Gentlemen's outfit

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Gentlemen's outfit

Post by Guest » 09 Dec 2020 13:41

I am thinking of purchasing a sidecar outfit. This would be just for fair weather Sunday runs with the wife and dog so nothing too high spec.

I was considering one of the Ural or similar outfits.

If I am completely barking just say so I'm used to it. I would just like to amble about in something a bit bonkers.

Any thoughts?

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Post by keithh » 09 Dec 2020 15:03

K1100RS/EZS Rally sidecar
R850R Classic

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Post by keithh » 09 Dec 2020 17:04

Just out of interest, have you ridden an outfit before? If you haven’t, I wouldn’t recommend buying one and trying to ride it home - they are a whole new experience. Leaning will not get you round the bend, you have to make a very conscious effort to turn the bars. My first experience on an outfit (many, many years ago) made a hole in the local golf club fence so practice left and right turns in an open area to get the feel of how an outfit handles before going on the road.
Having said that, once mastered outfits are great fun.
K1100RS/EZS Rally sidecar
R850R Classic

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Post by spoonfed » 10 Dec 2020 09:14

I had a similar experience when first on a Quad bike. On two wheels you lean and virtually subconsciously push on the bar end the same side you are leaning. The quad needed steering by pulling that side and pushing the other, the opposite to what came naturally.


Post by Guest » 10 Dec 2020 19:50

Thanks for the replies and hints

I'll let you know if I take the plunge


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Post by GB-Classic » 27 Dec 2020 15:01

I think you have to be mad to ride an outfit.

Ive had a few, but am in remission currently. I think there is an organisation you can get in touch with if you ever feel a relapse coming on. I dont need to get in touch, my wife reminds me of the disadvantages of buying one.

Like Keith, there are places where I remember near misses.

Good luck

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Gentlemen’s outfit

Post by bikerboy » 27 Dec 2020 15:49

Trikes behave in a similar fashion if ridden with spirit but that’s no reason to not have one. Whatever floats your boat, I really enjoy my trike to the extent that I don’t have a bike anymore!!

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Post by RobertFreeman » 31 Dec 2020 08:15

I had an R50S (1963 ) with a Watsonian Palma for 10 years. Had the chair fitted by Munday's of Brixton (1970 ), they were 'the' sidecar people then. twice round the block and off you go. !!! coming down Brixton Hill and sharp left turn, wondered if I was going to get around the corner ! needed a turn of the handlebars and some throttle.
Left hand bend, the bike runs around the chair. to a degree. r/h throttle backed off and chair runs around the bike.

Initially a weight in the chair helps, sack of potatoes, until you get the feel.

Use only one hand on the handlebar ( throttle ) like a tiller on a boat.

The Earles Fork BMW's are made for sidecars, but don't forget to move the front fork lower arm to the front position to alter the trail. put the rear suspension spring in the front, and get heavy duty springs into the rear. swap the bevel drive to s/c ratio.

So, how did I get on??

Well, with a good navigator ( John Flitney) we won the 500 ccs sidecar class in the ACU Nation Rally 3 years running, 70.71.72.

It was 600 miles then and 34 controls in 24 hrs. Not the 'mambv pamby' 2, 3, or 400 miles now, Start and finish where ever you like, over 12 hrs.

One other thing, in 1971 we Won the whole National Rally Outright against Vincent, Ariel Sq 4, Big BSA, Triumph, Royal Enfield and some 150 other competitors. We finished at Stoke on Trent Starting at Markyate

No Sat Nav, or all the mods now !! on the to of the range M/C''s today.

However, after covering 600 miles, visit 34 Contols, start at 10 am , Stoke on Trent 06.00 Sunday, there was 'special test' over an undisclosed distance. to sort out the winner from those with Max Marks.

Our error??

2.4 seconds !!

Had one more go in '72, won the 500 class, then retired. also did lots 'Night Trials around Sussex / Surrey etc The London Douglas Club put on good evening events. Some club ran the 'Firecracker 'road Trial around 5th November time, semi sporting meaning 'green lanes'.

We 'won; the s/car class and the prize was a Pewter Hip Flask. still pride of place on the shelf Empty!!1
On retiring as a competitor organised a Nat Rally check point in St Albans for the next 5 years or so. We operated from 10.00 am - 03.00 Sunday

In retrospect. 'GOLDEN DAYS. '

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Post by norbsa2 » 07 Jan 2022 10:19

I remember Mundays as used to live in Brixton area. Did Sid fit the chair as he was very knowlegable.

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An Outfit

Post by John King » 07 Jan 2022 13:04

Each to their own. I have driven one, only the once and terrified the owner who was in the sidecar but he wasn't as terrified as I was!

In my mind driving or riding a sidecar outfit whilst you get the experience of being out in the open like a solo bike you also get stuck in traffic jams where you get exceedingly wet if it rains. You will still get wet on a solo but at least you will get home sooner and into the dry.

I am afraid not my cup of tea.

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Re: Gentlemen's outfit

Post by Gonk1100 » 08 Jun 2023 07:12

Sidecars are fun get one,had a Palma on a guzzi cali1100 for years,it’s cheaper to get one already built,ural are solid bikes very heavy and motor and gearbox very crude,I wouldn’t like to go too far on one,r series Bmw is not very strong and will not be the same when you take the chair off also get hot in traffic,a good choice would be naked goldwing,vn1500,nice to have some pulling power.If you are just popping local and not on fast A roads enfield 500 bullet is ok 30/50 mph

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