USCA Sidecar Forum

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New old rig time

Hey everyone.

I bought my first sidecar rig in 1998 and had three more by 2000, I then switched to the can am spyder and am now ready to sell my second spyder and return to a sidecar rig. I'm PARALYZED (I know, big word but it's key to this discussion) and due to that its taken all these different rigs to have a little bit of an idea as to what I'd like to put together next. I don't want to over complicate this right of the bat so I'll try and "keep it simple stupid" and if we get some interest in the thread we can roll it up into a ball, throw it out the window and ride over it a few times.

What I've learned about sidecar rigs so far.... I understand and know very little! There is a lot of black science in sidecar set up! Thank goodness there's people out there smarter than me and got skills too!

Alright... I tend to get excited when I see and hear a nicely preserved 70's CB. My first rig was a 74 CB750K with a slightly later model Velorex attached to it. The only mistake I made was separating them and selling the wrong piece of that puzzle! The only thing I didn't like on the CB was the seat was high making for a tricky transfer from wheelchair to beast and then taking my chair apart and lifting it over and into the sidecar. That aside, the bike was perfect! I bought that whole rig for $800 bucs! Had I been blessed with more ramm and a faster processor, I would have kept that bike and done a ground up rebuild and clean up and sold that POS velorex. To be fair, it was an entry level sidecar and not well suited to the 750 inline 4 beast that I called "Juan Carlos". 

Next I had a sportster which kind of fell into my lap!  At 6' 1 and 3/4 inches tall, I did indeed look like a monkey trying to root a football! However, the low seat was perfect as it allowed me to throw my leg over the bike landing in the sidecar away from all sharp or burny things... The low seat also allowed me to keep my left leg stretched out with my boot on the floor giving me better torso balance, making it easier to disassemble my wheelchair, chuck it in the hack and go... Like a champ!

So guys and girls... I am actively looking at CB's but I have some questions...

If I did go mid 70's CB and would love to keep the rigs weight down, would a 550cc handle a hack and a 175lb guy or should I go with more grunt and a stronger gearboxand in the heavier 750cc?

Or, does anyone have recommendations for a different bike all together??? Keeping in mind a lower seat and lighter bike is easier, I do like to take of for a few days, perhaps 5.... So keeping it all as easy and as comfortable as possible is important to me. Lets start here and many thanks in advance champions!


p.s. hope I'm in the right forum ;0)

I would be looking a totally different route on this being as you use a wheel chair. We like to go with the Suzuki Burgman 650. Yes this is a scooter, but under the plastic this is a real motorcycle that will pull the sidecar to 100mph Being a "scooter" it has a step through frame making it easier to transfer from the chair and it comes from the factory with only hand controls so you do not have the expense of modifying the shifter or rear brake. Also being a lot newer parts are going to be less of an issue, While Honda is one of the better companies about spare parts, the CB750 and CB550 are now over 40 years old. One thing however about the CB750, they made the CB750A model which is an automatic as such one less thing to modify however by modern standards it is slow. My sister in law had one with one of the Sputnik's we offer. One day she and her family was out for a ride. Their son was on the back of her husbands GL1000 Goldwing, her daughter in the sidecar when the timing belt snapped on the GL1000. So my wife and I grabbed my flat bed trailer to go pick them up. We put his bike on the trailer, he road her bike with her in the sidecar and we put her two kids in our sidecar which was connected to a GL1800, even towing the GL1000, a two seat sidecar and 4 people the CB750A could not even come close to keeping up.

Burgman 650 scooters can be had fairly cheap if they are a bit older and have ever been down scratching up the plastic. We usually go with our Kenna sidecar which is one of our lower priced sidecars. You would put your chair in the sidecar unless you have a passenger in which case we put a receiver type trailer hitch on the sidecar and you can plug a rack into it that your passenger loads your chair onto.

Back when the CB550/750's were new they were state of the art however by modern standard the brakes suck and they lack power. Back in the 1970 most cars did not have a lot better brakes and most of the drivers understood that. Now brakes are much better, speeds are faster, younger people have not had to share the roads as much with 40 year old vehicles and do not understand the performance differences. Not really doing a good job at trying to say that things are different out on the roads then when you had your last CB750 and while I am sure you have good memories of it, 40 years on things are not the same.

If you do go with a CB it would be a lot less money to buy one with a sidecar already on it. There are some good values to be had used. We had a call yesterday from some one who is picking up a 1982 Honda GL1100 with only 27,000 miles on it equipped with a then state of the art EML sidecar complete with leading link and car wheels for only $3000. 

Let me know if we can be of help.

Jay G
DMC sidecars


15616 Carbonado South Prairie RD
Buckley WA


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1bmwmc, AJ1500 and Thane Lewis have reacted to this post.
1bmwmcAJ1500Thane Lewis
Jay G DMC sidecars 15616 Carbonado South Prairie RD Buckley WA 98321 866-638-1793 Hours Monday - Thursday 6-4:30

If you really do want to run a CB750 this one on auction on bring a trailer is perhaps one of the best for sale at this time Original owner and only 5K on it

Jay G
DMC sidecars


Jay G DMC sidecars 15616 Carbonado South Prairie RD Buckley WA 98321 866-638-1793 Hours Monday - Thursday 6-4:30