Another GS Adventure being hacked

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by MIXR, Sep 18, 2011.

  1. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    Pick up day is tomorrow. I think. Maybe. Perhaps.

    I sent SRK an email on Monday seeking a photo of the spare wheel rack so I could have a think about how to mount my dog harness attachements. No reply as yet, and it is Thursday mid-afternoon here! Oh dear.

    One thing for certain is that I will be taking my trailer tomorrow and will be coming home with the bike. Whether the bike is complete with the sidecar, complete with no sidecar, or still in parts with no sidecar, is yet to be determined.

    The SRK nominated build finish was yesterday, so I can only assume that all is good. I had to extend my pick up to Friday due to work commitments.

    Hopefully I will be posting a nice photo tomorrow night of an outfit on a trailer on its way home. Anyone taking bets?

    Five weeks without a bike! I'm going stir-crazy.

    Until tomorrow then,

    The ever-patient (wish I had never done this), Mick. :cry
    #41
  2. pops

    pops Long timer

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    :clap:clap Hope it all works out good for you Mick.
    And yes please ,we need photos.

    Cheers Ian.
    #42
  3. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    I wish things had worked out better and the way they were planned so that I could have provided more progressive build shots. Such is life! Went to Bathurst in the pouring rain early this morning, and drove home in the pouring rain at midday.

    What was on the trailer?

    Can you see it?

    [​IMG]

    Yep - It was done! Only just! They were finishing as I arrived! And there a few things that I'm not completely happy about, but they are within the bounds of 'acceptable'.

    Overall, I'm happy with the outcome. I will probably continue my ramblings over on the Hack side as this is no longer a build in progress (are they ever finished?). For now, here are some better trailer shots:

    Nice arse! And yes, the panniers and spare do fit! The left pannier is very tight though.
    [​IMG]

    Excellent job on the spare wheel rack. Love it, and exactly what I wanted. The outfit looks great when the spare is fitted.
    [​IMG]

    A wide view of the front end. The protective plate would have been better in black, and is a bit light. It will do as a starter. The idea is there.
    [​IMG]

    Closer in shot of the front.
    [​IMG]

    And a last view of the whole rig. The rear looks good (in my humble opinion).
    [​IMG]

    The test ride was only about 30 kms. Enough to note some serious head shake at walking speed, but we knew the front tyre was low on pressure. I'll play over the weekend and stiffen everything up, and see how it goes. If I need a firmer rear shock on the bike (or heavier spring), I'll do that as it was something I was expecting and was warned about.

    Handling seems good at 100-110 kph. Not so good at parking speeds! Maybe that's me! Overall, I'm pleased at the work done by SRK. There are signs of the last minute rush, but nothing I can't live with. I'll eventually post more detailed shots of the set-up. It's a 5-point fixing. Priority is to get some shakedown miles up so I can do my bigger run next weekend.

    Anyway - This 'build' is 'built', so next posts about Goliath will be over in Hacks.

    Cheers all, and thank you so much for your patience, advice, encouragement, and good thoughts.

    Mick.
    #43
  4. JoeyBones

    JoeyBones Encouraging Entropy

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    It looks awesome! Please post a link here to your new thread in Hacks.
    #44
  5. pops

    pops Long timer

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    Looks great .Worth the wait i reckon.:clap:clap.
    The wire wheels look wicked .

    Mate your dog is going to love you long time.Well to sidecar at least.

    How soft is your rear end ?:hide

    Cheers Ian
    #45
  6. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    At my age, quite soft. Why do you ask? :rofl

    As for the bike .......................................

    Yeah, it's interesting, as you already know from yours. But, I want this to remain a long distance bike and it seems good at speed, so I'll give it time and play with tyre pressure and existing spring settings. It sits well on the road and doesn't seem to be loading the rear tyre as much as I thought. I've probably got that wrong, but I had 40 litres of water on board to simulate most of my likely load. 20 kg of dog, 20 kg of camping gear, and 20 kg of tools and 'stuff'? Plus a heavy spare wheel. Hmmmm - Maybe I'll be up to 80 kg?

    There are a few 'assembly' issues that I need to address. Still raining here, so not conducive to test riding. Maybe later today. Chasing some parts this morning. They noticed the fuel tank quick-disconnect was leaking and showing some cracking, so I'll need a new one. I need some wheel bolts and cones to hold the spare on its mount. And some more zip-tying of the totally useless Harley park brake cables.

    I'm still of two minds about the build. It looks good, but I'm having trouble geeting excited about it. It probably needs a good run to change that. And the fact that it's not turning out to be as 'plug-and-play' as I hoped is a worry.

    One big issue is the amount of attention it attracts! Whenever I stopped for coffee or fuel yesterday I (or it) got some serious attention. And that's with it strapped to a trailer!

    Anyway - As this thread dies off and I do some proper riding, I'll add a link to 'Hacks'. My HumVee decals are waiting to be applied (tomorrow's job with a mate here to do some bar risers on my old R1150R that he now owns). Got to go slow on the decals and get them 'right'.

    Cheers, Mick.
    #46
  7. Medic

    Medic Window licker

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    Where's the pics off the trailer Mick?
    #47
  8. Andrew2

    Andrew2 Long timer

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    Well done Mick it looks great:clap.I'm happy to see you finally got her.They are never right from the start trust me so you'll still have to set it up to your liking.
    One other thing mate.If you take your pup everywhere with you in the chair be prepared for the pretty young things to be clamouring all over the mutt.....and you too if your lucky:rofl:rofl.

    Cheers
    A2

    P.S. what sort of muffler do you have on,I can't see it in the photos.
    #48
  9. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    Andrew - You forget that my Border Collie used to ride pillion. The pretty young (and often 'older') things used to always come over for a chat (with the dog)! My two responses when the blonde ones asked;

    "Does the dog really ride on the bike?" were:

    "No. He has a long leash and runs really fast!"
    or better still
    "No. He rides the bike and I sit in the box and tell him where to go!"

    They quickly get the message and suddenly become very embarrased that they had even asked!


    Muffler? What muffler? I ran my R1150R sans-can for about 125,000 kms of it's 155,000. Doing the same with the GSA. It allows a full-size left system case to be used. Not much noisier, but amplifies the slight popping on overun the R1150 has. No problem with back-pressure as the cat is just a big muffler anyway. Makes it really easy to clean the back end, and wheel changes are a breeze.


    Medic - I'd like to wait until I've put the decals on and have the extra bolts I need for the spare wheel before I start posting pics.

    One problem I have is that my stock (full-size) left bag doesn't clear the spare tyre rack. The other one I sent over just cleared, but something has moved and the older bag is full of gear, so has probably expanded the lid a little. I'll have to just let it rub, or put a piece of chaffing tape in-between.

    Have now set-up the dog, the sun is shining, and I'm off to do some test riding.

    Cheers all. Mick.
    #49
  10. Andrew2

    Andrew2 Long timer

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    Fair enough.I've taken the cat out of mine and it made a big difference in power.

    Cheers
    Andrew
    #50
  11. choccoloco

    choccoloco Cabin Fever....

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    Congrats Mick, looks great.

    As for your cracked bit of plastic leaking fuel, my boss replaced his with a metal one at Mick Owen's. From what I understand it's common when removing the fuel tank.

    It cleared up well today so hopefully we'll get some pics...
    #51
  12. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    I am so over this!

    [​IMG]

    At least I managed to get it back in the shed! I had noticed a lot of vibration from the guard on my test ride yesterday. Figured it was 'normal'. Finally got it out this afternoon, and did a hundred kms before disaster.

    [​IMG]

    All the framing for the guard goes to one strip of light box. I guess the vibration generated some fatigue cracks, and then it decided to part company. A few loops of park brake cable and clearance light electrical wires held it in place. Not good after so few miles on reasonably solid blacktop. The backroads were rough in places, but nothing like a corrugated dirt road. Had I ridden it back yesterday, I'd have got to the bottom of the Abercrombie Valley!

    So ....................... You wanted pics? How's them apples! And just when I was getting it sorted in the shed this morning while it was raining. Some fiddling on the back end.

    [​IMG]

    And some work on the front-end to tidy up some low-quality assembly work.

    [​IMG]

    All for what? This? Kipper near crapped himself when the guard flicked back and made all the expensive scraping sounds.

    [​IMG]

    I didn't want a 'project'! I didn't want to have to rebuild a $10,000 purchase to make it usable. This is not Mick being a happy-chappy!

    So what, pray tell, does one do now?

    It's in the hands of SRK now. I guess the 'build' thread stays alive after all! Or do I exercise my consumer rights and return a product that's unfit for its intended purpose?

    Cheers guys. Mick.
    #52
  13. choccoloco

    choccoloco Cabin Fever....

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    I feel for you Mick, it's not good to see, I would have expected better.

    Giving SRK the chance to resolve the problem is not so easy when they're interstate plus with all the travelling costs and inconvenience, but I'd still try.
    They better pull the cat out of the bag on this one though. I'd expect to see not just a fix to your guard but maybe some extras thrown in for the sidecar, compensating your existing costs plus any ongoing costs to do with freight or what have you.

    Anyone searching "SRK engineering" will find this thread and will make their own minds up if they wanted SRK to build them a sidecar. So be interesting to see what comes about.

    I also believe from searching old hack threads SRK are also on ADV, but with a different name, I don't remember what I had searched but they hadn't posted much.
    #53
  14. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    I'm really torn about where to go with this. I was told (and reminded along the way) that SRK were 'interesting' to do business with, but they produced a good product. Well, I'm a living, breathing recipient of one of their products, and it ain't good. There are several other matters I could raise, but won't in a public forum. Just the hard facts here, and the sad photos.

    My bike is now sitting here in my shed and is unridable. It was sitting in their Bathurst yard for 5 weeks unridable. At least here it's indoors and out of the sun and rain! So if I take it back over next Saturday (my first opportunity), it then has to have at least a week (maybe more) of redesign, rebuilding, and repainting. More weeks without a bike, and more expenses shuttling to and from Bathurst.

    It's roughly a 550 km round trip. That's a lot of diesel in the old Hilux, and some wear-and-tear. Throw in some lunch, and a wasted day better spent doing useful things, and the costs mount up. And Christmas is almost here! I've got better things to do!

    I've spent time tonight looking at the failure. I can see a few engineering areas that might explain it. The biggest issue is the weight of the glass guard and steel bracketry all hinging of a relatively small central area. Call it the hub. The brackets radiate out from the hub to support the guard. Spread is about a quarter the circumferance of the wheel, which is how 'big' or 'long' the guard is. That's also a long way from the hub. So suddenly, you have a large mass at a large distance from its small fixed hub in a high vibration area right at the axle and shock mount.. The mass of the guard and brackets shakes on the rough stuff and gets amplified by the distance from the hub and overloads the very small attachment structure. Result: Fatigue failure in quick time. A design flaw waiting to fail. My mate from work noted how 'flimsy' the guard seemed when he helped me unload the rig yesterday. He wasn't surprised when I said it failed.

    It worries me that this didn't survive maybe 150 kms in total on 'good' roads. And under a 100 on fail day. What will the rest of it do on a run down the Sandover Highway from Isa to Alice?

    Anyway - I'll have to remove the guard and broken frame tomorrow. More photos? Like I said earlier, I'm over this, big-time.

    Oh yeah - SRK is also Premier Sidecars. Same business.
    #54
  15. JoeyBones

    JoeyBones Encouraging Entropy

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    I feel for ya dude. I hope there's a happy ending in store for this one but your dealings with them so far certainly make me nervous.

    Keep us posted.

    ...edit... You posted more detail while I was typing. If it was me I'd demand every penny back and talk to a lawyer. I know the USA has a reputation of being far too lawyer-happy and I usually shy away from stuff like that, but in this case I would lawyer-up, remove the sidecar, deliver it back to them and get ruthless in getting a 100% refund. Even if they "fix it" you don't want it and you'd just be waiting for it to fail again. That's my $0.02
    #55
  16. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    Had a closer look this morning as I snipped the electrics and last couple of zipties to remove the guard.

    I also wondered what might have happened if it had failed a few minutes earlier when I was doing 110 kph down the highway. Jammed in the chair wheel spokes and locked the wheel? Caught the spokes and rolled forward and under the chair wheel, throwing the chair in the air? Flicked out the back and cleaned up someone behind me?

    There is a lot of weight on the attachment weld area. Worse, the weight is not centred, so the guard has a tendancy to want to lean out. Remember 'moments' and force x distance?

    [​IMG]

    I used to teach engineering stuff to Air Force apprentices. One of my subjects was materials science. Aviation-based, but ...................

    The failure clearly shows signs of a fatigue failure as I see it. One edge appears dark and smooth. That's a sign of the fatigue crack 'working' the metal either side of the crack. The other edge is shiny and sharp. That's a sign of an instant fracture when the remaining material couldn't handle the load any more. At least, that's what I recall from my training days. I don't have a strong magnifier here, but the signs are very visible under a cheap 10x, and even with the naked eye! Maybe I'm wrong. But that's what it looks like to me. Happy to accept second opinions.

    Equally, the fatigue fracture (as I will now call it) is on the inside edge (closest to the bike) of the weld area. This is the outside weld farthest from the lean on the guard, which leans away from the bike. It is where the greater load (tension) would be carried, while the outer edge of the fracture (relative to the bike) is in compression as the guard flexes left. Hope that makes sense.

    [​IMG]

    I guess a simple way to look at it is that the guard was weighted to lean out under gravity and therefore the first failure was the 'lifting' side of the attachment weld. The other side failed when the weight was too great for the metal. The attachment for all that bracing is just too damn small!

    Anyway - The damn thing broke off! Doesn't matter how or why as far as I'm concerned!

    Might be an interesting week.
    #56
  17. ADVwannabe

    ADVwannabe Salty Adventurer

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    Damn! No wisdom to offer Mick, but I knew how much you've been anticipating this project. Good luck 'negotiating' with SRK.
    #57
  18. MIXR

    MIXR Been here awhile

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    Ok - I am not in a position to discuss the finer details, but SRK appears keen to rectify my perceived flaws with the build quality of the sidecar. There is a fine line in the NSW Fair Trading Legislation that makes it 'reasonable' to allow a supplier of goods and services to 'make good' bad service or a bad product. A very fine line. I rejected out of hand an offer to have a 'temporary' repair completed here in town. That would have been a third player in this debacle and the probable/possible reincarnation of the same design flaw. Not going to happen.

    I have given them the option. Ditch this whole thing on Saturday and call it quits, or rectify the guard issue and a bunch of other stuff. I have expressed my own preference to bail out of this altogether. They have expressed a desire to fix the thing. Since they have my money and the bike is still attached, they win at this juncture. That's assuming that they choose to maintain their position on Saturday when we have our face-to-face meeting (again).

    It's been difficult to explain my purchase of an item that has so many obvious faults. Don't get me wrong - It looks fantastic! But when I have to justify someone else's design faults and low quality tradesmanship to my friends, then it becomes problematic in a big way. It's all fixable. Most of it very easily. The question is "Why am I even having this discussion?"

    So, the rig is being delivered this coming Saturday and then collected again the following Saturday. At least, that's the plan. Wish me luck.

    Cheers, Mick.
    #58
  19. pops

    pops Long timer

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    Bugger. I have no advice to give Mick:bmwrider.
    I hope it all goes well for you on the weekend.

    Cheers Ian
    #59
  20. TspeED3

    TspeED3 Cult of Three

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    This is a really bugger for you (and Kipper), Mick. As I said on the phone the other night, I had a very different experience with SRK. Here's hoping that this is the anomaly and that my experience is the norm. But I agree, it is not overly surprising that the guard went south when you look at the way it was attached.

    Oh, and for what it is worth, rainy weather is the BEST time to be riding an outfit! :evil
    #60