Posted 11/28/2016 6:58 PM (#91530) Subject: Hello from new member
I just found and joined the forum yesterday. I'm 81 years old and have been driving motorcycles for about 68 years. Starting with a Whizzer, I've owned and ridden many bikes but have never been on a sidecar. Leg and back problems have made it more and more difficult to comfortably ride my current '79 R65 BMW so I decided to go to a side car which will also make it possible for my handicapped wife to ride with me again.
So, I have an order in for a URAL CT and should have it in a week or so. I've been doing a lot of reading about the difficulties I'll have transitioning from the 2-wheel (my first attempt at our daughter's Spyder was something to behold) to the point that I wonder if I've done the right thing. But I'm anxious on get on it and feel it out. I'm sure I'll be on the forum with questions once I see how the bike and I get along.
Posted 12/1/2016 3:39 PM (#91573 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: San Isidro de Heredia, Costa Rica
Malcom, you soon will say too:
"Why didn't I do that long ago?"
That happens to all of us. Even I at the age of 23 did say it to myself.
A rig is much more versatile then the solo.
Only take care. It is a complete different animal and you need to learn fresh from new. The dangerous moment comes when you start to feel comfortable.
"It is never too late for a happy childhood!"
Enjoy with your wife every moment.
Posted 12/1/2016 3:45 PM (#91574 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: Portland, Oregon
I would suggest if you can find one close by that you take a sidecar training class. I was a "youngster" of 65 years when I went to sidecars and have never looked back. Basically, you'll be unlearning all you know about riding two wheels, and learning new skills for three wheels. I doubt you'll have any trouble but do ride slowly and carefully for a while.
Posted 12/2/2016 8:40 PM (#91596 - in reply to #91573) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Several years ago, I attempted to ride my son-in-law's Spider with no instructions or warnings about how it handled. My journey consisted driving out of the driveway and leaning into a left turn while the bike continued straight across the street to the opposite curb. At least I've talked to several experienced sidecar riders who will give me a hand and have read a lot about what to expect.
Posted 12/4/2016 7:36 PM (#91603 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
I was supposed to have my Ural delivered today but the dealer who is 190 miles away, called and said his delivery truck blew the transmission so I probably have another week to wait. I'm concerned about buying a vehicle with the support so far away but we have no dealer in San Diego.
In the meantime, I had a prospect look at my '79 BMW today. He wanted to buy it but wanted his dad's opinion so his dad took it out and promptly jumped the curb and dumped it in a neighbor's yard. Sold!
Hope my first ride on the Ural is more successful. Malcolm
Posted 12/4/2016 10:20 PM (#91604 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: Fort Smith, Arkansas
Welcome, I'm a new comer here myself just getting started at 70. Found this helpful on what to expect http://motorvation.com/scmanul1.htm . I purchased the so-called yellow book "Driving A Sidecar Rig" it has a series of specific driving instructions for the beginner. Kind of expensive though and has a lot of redundant beginner motorcycle rider stuff.
Posted 12/4/2016 10:58 PM (#91606 - in reply to #91530) Subject: RE: Hello from new member
Location: Richton, MS
Welcome. Not all that hard. Just go slow. I taught myself how to handle a rig about two years ago. I'm now 72 and have three rigs. Have logged about 13,000 miles in that time.
There is a lot of good information on this site. I encourage you to stay involved here.
Posted 12/5/2016 7:45 AM (#91609 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: San Isidro de Heredia, Costa Rica
That were very good reminders to: "Television spoils person, We are no supermen."
The spider and the yard awakening story were the kind of story that should make you consider.
"first step First!
Nobody was born learned!
Step by step You get very far"
I smiled to both stories as with cars, motorcycles, rigs, Vespas (it ain't a motorcycle at all but it gained my deep respect) AND video games I had a simular experiences,
all scratches and touch downs I did in the first few month.
I am generally a slow reacting person, therefore I am a bummer at video games. I love fishing, so my kids got a "bass fishing video game".
First wiggle in the !rod! as a nice bass bite.....The game command landed behind me against the wall ....
....as I gave it the hook seating hit.
Exactly something like that is the most problable to happen and the most dangerous that !will! happen.
Be aware of it!
The dangerous moment comes when you start to feel comfortable.
Then you will react as solo rider.
(It happened to me too the other way round....I reacted on the enduro as rig pusher between 2 open sewer tops....
still do not know how I passed between them without droping into one!)
Good luck to you Malcom and enjoy every second.
Take your time and learn to ride the new animal in the "right" sequence. It ain't your old bike due to be a rig and on top still a Ural is way different to a beemer.
Posted 12/5/2016 2:15 PM (#91613 - in reply to #91609) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
I'll admit to having a problem with patience and am self-taught in most everything (except for flying where I had no choice.) I play 8 or so instruments, but, being self-taught shows because I didn't master fundamental techniques which does make some things more difficult. When I got a 5-string banjo, I decreed I would take lessons and do it right but quit after a few. I can get along in a band but do have limitations. So, with plenty of awareness of the need to "do it right" and the potential consequences of not mastering the fundamental skills needed to ride a rig I WILL approach it very cautiously. As far as I know, there are no rig riding lessons available in my area (I don't even know anyone who has one) so I will have to follow the reading material I have (Ural has a good tutorial and I have other good recommendations) and other advice from the forum. I may post my progress so you guys can jump in. One thing that will help is that the Ural requires a slow break-in which will keep me from being tempted to jump the gun.
Posted 12/5/2016 7:10 PM (#91624 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: San Isidro de Heredia, Costa Rica
from San Diego to Santa Barbara CA is not very far. There is a recognized Ural shop that should give you an introduction.
The how to ride a Ural manual is pretty good.
When my son entered into licence classes and another Lady showed up, shortly after I wrote a brief manual in Spanish.
If that helps you, here is the link: http://foro.foroural.es/index.php?topic=121.0
Or try with a translater programm.
My first day on 13. Dec.1986 was the way IT SHOULD NOT BE DONE:
First traffic light first fuse.
second traffic light second fuse.
1 km a flying off wheel cover nearly shot me down.
first 145km 3 times straight into the pasture.
Next day I whacked off a road side plock on the left side of the road with the lower front joint of the rig and my knee. (motocross knee and spline protectors are better then any insurance)
3 weeks later in Norway I did a 3/4 salto mortale in the left ditch of the road in 1m deep powder snow.
The bike got to stand on its number plate and I kept hanging from it from the upper middle strut by my right leg like a pig to slaughter.
Head deep in the fresh snow choking.
Not until a few weeks later I recieved my German manual that is translated here in the link section.
Upper row most right: http://sidecar.com/links3.asp
My best bet is.
first read completely what You can get hand on.
Take the manuals to a parking lot and practice hopefully with somebody from here or the soviet steeds forum
Go and ride with a a hundredweight inside the trunk on gravel roads together with a few strong friends as Plan B backup.
The gravel roads show you the fast way to train the muskle reactions needed for rig pushing.
Best go into light traffic on pavement until after the body recieved and learned well this reaction training.
It is important to get this new "equilibrium reaction shortcut":
inner ear sensor, brain, shoulder push and BU*TT-sensor.
You hear right. the equilibrium sense and the four letter sensor need to become "hotwired".
Do not use primary the arm strengh, that wears you out, but use primary the whole trunk and the shoulders for stearing.
Rig riding is a good body training you will not get in any gymnasium training studio.
The first few weeks you will become sour, after that You will feel well trained after each few miles on the road.
In Yukon I became so "hotwired" that when I stepped off the rig and moved my shoulders several times I nearly stepped over and fell.
In fact I felt pretty tipsy walking on my feet.
As we say home in North Germany. "The sailor who cannot walk on solid ground".
You will see. It is good each morning to wake up and feel the body ...Start to worry you wake up some morning and nothing aches.
A kind of Sarcasm you will soon understand much better. It is not bad at all, just difficult to follow for all those rocker chair buddies who stay home.
You two definitely seem not to belong to that gang.
Posted 12/5/2016 9:30 PM (#91627 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: Rapid City, SD
I am basically self taught. I bought a rig and rode it home very carefully. I had read a lot on how sidecars act so I had an idea of what to expect. I found that large, unobstructed parking lots make good practice areas. Practiced enough that you get the feel of how the rig acts when you speed up and slow down. Just know that the appendage on the side has it's own mass that acts according to the laws of physics. When you speed up the sidecar tries to lag behind and pulls the rig to the right. When you slow down it pushed the rig left. These actions have to be corrected to keep a relatively straight line. After much practice the compensating becomes natural. The more you practice the more natural it becomes. It is not a whole lot more difficult than that. The turns require other actions related to what I have just described. There are books available on this forum that better describe the stuff to look for in turns. Go there for more guidance.
Posted 12/6/2016 9:01 PM (#91647 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Best thing you can do is read the yellow book. It will answer all your questions. I'm 64 and started driving hacks 2 seasons ago. Many years of 2 wheels including track time. Manual and seat time are all you need. Avoid high traffic so you can focus on what you are doing and what the effects of your inputs are. No passengers until you are comfy and things feel natural. Learn to fly the car with confidence. You are not experienced until you can fly the chair. It is all part of getting the feel.
Regards and welcome.
Posted 12/6/2016 10:13 PM (#91649 - in reply to #91647) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
We are in a big city hilly residential area where I basically have about a 4-block x 4-block circuit of relatively level, low-traffic streets to begin practice on. The nearest parking lot is about 1-1/2 miles away in very heavy traffic. I have a 100' x 15' driveway where I plan to practice basic starts and stops and turn-arounds before getting out on the street.. It's enough to shift through a few gears as well. I also have a side street which is about 6 blocks long and very wide (2-lane but wide enough for 4 lanes) and low traffic. I can go up and down through the gears there and do some significant acceleration and braking. After that, I can head for the parking lot. Although the traffic is heavy, it's very slow with no turns in the main road to get there. I won't go from one to the other until I feel comfortable. The next big step will be to get it on the highways. Where we are, going more than a couple of miles from home requires traveling the freeways on which traffic generally runs from 75 to 85 mph.
Posted 12/11/2016 12:18 AM (#91693 - in reply to #91691) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Just got my new 2016 Ural CT off the truck this morning. Loving it!
My wife has limited movement and strength in her legs and I'm looking at options to get her in and out of the car. I'm focusing on an additional step and stowable stand with a bar she can pull herself up with. Any body else have a good idea that works for them?
Posted 12/11/2016 8:14 AM (#91695 - in reply to #91530) Subject: Re: Hello from new member
Location: Casper, Wyoming
Malcom, I grew up in SD county. Worked for the gas company and that's how I know some of the neighborhoods. I moved to Wyoming in 1977. Occasionally think about San Diego and the way it was. Good luck on your rig.