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Differences in sidecars mounted on either side
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Huey
Posted 9/26/2004 3:15 PM (#4816)
Subject: Differences in sidecars mounted on either side


In viewing multiple, multiple, multiple pics of sidecars over the past year or longer, I just wondered how many "experienced" sidecar owners have actually driven hacks with the tub mounted on either side. I know in europe they mount on the opposite side as the norm, but I have seen some stateside rigs done this way as well. I am quite sure that the riding/steering characteristics are quite different with the tub on a different side, but just wondered how people viewed them who had actually driven both. Any unique experiences in either? Does it do anything different to the bike to have it mounted on the opposite side. i.e. much more difficult to get to an engine part or such, etc.
Huey
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Hack'n
Posted 9/30/2004 4:32 PM (#4875 - in reply to #4816)
Subject: RE: Differences in sidecars mounted on either side



Expert

Posts: 4833
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Location: Boise, Idaho
I have sold lefties to people whose passenger didn't want to listen to the loud right side exhaust (Harley), Vintage bike with kickstart only and a customer with a hip problem who couldn't mount his bike from the left side.
The main problem here is, when one wants to pass, the passenger is in harms way before the driver can be in a position to see the oncoming traffic conditions.
The sidecar also needs to be aligned differently to maintain a level rig due to the camber of the roadways.
Maintenance on most bikes sold here (oil levels and such) are usually most easily accessable from the right side of the bike when on the sidestand. Clutches on the left. Carbs are all over the place. Either side mount will make something a little harder or easier.
The biggest drawback seems to be passing safety concerns.
England, OZ, and the Orient are where leftys rule.
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Posted 10/1/2004 4:31 PM (#4886 - in reply to #4816)
Subject: RE: Differences in sidecars mounted on either side


something really wants me to answer this as the first outfit i rode was a ural with a r/h chair. left is the correct side here in england.
but that journey lasted roughly 70 ft around the first r/h corner i had the chair way up in the air and bottled it shut the throttle bringing the bike round left hard into the only lampost on that side of the road, bent forks and buckled mudguard. then i had to go and tell the owner as i'd borrowed the bike.

just had a BAD day!!!!!!

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Huey
Posted 10/1/2004 7:40 PM (#4889 - in reply to #4816)
Subject: RE: Differences in sidecars mounted on either side


Ha! I had to laugh, as my first ride when visiting the Bahamas was a bit challenging as well. I like to ride right up front and we were actually sitting on the engine compartment by the driver. If you ar enot used to driving on the opposite side of the road, I can tell you the first turn will certainly be an experience for you.

I know that there are certain differences, but that safety of the monkey is one big key. However, I just wondered how someone compensated who had driven the opposite way in the past or if there were any unique experiences as you just shared.

My one bad experience in borrowing someone else's stuff happened with a camper attached to an old Caddy. I borrowed it from a friend, but got it late in the evening. I did not check it out thoroughly when I got it, as it was getting dark and I had miles to go to get to the camping area in the mountains that I was headed to. When I parked it I had run under some tree limbs and heard them scrape across the top of the camper that was attached to the big Caddy I was pulling it with. I thought nothing of it and went to bed right after we parked. Well, the next morning my kids got up early and began to scream loudly for me to come see something when they went outside. They found a large dent in the front leading edge of the trailer. Man, I took it right away that same day to a dealer and asked to have that dent removed and make it look like brand new. I could not believe that some tree branches had caused such extensive damage, but I did not want to have to tell the owner I had ruined his trailer either.

The paint the dealer used reacted with the old paint, so it required being painted twice. Not cheap at all, but the final job looked as if nothing had ever happened when he fixed it. That evening I returned the camper and Caddy back to the friend. As I backed it into his driveway he circled around it and began to scratch his head vigorusly. He asked me then, "What in the world had happened to the dent in the front of it?" Ahhhhggggggg! I had not seen that the trailer actually had a dent in it when I had borrowed it. The owner had done it himself and had forgotten to tell me about it when I got the trailer. I finally just told him that I had it repaired as a good will gesture for him letting me use the thing. Sheesh! A bad day for me as well, but taught me to never borrow again. Made a short vacation trip camping as well.

Thanks for the laugh in your experience. Sorry it sort of got off topic a bit, but the memories were similar in having to tell the guy I ruined his trailer.
Huey
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