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Sidecars On Line Issue 32
The December issue of
Sidecars on Line is now available to view and download.

The recent Colorado visit included the opportunity to ride a somewhat unique sidecar outfit. The experience was different, not only because of the nature of a new big vee four from Honda, but that the bike in question has an automatic transmission system. Perhaps an afront to traditionalists, yet no less intriguing. Can life ever be the same without gear and clutch levers ?
Oscar's Odyssey is unusual in that it doesn't reflect on interesting past experiences, but instead at some of the current concerns confronting the retail side of the motorcycle industry. His article is about UK issues, but probably affects the trade elseshere in the world.
Powered two wheelers, particularly stolen scooters, have become a "weapon" of choice for criminal scum involved in urban steert crime around the UK. What can be done about it ? Does it reflect on motorcycling, or is it a broader social problem ? Read on.
On a practical note, an account of trying to improve the rather simple seating in a contemporary sports type sidecar.

Marc Marquez - MotoGP Champion 2017
Whilst always one of the favourites to secure another championship, Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez did not have an easy ride in 2017. Yet again the premier class of motorcycle racing produced spectacles and excitement as a number of riders competed for wins and podium finishes. Certainly, unlike the predictability of the four wheel "pinnacle" of motorsport, i.e. Formula 1. Pit stops don't routinely settle the outcome of MotoGP races.
Established riders such as Valentino Rossi, Jorge Lorenzo, and notably Andrea Dovisioso were always in the running. Equally, the "veteran" Dani Pedrosa could still provide back up to Repsol's number 93 (Marquez), whilst Vinales, Zarco, and Crutchlow showed they could seriously compete. The fact that the championship was only decided at the final round at Valencia is testimony to the quality of MotoGP racing.

Robotic Motorcycles
A motorcycle going round a race track with no human rider makes intriguing viewing. That part of the experimental Yamaha's mechanics has been given the appearance of a robotic looking human adds to the fascination. Yet, what does this technological wizardry tell us ? Just like the various examples of robotic/ autonomous cars and trucks rolling along roads in California and other locations, there is a suppposed glimpse of our personal transport future. Or, is it ?
Vehicles are fundsamentally about moving from point A to point B, or Z if you prefer. Those powered by man made power trains such as internal combustion engines, and latterly electric motors, simply replaced natural power devices, i.e. horses, oxen, donkeys, dogs, elephants, goats, and humans. It's called progress.
Along the way homo sapiens has developed relationships with the motive power sources such as horses, elephants, etc. This brought about attitudes much more than the need for transport. Leisure, even relationships prospered. This human connection has also developed over more than a century with the man made sources of motive power, be it steam, or fuel driven.
Some might like, even prefer that a robotic device will take them where they wish to go, but what about the significant numbers of folk who wish to be involved. Being in control and taking care of your "horseless carriage", or similar is part of the relationship. A motorcycle travelling along a road without someone in control is rather pointless.

Chaostours - Sidecar Couple conclude travels

Kerstin and Kevin Holford, our German based friends' kept up with their online blog whilst in South America with a detailed posting, plus images of their travels dated 11th May 2016.

Kerstin and Kevin have been in contact to report they have indeed returned home following conclusion of their epic journey. Totally understandable circumstances justified calling it a day when in South America. They might have curtailed their memorable adventure, and so not fulfilled the original plan, but this hardly detracts from the experience, the pleasure and admiration gained from reading their blog, plus a collection of truly amazing images. In our mind, total heroes.
The challenge now is to settle back into being home, which, although understandbly not easy, is something with which they will eventually handle.
If you haven't yet had a visit to the blog it's well worth a look. The experiences are something else, whilst the images are stunning.

Photo courtesy of Chaostours

Watsonian 75 Years
OK we know that Watsonian reached a centenary in 2012, but what the heck.
The booklet produced for Watsonian Sidecars 75th anniversary is available via our
Download page.

Site last amended Dec 10 2017 |

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