Hello, I am completely new to the world of sidecars, and also new to this forum and have a few questions I'm hoping that I can get some help with.
I just bought an '89 Goldwing 1500 with a California Sidecar and when I ride it pulls hard to the left. The car has an extreme tilt towards the left (doesn't sit level at all) but the bike is straight up and down. I'm assuming the tilt has everything to do with the pulling, but I'm honestly no expert. As far as I know, the sidecar tire may be too tall and it could be as simple as that.
The bike has recently had new tires put on it (less than 100 miles probably) and I'm not even sure if they are stock specifications, I bought the bike from the family of the previous owner who passed away a couple years ago.
Can someone tell me what size the tire is supposed to be on the sidecar? It currently has a 155 R13. If this is a correct size, how can the tow-in or camber be adjusted to make this ride better? The tire shows no wear on the inside, but you can tell that the inside of the tire is the only thing actually making contact with the road.
Any insight on these issues would be greatly appreciated....Thanks!
Posted 5/15/2015 11:31 PM (#84404 - in reply to #84365) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Location: Columbiaville, MI.
I can't offer much help, but it sounds like the sidecar may have an adjustable suspension, that is set all of the way up. Check to see if you can find a two way switch near the grips and see if it lowers the suspension. Good luck with it, hope someone with more CSC knowledge offers some suggestions.
Posted 5/16/2015 2:24 AM (#84405 - in reply to #84404) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Location: Tacoma, WA, USA
When setting up a sidecar rig, once you get the car approximately level when the bike is level on a level surface, then you want to start fooling with the setup which consists of 1. wheel lead, 2. tilt out, and 3. toe in. General instructions for how to do this for California sidecars can be found HERE . This usually takes some trial and error. A useful little device to get hold of is a digital angle gauge like this one . Makes doing the lean out easier.
Posted 5/16/2015 7:03 AM (#84407 - in reply to #84365) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Location: Savannah Ga
try to post some pictures here, there are some good people here that can help. look and see if the car has a cylinder on the side with wires going to it as Lloyd said it could be the elec. lean is adjusted all the way out, but from what you said I don't theink that will be it as the bike should be leaned out as well.
Pictures will help greatly to get to the root of your problem
Posted 5/16/2015 9:21 AM (#84408 - in reply to #84365) Subject: RE: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Thanks for the replies...I had a little bit of spare time yesterday to tinker around, and got the issue improved, but not completely resolved....here are some pics...the first is how the bike currently sits.
And the rear view...
I figured out how to adjust the angles, but still need to do a bit more. I did get it to the point where it's actually able to be ridden. The pull is gone with the exception of a slight left pull when breaking. The sidecar tire went from maybe having 1/3 making ground contact to 2/3...I know that's still not right, but it's a definite step in the right direction. Here is a pic of the adjustment bars. It's an older model, and there is no electric adjustment...all wrenches, sockets, and a deadblow hammer.
I am becoming more familiar and comfortable with this bike...and that's definitely a good thing...thanks again!
Posted 5/18/2015 8:05 PM (#84437 - in reply to #84425) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
I tried the link, didn't work. I will attempt to do more tweaking on this to level it out, but I'm about at the point where the bike will no longer be level if I go much further. It rides decent now, but it's not perfect. I did put a level on the sidecar, and it was about 3/4" from actually being level....the pic makes it look much worse.
Posted 5/19/2015 9:50 AM (#84443 - in reply to #84365) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Location: NJ The Garden State
As Jay said you need to start ALL over. A little tweaking of attachments is not going to do it and you'll continue to chase your tail. You have to completely disconnect the sidecar, all four connections. Raise sidecar on a MC jack or stand until level, move bike along side be sure it's vertical and then adjust sidecar components so that sidecar remains level and bike vertical. After it is attached load your sidecar with approximate load weight you expect to carry then you can make adjustments for toe-in and lean-out. I heard you mention a dead blow hammer, if you have to resort to that to align attachments you are torqueing the attachments and frame putting everything under tension. Attachments usually have more than enough adjustability and should go together easier than that. I don't know anyone who has gotten their sidecar aligned properly the first three attempts, keep at it and you'll get it.
Posted 5/19/2015 7:44 PM (#84454 - in reply to #84365) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
I just looked at the links for the instructions...looks extremely involved. Definitely something for the long holiday weekend coming up...I did a little more tweaking, and it rides great now. But, it's pretty clear that it's not level, and I'm sure that it more than likely is a safety issue. Thanks for the help, I will do it right this weekend.
Posted 6/14/2015 5:42 PM (#84914 - in reply to #84365) Subject: Re: 1989 GL 1500 with CSC issues/questions....
Location: Libby, Montana
I have an 89, same color, with Champion Escort. It is spposed to use 145x13 tire and I was having trouble finding that size here so I went to the 155x13. It sat too high like yours. I took the mounts apart like was mentioned and leveled it up, reset the mounts and everything works great. I did have to try several times to set toe-in. Had some clearance issues between tire and shock mount bolt. I am using a quarter inch spacer behind the wheel. I've heard there are 145x13 tires available now which might cure your problem.