So, over the past few (OK, several) months, I've had my rig in the shed making some adjustments to address the following:
1. The seat cowl had started to crack from pushing and pulling the rig by the rear grab bar. It was only connected to the bike by the plastic shell (an on-the-fly change by Yamaha on the TR1 in Europe in 1983 to address styling criticism).
2. The seat was not very comfortable.
3. The ride was harsh. I had wanted to avoid an evil-handling rig, and believe that bolting a sidecar onto a bike without making appropriate spring and damping changes is a good way to end up with handling issues. And, I achieved a very good handling rig. But harsh.
4. In 4 years, I had never come close to needing all the ground clearance. I have had the chair lift on a few occasions (and not when I was specifically trying to do so).
5. Braking from 60 to zero in a hurry is something of an art. I'd like to make it less 'arty' and more confidence-inspiring for my wife.
6.The lid on the sidecar thumping loudly when I go over bumps. It annoys me, it scares the dog. The rubber strap 'latch' is not good enough.
7. My horn setup is not authoritative enough. It tends to bring to mind a vintage European sports car. The reaction I want is an image of an 18-wheeler about to turn the listener into a grease spot. But, if I make it louder, I want to move it to the side of the bike opposite the dog.
8. Lastly, some areas of my paint job did not turn out to my liking. The clearcoat 'blushed', muting the base color in some areas and getting downright milky in some others.
OK, stage is set. So I'll add some posts with my (hopefully) solutions to all the above.
OK for #1, I want something I can put my back into, without concern that I'm going to break something. So, an old jack handle and a footpeg hinge later, I have my 'reverse', connected directly to the bike frame:
When not in use, it folds flush to the side of the cowl:
For #2, the pics above show the seat I'm switching to (from a Honda cruiser, IIRC) and the one-off fiberglass cowl to go with it. The fiberglass is, ahem, stout. And directly connected to the frame by steel . OK, it's a pig. But who cares about weight with a sidecar rig? A 'luggage' rack is planned for over the flat area at the rear. ....or maybe a Vetter trunk......
For #3, I softened spring rates on the bike, front and rear, by 20%. It turns out that there is some industrial equipment that uses springs that work well in the XV fork tubes, and are available in a variety of lengths and rates. Right from Amazon.
#4, lowered the bike by 2 inches, front and rear. When empty (or with my 30# dog) the chair is a little high, but I have 80# of lead I am melting into shapes to fit in the sidecar nooks and crannys. That will level things out, and hopefully extend my cornering envelope significantly before the chair starts to come up.
#5: integrated braking with bias adjustment - in the next post.... enough for now.
Finally got the integrated brake setup bled. I'm going to have to go to a larger diameter master cylinder,but it stops the rig. The setup is:
With this setup I have the car brake activated along woith the bike front brakes,or can use the car brake to assist in right turns. The CBR1100xx master was optimized for 5 caliper cylinders. I have it plumbed to 10 (4 in each front caliper + 2 in the car caliper.The CBR master is 14mm diameter- the largest I can find is 19. I hope it's enough.
Yes. For a given caliper piston combined area, increasing master cylinder bore will do as you say. In my case, I increased caliper combined area so now master cylinder has too much travel. With the lever adjusted all the way out, it gets firm before hitting the grip. Adjusted all the way in, where my wife likes it, it hits the grip before getting firm.
I may end up swapping the brake lines at the sidecar caliper, connecting the single-pot to the bike brakes, and the dual-pots to the sidecar brake pedal. Need to road test some and get the new master cylinder in (from China) and try it first.
In the meantime, on to #6 and my all-singing, all-dancing super-duper latch mechanism....
A lever operates 2 push/pull rods. Each rod goes to a latch, one toward the front, and one toward the rear.
At the end of each rod is a clevis with a steel bushing (free to rotate) across the open end of the clevis. A nylon bearing in the riveted bracket maintains alignment.
Each clevis engages with a steel 'tang(?)" that goes down through the fiberglass and upper frame tube when the lid is closed. As the clevis engages with the slot in the tang, it pulls the lid down tight. Push forward to lock. Pull back to unlock.
Oh, yes - and the vinyl is item #9: I had marine carpet in there and I could not get my dog's hair our of that dang carpet. Now it cleans up with a damp rag and/or swiffer. The floor mat is heavy rubber, which can be pulled out and hosed down.