Posted 9/27/2004 3:45 PM (#4831) Subject: MModel of side car.
I purchased a new California side car in 1982, I cannot find a mfg plate telling me what model I have. This car is mounted on my 1981 Goldwing Interstate. Neither unit has been on the road since 1987. I plan on trying to get them road ready in the near future. The bike will not be any problem as I have all the info I need to get it going. But I'm sure there have been upgrades and changes that I should know about before putting the car on the road again . Any and all help on this will be appreciated. Thanks Don Stansky.
Posted 9/28/2004 10:42 AM (#4845 - in reply to #4831) Subject: RE: MModel of side car.
Posts: 359 Location: Covington WA
Back when your sidecar was new California made the mounting systems different then they do now. The early systems as you most likley have are known to fail in a couple of places so you may want to think about up grading the mounts.
The first place they fail is with the lower mounts. The small ball mounts with tulips over them are known to come apart and really should be up graded to the newer 5/8 inch heim joints.
The next item that is known to fail are the strap clamps. They were not cross drilled and will come apart. You can either cross drill them for 2 1/4 inch bolts or replace them.
A couple of other problem area's on these sidecars. The suspention runs on 5 flat springs used as torsion bars. They are known to fail. The suspention pivots on a bronze bushing that wears quickly and once worn the sidecar will not hold an alignment.
The wheel on these early sidecars were 16 inch cast wheels runing a motorcycle tire. These wheels are known to fail. You will want to inspect all of the spokes in the casting closly for cracks. If cracked do not run the wheel.
I put 150K on a Friendship 1 sidecar of this vintage on a GL1100 and have had all of these items fail on me.
We build the up graded mounts as do a few other companies. We have the suspention bushings in stock but not the springs. California no longer supplies the springs. We build a suspention up grade that converts the sidecar over to a motorcycle spring shock set up and can even add a disk brake. With this set up you would also end up going to a car wheel and tire. If your wheel is cracked and you do not want to go the the expense of our up grade you can shorten the stock swing arm and run a trailer hub and 13 inch wheel with a 145 13 tire on it. This is what California did to replace the failing wheels.
Let me know if we can be of any help.
Dauntless Motors Corporation