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Installing a side door on a Hannigan SP 2 sidecar?

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i am considering having a small side door installed on my Hannigan SP2 sidecar.  The reason is to accommodate my spouse who recently has shoulder surgery and finds it difficult to climb out of the clamshell opening.  I also have a large standard poodle who I getting up in years and finds it difficult to jump in and out of the sidecar. It looks like it would need to be placed just in front of the fender and end at the first curve. I know it will be challenging and am looking for some sound advice from those of you way more experienced than I.i simply don’t have the$ to invest in a new sidecar. Anny thought or suggestions appreciated.  Thanks

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Hi Chuck,  Have you asked Hannigan?  They might tell you, see so in so, or it will break in half if you do that.  Where are you?  They sell a seat lift that raises up and you slide out.  Was going to build one for my Miata that's lowered to the point I need to take a grandkid to pull me out.

Thanks Dave. Had a discussion with Claude today regarding options.  That was one of the suggestions he had.  Another we discussed was using a ramp I built that would allow the older dog to walk in easier.  A third option is to sell the SP2 and buy a Heritage with the side door. I totally agree that whatever is done has to maintain the structural integrity of the sidecar. Do you know how the rising seat works? Lot to think about. Really appreciate your thoughts and suggestions.

After some long discussions with several very knowledgeable people it seems the opinion is that the best way to go at this point is to open the clam shell wider by replacing the piston with a strong elastic cord and using a ramp that I built to let the older dog get into the sidecar easier.  I think making the opening wider will be less intimidating to the older dog. The younger one doesn’t care. Interesting challenges but the older dog and I have been riding together for a long time.  The longer term solution may be a sidecar with a door.  Thanks for the suggestions.






Cutting a hinged door into the side would be a real challenge, in my opinion.  It could probably be done, but you'd be pretty much limited to fair-weather riding.  Any seam in a sidecar body is subject to leaking water in rain.  More than one time we've stopped at a car wash to use the large vacuum cleaner to suck water out of the sidecar.  Some ask why we don't just drill drain holes in the bottom pan of the sidecar to let the water run out.  I think it would have to have a valve of some kind to let water out, but not let water run in through the drain hole.

If changing to an elastic cord will let the nose or cowling flip up more, could your wife scoot forward far enough to get her legs out on the ground to help lift herself out of the sidecar?  My wife has shoulder problems too, but so far has gotten along well with a flip-nose Motorvation Formula II LTD.

I have yet to see a Heritage on a Goldwing. I would want a side door also..


Thanks for the comments and suggestions. I extended the opening in the clam shell with paracord and that seems to be working much better for our older dog. She seems to be able to jump in and out much easier. I bought some 1/4 “ plywood and a 2x8 beam and plan to raise the floor to accommodate her even further.  My wife is still 3 mos. from riding so we’ll have to see how that works.  She’s done ok riding on the back of the bike.

We're in a similar situation right now: we have a CSC Friendship I and my wife has a hard time climbing in and out - she has had her right knee replaced, and the left knee is scheduled for this February. She also has arthritis in both hips, bulging L4 and L5 discs, and sciatica. Currently she uses a folding step stool to help her get in and out of the sidecar but we're looking at maybe modifying the car so that the front tilts up out of her way so she can step in and out easier. Being retired we don't have a ton of disposable money to buy a different sidecar - uness someone has a more accessible sidecar they want to swap for our Friendship I... 🙂

Quote from Big Tom on December 8, 2018, 7:55 am

I have yet to see a Heritage on a Goldwing. I would want a side door also..


I would like to see a Heritage on a GW also.

The world we live in provides people with skills and vision to fab just about anything. You can bet the right shop with fiberglass and some metal working skills could cut out frame and add a swing- out door with a seal in the lower part of the shell.

Having visited the Hannigan shop , I know they have people with skills there.

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