you to look over the Ural side car to give advice. Ural side cars are great but maybe too heavy for a KLR, or at least a stock one.

To look over some very nice hac's and get some ideas try:
http://www.dauntlessmotors.com/Sidecars/sidecars.htm

Mr Cob (Dave) to the white courtesy phone please!

Ural tubs would be way too heavy for a KLR. At the very least, assuming you could get a good head of steam going, the effects of braking and acceleration would be grossly exaggerated.

Also Ural hacks sit further back than most other rigs to accommodate the other drive shaft. Yes, even on the single drive models.

David hough has a good book on sidecar piloting and set up.

Also if you live in wa state, there is a separate MC class for 3 wheelers.

I read Houghs book extensively and practiced. I still near killed myself the first time I got rolling on the street.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopperman
First off, driving a car is *very* different than riding a bike. The adjectives I chose there are on purpose. THe skills are completely different. Instincts from years of bike riding will screw you up on a hack.

Second, a hack isnt an accessory that can be added and removed at will. Any set up that allows for that will be a compromise that downgrades the performance and handling in either configuration. Do a little reading on sidecar geometry. A tiny adjustment makes a big difference in handling. Even my small experience with them has learned me that quite well. Improper adjustment at best leads to shredded tires and abruptly worn bearings. At worst it will be an evil handling dangerous machine that will try to kill you at every turn. From what I can tell, convertible hacks are less than fun to use.

I would suggest you save yourself a lot of aggravation and time by setting up a rig for that purpose and leaving it that way.
You can absolutely put together a detachable sidecar. Before my Sportster/Motorvation rig was totaled detaching the sidecar took less than 10 minutes.

However, Chop is on the money - any rig that is built to function as both a two-wheeler and a three-wheeler is a compromise of both. When I first built my rig my intent was to do exactly that. It worked, but it steered heavy and the suspension was very compressed. Also the manner in which a sidecar wears the tires on the bike was not condusive to two-wheeled riding. The flattened tread area made the bike handle like shit when the sidecar was detached. Ultimately I decided to commit the bike to being a sidecar tug. I had the bike's triple trees cut, raked, cambered, and re-welded, and installed progressive front & rear suspension that was sprung for the additional weight of the sidecar. It transformed the rig, making it a pleasure to drive instead of a fight to steer. I could literally lock the throttle at 65 mph and take my hands off of the bars. Prior to these mods it was always pulling one way or another. That confirmed for me the best way to do this is to have a dedicated setup. You want two wheels? Buy another bike.

My replacement rig for the one that was totaled is forthcoming and will be even better than the last one.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:04 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopperman
The hacks come off and go back on the Urals real easy. Takes 15 minutes tops. And with the telescoping fork models, you can ride them solo.

But, the handling on those bikes solo is real vague and funky. Also the tires are different. At the very least, the tires are really squared off from hack duty.

And, slapping the car back on is more than just doing up some bolts. You gotta at least check the toe-in and lean-out adjustments.

IMO it isnt worth it. Dedicate the bike to hack duty. Make it handle like a hack. They are fun as hell.
Damn straight Chopperman. I would never try dual duty for a bike set up for hack duty. My Ural is what it is and not meant to be ridden as a two wheeler.
My Ural without the hack handles like a small apartment complex in a mud slide.

A cool set up for a KLR is this


and is one I am considering for myself.

I just can't fathom doing it to my R1200GS.

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Old 11-18-2007, 08:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwanacswan
Damn straight Chopperman. I would never try dual duty for a bike set up for hack duty. My Ural is what it is and not meant to be ridden as a two wheeler.
My Ural without the hack handles like a small apartment complex in a mud slide.

A cool set up for a KLR is this

and is one I am considering for myself.

I just can't fathom doing it to my R1200GS.

Bwana

Can you please post a bigger pic? That one is too small. I can't see whether grade 8 fasteners are being used.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopperman
You gotta at least check the toe-in and lean-out adjustments.










Of course, this is a British set up- where they drive on the wrong side.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:09 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopperman
Ural tubs would be way too heavy for a KLR. At the very least, assuming you could get a good head of steam going, the effects of braking and acceleration would be grossly exaggerated.
.

Probably very true. You want the hack to weigh between 1/3 and 1/2 of the tug. Personally I like to shoot for the 1/3 mark because I can always add weight if I think the hack flies too easily. Conversely you can't do much to remove weight if the hack is wagging the tug.

On my next rig the hack is probably going to weigh about 25% of the tug empty. I'll throw 75-100 Lbs of lead shot into the hack, dispersed across the floor and trunk to balance the weight equation.

As for putting a hack on a KLR it has been done but the hacks are always very light weight and sparse. Making it go isn't necessarily the problem - steering it and making it stop are the issues.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:11 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curbjumper






The pics get the point across, but there are much easier ways to check lean and toe.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siemonw
Can you please post a bigger pic? That one is too small. I can't see whether grade 8 fasteners are being used.
Morning Bill....I just assumed everyone else here has a 61" plasma screen to appreciate that pic.

Actually I f*cked up and didn't check it before I submitted it.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bueller
The pics get the point across, but there are much easier ways to check lean and toe.



Are you going to replace sporty?

I don't know much about sidecars yet- just starting to look for one for this...



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Old 11-18-2007, 08:23 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siemonw
Can you please post a bigger pic? That one is too small. I can't see whether grade 8 fasteners are being used.



I had to save it to my puter so I could look at it - that's pretty damn neat!
A dear friend of mine had an old /2 with a Ural side hack on it, a KLR with a hack couldn't be any worse power-wise than the slash-too was.


Choppa's right on a lot of points - the main one is that once you get it set up, leave it alone, Forget the easy on - easy off, it ain't gonna happen.
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