Hackless in Alabama...

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by GSBS, Dec 10, 2008.

  1. GSBS

    GSBS FunHog

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Blount Springs, AL
    Hello all...

    I'm considering buying a sidecar rig - probably late model Ural - because recently we added a golden retriever puppy to the family.

    The sidecar seems like a great idea, but I've never actually ridden a bike with sidecar (or even ridden in a sidecar). After thinking about it I realized I'd be crazy to put out the considerable $$$ for a sidecar rig before knowing if I'd like riding one.

    So, I'm hoping someone here would be willing to meet up and give me a ride (or let me take theirs around the block).

    I'm in North Central Alabama 30 miles north of Birmingham in rural Blount County, but would be willing to ride anywhere in Alabama (or maybe surrounding states) to check out a hack.

    Thanks!
    David
    #1
  2. claude

    claude Sidecar Jockey

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    I sent you an email
    #2
  3. Threewheelbonnie

    Threewheelbonnie Long timer

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    I think Claude may have suggested this, but get a ride before you buy. An outfit is a different vehicle to anything else and some people simply can't get their heads round the fact that it leans in the direction it wants to and the controls do different things in different circumstances. Even a trike isn't the same. I'd hate for you to buy one then find you think it handles like a badly made supermarket trolly.

    The other reason to get a ride on one is so you've an idea about how a decent outfit will handle. If you can get a ride at a dealer or training course you'll have at least a rough idea if any used example is Ok, set up wrong or just plain wrong.

    There is a thread about Urals that I guess you've read. Without repeating what's there, I think you need to match how much work you will do against the bike. If you want to ride, IMHO get the newest 750 you can, if you like oily hands get a 650 or a Chang or one that wasn't run in properly. If you really need a 70 mph cruising speed, get something else.

    Dog wise I'm afraid you need to get on with things. Any dog put in a sidecar before 12 weeks old will love it, after that some won't manage (I never met one, but they are out there). I'm guessing yours will be used to bike noise and travelling in a car, in which case you've made a start. Once you've got the hang of an outfit start with sitting in the chair with the harness on, then short rides, then longer ones, is repatition like any training. After the short runs you'll know if yours is going to ride head out or head in. If it's head out, you need to do some training to get them used to either Doggles or safety goggles with a chin strap added. Head out dogs without eye protection get bug and slipstream damage. I'm lucky, ours (Gooner; Collie Alsation cross) has always been head in and sleeps through anything over 5 miles. Good job really, he ate his Doggles :eek1

    Good Luck, let us all know how you get on and please keep asking anything you think anyone here can help with.

    Andy
    #3
  4. GSBS

    GSBS FunHog

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    That's what I'm hoping for, a chance to try before I buy.

    Thanks for the quick responses!

    David
    #4
  5. tony the tiger

    tony the tiger Long timer

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    Look into taking a Sidecar/Trike Education Program course (S/TEP) if you can... We have two in the NorthWet, which made it easier for me. You might have to look around a bit.
    Anyways, you pays yer money and plays w/the program rigs for two days. Better'n buying one only to find out it's not for you!
    :thumb
    #5
  6. GSBS

    GSBS FunHog

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    ...I'm gonna check with our state motorcycle safety program to see if they offer the classes.

    Thanks for the suggestion!
    #6
  7. Ogre_fl

    Ogre_fl Long timer

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    Shameless plug.

    If you want to try the hack thing, don't want to spend a fortune and like the idea of Honda reliability.
    Our rig has almost identical on road performance as a Ural and my dog never once mentioned that its was any less "cool"

    If a trip to the beach is in your plans before this sells, your welcome to come try it either way.

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=412349

    [​IMG]
    #7
  8. rtwdoug

    rtwdoug prominent underachiever

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    Hey David,
    Im about 35 miles north of you. I'm trying to work a deal on an old BMW outfit. if it goes thru, I'll let you ride it.
    My 1st hack was an R69S combo. when I 1st rode it, I HATED it. but it looked so cool, I wouldnt give up. I learned to love it.
    I dont think Bama has a sidecar school, theres just not enough of em here.

    Doug
    #8
  9. Yankee Dog

    Yankee Dog Long timer

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    I have a 2005 Gear Up. I live up near Florette/Somerville. Depending on what the missus has scheduled I may be able to accomodate you this weekend. Sunday afternoon would most likely be best.

    I will give youi a ride and let you drive it around the parking lot up at the park in Florette. A rig is very hard to get used to and easy to flip if you let it get away from you are speeed, thus the reason for the parking lot restriction.

    Which brings me to my next topic. It could be counterproductiive to test drive. As I mentioned, driving a rig can be very scary when you first try it. You would swear the thing is going to come over on you. And it can. However, once you get the swing of things they are a blast.

    PM sent.

    Yankee Dog
    #9
  10. tony the tiger

    tony the tiger Long timer

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    ...down there in Alabamy! :thumb
    Hey GSBS - if you do decide to buy one, still consider taking a mini-vacation to get some training somewhere... it's worth it. Might consider the United SideCar Association too. linky :thumb
    #10
  11. gec343

    gec343 Been here awhile

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    Evart, Michigan
    I totally agree with the above. You will not like driving the rig for the first time. However, after a few miles, hours, etc, you will love it. I love my Ural rig, but still prefer two wheels most of the time. My little Pug rides in the rig, but also in his pet carrier on all of my bikes. Taking the dog along just adds to the enjoyment of the ride.

    We (the Pug & I) took a 6000 mile ride last Summer. That was my first long trip with him, but I will not leave home without him again. That trip was on my ST, since I use the Ural for short rides, errands, etc.
    #11
  12. gec343

    gec343 Been here awhile

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    Very nice rig. Yes, that Honda reliability is outstanding, to say the least.
    #12
  13. Spicy McHaggis

    Spicy McHaggis Darth Peach's cracker...

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    You don't RIDE a sidecar motorcycle...you DRIVE it...:ricky
    #13
  14. gec343

    gec343 Been here awhile

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    Very true statement. Also, Spicy McHaggis, thanks for serving in the USCG.:norton
    #14
  15. ZONKR

    ZONKR Been here awhile

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    I bought my 2007 GearUp last year without ever having driven one. Gave the salesman the check, did all the paperwork and then he climbed into the tub and said "let's go". We drove around on some neighborhood streets behind the dealership and I was thinking I'd made a big mistake. They put it on a trailer and delivered it to my house the next day and the rest is history. Took a little getting used to but now I can't stay off of it.
    #15
  16. Gene McCall

    Gene McCall Adventurer

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    GSBS, I think you will soon be able to have a taste of driving a hack. In March of this year I picked up my 2000 ST1100 at Hannigan's Motorsports in Murray, Ky after they added a 2008 Astro sidecar. In June an old riding buddy from Oz and I took off on a 15,000 plus miles trip, covering 17 or 18 states, including Alaska and I think 10 Canadian provinces. We split the driving duties and neither of us had owned a hack before. My only experience was getting to drive an old BMW rig for a few miles, hated it! I am only now really beginning to enjoy the hack, it took a lot of getting used to for me. I don't think my aussie buddy would ever own a hack. Having said that I am finding it is great for all sorts of chores and is really great for traveling. BTW I am located in Murfreesboro, Tn., not too far away, let me know if you don't get your ride.
    Gene McCall :freaky

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]
    #16
  17. GSBS

    GSBS FunHog

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    Yesterday afternoon he took me for a tour of his neighborhood in his Gear Up Ural sidecar rig and then let me take the controls in a large parking lot for a taste of hack-dom.

    The one word that comes to mind to describe my first sidecar experience - squirmy. But the brief ride was enough to let me know I wanted more and will be scanning the web for deals on recent model Urals over the winter months.

    Thanks again Yankee Dog! Great to meet you and the Missus yesterday:clap
    #17
  18. gec343

    gec343 Been here awhile

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    Nice rig. I have never seen an ST with a sidecar. It has me thinking.
    #18
  19. tony the tiger

    tony the tiger Long timer

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    :thumb
    Good onya' YD.
    #19
  20. Gene McCall

    Gene McCall Adventurer

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    gec343, actually Dave Keesee, the guy at Hannigan's who put my rig together said he has done more 1300s than 1100s. I have seen several GL1500 & 1800s but only pictures of 1300s with hacks. :freaky
    #20