Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dauntless Motors

This morning, I stopped at Dauntless Motors aka DMC Sidecars, to pick up the modified front mount for the Cozy sidecar as well as a new rear crossmember. It was a very wet trip north from Corvallis OR, to Enumclaw, WA, with almost continuous rain. Jay was out running errands but his knowledgeable and helpful staff got my order together and gave me general instructions for welding in the new crossmember and getting everything lined up.

There were a lot of bikes in the shop which I'm assuming were waiting for sidecar installation and a few looked to be ready for delivery. Through the doorway on the right is the machine shop where the fabrication is done.

In the back of the shop were a couple of interesting looking cars. I didn't take time to look at what it was though the louvers suggest a rear engine. The yellow scooter looking object to my immediate left is a kids grocery store type scooter ride with a sidecar. I probably should've gotten a picture of that contraption.

Here are most of the pieces of my order with the rear mount and the new crossmember in the center. They are flanked by the two identical 70° bosses that connect the sidecar lower mounts to the lower mounts already installed on the bike. The modified Cozy mount was already sitting in the box. The parts are all very well finished.

General directions were 10-15% lead and with my airhead, he recommended closer to 15% of the bike wheelbase since my airhead is a relatively light bike (according to him!). Lead is the amount the sidecar axle is in front of the bike's rear axle. More lead helps keep the rear end planted on left turns. Torque on all of the pinch bolts is 80 ft-lbs. A bit more than I would have guessed. Toe in should be about 5/8" to start. For our weather, he recommended I look at some of the soft rubber compound trials tires since they are readily available in the 4.00-18 size my bike uses. The disadvantage is the soft rubber wears faster.

He also suggested that I start with a fair amount of ballast in the sidecar and explained a technique on how to determine if there isn't enough. Turn the bars to the right, stand on the left peg and try to lift the sidecar. It shouldn't come up much more than a few inches. He also suggested playing with the distance between the sidecar and the bike. He prefers it close but due to the light weight of the sidecar, more may be better. Like I said, very general directions. Now all of this stuff is packed in my checked baggage as I sit in the Seattle airport for my flight home.

This is an example of lack of planning on my part. DMC is in Enumclaw, WA, just outside of Tacoma, WA. I should have just flown out of SEATAC just a few more miles north but, no, I ended up driving back to Portland, OR, to catch my flight to SEATAC.

18 comments:

Geoff James said...

Richard,
I had no idea that setting up a sidecar was so complex. Is the background reason to ride through the Alaskan winter (the men with white coats will be knocking on your door shortly), taking family members on tour when it warms up again or some other purpose?

RichardM said...

In that case, I'll be keeping a sharp eye out for the guys in white coats though they may blend in pretty well with the snow. In all seriousness, I'm looking to extend my riding season and tackle more of our unpaved roads. I don't have any aspirations of year around riding as the bike probably won't start much below 0°F.

redlegsrides said...

Good stuff Richard....I'd like to visit Jay's shop one day and see what's going on.

Which reminds me, there's a part I've been meaning to order from him....

dom

Keith - Circle Blue said...

Yep, you should have gotten a photo of "that contraption :)

That is the way of it isn't it? Think about it later...like not driving back to Portland. I know it seems to happen to me all the time.
~k

Trobairitz said...

Maybe flying out of Portland is just that much more fun. Either that or you wanted to drive I-5 a little more. Always a pleasure through Olympia.

I'm looking forward to seeing more pics as you install the sidecar.

RichardM said...

I was pretty curious to see what the shop looked like and this stop in Oregon seemed like a great opportunity to stop by and pick up the parts.

RichardM said...

I looked at but taking pictures isn't in the front of my thinking.

Actually, not much is in the front of my thinking as Geoff alludes to in the first comment...I looked at but taking pictures isn't in the front of my thinking.

Actually, not much is in the front of my thinking as Geoff alludes to in the first comment...

RichardM said...

That must be it, I just love driving I-5 and needed to get in as much as possible. Traffic wasn't too bad at all and if it wasn't raining, it would have been a nice drive.

Unknown said...

Richard:

If you liked driving on I-5 that much, you could have just driven NORTH up I-5, then wait the 2 hour border line-up and leave from YVR instead of Portland. Then I could have taken you out for a meal

bob
Riding the Wet Coast
My Flickr // My YouTube

RichardM said...

Very expensive to fly in and out of Vancouver compared to Seattle or Portland. Plus it isn't serviced by Alaska Airlines.

Dar said...

I can hardly wait to see a picture of the sidecar on the bike. How exciting!

Unknown said...

Richard:

I realize you have orders not to take a bike tour next year (2013) BUT, I was thinking you need a sidecar tune up in Dom's garage.

As you leave your driveway you just say, "I heading over to Dom's for a sidecar tune-up, will just go straight there, and come right back"

bob
Riding the Wet Coast
My Flickr // My YouTube




RichardM said...

That may still be a few weeks away. Still lots of work ahead...

RichardM said...

Yeah, right....

Troubadour said...

Why so much ballast? I would think with 15% lead the sidecar would be plenty heavy enough.

Gotta love the language ;)

RichardM said...

Ironically, I was planning on using lead (Pb) for "permanent" ballast since I just happen to have a lead brick lying around since college but also plan on using a sandbag.

Coop a.k.a. Coopdway said...

More than satisfied with the machines in my garage, there's one thing missing and that's a sidecar rig. For the trips I take and the riding I do, we'd get to be fast friends I'm sure. I'll need two wheelers around, but as long as they're already here, I won't be at capacity until there's a hack rig parked next to them .....Santa, are you listening??

Buddy Dave just had a big, rugged car put on his GS. Forget the manufacturer, but it came from PA and looks like it's ready for Dakar.

I test rode a new Ural rig this past summer at the MN Hiawatha BMW Rally and really enjoyed myself.

RichardM said...

There was a Ural sidecar listed for sale in PA a few months back that was "painted" inside and out with truck bedliner. It looked pretty rugged, just perfect for the travel around the world type.

I'm not planning on modifying the front end geometry so it should be pretty simple to transition from three wheels back to two. Though, if I get square profile tires, not so simple.