Goliath has come to play

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by MIXR, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    HOW 'GOLIATH' CAME TO BE
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    The drama surrounding the creation of &#8216;Goliath and his chair&#8217; has been quite distressing, annoying, frustrating and perplexing at times. Sometimes all at once! This was documented elsewhere and my rant followed the troubled path from being an &#8216;idea&#8217; to being a workable concept. However, the job is now done, the build is complete, and the outfit is on the road getting the first few kilometres of many under its wheels. That is my dream.

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    'Goliath with chair&#8217; was spawned out of a desire for me to be able to carry my best mate &#8216;Kipper&#8217; the Border Collie and enough gear for a week or more out in the bush. Kipper is a farm reject. He failed &#8216;sheep&#8217;. I scored him as a three year old working-stud sheep-dog that wouldn&#8217;t work those woolly things you turn into Sunday roasts and soft seat covers. Bye-bye country town of Grenfell, and hello city of Canberra for a total change of lifestyle. That was five years ago. He travels most places with me, and I happily admit that he is one very lucky dog!

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    He loved the bike so much that he accompanied me in his pillion crate for several thousands of kilometres on the back of my R1150R (un-named) and then on my R1150GSA (named &#8216;Goliath&#8217; from day 1 of ownership). It just got too hard on the longer trips with lots of gear and I soon recognised that it was too risky to venture too far off the tarmac. Hence, Goliath gained a &#8216;chair&#8217;. The chair is on the left side of course. I live in a civilised country unlike the heathens who live in the land of milk, honey, and the rocket&#8217;s red glare and who drive on the wrong side of the road!

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    I have spent a little while getting to know Goliath all over again. As a GS Adventure, Goliath was a handful. As a GS Adventure with a chair attached, the handfuls are still there, but are different. Oh yes, they are very different indeed! The risk of falling over is gone, but the ease with which Goliath cornered is also gone, replaced by something that feels unnatural, awkward, difficult and ungainly. Time will heal some of the ills, and time will become my friend as we venture further and further from home. Most importantly, Kipper loves his new mode of travel and that&#8217;s something very important to me.
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    This then, is an introduction to Goliath resurrected. I will add posts as Goliath grows and develops. I will answer questions where I can, and let the experts chime in where I can&#8217;t. Trip reports will probably go elsewhere. Do I expect failures along the way? Absolutely. That became clear during the build. This is very much a prototype that is someone else&#8217;s creation. It was designed for me, but is not my design. The outcome of this abomination of a creation is uncertain, so it will be an interesting experience. Wish me luck and safe travels. The luck I may need. The safety? We all hope for that.
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    So, my good people, say hello to 'Goliath' and my faithful companion 'Kipper' the Border Collie.

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    #1
  2. ClearwaterBMW

    ClearwaterBMW The Examiner

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    5,972
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    ah...
    a very nice rig, indeed
    would love to know more about it...
    as in the fabrication process, etc
    the distance between your chair and bike seems to be a bit LESS than usual

    i love you way of writing... with the exception of your SLIGHT OF THE US... :D

    hope that you'll be an active member of our fine hack forum
    enjoy every mile
    i surely do

    GOLIATH is an awesome companion
    i love riding with my dogs:

    DISCO... the Portuguese Water Dog:
    [​IMG]

    JACK... the Australian Shepherd:
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    #2
  3. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Thanks Greg. I'll post some more shots when I sort out my camera. It's giving me some curry at the moment.

    'Goliath' is the name of my bike/outfit/hack. 'Kipper' is the name of my Border Collie.

    Your 'Jack' looks like a Border Collie as well. We don't really have an 'Australian Shepherd', although the term is used a lot more these days than it used to be. I think the term came from you guys in the USA. The three main breeds for sheep work are Border Collies, red or Blue Heelers and Kelpies, and often there is a mix of those breeds to make a very good working dog. The Kelpies can be a bit scatter-brained and will work until they drop dead from exhaustion. The Border is more even-tempered. Heelers can be a handful (but very loyal) and are mostly used with cattle rather than sheep for some reason. Anyway, not the place to discuss dog breeds!

    As for the 'spacing' - Yes, it is close, but the track is quite wide. Remember that the engine is wide on the bike, as are the side cases, and the hack wheel is a fair way out from the tub as well. Some of our bush tracks are pretty narrow, as are the fire trails, so I could not afford to go too wide with a single-seat chair. The track is about the same as my Toyota Hilux 4WD, so it's not as skinny as you think.

    I'll get some close shots another time and post them up here.

    Cheers, Mick.
    #3
  4. Boondox

    Boondox Travels With Barley

    Joined:
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    Mick -- I had a brief stay in a tiny part of your country when my sub pulled into Perth. The Aussies treated us like we had personally won the Battle of the Coral Sea. I've always wanted to go back and see more despite your annoying habit of driving on the wrong side of the road.

    My initial sidecar experience was, like yours, less than inspiring. I came from a 2007 R12GS on which changing direction was effortless. The R12GS with a Hannigan sidecar handled like a moose. But it had the major advantage of allowing me to take my dog with me on some great adventures! It transformed adventure riding for me. And somewhere between 500-800 miles the rig started feeling natural under me. Very different, not as nimble, but unbeatable when it came to sheer joy.

    Stick with it till the insanity hits you. You won't regret it!

    Barley now has 14,000 miles under his collar and takes delight in every ride with me.
    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. ClearwaterBMW

    ClearwaterBMW The Examiner

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    thanks for your reply, mick
    yeah, i knew that AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERD was an AMERICAN TERM, oddly
    we had 2 shetland sheep dogs in the past... loved them

    as for your track... mine is almost as wide as my nissan armada... which is quite odd
    #5
  6. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Boondox - It was built with a few different adventures in mind and I know that it will grow on me. Can I say that it was a difficult 'birth' and that I'm still feeling the pain rather than the pleasure? Females - Please forgive my analogy.

    One aim is for a trip across to the west to visit my mate Rob. East to west is a long way here, as it is in your neck of the woods. The other big one is to head off around Australia again and enjoy the sights at a slower pace than the last time I did that trip. I also have an interest in doing some long-distance runs with Kipper, just to formally log his enjoyment of the ride. I think he is more capable than I am at the moment!

    Early days as they say, so I'm sure it will come good. Mick.
    #6
  7. Andrew2

    Andrew2 Team 250

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    Good to see you over here Mick...and don't worry about offending the female reader as 3Legs is thick skinned:hide:lol3.

    Andrew
    #7
  8. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

    Joined:
    May 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Across the pond.
    Great to see another combo with the sidecar on the PROPER SIDE. :evil :evil

    Looks good to me.....and Kipper seems to agree. :freaky
    #8
  9. 3legs

    3legs Real men ride sidecars

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    Oct 3, 2007
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    Location:
    Adelaide,South Oz
    Very nice outfit Mick. Much much better than Andrew's:lol3

    3legs
    #9
  10. senoj

    senoj senoj 54 but now 55

    Joined:
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mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;} </style> <![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <o:shapedefaults v:ext="edit" spidmax="1026"/> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <o:shapelayout v:ext="edit"> <o:idmap v:ext="edit" data="1"/> </o:shapelayout></xml><![endif]--> Mick

    From our conversations and the previous photos the pain of this build has been far greater than it should have been. I hope now that the company who built the car have delivered corrections covering the issues you encounted. Its now the end of the build to some extent and the start of the adventure. The people here have laid down some very encouraging comments about the future and the enjoyment it should hold.

    As for visiting us here on the West Coast, it's only 4450klm or 2781 miles(for those you drive on the wrong side of the road) from your house, so get cracking.

    Cheers
    Rob


    #10
  11. Andrew2

    Andrew2 Team 250

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,308
    Location:
    Wollongong,N.S.W.
    Bastard:huh:rofl
    #11
  12. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Good to see you lot can heap an appropriate amount of crap on each other's shoulders. Makes me feel right at home.

    Thanks guys. It's been an interesting time but I'm enjoying the chance to 'fix-and-fiddle' in the shed at last.

    And yes Rob - I'll get there in 2012 once I'm confident it will make it. Maybe I'll drop in on my way round Australia.

    Mick.
    #12
  13. pops

    pops Long timer

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,596
    Location:
    Stirling North South Australia
    Nice :thumb
    #13
  14. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,130
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    As a fellow 1150 GSA hacker, gotta say that I like the looks of that rig. :thumb

    Blue Heelers are called Australian Cattle Dogs here in the USA. Red Heelers are also called ACD's , except we don't see many of them.

    When rear tires go on sale, better stock up, because you'll chew through them quickly. Or start looking for a car tire conversion.
    #14
  15. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Cheers Drone. If I had a new rear tyre for everytime I was reminded how it would chew them up BEFORE I had it built, I'd be smothered in them. I'll have to live with the pain until I firmly decide that this is 'Me'!

    And .................................... Apologies for stealing your decal placement idea from Wumpa. I tried all sorts of locations, and yours stood out as the best for me. Hope that's ok. Guess I'm far enough away that throwing stones won't be a problem.

    Cheers, and thanks for the reminder. I have a few TKC's coming to try as I have already found my off-road grip lacking with dual-sport tyres. Wet grass is interesting!

    Mick.
    #15
  16. TouringDave

    TouringDave Tri Moto Veritas

    Joined:
    May 17, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,112
    Location:
    Frankston, Vic, Aust.
    Mick, that is a top looking outfit! Congrats! :clap
    #16
  17. pops

    pops Long timer

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,596
    Location:
    Stirling North South Australia
    That looks the part :clap.
    That dog is going to pester you every time you try to go for a ride :deal

    I also like the look of the spoke wheels.

    Cheers Ian
    #17
  18. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    The wire wheels look really good, and it will be hard to ever replace them with a car wheel set-up. I've been watching the bike's rear closely for any signs of stress (feathering etc) from pushing the load, but it seems to be sitting nicely on the road. Early days though with only a few hundred kilometres up, but maybe the setup will have a less-pronounced effect on tyre wear than some of the bigger and heavier rigs.

    As for build quality - I'm still finding things wrong that have to be re-done, which is annoying. One of the travel-toneau press studs pulled out of the tub. A couple more are loose. A close look reveals that the alloy rivets used to secure the studs to the tub just aren't long enough, and some of the holes have been badly drilled and are oversize. And while checking that, I noticed that the felt backing on the seat is just glued on, and has already started peeling off. So, I have purchased a pack of correct size riverts and some vinyl glue to do the job properly.

    It's not structural stuff which I think (hope) is all ok, but the general fit and finish is woeful. Annoyng when you spend top-end money and get bottom-end quality. It's not worth taking the thing back to Bathurst to have the builder address these little thing and to be honest, I'd prefer to do it my way and not have to worry about it failing again.

    And so we soldier on. Holidays coming up, so lots of trips planned. And some detailed shots coming soon for a few guys who have asked for them. More later. Cheers, Mick.
    #18
  19. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    662
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Managed to clear out from work a little early today (Christmas Lunch) so I headed home and loaded up Kipper for a short 150 km ride. Practice, practice practice!

    I ended up on a dirt road, so what the heck - Time to see how it likes loose gravel. It's great! Better than driving tarmac Soaks up the bumps and feels very stable and solid.

    [​IMG]

    I'm starting to get the hang of the left corners, but seem to be pushing a bit too hard at times. Hard to say if the effort is excessive, but I can feel my arms tonight! It's getting more comfortable with each ride, but I doubt I'll ever be fast. I did discover that my wheel cover is a big parachute! The airflow gets underneath the frame and blows the cover out like a big drag chute! I guess it has to go, unless I cut a large air vent in the middle!

    [​IMG]

    The thing certainly attracts a decent share of attention. I guess it is a bit on the unusual side. And a rarety in these parts.

    [​IMG]

    I actually took a mate for a run in the chair as well. He noted a few things, and so did I. He said it was a bit breezy and cold (he wasn't really dressed for it) and pretty noisy (the exhaust may need to be muffled a bit more by putting the can back on). Overall, he was pretty impressed with the ride, and if he tucked his arms in the thing was very aerodynamic and quiet. It's a small tub, and he is a big bloke, so I guess that's fair.

    What I noticed was the large increase in effort required going from a 22 kg dog to a 100 kg person! Major difference. Left turns were easier, but overall effort was much increased. It also wallowed a lot more, but suspension is still set fairly soft. It definitely gave me more ideas on what to play with for next ride, so thanks for being my ballast Garry!

    I think I'll be right with the weight aspect as my gear is mostly on the bike already. Just a tent and sleeping swag to go, and that's well under 30 kg, so I'll be a long way short of my passenger (by half) and still have some suspension settings to work on.

    I'm not sure that there is more scientific approach to all this with individual rigs, but I am slowly seeing how you can extrapolate one finding into the next move that needs to be made. All interesting stuff. Anyway - One last look until I get out again in a week or so. Unfortunately I have a funeral to attend before Christmas, so the outfit will remain shed-bound for a week or so.

    [​IMG]

    Kind of grows on you, doesn't it?
    #19
  20. ClearwaterBMW

    ClearwaterBMW The Examiner

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,972
    Location:
    Clearwater, FL USA
    nice report
    looks like you had fun
    thanks to GARRY...
    YES, it DOES kind of grow on you

    can't wait to read and see the next installment
    #20