The Sidehack Adventures of Rad 'n Doc...USA then the World

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Elefant 900 Rad, Oct 25, 2016.

  1. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    So my round the world journey has started. Never thought I'd be doing it with a dog, but I adopted my boy Doc Holliday in December of 2014 and 3 months later realized I could start planning my dream ride around the world. I thought "what should I do with my new dog" ?...Contemplated getting rid of him, but I just couldn't do that.. So I started researching traveling with a dog and found Kuhjunge's RTW thread and also another guy Stan Mcghee in Germany who traveled all over with dog in sidecar. I saw that it can and has been done, so I contacted a few sidehack builders and chose Chris Canterbury of Boxer Metal. who built me an awesome rig to my specs.

    I'll start posting pix and more real soon, we've already been on the first leg in California and Oregon for 2 months.

    More to come....gotta download my photos to smug mug and start the real report.

    Talk to you soon...
    #1
  2. out rider

    out rider You Go First

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    Waiting for more...
    #2
  3. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    N!
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  4. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    And so the journey begins.....

    I've always loved long trips on a motorcycle, and after meeting Austin Vince at a Round the World presentation about his home made movie "Mondo Enduro" at BMW Motorcycles of Escondido a few years ago, I got the bug of possibly doing a round the world trip myself. I also hosted about 15 motorcycle travelers at my home over the last 4 years, some of them on their own round the world trips. I was inspired by all the people I hosted, and continued to attend round the world trip presentations at local shops whenever I could.

    In February of 2015 there were some changes in my life and I realized I should start planning my own journey around the world. I had just adopted a dog (Doc Holliday) 3 months earlier after my last one passed, and I thought "what should I do with my new dog" ? I contemplated getting rid of him, but I just could not do that. So I started researching traveling with a dog and found Kuhjunge's round the world trip report on ADVrider, where he and his girlfriend were traveling with 2 bikes and 3 dogs in a sidecar. Also got referred to Stan McGhee in Germany, who travels with his wife and dog all over in a sidecar. I asked them specific questions, like if the extra time, money and effort involved with taking a dog to other countries was worth it, and if they had to do it again, would they do it with a dog. Both said that it was well worth it, they would do it again with a dog, and a dog will often enhance your trip and even open doors for you in many places. So, I started researching what is needed for entry into other countries with a dog, found a travel site called "PetTravel.com" which is a wealth of information, and decided Doc Holliday was going with me.

    First thing was to decide what bike to buy for this journey. I wanted shaft drive, parts availability and reliability with good power. There were only a few choices in my mind...BMW 1150 or 1200 GS, Yamaha Super Tenere 1200, an older Airhead BMW GS and maybe a couple of others came to mind. One night, a friend Ed (Shafted) and I were sitting in our favorite fish taco bar in Ocean Beach, discussing my plans and what bike to use. I didn't like the fact that on an older Super Tenere, you cannot turn off the ABS and the newer ones have too much electronics like suspension adjustment, etc. The newer BMW's also have too much electronic suspension, canbus and ABS. An older Airhead to me, doesn't have enough power for a heavy sidecar rig and they also have weak electrical systems and alternator. Ed said, "you know, about a 2003 BMW 1150GS "Sport" Model would be just about ideal"...no canbus, no ABS, slightly lower first gear. He happened to check Craigslist later that night and found one an hour and a half away, with only 9500 miles in showroom condition...I said, "I'm going to buy it this weekend, whether or not I use it for this trip". So that's what I did.

    Next step was start looking for a sidecar builder. I contacted a few around the country and chose Chris Canterbury of Boxer Metal, in Chico, CA. The design process and commissioning of the sidehack build started in August of 2015. Wheels, subframe and leading link front end were ordered from EZS Sidecar in the Netherlands. The parts arrived in December at LAX in Los Angeles and I happened to be working in LA that day, so I picked up the crate and later that week, drove the parts and the bike up to Chico in the truck with Doc.

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    Commissioning the build on a handshake.



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    Doc Holliday was jumpin' for joy....

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    Some pix from later on, during the build process.....

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    #4
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  5. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    The rig was close to completion in early August, so I got a one way rental up to Chico, took my riding gear, tools and Doc with me to go pick up the rig from Boxer Metal. Here's a few pix of Chris working in the shop...I helped him work on it some, and I got to know the workings of a lot of it while I hung out as he put on all the finishing touches.

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    Custom solar panel, much more efficient than most you can buy....powerful enough to charge laptop, has a controller inside top Jessie Luggage case, with USB ports, and also constantly charges bike battery.

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    Doc is a big boy....the body is designed to my specifications, so he can fully stand, turn around and lay down sprawled out inside the chair....after 2 attempts, he got in on his own...

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    Chris working on the wiring....

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    It's a beautiful thing....accessory board inside the chair....

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    Dinner time...

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    Had to go here one night....

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    Chris getting ready for the first test ride after completion....

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    Chris showing off how to get "the chair in the air" !

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    Test ride with me in the chair, looking up at Chris as the pilot...

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    I had to test ride in the chair to make sure it was safe for Doc, check out wind noise, etc.

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    My first ride on the rig....

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    Getting ready to leave Chico for the ride home...

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    #5
  6. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    The ride home from Chico down the I-5 was hot....I had to stop every hour to let Doc cool off, give him water and sometimes find a place where we could go inside with air conditioning...

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    Doc chilin' on a cool floor...

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    Our rig draws a lot of attention, people taking photos of it all the time, coming up to talk to me....this guy wanted to follow me down the road a ways, make sure I was OK...that was cool of him.

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    Another rest stop on the way home....

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    Had a couple of going away get-togethers with friends....

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    It was a few weeks before I was actually ready to get out of my rent house, have a big yard sale to sell most of my belongings and finally get out on the road....more to come.
    #6
  7. Dessert Storm

    Dessert Storm Dances With Drunks

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    Awesome already!
    #7
  8. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    Looks great!
    #8
  9. goodcat

    goodcat Changing latitudes, altitudes and attitudes

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    That is one skookum badazz setup !!!!

    Safe journey
    #9
  10. ChiliPepperGarage

    ChiliPepperGarage Spork

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    Nice rig and beautiful dog!

    Looking forward to your adventure.
    #10
  11. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    Before I left San Diego, I attended a couple more round the world presentations by Simon and LIsa Thomas, and Sam Manicom. At Sam's presentation, he introduced me to Bonzai Becky and Andrea of Motoventuring.com...2 wild and crazy chicks who rode their DRZ400's to South America. Becky said if I needed any graphic work for Blog, stickers, etc. she'd be glad to help so I took her up on the offer. My friend Shafted and I met them both in Ocean Beach for fish tacos....we had a blast. We came up with a blog name....RadnDoc.com, so if anyone wants to follow the blog, I'll be updating that also.

    Becky soon came up with a cool sticker design and ordered me 500 so I can hand them out to people I meet on the road....

    L to R, Ed, Andrea, me and Becky

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    I finally got on the road on September 4th...My first night of the trip, I made it to Fullerton, just 2 hours from San Diego...my Airhead friends invited me to stop and see them as my first official stop of the trip....here's a pic of my friend John's old Airhead with an original Steib sidecar on it....John has quite a colleciton of bikes, ALL Airhead Boxers....

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    As i was hanging out with my friends in Fullerton, I mentioned that the rear luggage section of the hack was sitting way too low fully loaded....John and I looked at it closely, and he mentioned he had a friend who is a really good welder...we decided to cut the rear section off the sidecar subframe and raise it 5". In the process, before I had it welded, I somehow shorted some wires and the bike would not run. I fixed the fried wires but still no power with key on. I had to take the bike to Irv Seaver BMW to analyze the problem....they had the bike for 2 1/2 weeks before finding and fixing the problem, just a burned out ignition switch.

    In the meantime while bike was in shop, the Airheads were having their yearly Kings Canyon campout, so I decided to rent a car so I could attend the rally. Did some good hiking with my boy Doc in Kings Canyon and the Seqouia Nat'l Park area....

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    I've been to see the giant Seqouia trees many times and still never get tired of them....

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    The Airheads at the group campsite...

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    Doc crashed out after a busy day....

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    #11
  12. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    Since I was bikeless, I had to find some good hikes....some great scenery, and lots of pix of Doc....

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    Usually there's a waterfall, you can see where the water usually cascades down the rocks...but California is in a drought so no waterfall.

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    One of my favorite pix of Doc...



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    Video of box canyon and Doc gettin' in trouble on some rocks...he shows what a dog's nails are really for....




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    On the way back to campsite, stopped for an awesome sunset on the mountains....

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    A tired pup again, after an active day..



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    #12
  13. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    On the way out of Seqouia National Park, I took the 23 mile drive up to Mineral King...all the times I had been to Seqouia, never went up here...I'm glad I did...great views.

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    Stopped to check out this guy crossing the road...dropped a quarter for size comparison,

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    Video of the Mineral King Area....


    #13
  14. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    Back in Fullerton, I ordered Doc some "Rex Specs" K9 goggles....

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    Had to get some electrical parts, and while there, Doc got a buddy to play inside the store....



    A guy showed up to my friend John's house with this trick bike....very cool.

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    A short hike in the hills of Fullerton....

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    Finally, got my rig back from Irv Seaver's....time to ride ! Went up to Carpinteria to join the Airheads for a Tech Day at Martin's shop...

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    My friend John who was my host in Fullerton, working on his 1941 or around that year, BMW....cool bike !

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    Went to Carpinteria Beach...there is natural tar oozing out of the cliffs...the Indians used to use this for their canoes.

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    Troy, Sherri, Doc, and his new girlfriends Lola and Shelby...Doc and Lola were in love.

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    Our accommodations for the night in the parking lot....

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    Had a great time with my Airhead friends and met new ones...
    #14
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  15. Ruud109

    Ruud109 Dutch in Barcelona

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    What an awesome hack you got there! Best of luck to you and safe travels!
    #15
  16. dano619

    dano619 Long timer Supporter

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    Nice Randy.....Met you at Desert Dash thru the years......will be following.......wishing you and Doc safe travels and Adventure!!
    #16
    Elefant 900 Rad likes this.
  17. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    Outstanding! Count me in.
    #17
  18. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    The next day, took a ride to check out the Montecito Motor Classic Car and Bike Show....lots of nice machinery....I took loads of photos, but here are a few of my favorites...

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    Nice license plate....

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    One of my favorite cars....

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    Video of the bikes.....





    After the motor classic, took a ride thru Santa Barbara, then up into the mountains near Ojai....it was pretty hot that day, Doc was exhausted....took an hour break in the shade, then had dinner at a nice Italian joint in the mountains.

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    The end of another good day.
    #18
  19. Elefant 900 Rad

    Elefant 900 Rad Hedley

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    Finally, this day actually felt like the real start of my trip....heading north to the Sierra Nevada mountains up Hwy 395. At a gas stop in Pearsonville, I heard something that didn't sound right from my front end...I carefully examined the wheel and brake calipers....found a couple missing bolts and loose bolts on the calipers. Luckily, I stocked up on spare bolts, nuts and washers before I left. I had all the bolts necessary and soon was on my way.

    Funny how Doc guards the rig....I don't think anyone will mess with it.

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    I stopped in Lone PIne for a room at 3am.

    Next morning, met some English folks renting Harleys and touring parts of the USA...

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    In the lobby of the historic Dow Villa Motel, I saw a cute girl in riding pants...figured she had to be on a bike, so went outside and met Thomas and Helene from Germany, their name on ADVrider is "Wipeout"...they are touring the USA, Canada and South America 2 up on an F800GS.

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    Lobby of the Dow Villa Motel...famous movie area, lots of memorabilia....

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    Five Bold Women....oh yeah !

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    The view across from the motel...Mt. Whitney and the Eastern Sierra Nevada...I've been addicted to these mountains for years !

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    Not a clear shot, but that's Mt. Whitney....highest mountain in the contiguous United States, elevation 14,505 feet.

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    Had to go to the Alabama Hills, Movie Flats...love this area...many westerns and other movies were filmed here...plus, a chance for riding off road !

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    Let the dirt roads begin !! I've been waiting for this...the first time really riding off pavement with the rig.

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    The old runway at Manzanar, where they flew in Japanese Americans during WWII and put them in relocation camps, similar to concentration camps.

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    I love exploring dirt roads, and I'm really loving it with this rig !

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    More to come from the end of this day....
    #19
  20. ChiliPepperGarage

    ChiliPepperGarage Spork

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    If you head up I-70 make sure to stop by Glenwood Springs for a refreshment!

    I want to do some traveling with my dog too. Where does Doc sleep at night? My dog is a Blue Heeler and likes to chase things. I'm concerned that he will take off after stuff or bark and raise a ruckus. I figure I'll keep him in my tent as he sleeps on the bed at home but need to secure him so he doesn't try to tear through the tent.

    I saw you had one photo of Doc sleeping on a pad in the parking lot. Does he stay there all night?

    Thanks.

    Attached Files:

    #20
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