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smoothest riding car?
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Posted 7/30/2004 10:14 AM (#4257)
Subject: smoothest riding car?


Which sidecar would have the best suspension to give the SMOOTHEST ride?
My wife is partially disabled and can't be jostled about very much.

My bike is a Harley Roadking.
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Hack'n
Posted 7/30/2004 4:12 PM (#4260 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?



Expert

Posts: 4833
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Location: Boise, Idaho
Just about any sidecar except the Motor Company's hack. They don't have any articulating suspension on the chassis itself. Just a spring suspended boat (Banana). Most suspended sidecars with an easy entry/exit would be good candidates and some can be equipped with a seat that lifts up for easier ingress and egress.
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Posted 7/30/2004 7:37 PM (#4262 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


I agree with Lonnie. The Harley Davidson sidecar has no practical value other than as a novelty or for carrying groceries. Harley's sidecar, which incorporates a solid axle frame rigidly mounted to your motorcycle frame, and a non-dampened leaf spring supported chair, has to be miserable for the passenger. I doubt it's much fun for the driver either as every shock received by the sidecar wheel is transmitted directly to the motorcycle.

You may want to look at Urals. Ural's have an incredibly stout frams with a proper swing arm and shock absorber, as well as being rubber mounted at the chair; the importance of those features to comfort and stability can't be overstated. They are also so smooth that I've been lulled to sleep many times while doing monkey duty as my 16 year old son drove us through the western flank of the Rockeys. I challange anybody to match that claim...and I'll even supply the 16 year old so all is fair.

Jim
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Posted 7/30/2004 9:53 PM (#4263 - in reply to #4262)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


Hmmmm, I am certainly learning something here! I rather assumed the Harley sidecar would be a heavy and stable car engineered over the years to compete with aftermarket products.
I like the looks of the Motorvation Spyder, but I am afraid it is too light to give a sturdy ride. And my 800lb roadking might fall over due to the lightweight Spyder.
It seems that I DID hear somebody else mention the Ural sidecar as being solid and well built. BUT I have been afraid of it due to the poor reputation of the Ural bike engines. Maybe the sidecars are better built comparatively than the Ural bikes themselves.
Thanks for the input. I really appreciate it!!
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Joyce
Posted 7/31/2004 7:18 AM (#4264 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?



Expert

Posts: 3024
20001000
Location: St. Joseph,MO
Lightening, I live about 50 miles North of you. Ron, hubby, has a Ural chair on his Suz. Intruder. If you would like to meet up and check it over sometime just say the word. Pictures are good but an actual visual makes a lot of difference.
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Sarge
Posted 7/31/2004 8:21 AM (#4265 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?



Veteran

Posts: 135
10025
Location: NE Ohio
Lightning,

Today you wouldn't recognize ANYTHING on a Ural compared to what gave the brand a bad reputation years ago. Good sidecars, good engines, good bikes.

Sarge
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Posted 7/31/2004 10:02 AM (#4267 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


Running a 1999 Harley Ultra sidecar on a 1999 Road King Classic. Passengers have said it was a smooth ride, even on the dirt roads, but hard to get in and out of.

My mother is disabled; can't bend her legs very well, can not be bruised, and is six feet tall. She said it was comfortable for about 40 miles, then she needed to get out and stretch. I also carried my dog yesterday (65 lb. blue heeler). The car bobbles around when she gets up and turns around, but I couldn't feel it. Its disconcerting when getting in and out. I found that if I put my hand on the nose, it acts as a dampener when people are getting in and out.

Before I bought it, I was looking at the Champion Daytona and the California Friendship, because they clam-shelled and had roofs. The only person so far who doesn't fit comfortably in my Ultra is my brother-in-law who's 6'6". And the problem there seemed to be the plush-o seat pushing him too far forward.

I live on top of a mountain in North Alabama, so lots of twisties just to get down to where I can practice. I didn't install the steering dampener and practiced without ballast so I'd know what to do when the car 'flew' and such.

Anyway, don't dog out the modern Harley sidecar. Yes, its hard to get in and out. Yes, its leaf-sprung. But it balanced beautifully and in an emergency stop, brakes in a perfectly straight line with all three wheels locked up (found an empty parking lot to play in). The Road King barely notices the drag unless starting from an uphill stop. Yet the car is heavy enough you don't feel like its going to flip when you step on.

I have seen a drop in gas mileage. With a passenger and in stop and go traffic, I only got 34 MPG. Running empty on open roads, I got 43 instead of 52 MPG.

Less important to some. it looks right together. A beautiful package that functions at a single unit. ...But I have to do something about the 2 right turn signals...

Edited by Red the Unready 7/31/2004 10:15 AM
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Posted 7/31/2004 10:09 AM (#4268 - in reply to #4264)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


Originally written by Joyce on 7/31/2004 7:18 AM

Lightening, I live about 50 miles North of you. Ron, hubby, has a Ural chair on his Suz. Intruder. If you would like to meet up and check it over sometime just say the word. Pictures are good but an actual visual makes a lot of difference.


That would be GREAT, Joyce!! Maybe we could meet up somewhere in between, like Platte City, etc. And the ultimate test would be to have my wife take a ride in it. Name a time and we'll be there.
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Posted 8/1/2004 8:09 AM (#4269 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


Lightning. Check E-Bay [motorcycles]. A couple of days ago there was a Police Road King with a [custom?] Hannigan attached. Nice looking rig. In the description the owner advise he orginially had a Harly tub attached and did not like it so went to Hannigan an they customized [?] one of their Astro Sports to fit his bike. He might give you some insights on what to do or not to do with your bike and hack. Good Luck Terry
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Posted 8/3/2004 10:22 PM (#4319 - in reply to #4257)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?


Thanks, Terry. I am still searching for a sidecar. I like what I read about the newer Ural sidecars. But there are no dealers/service shops near Kansas City.
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Hack'n
Posted 8/4/2004 1:50 PM (#4326 - in reply to #4319)
Subject: RE: smoothest riding car?



Expert

Posts: 4833
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Location: Boise, Idaho
Lightning,
I had a Spyder H-D on my Turbocharged '95 RK and it was a nice fast easy handling setup. My wife had a little trouble getting in and out due to the small cockpit but it was quite comfortable for her once she was settled in. She does prefer the Bavarian Classic for ease of entry and exit, also they have more comfortable seating and are roomier.
I'm shipping a Bavarian Classic to a customer in Maryland today that will be used on a Harley police bike. It was ordered with a modified swing-arm that will mount a Harley wheel so the buyer can match his bike wheels. The cost was $2,595.00 with windshield, tonneau cover and an added universal mounting system. I also have a Roadking ('99 or later) Sub-frame kit from California Sidecar Co. that would mount a similar unit to your bike for $285.00.
e-mail me if interested.

Lonnie Cook
Northwest Sidecar
nwsidecar@aol.com
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