Seeking ballast advice

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by DRONE, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. ildahl

    ildahl Adventurer

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    Drone,
    I am running with three bags of lead shot when empty in the trunk of my EZS car. They don't move around at all.
    Lance


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #41
  2. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

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    Lance--of course I'm familiar with your gorgeous 1100LT rig having been the one who posted it up here last March when it first got put up for sale. I think I commented when you bought it. Or did I PM you? Anyway, I can guarantee that your rig has never been on a road as bad as the ones I consider my bread and butter! I have to pack my trunk full every time I go out or pack in some pillows if there's any extra room just to keep stuff from flying around while I'm bouncing down the road. :D

    As for putting ballast in the trunk, my trunk is outside the tipover triangle. Sure, I'd rather have extra weight there than in the nose, but still it's best for me to put the ballast under the seat where it's near the sidecar wheel and inside the triangle.

    With your rig, the car is so low to the ground already, and with leading links, and a seat height 4" lower than me, I think your ballast in the trunk is probably OK, but still be careful accelerating out of those sharp left-handers. :wink:
    #42
  3. toothwater

    toothwater n00b

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    Drone....what i do, is use Maxwell House plastic coffee jugs filled with sand,cheap and effective and they have handles. If i remember correctly they weigh about ten lbs each and are easy to remove, which is a plus with a Terraplane and by the way, nice rig ........Mike
    #43
  4. anselmo

    anselmo Adventurer

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    Trap and skeet shooters sometimes have access to reclaimed lead shot, about half price. With about 1/4 ton + of new shot from my old shooting days, I use 4-25 lb bags behind the seat on my klr/velorex outfit. It moves some, especially when being silly and scraping the left peg. I should put it in a duffel and strap it to the seat brackets. I do not remove it when carrying a passenger since the load limit is 250 lbs, I think.
    Phil

    I suppose, ala oil threads, that we could get into the merits of #8 vs #4 shot, and copper plated vs hi zinc.
    #44
  5. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

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    Oh, please no! :lol3 Next thing ya know we'll get booted to the basement!

    Getting back to this idea described on page 2--

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/34068258@N02/8069118987/" title="Ballast by ag_streak, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8458/8069118987_19ce653745.jpg" width="500" height="222" alt="Ballast"></a>

    I think this would work on a metal tub, or a heavy-duty fiberglass tub that doesn't go into the backcountry. But on a fiberglass tub like mine, the sides of the tub are not designed to carry this kind of load. I think that with all the flexing and bouncing -- I'd destroy the tub. But I don't see a problem with mounting the post vertically on the floor.

    I'm actually kinda amazed at how strong my DMC tub already is. Sometimes I'll look over at it when I'm going over washboard (usually at way too fast a speed) and the vibrations going from the road to the frame to the tub are incredible. Try it sometime. Hit some washboard fast and look over at the tub. It's an eye-opener. :eek1
    #45
  6. anselmo

    anselmo Adventurer

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    I would not want a spindle on the interior side due to passenger puncture potential (say that 3 times fast). Floor far better. But, not having reviewed my periodic table, I suspect you will get weight faster in less space with lead than the presumably cast iron of free weights or for that matter anything else. Maybe with a bigger rig like yours you do not need as much ballast; my lighweight set up really needs 100#.
    #46
  7. Mr. G

    Mr. G Normal Dude

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    Seems like a "Passenger Puncture" from a floor mounted spindle could be quite painful or quite enjoyable....depending on the gender ... :rofl
    #47
  8. NitroMax

    NitroMax Been here awhile

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    I had about 40 kg of lead which I melted into a diamondplate box I made and bolted that into the frame I made for the transport hack, so it was under the flat floor.

    [​IMG]

    I now have a "lastenseitenwagen" as hack and just bolted it to the floor, since it's pretty flat it doesn't take too much space.

    This is next to my MZ 301 2-stroke.

    On my R 90/6 with SuperElastik sidecar I have about the same weight in the boot, as far to the outside as possible, mounted with a bolt with a wingnut so I can take it out pretty easy. Just have to make some kind of grip on it so I can pick it easier :D
    #48
  9. Pago Cruiser

    Pago Cruiser Been here awhile

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    Hey Drone - I have a problem just bolting weight in; it has to be functional on some level... A small AGM battery, air compressor, receiver tank, and air horn weigh in about 50 lbs: and obviously bolted down.

    Plus you get to see cagers about sh!t their pants when they pull out in front of you, and are jerked out of their cell phone bliss by a Freightliner (or so they think, as they obviously aren't paying attention) 140 db horn.

    [​IMG]

    Let me know if you want to see the compressor/tank. Takes up about 1/2 cubic foot behind the seat. If you wanted, you could even mount the air receiver on the outside of the hack body; it would look like a fuel tank.

    I do not use it often, but when you do it gets the job done. You also get the convenience of a 100 psi air source when your tires become unround on the bottom...:D
    #49
  10. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

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    That's pretty awesome!

    Don't think I'll adopt it for my rig, though. The first time I used it would be the last time Kirby would get in the sidecar!
    #50
  11. Melrone

    Melrone Been here awhile

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    I started out with sand bags.Niow I have some Die casting steel that wieghs about 70lbs....When traveling I also carry a tool box weighing about 60lbs and camping gear.I run with a weghted tub...
    #51
  12. Boxer Metal

    Boxer Metal Mad Scientist

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    I did something similar. I went to the tire store and asked for the lead weights they were throwing away and I then melted them down into an old bread tin(doing this outside) with a propane torch.

    [​IMG]
    #52
  13. DirtyDR

    DirtyDR Dana

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    I used to carry a 70# sand tube in the hack and then I finally had about 4 sqf of 3/8 steel plate welded into the space between the frame tubes. Works out to about 75# and makes a real nice skid plate also. Now that I have a platfotm there I may work on a set of bolt on wheel stops so I can pull the tub off and carry the Rokon on the sidecar frame instead of pulling the trailer. I will have to come up with a fender for it then also so maybe I will just stick to the trailer.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #53
  14. eastbloc

    eastbloc comprador bourgeois

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    I have a similar air horn setup. It does work very well indeed :evil and I can inflate my tires with the air tank, too.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You can also see the automotive battery in the aluminum box behind the horn in the last photo. My rig is used on a lot of short trips, and this helps keep down the time in between when the battery needs to be topped up, especially in the winter.
    #54
  15. Sidecar Jockey

    Sidecar Jockey Been here awhile

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    I bought an 80 lb bag of quick-concrete mix at Home Depot for about $25. I put the un-opened package into a trash bag, then into a burlap sack.

    Since its in the heavy duty burlap sack, its easy to take in and out the the sidecar when you want to.

    One of my winter projects is going to be to put a deep cycle RV battery into my sidecar trunk, wired into a marine battery selector switch. I want the extra battery for powering stuff while on camping trips, but a size 31 deep cycle lead acid battery weighs about 60 lbs... so i guess it counts as ballast too. I'm using a marine battery tray with quick release straps and my battery selector has quick release clips for the wires too, so I'll be able to take the battery out in just a minute when I want to free up trunk space.
    #55
  16. dholaday

    dholaday Been here awhile

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    Sidecar Jockey:
    Do you have any pics of the parts? Link to where you got them?

    Thanks
    #56
  17. Boxer Metal

    Boxer Metal Mad Scientist

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    Always make your ballast weight adjustable and removable. As you become a better sidecar pilot you can lighten the load and still ride as fast through the corners.
    #57
  18. bully1

    bully1 Long timer

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    when I first built my rig I installed a 3 gallon Rotopax water container on the out side

    [​IMG]

    now I find that there is no water in it, a wise sidecarist ( Hello 3legs :wave) once told me to roll the throttle on more at the apex and you'll really pull through the corners ( left hand in our case ) , the left hand wheel now tends to be skipping along the ground as I turn left, once I load the car up then it's no problem.

    Adjustment by water is so easy, 70 pounds seems overly excessive, you need to get used to the feeling of "Flying " and ride with it.
    #58
  19. Sidecar Jockey

    Sidecar Jockey Been here awhile

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    Here is the battery tray. ITs $8 on Amazon and ships free. It seems raelly heavy duty.
    http://www.amazon.com/Attwood-Batte...8&qid=1351195170&sr=8-1&keywords=battery+tray

    Here is the battery selector. My advice would be to not run it in the "both" position, just switch between 1 and 2:
    http://www.amazon.com/Attwood-4-Way...d=1351195246&sr=1-1&keywords=battery+selector

    I got inline fuses, with quick disconnects at my local auto parts store, so i can quickly disconnect the sidecar battery cables. They were about $10 for 30 amp fuses in a 4 gauge wire size.

    I got the battery at a local battery shop. $100 buys a decent deep cycle marine or RV battery. I ordered the stuff yesterday, and went with size 27 battery. The batteries are much cheaper than the large 31+ sizes. They will still run pretty much all of my camping stuff and my bike. I havent installed it yet, its a winter project.

    The battery weighs 55 lbs, so its enough ballast. I can easily take it out when I dont want it, since the tray has a quick release strap, and just set the battery selectopr to use the original bike battery.
    #59
  20. CharlestonADV

    CharlestonADV I do my own stunts!

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    Get a couple 50 lb. bags of play sand from Lowes or your local DYI store.
    #60