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Discussion Starter #1
I started riding 50 years ago, at age 15 with a Honda 50. At 17, I traded the 50 for a 305 Superhawk that I rode until I left home at 24. At 33 I bought a Harley FLH that I rode until I changed jobs at 38 and couldn't afford to keep it. This past summer, at age 65 and retired, I picked up a 1962 Honda 50 for a song to restore and shortly after picked up a 1983 Honda 750 to ride. I find the Honda 750 sits rather high and has a higher centre of gravity than my Harley did - not exactly my preference - so yesterday I tried a Harley FXDL and I REALLY liked the balance and feel of the bike plus the fact that it sits low enough that I can have both feet on the ground at the same time. But I live on a pension and the Harley is EXPENSIVE!

I live out in the country with 4 miles of gravel road to the pavement and in a part of the country that is often cold and snowy. I get my mail 10 miles away and drive 20 miles for groceries and 40 miles to the city for special purchases, doctor's appointment, the pharmacy, and so forth.

I AM 65 and got thinking that a trike might be a better investment for me. I could ride a trike more easily into my senior years, a trike would take the gravel roads better, and a trike would afford me a much longer riding season. Wearing a snowmobile suit, a trike would even handle slippery roads to some degree. A trike offers the cargo space to be able to fetch groceries or other bulky/heavy items that a bike wont. I am also quite handy and experienced at building, restoring, and repairing mechanical stuff so I could build my own trike. (Commercially made trikes are also EXPENSIVE!)

Being on a limited income, purchase price, operating & maintenance cost, and insurance costs are all important. Making the right decision is VERY important to me!!!

I would REALLY be interested in hearing the thoughts and opinions of other senior riders on the choices you made in selecting wheels and the short-comings and advantages you see in various options.

Thanks gang!
 

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I'm not a senior yet, but due to various injuries and such I'm pretty sure there will be a trike in my future if I live long enough.

My plan is to take one of the bikes I already have and add a trike kit to it. There are several companies so I have a few options on what I might want, and hopefully I will still be able to do the work myself.

So, consider buying the bike you really like now, with the intent to trike it out later. There are even trike kits that are removable. Back it up, hook up a couple of pins, and ride away. Also, think about a used bike. You can often get a much cheaper deal then from a dealership.
 

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I'll have to admit, my Ultra is gaining weight. Or at least it's starting to feel like it. I haven't made up my mind if I'm going to put a trike kit on or bite the bullet and get a factory trike but it's one or the other if I can't find an unmolested FXRT to down size first on. I'm even looking at the Indian Scout to see if anyone tricks one out with all the creature comforts I'm come accustom to.

But something in the 750 to 1,000 cc range or trike is in my very near future. The crash I had almost three years ago now really knocked the wind out of my sails and 67 is feeling more like 75 now. Or what I used to think 75 would be like anyway.
 

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If you wait, all that happens is you get older
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This is the one that interest me.

May have to view it in full screen to see it.

Not sure what the price is but I will have to check it out if I ever make it to that point.


:71baldboy:
 

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That suspension design was originally developed by Harley and patented about 8 years ago. They decided not to produce it but it was going to be called the "penster," or something like that.

Good to see someone is offering it as an add-on. I don't want one, but it looks like wicked fun!

(The leaning front wheel one I meant.)
 

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This is the one that interest me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuT9Omec7wI
May have to view it in full screen to see it.

Not sure what the price is but I will have to check it out if I ever make it to that point.


:71baldboy:
Wow that truly looks like a fascinating solution! But,, geez it looks a bit TOO much like this :D U might get more than a few chuckles from fellow bikers


 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ghost wheels don't qualify as a trike up here because it has a total of 4 wheels. Same with some of the bolt-on trike conversions. It HAS to replace the original back wheel to qualify as a trike.

I have heard negative comments about the reverse trike system, nothing specific or detailed, just "don't do it!".
 

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I looked into a trike kit for my Road Star, the cheapest I found (other than the removable one) is 9K just for the kit (more than I paid for my bike lol) and then there is the installation....it would be cheaper this way than buying a trike already done, but not by much....the other problem I found is my shed where I park my bike in the winter only has a 4' door opening, most trikes are a little wider than that, so I would have to find somewhere else to park it....
 

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It's probably cheaper to add a sidecar to an existing bike instead of making it a trike? A trike conversion means removing the rear wheel & drive system and replace it with a whole new drive & tandem wheels, and the suspension must keep up with the conversion too.

A sidecar just gets bolted to the side of the bike. The 3rd wheel isn't "powered" in most conversions, and I don't think it even assists in braking.
 

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A trike definitely has advantages over a bike with a side car. The most obvious is that it gives you some stability in left or right turns. A sidecar resists turning over in one direction but gives you little help in the other direction. A trike has rear wheel brakes that will help you stop while a sidecar relies on the bike brakes for stopping and tends to want to twist the bike because you have weight off to the side that has no brake of its own. If I go to 3 wheels, some day when I am over 80, I will go trike, not sidecar.
 

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that's true, but I also think a sidecar is inherently more dangerous when the sidecar is empty and you make a left right turn...since the bike won't lean (triked or with a sidecar) you have to lean more to keep the sidecar on the ground (if turning too fast, which I think would be very easy to do) whereas with a trike, you have the same amount of force holding the bike down no matter which side you turn.....

now I'm not saying that riding a trike is easier or safer than a sidecar, and this is just my opinion, but I would rather have a trike


edit...dang Oldman said pretty much the same thing I did....only better, while I was typing my post...lol
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Years ago I had a homemade sidecar on a Honda 305 Superhawk and liked it - you get used to it! That bit of weight (the extra wheel) hanging so far out to the side makes it pretty damned hard to lift the sidecar off the ground unless you are trying to.

The only thing I didn't like about the sidecar was the constant pull toward the sidecar and the opposite direction when stopping.

I wouldn't be adverse to a sidecar again (but I would rather have a trike if it wasn't for the horrendous price!)
 

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If you wait, all that happens is you get older
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Wow that truly looks like a fascinating solution! But,, geez it looks a bit TOO much like this :D U might get more than a few chuckles from fellow bikers


Could not agree more of the looks of it at a stand still, but if I can no longer hold a bike up and still want to ride and lean into curves this would be the option. At that point it would be "he is still riding" instead of "look what he's on"

:71baldboy:
 

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Probably want to find a Spyder forum. A friend who has test ridden them over the years feels the earlier models were better --- lighter, better handling. If true, that means you can save $ and get a better trike by buying used...
 
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