Thu Nov 18, 2021 9:50 am

Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
 
Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
Thu Nov 18, 2021 9:50 am linkquote
Hi All,
I have been on this forum for the past few years, more consistently while I completed the restoration of my '64 VBB.
When I purchased the scooter originally, I had also wanted a side car which Scooters Originali sourced for me.
Long story short, had the side car painted to match the scooter and frame is black. Problem now, is that since the scooter is done, I am afraid the side car and frame I bought was actually for a Harley Topper scooter. I don't have any idea how to mount an 8" wheel to the frame as it differs completely from a VBB front fork.
Has anyone managed to complete a side car project for their vintage Vespa? If so, how, and what resources did you find? I worry that I may need to try to sell this frame, and find a Vespa specific frame to mount the side car to. The attached frame pic is a PDF so it doesn't show on screen.
Thanks for letting me rant. Your help and support during my scooter restoration has been invaluable!
Josh


1964 VBB


Side car front


Side car rear


Diagram from Harley-Topper site


Side car frame (Harley-Topper?)

Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:17 am

Not So Moderator
VNB VSC VBC VSX*2
Joined: 28 May 2008
Posts: 5439
Location: Hustletown, TX
 
Not So Moderator
VNB VSC VBC VSX*2
Joined: 28 May 2008
Posts: 5439
Location: Hustletown, TX
Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:17 am linkquote
This is clearly a job for Charliman22.
Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:33 am

Ossessionato
VSX, Stella 177, Stella 150, VNX1T, V9B1T
Joined: 20 Jul 2018
Posts: 3476
Location: Staten Island, NY
 
Ossessionato
VSX, Stella 177, Stella 150, VNX1T, V9B1T
Joined: 20 Jul 2018
Posts: 3476
Location: Staten Island, NY
Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:33 am linkquote
Sidecar fab side job for cm22.
Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:43 am

Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
 
Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:43 am linkquote
Yeah,

It was CM who asked that I post in the public forum.
Thu Nov 18, 2021 12:35 pm

Ossessionato
62 VBB1T Round Tail W/ leaner sidecar
Joined: 26 Jan 2019
Posts: 2639
Location: california
 
Ossessionato
62 VBB1T Round Tail W/ leaner sidecar
Joined: 26 Jan 2019
Posts: 2639
Location: california
Thu Nov 18, 2021 12:35 pm linkquote
Your side car body is a beautiful shape - and this thing is going to be gorgeous.
As for the frame - frankly - there are lots of solutions - and there isn't a "right" vs "wrong".

Anything with a wheel on it is a starting point.
You can modify the one you have - or try and find another - but don't be surprised if you have to modify something "made for a vespa" to make it nice.

The difference in 1 or 2° of toe in can mean doggy and unpleasant to ride vs fun.

To get a rigid sidecar frame set up, optimally you want a few things.
1. It needs to attach solidly to the scoot.
2. You need to be able to control the toe in of the sidecar wheel
3. Lighter is better
4. Less grip from the sidecar wheel can be better
5. A form of dampening for steering can be helpful.
6. A few degrees of lean out on the scoot will negate some of the push pull of having a sidecar hang off the side.
7. You want to have the sidecar wheel "lead" in the right place.

Sounds complicated but its not really.
Google "side car setup" to get lots of DIY tutorials.

With all that said - couple observations on your specific frame from what I can see.
It looks imperfect - though usable.
You will have to determine if you want to modify it or not.
The wheel looks like it is a motorcycle size - which can work - but may not be the look you were going for.
There does not appear to be any means to adjust toe-in?
Scooter camber (lean out) also looks like it may not have any adjustment.
I can't tell if the frame length is too long to fit your sidecar body.
The frame appears to stick out significantly from the scoot - and you only want enough to make sure you can comfortably use the kick starter (farther out - the more the sidecar "effect" you will have)

That is all addressable - but it may be easier to find a lighter frame that's more suited to your scoot.

Assuming you wanted to address with yours:
1. The portion that would mount under the tunnel looks like it could be drilled and or modified to attach. You can look at how a Cozy side car mounts to get an idea. Find online. Bolts through the edge of the tunnel where it meets the floor board is the standard. Ideally, some beefing up of that area is beneficial - but given that you are fully painted - I would opt for some strips of steel with thin rubber to protect the pain under them used on top of the holes in the scooter chasis as a means to help spread the load.
2. You may need to shorten that frame to be able to attach it to the sidecar body you have - but its just 4 holes and 4 bolts.
3. You want the "lead", meaning where your sidecar wheel aligns with your scooter wheel to be about 6-10" in front of your rear wheel. There is some good stuff online if you google - how to set up a sidecar.
4. That frame looks to be pushing the sidecar pretty far out from the scooter. You really only want it to be as far as it needs to for a boot to stand on the kick start and press it.
5. You could address 4 and simultaneously get some lean out if you shortened the connecting bars - but keep in mind that the angle will adjust with the height of the sidecar wheel.

If it were me:
1. Have a look at all the set up notes so you know your targets. ~3° lean out, ~10" of lead, few degrees of toe in... etc.
2. Put the frame on blocks and remove the bolts from the area that will sit under the scoot.
3. Put the scoot on it - and see what you have. Get everything positioned together and see if it will line up for you and what you would have to modify to get the geometry you are going for.

Of course - you could not have to worry about any of this by making it a leaner - but that required some pretty significant welding and an internal frame on mine... That said - blowing by someone with a sidecar hanging out to the side does create a certain type of joy...


Lean out


toe in. This stuff is all over the internet - with suggestions for target angles. any solution you have that allows adjustment once it's on the scoot can be a game changer. small adjustments can have big effect.

Thu Nov 18, 2021 1:11 pm

Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
 
Hooked
1964 VBB
Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 100
Location: South Orange, NJ
Thu Nov 18, 2021 1:11 pm linkquote
This is super comprehensive. Thanks. I am aware of the lean/toe-in necessity for a sidecar.

The problem I have is that the axle is a fixed, threaded rod, so I have no idea how I would be able to mount a vespa hub/tire (mine wears 8" wheels).

The frame does have 2 rows of 4 bolts, which actually, look like they line up with holes in my scooter floor board (see attached pic). I wonder if the frame had been modified at some point, but I don't know how to contact the guy who sold it.

The brackets on either side of the axle are obviously for mounting a fender. There does not seem to be any way to attach some sort of suspension to the side car.

This set up is really only for zipping around town, as the VBB doesn't really have THAT much power. It's a stock 150cc.

I'm not a welding guy and would be afraid to modify this frame further.


looking down at floor board

Thu Nov 18, 2021 2:39 pm

Molto Verboso
GL, PK, PE200 with hack, Sears Rust Badge
Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Posts: 1139
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
 
Molto Verboso
GL, PK, PE200 with hack, Sears Rust Badge
Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Posts: 1139
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
Thu Nov 18, 2021 2:39 pm linkquote
You may need to approach the wheel for the sidecar like a front end of a VBB.

You would need to know how the current axle on the sub frame is connected, how it spins, and/or is there any type of bearing on the end of the axle inside the frame tubing. The objective is to know what's in there now in order to add a VBB front axle. https://www.scootermercato.com/Scooter-Parts/Pivot-Kits-and-Axles/89571
Either use the complete VBB axle with the shaft or have someone cut the VBB shaft off and weld the wheel connection to the current sidecar sub frame axle.
If you're lucky, maybe the old axle pulls out of some type of bearing inside the frame and the VBB front axle slides right into it that bearing with a way to lock it in. I seriously doubt it would be that easy. It's prob gonna take some type of welding to get it right.

You can also try getting someone to weld on the end of a trailer axle and use a small trailer tire that will fit that axle end.

BTW, the suspension is a tension bar inside the tube that connects the sidecar to the wheel section. I think it's item number 17.
Also, it seems like you're missing item number 23, the tube suspension that goes from the sidecar frame to the bike's front wheel shock. There should be a hole in the intersection of the sidecar bucket mounting area to screw that bar on the frame and then screw the other end to the bike's front shock. I don't see the hole for that item. Do a quick line up with the frame and the bottom of the scooter to see if someone did really add this to a Vespa. Also check if the sidecar wheel hub is before the scooter wheel hub. The sidecar wheel should not roll behind the scooter wheel or there are other adjustments/add on's that required for a steady ride.
Thu Nov 18, 2021 4:45 pm

Enthusiast
Allstate VA12T (VNB2T)
Joined: 24 Aug 2017
Posts: 88
Location: Tacoma, WA
 
Enthusiast
Allstate VA12T (VNB2T)
Joined: 24 Aug 2017
Posts: 88
Location: Tacoma, WA
Thu Nov 18, 2021 4:45 pm linkquote
How does one usually mount a sidecar to a Vespa? Is any drilling required?
Thu Nov 18, 2021 5:32 pm

Ossessionato
Joined: 26 Oct 2015
Posts: 3201

 
Ossessionato
Joined: 26 Oct 2015
Posts: 3201

Thu Nov 18, 2021 5:32 pm linkquote
^^^Where's VooDoo with the Shoe Goo?
Thu Nov 18, 2021 6:07 pm

Molto Verboso
GL, PK, PE200 with hack, Sears Rust Badge
Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Posts: 1139
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
 
Molto Verboso
GL, PK, PE200 with hack, Sears Rust Badge
Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Posts: 1139
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
Thu Nov 18, 2021 6:07 pm linkquote
noexit wrote:
How does one usually mount a sidecar to a Vespa? Is any drilling required?
Most require an additional hole on each side of the tunnel inline with the center stand holes.
Fri Nov 19, 2021 4:09 pm

Style Maven
'74 50s x3 '78 P200 E '84 Cosa '91 PK50XL2 '58 AllState '68 Sprint '80 50special and a '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 8444
Location: seattle/athens
 
Style Maven
'74 50s x3 '78 P200 E '84 Cosa '91 PK50XL2 '58 AllState '68 Sprint '80 50special and a '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 8444
Location: seattle/athens
Fri Nov 19, 2021 4:09 pm linkquote
whodatschrome wrote:
^^^Where's VooDoo with the Shoe Goo?
Don't laugh , with enough surface area it's gonna work great PLUS easily removable without any trace! It's just rudimentary physics , math calculations and bond tensile strength.
Fri Nov 19, 2021 6:24 pm

Molto Verboso
2007 Stella 225
Joined: 02 Nov 2019
Posts: 1992
Location: Rochester, Minnesota
 
Molto Verboso
2007 Stella 225
Joined: 02 Nov 2019
Posts: 1992
Location: Rochester, Minnesota
Fri Nov 19, 2021 6:24 pm linkquote
Different side car but pictures etc may help.

https://www.scooterworks.com/Sidecar-10-Wheel-Rocket-Vespa-Large-Frame-Stella-P11587.aspx
Sat Nov 20, 2021 8:30 pm

Ossessionato
62 VBB1T Round Tail W/ leaner sidecar
Joined: 26 Jan 2019
Posts: 2639
Location: california
 
Ossessionato
62 VBB1T Round Tail W/ leaner sidecar
Joined: 26 Jan 2019
Posts: 2639
Location: california
Sat Nov 20, 2021 8:30 pm linkquote
This is an install video that's worth a look.
Get that you are not a welder.
Someone not to far from you must be tho...
If you can find a shop - and come to them with direction - they can make mods fairly easily.
That is probably the fastest and lowest cost solution...
But it will take some doing.

If you want a more turn key solution - the ones that come to mind are:
- Scooter 99. Indo based company that could send you a frame that would bolt on and have some adjustment. Take some doing - but they know vespas. You can porn their site for ideas - tons of pictures to be found if you want to do a deep dive.
- Keltic Sidcars. No idea if they are in business. My guess - "they" is one person in his garage. Might be able to send a mostly turn key solution if he is operating. $$$
- There was a guy in Florida that bought the California Sidecar stuff. Rowdy - do you know anything about this guy - is he still around? Did he have frames?
- Find a California sidecar in horrible condition and rob the frame.

Finally - if you can find a local welder - they may be able to help engineer a bit of it.
I'v often thought of using a spare VBB fork to have a matching wheel and suspension - that would also hold a fender and look authentic. So if you wanna get creative - anything's possible. But you would need a willing partner with a welding set up who could help...
Sun Nov 21, 2021 9:07 pm

Addicted
85 Vepsa PX150E with sidecar, 80 P200 with sidecar, 96 Goldwing with Hannigan Sidecar, LR87aj5, LR91aj3
Joined: 11 Oct 2011
Posts: 574
Location: Central Washington State
 
Addicted
85 Vepsa PX150E with sidecar, 80 P200 with sidecar, 96 Goldwing with Hannigan Sidecar, LR87aj5, LR91aj3
Joined: 11 Oct 2011
Posts: 574
Location: Central Washington State
Sun Nov 21, 2021 9:07 pm linkquote
I have found with a bit of internet searching there are frames out there, it may take time but they are there. As far as the set up it is not as hard as it may look at first glance.



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