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Old 02-14-2013, 03:33 PM   #106
MIXR OP
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Goliath is parked - Permanently!

Guys - I have decided to ditch this post and some of my subsequent replies to others because it has caused some anxiety amongst fellow inmates. That's not what I wanted.

A lot of comments below have focussed on what could be done to fix the problems I have with Goliath. I know it can all be fixed. But .......................... The question is whether I should be held responsible for someone else's poor design, choice of materials and construction techniques, or whether I have the right to seek recompense for something paid for on the basis that I was purchasing a quality product from a reputable manufacturer.

The short post is therefore this: I have had a second mudguard failure while out on a ride. The circumstances could have placed me and my passenger, and other road users at risk. It is not acceptable given my earlier problems with the structural integrity of the rig and has highlighted a number of other deficiencies with the structure. The matter is now in the hands of NSW Fair Trading (Consumer Affairs) as I am seeking resolution via a return of the product to the manufacturer.

End of story (for now).
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:15 PM   #107
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Mick, really sorry to hear about all the grief you've gone through with Goliath.

I've followed this thread from the first post and have admired how great the GSA looks.

I've always been thankful for the fantastic work done on my outfit, unfortunatley there are always the horror stories you hear (and not always from one place.)

Brave decision to take the outfit off the road, I admire your integrity.

Hope everything goes well for you in the future.

TDave.
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Old 02-14-2013, 06:06 PM   #108
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It's a 'prototype'.

Thanks Dave.

The manufacturer advised Fair Trading that it was a 'prototype', so I can only assume that means that it is expected to 'fail'. Unfortunately, I am not prepared to place myself, my kids, my dog or other road users at risk, so I really didn't have too much of a decision to make. From a technical standpoint, it is (or would be) officially unroadworthy without the guard (and running lights) in place. All the pointers are to the so-called 'prototype' being inadequately designed, under-specified in construction materials and hardware, and poorly assembled. Of course, that's just my personal opinion.
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Old 02-14-2013, 06:36 PM   #109
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Hi Mick.
Yep like you said ,some Interesting times ahead .
Sorry to hear of the troubles with your sidecar set up .
A lot of time and money down the drain if you can not get it fixed .
Please keep us up to date .
Cheers Ian
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:20 PM   #110
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Personally, I can't see giving up the joys of a sidecar because of a crappy fender, sorry you feel it had come to that.
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:38 PM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strong Bad View Post
Personally, I can't see giving up the joys of a sidecar because of a crappy fender, sorry you feel it had come to that.
Umm - I think you need to read a little deeper into what's been said. This goes far beyond a 'crappy fender' (to use your words). I've actually kept records of all my adjustments since I took ownership. Every time I set the bit of lean-out it needs, it lasts a while into a ride and then ends up back at 'neutral'. That my friend, is much more of a problem for the future than just being a 'crappy fender'. The fender is simply a symptom of far more serious and significant problems. The fender is the catalyst for rejecting the product outright and starting again with something else, some other way. The sidecar concept is perfect for my needs. It just has to work as per the design brief given to the builder. This one doesn't.
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Old 02-14-2013, 08:23 PM   #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIXR View Post
Umm - I think you need to read a little deeper into what's been said. This goes far beyond a 'crappy fender' (to use your words). I've actually kept records of all my adjustments since I took ownership. Every time I set the bit of lean-out it needs, it lasts a while into a ride and then ends up back at 'neutral'. That my friend, is much more of a problem for the future than just being a 'crappy fender'. The fender is simply a symptom of far more serious and significant problems. The fender is the catalyst for rejecting the product outright and starting again with something else, some other way. The sidecar concept is perfect for my needs. It just has to work as per the design brief given to the builder. This one doesn't.
Best of luck
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Old 02-15-2013, 10:10 AM   #113
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MIXR--this is sad. Your rig LOOKS so good, and the concept seems sound. But if the frame is flexing and welds breaking, then yeah I would not ride it until you get it sorted. A lesson to all of us. Makes me reflect once again that though my rig has had some trials and tribulations, I still find it AMAZING the amount of abuse it's taken.
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Old 02-15-2013, 01:12 PM   #114
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Looks versus function

Thanks Drone. It's only when you get out there and use the things that you discover the weak points. You could forgive this if it was a home-build or put together by a few mates with some welding help, or out of an unknown second-hand frame, but this was constructed from scratch by a professional side-car builder.
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Old 02-15-2013, 02:49 PM   #115
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Mick, as far as lean adjustments, could the clamps be moving in toward the engine on the crash bars?

Also looks like a upper brace from the spare rack to the top of fender would take a lot of flex out from bouncing.

Hope all works out.
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Old 02-15-2013, 11:16 PM   #116
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Lots of options

Quote:
Originally Posted by cleatusj View Post
Mick, as far as lean adjustments, could the clamps be moving in toward the engine on the crash bars?

Also looks like a upper brace from the spare rack to the top of fender would take a lot of flex out from bouncing.

Hope all works out.
It's not the bike mounts themselves. They seem to be ok. The main crash bar mount is more than just a clamp to the bar. It extends to the actual bar mounting point and is quite rigid. Ditto the rear mount which is a well-attached plate. The front bar mount is attached to the bar only, but hasn't moved. The problem appears to be in the use of the vertical bars that are bolted to the lower tub chassis and curve at the top to meet the bike brackets. These curved uprights are the means of adjusting for lean, but there is a heck of a lot of leverage against the bars at the top. They may be flexing, or worse, bending. The loads are massive, and it looks like the lower mounting points of these uprights are also bending. That's where all the force goes. Either those uprights are bending, or the base they mount to is bending. Think basic mechanics and it's a large force acting over a long arm (leverage). I think it's all too light with this design.

As for extra bracing - Yes, it needs a few. And that's the problem. I relied on a professional builder to get it right and it seems to have missed the mark in far too many areas.
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:36 AM   #117
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Note to all

A couple of things to remember please, and then this can be the end of it.

I believe that I am entitled to continue my own thread by including an update and status report, no matter what direction that might take. I am a member of six different groups of motorcyclists and have ridden and corresponded with many people who have had a lot of input to the rig. All I've done is explain why the rig is parked, and what's happening. I've been happy to respond to constructive comments, or comments of concern, but there is little point in continuing down that path.

The depth of my disappointment should be evident, and hindsight is a wonderful thing. I ignored my own gut feelings about this build, and relied on the expertise of a professional builder and the numerous recommendations of their customers. It may get resolved or it may go to court or it may get junked, but when it's my neck on the line when I ride the thing, then I feel that I am entitled to tell people why it's in the shed and why I'm not doing rides.

If you don't like following this thread, or it makes you angry, then bail out. We still have freedom of choice last time I checked. That's all folks.
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Old 02-16-2013, 07:57 AM   #118
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Thanks for documenting your difficulties. I am on my first sidecar, a standard Harley. I decided to buy the Harley sidecar partially because of its long history and real validation of the durability by Harley's engineering department. I know I'm stating the obvious, but unfortunately, a small sidecar builder doesn't have the luxury of a long term testing program and customers have to take the bad with the good. I hope you get the situation resolved to your satisfaction and you and the dog can ride on the rig again.
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Old 08-25-2013, 02:47 PM   #119
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It's finally all over and done with.

This whole sorry saga is now closed for me.


In summary, I approached the builder for a refund under Australian Consumer Law (via Office of Fair Trading) following the second weld failure and identification of further defects in January this year. The builder chose to dispute his responsibilities under the Law and stated that he would take his chances at a Consumer, Trader, and Tenancy Tribunal (CTTT).


The matter was eventually resolved in my favour in June this year and the builder was ordered to immediately refund my purchase price as I had requested back in January. The build was described by the Tribunal as having "significant structural failures", "ill-fitting components", and "inappropriate materials and construction". It goes on to say that due to these defects, "the sidecar is unsafe for use".


Unfortunately, the builder had no concept of what the word "immediately" actually meant and did not pay the well-overdue refund I was entitled to under the Law until a further 5 weeks later. I had to threaten him with registration of the Certified CTTT Order with the NSW Court System for enforcement by the Sheriff. Poor form given it was his choice to see this go to the CTTT.


Following the late payment, I was advised by the builder that I would be charged with obstruction if I did anything to delay the return of the sidecar to him as per the CTTT Order. This was in spite of him failing to comply with the same order for payment, plus failing to comply with a previous order for provision of information by the given date. It was a childish threat with no substance as I had no intention of having that piece of junk in my shed any longer than necessary.


So there you have it. I feel that the comments by the CTTT vindicate my stance in seeking a refund and this outcome now ends my very distasteful experience of relying on a professional builder to build something that they clearly were unable to do. Buyer-beware (as they say).
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Old 08-25-2013, 04:34 PM   #120
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Well Done Mixr!

Glad you stuck to your guns and got a positive result.

TD.

Now, let me give you the name and number of my engineer who did my Strom and it will all be done properly.
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