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Thread: Yikes! Trikes!

  1. #1
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    Yikes! Trikes!

    A friend of mine bought my old R1100RT. As it turns out, his balance is not what it once was. That being said, he is considering converting to a trike. I cannot seem to find anybody who deals with trike conversion kits for that bike. Any help would be most appreciated.

    Best,

    3hawks

  2. #2
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Have you checked with Hannigan? They at least list an R1150RT...how different could that be?

    http://www.hannigantrikes.com/product-type/bmw/

    I think this would be better displayed in the Sidecars and Trikes forum...a moderator will move this a little later on.
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
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  3. #3
    Left Coast Rider
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    Get your friend to buy a Can Am Spyder. Its a MUCH better and safer vehicle.

  4. #4
    slave to gravity skibum69's Avatar
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    I listened to a podcast talking to a long tie motorcycle guy and tour operator who had recently bought a Can Am. He went on about the difference between those and trikes. He talked a lot about how unsafe trikes were and that he'd recently lost 4 friends who crashed their trikes. Definitely look at Can Ams first, much more likely to survive.
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  5. #5
    Debbie's Servant Lee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC1100S View Post
    Get your friend to buy a Can Am Spyder. Its a MUCH better and safer vehicle.
    I agree, much safer.
    Lee
    2016 R1200RS
    MOA # 30878
    Past BMW Bikes: 2011 K1300S, 2003 K1200RS, 1991 K75S, 1987 K75T, 1984 R100RT

  6. #6
    Out for breakfast in Globe, Az. 3 weeks ago, pulled up alongside two Can-Ams in the parking lot getting ready to go in and eat.

    Ask them how they liked their Can-Ams asd I was thinking about a second motor to tool around on. Rather large guy said he'd save me the money of purchasing one by relating he'd just spend 2800.00 on a repair bill out of warranty, and two months before that it had cost him 800+ for repairs. He couldn't wait get rid of it.

    The other guy said his had had some problems, he didn't think it was reliable enough and would never buy another one.

    I found that interesting as two years ago I walked in a dealers place that sells Honda's, Can-Ams, Yamaha's to talk to the head sales rep I've known for years and say hello. He saw me eyeing a new Can-Am and whispered "don't ever buy one of these", with the caveat I didn't hear that from him.

    So a head sales guy I know, and two owners have told me, save the money and the trouble. BUT, I did run into an older lady on one and she loved hers. I like em, but I'm very leary to lay the money down on one based on the above remarks/. I also think they're more stable than a trike hence the interest in them.
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  7. #7
    slave to gravity skibum69's Avatar
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    No doubt, you'd be hard pressed to flip one but you'd stack a trike without thinking about it. I've met a few people who really like theirs, no-one said anything to me about reliability.
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  8. #8
    From a user on the Can-Am forum Jan 24, 2016

    "The 2013 RT had excessive heat and fire issues.

    You rarely, if ever, hear of folks on Japanese machines being stranded but it's a far to common occurrence with Spyders for me to be tempted to get a new one. I bought my Spyder new in 2009 and won't upgrade due to the reliability issues many of the later models have.

    Spyders are not know for reliability but for satisfying a niche market. Folks love em until they break down. Some owners just shrug their shoulders tolerate the dealer repeat visits and/or trade it for another one, some rue the day they bought it, others fear to ride far from home.

    From the bike forums I follow fairly closely, Spyders are the most troublesome"


    Jan 24, 2016 another owner

    the last 18 months have been a series of major issues, which for some stupid reason no one can find a way to fix them

    my wife and I have always been huge fans of the bike, but as my extended warranty ending is fast approaching we wish we could afford to buy another bike and it would NOT be a Spyder.

    we have lost total confidence in the bike, the dealers are doing their best but it's so darn hard to find anything good to say about the bike these days.

    our friends keep saying to trade it in and get another bike of some sort, but we can't afford what another brand of trike ( I am not licensed to ride a 2 wheeler )would cost even if we could get a reasonable price for ours

    I know with the newer models a lot of previous issues have been addressed and they are supposed to be better, but would still not get another.


    From another user on a reliability/longevity report

    My wife has a 2016 Spyder F3T. We have only had it for about a year, so I really can’t say how it will be long term. What I do know is that the problems that people have with them them seem to be random and all over the board. Mostly quality control issues from the factory. For example, we just got my wife’s F3T back from the dealer a few weeks ago for a clutch issue. Ended up being a nut on the back of the clutch basket that calls for green lock tight in the service manual, but had none on it. The nut backed off causing the clutch to not disengage the drivetrain. Took the dealer over 2 months to finally figure it out and fix it after throwing parts at it for a while Before they figured it out.

    If you google motorcycle reliability by brand, Can Am has a pretty low ranking, but it is because of quality control issues like we had with ours. Once these things have been discovered and fixed, owners seem to be pretty happy with them. The rotax Motor is probably their best feature and all the electronic is probably their worst feature... at least in my opinion.


    There's hundreds of reports of reliability issues, and some report great success. Flip of a coin probably. But the two I talked with with 2017's weren't happy with the reliability and monies in repairs out of warranty. The biggest tell for me is the head sales manager who sells them giving me the heads up, not to consider that product, and only because I have a long term friendship with him and he'd not want me being PO'd he sold me a POS. I thought his heads up was worth paying attention to. This was just last summer so he was talking the 2020 models. Apparently they still aren't up to speed on reliability in his opinion selling them.

    I still want one, maybe one day they will figure out how to make them more reliable. I'll ask my buddy at that time as he has a pulse on these bikes.
    Last edited by brownie0486; 03-19-2021 at 10:09 PM.
    The lion does not even bother to turn his head when he hears the small dog barking.

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  9. #9
    One must be careful about forums. If I read this very forum for a year, and didn't have 900,000 miles on BMW motorcycles I wouldn't buy one. They are too unreliable what with failing final drives, sidestands that break off, shocks that don't shock, brake calipers that leak, instruments that fail, fuel level sensors that never work very long, etc. Just a warning about grains of salt.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
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  10. #10
    Debbie's Servant Lee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skibum69 View Post
    but you'd stack a trike without thinking about it..
    What does that mean?

    They do flip easy. I had one in front of me go up on two wheels, cross the road and run off the road.
    Lucky for them they got it under control before hitting anything when they ran off the road. Also lucky they did not hit a car head-on.
    Lee
    2016 R1200RS
    MOA # 30878
    Past BMW Bikes: 2011 K1300S, 2003 K1200RS, 1991 K75S, 1987 K75T, 1984 R100RT

  11. #11
    slave to gravity skibum69's Avatar
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    Trikes are inherently unstable at speed as in if you cranked the bars you are very likely to flip the machine. The other thing the educated person mentioned was that the front brake on a trike ended up being very much overloaded which makes sense if you look at the weight of a trike coming down on it. I'm just regurgitating a bunch of stuff I heard on a podcast, I don't claim to know anything but I can look at a trike and see where the centre of gravity is and relate it to where the supposed control is in the front wheel and I can see the recipe for disaster.
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  12. #12
    RK Ryder
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    I've ridden a friend's and it did take me awhile to get use to it's driving habits. I related this information to another person who traded his GW for a Can Am who told me that one operates as a snowmobile.

    I did notice that at stop signs, when it wasn't my turn, I was always on by other drivers.

    As I recall, Dave Hough showed up at the West Bend Rally with his Cam Am Spyder and he totally loved it. However, once it was out of warranty, he got ride of it as he was accustomed to doing his own maintenance and he said that even routine items involved removing too much stuff to do what needed to be done. He returned to sidecars.
    Paul F. Ruffell
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    One must be careful about forums. If I read this very forum for a year, and didn't have 900,000 miles on BMW motorcycles I wouldn't buy one. They are too unreliable what with failing final drives, sidestands that break off, shocks that don't shock, brake calipers that leak, instruments that fail, fuel level sensors that never work very long, etc. Just a warning about grains of salt.
    I tend to agree with this, but bmw has how many models and Can-AM has two [ with variations of accessories ].

    When the sales manager told me not to consider one and he sells them, I tend to take that with more than a grain of salt. More like a good heads up.

    Still want one, hopefully by the time I have to move to 3 wheels, they'll have become less problematic and worked out the bugs/gremlins
    The lion does not even bother to turn his head when he hears the small dog barking.

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  14. #14
    Registered User 6322's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    One must be careful about forums. If I read this very forum for a year, and didn't have 900,000 miles on BMW motorcycles I wouldn't buy one. They are too unreliable what with failing final drives, sidestands that break off, shocks that don't shock, brake calipers that leak, instruments that fail, fuel level sensors that never work very long, etc. Just a warning about grains of salt.
    ...and BMW motorcycles can be mighty spendy to have fixed at a dealer as well. That's why you take the time to learn to do maintenance on what you ride.

    I can't speak to trikes or Spyders, but I've got in excess of 200,000 miles on hacks since back in the '80s and a well set up hack is a joy to ride. It does take a different set of skills and it isn't for everyone. An individual's balance becomes a non-issue. It doesn't solve your friend's dilemma about how to make his R1100RT rideable, as rather than attach a sidecar to what he has, it would be much cheaper to find a good, used, well dialed in hack. There's been one listed in the market place lately, a K100RT with an EML sidecar, that looks interesting.

    Good luck helping your friend sort out his dilemma.
    Gary Phillips - #6322
    Wildland Firefighter, Retired, Riggins, ID
    Heartland Moto Locos BMW Riders
    '77 R100/7 Dirt Hack, '83 R80ST, '85 K100RS w/EML, '93 K1100LT, '00 R1100RS

  15. #15
    SURVIVOR akbeemer's Avatar
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    3hawks, has your friend considered adding a sidecar to his 1100RT. Cheaper than turning it into a trike or buying a Spyder.

    You are near a superb sidecar outfit, Claude Stanley’s, Freedom Sidecars, Middleburg.
    Kevin Huddy
    Silver City, Montana
    MOA# 24,790 Ambassador

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