Thread: Sidecar for kids!??

  1. #1
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    Default Sidecar for kids!??

    Stupid Idea -- or -- Stroke of Genius?

    Hi Guys,

    Hope you can help me with an idea I'm working on.

    We're currently building our F-650 based camper called EcoRoamer, for the family's round-the-world two year adventure.

    Like "Mogcamper" in his thread What bike on the back of a camper? we want to carry a small dirt bike on the back of the camper for getting into town for groceries, and exploring places to small for an F-650 to fit.

    I won't get into the debate here of whether a KTM640 or TW200 are better choices for us (I'll leave that to the ongoing discussion in the other thread) but let's just say we've spent the past 13 yrs living in SE Asia, where the Honda Cub 90 is the local idea of the family minivan:


    (so, no I don't by the argument that you need a 600+ if you have two people)

    The trouble is we have four people. Two parents and two kids. We thought about getting something like the Kawasaki Mule Diesel 4x4, but that's just too big to hang off the back of a camper. (1600lbs!)

    So here was my idea... We have a 2 kid bike trailer / jogging stroller from Chariot that we love:



    The wheels come off it with quick release mounts, and as you can see at the front of the trailer are two integral mounts for the trailer hitch to lock into.

    I was thinking of custom fabbing an aluminum sidecar that looks like a cargo tray with 6" lips around the side, but build it so that the kids trailer can lock into/onto it. Then on the side of the trailer do a dirt tire floating suspension single wheel, that is also removable.

    That way, when we don't want to use the bike, we take off the side car, remove the kids cabin (which folds flat) and the wheel - then mount the side car vertically on the back of the camper together with the bike.

    I think this would give us a nice working solution for carrying 4 passengers (and some groceries) and yet be 'foldable' enough to compactly mount up on the back of the camper for when we are underway.

    As a caveat I should add - that I have never ridden with a sidecar, so I'm talking out of my *** - but it seems like a good idea.

    I thought I would turn it over to all of you to tell me why it is a great/stupid idea.

    Any help is most appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Jay.
    Jay & Alice (+ Kurt + Maya!) - www.ontheroadlesstravelled.com
    --------
    co-founders of www.themuskokafoundation.org - "Use what you know, to Do Good as you go!"
    --------
    '97 - Landcruiser Diesel Prado - for excursions - Available for loan in Malaysia
    '07 - Ford F-650 - The first EcoRoamer - www.ecoRoamer.com
    '06 - Horizon AT - "rent" it FREE here.

  2. #2
    Hltoppr's Avatar
    Hltoppr is offline Overland Training Alumni
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    One of my next classic rigs will be a BMW/Ural with a sidecar, for Sunday drives with the wife and kiddo to breakfast...

    My opinion:

    Sidecar....YES!

    Hacked together sidecar.....HECK NO!

    A sidecar significantly changes the operation of a motorcycle....they're not the same species anymore.

    Get a well made sidecar and have it attached by a professional. I wouldn't even think about the bike trailer....just too dangerous when the family and kids are involved!

    Do it right, or don't do it.

    -H-
    Andrew

  3. #3
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    Just as a time guideline. It takes a certified harley davidson mechanic 8 to 12 hours to properly "Set up" a sidecar.

    I was under the wrong assumption that it could be removed and attached fairly quickly and with ease.

    I then inquired at my local bmw dealership (The brand I ride five days a week, 8 to 10 hours a day). They had no offerings and suggested a custom route (That was for a 1200 Adventure model).

    I don't think I would want my kids riding in a foldable design anything.

    Good luck I can't wait to see what you come up with.
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  4. #4
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    I have a mountain bike with one of the same type kid trailers and have managed to roll the trailer a few times with the kids on board. (Don't worry they where strapped into the five point harness and had on helmets) It does not take much of a bump to flip one of those (they have no suspension!!!). The thought of putting one behind a motorcycle really freaks me out. They are not meant to go fast at all, plus do you really want you kids breathing exhaust fumes????

    My .02 get two mountain bikes and a trailer. You will get to see some good country, stay in shape, they don't need gas or a whole lot of spares and they can be strapped just about anywhere. On top of the camper, onto a trailer hitch, the front bumper, all three would weight less than 80 pounds.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by preacherman
    I have a mountain bike with one of the same type kid trailers and have managed to roll the trailer a few times with the kids on board. (Don't worry they where strapped into the five point harness and had on helmets) It does not take much of a bump to flip one of those (they have no suspension!!!). The thought of putting one behind a motorcycle really freaks me out. They are not meant to go fast at all, plus do you really want you kids breathing exhaust fumes????
    Hi,
    Thanks for your response. I definitely did not intend to use the trailers existing suspension/wheels, or for it to ride 'behind' the motorcycle...

    Maybe I wasn't clear enough in my post.

    Thanks,
    Jay.
    Jay & Alice (+ Kurt + Maya!) - www.ontheroadlesstravelled.com
    --------
    co-founders of www.themuskokafoundation.org - "Use what you know, to Do Good as you go!"
    --------
    '97 - Landcruiser Diesel Prado - for excursions - Available for loan in Malaysia
    '07 - Ford F-650 - The first EcoRoamer - www.ecoRoamer.com
    '06 - Horizon AT - "rent" it FREE here.

  6. #6
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    Back when we were just kids ~ we referred to them as side hacks . . .

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