Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Times keep a-changing

Goodbye Da'mu!

Da'mu is leaving us for new adventures. He will soon be exploring the historic Civil War battlegrounds with his new owner this summer.

Da'mu was a great rig. Together we visited all 48 states in nine and a half days. A superb highway cruiser. Sad to see him go, but there is only so much room in the ole Man Cave and a new rig is in the works, soon to be heading our way.

Far up north in a small Pennsylvania town, where sidecars ideas are created and brought to life...

is the home of Freedom Sidecars LLC. 

The mad genius behind this operation, Claude Stanley, rules over the creation and birth of beautiful sidecar rigs for round town cruising or round the world riding. Bring your dreams and ideas to Claude. With his team of expert welders and fabricators they will bring it to life.

Other rider dreams are in progress ahead of mine.

  A yellow BMW awaits its new sidecar.

A Triumph has its chassis attached. Once the electrical wiring is complete, 
the tub will be bolted on.

My dream is to wed this blue adventure rig ( a 2007 Suzuki Vstrom 1000) with a Mini Mate pop up camper. Sleeping on the ground is getting old and the cost of motel rooms keeps rising. 
With this rig, plans are to explore the far reaches of Canada and Alaska, stopping when and where great photo opportunities arise. Being out in the wild when the sun comes up or watching sunsets from a deserted ridge are vistas that move man's soul.

Besides attaching the camper to the Vstrom, my wish list includes 15" car tires on all three corners, a ten gallon auxiliary fuel tank, a winch front and back, space for spare tires, parts and tools, driving lights, high ground clearance and rugged enough for hundred of miles of gravel, pitted washboard roads. 

Oh...  try to make the camper more aerodynamic too. 

Claude sent a photo assuring me that fabrication has started. Since this is the first time for them to mount the Mini Mate as a sidecar, it is a cut-fit-weld operation,  piece by piece by piece until complete. 

While Claude and his crew cut, weld and fabricate up north, 
back in the Man Cave progress is slowly being made to move the cargo sidecar 
from the red 2011 Da'mit KLR to the digital Grey Phantom KLR.

Da'mit the red KLR will be returned back in its original condition and sold off as a two wheel motorcycle. The Grey Phantom will acquire a cargo sidecar for exploring mountain passes 
and beyond.

Yes, times are a-changing in the Man Cave. 
Riding season is here so no time to waste.

Ride safe
Ride long



  1. that V-Strom rig of yours is going to be a heavy duty traveler I think! Going to upgrade to a 530 chain and sprockets?

    1. Has already been upgraded to 530 chain and sprockets. The couple I bought the Vstrom rig from just completed a tour of Mexico on it, then decided to upgrade to a 4x4 camper van to continue on down thru Central and South America.

      Has less than 15,000 miles.

  2. Forgot to mention, a rather coincidental posting on your was five years ago that Vikki, my first attempt at a V-Strom Sidecar Rig was put together. Vikki gets a sidecar

    1. Great write up, that's for linking that.

      Claude at Freedom Sidecars asked what I was going to do with the existing sidecar. When I said sell it, he mentioned that he would take in in trade toward any work I wanted done in his shop. Since his shop is only a couple hundred miles from Baltimore where the Vstrom was, sounded like a good deal. I'm getting a custom built sidecar chassis for the camper and Claude is getting to resell a sidecar still in great shape that he built in 2009. Plus, the MiniMate campers are made in PA so maybe those two companies can combine forces and offer sidecar mounted campers to other adventure riders.

      Don't know if the Strom will be ready for the USCA Rally or not, but hope to have the KLR rig up a running long before then.

  3. That is going to be one huge rig…

    I like the idea but why not simply tow it?

    1. You are right, width will be a question. How much toe in do you need for a rig a foot wider than most? The first long ride will be interesting. Seriously looked at towing, but ground clearance and two extra small tires were obstacles. Plus I don't need the passenger compartment.

      Simplicity is the theme of this rig. No fancy electronics, no hydraulics, no dealer only servicing, no tupperware panels hindering accessibility or service. If it can't be wrenched on the side of the road.....

      Prudhoe Bay and Inuvit are the targeted destinations for this rig after taking a tour of the eastern most provinces of Canada. After that, who knows where it might go... Ride the Horizon.


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