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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The wife and I have decided it is time for a trike conversion if we plan on continuing to ride. The question is to those that have a trike or to others that have knowledge or have ridden one, any ideas of on preference of kit and why. Also any options that I should be sure to include. Thanks in advance.
 

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A very good friend of mine owns a 2012 with the California Side Car trike kit. It's either a Viper or Cobra model. It is nice and has independent suspension. He loves it.



 

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The choice is yours to make. No one knows which one you will think is best.
Having said that, I studied and tested all the major brands for almost 4 years prior to picking my brand.
I found immediately, for me, the choice was going to be IRS.
Then discovered those that lengthened the wheel base provided the smoothest ride,especially for the passenger. Moving the rear wheels out from under the passengers bottom made a huge difference for the wife.
IMO, the simpler the design the less chance for problems IE no air bags, no fancy/dancy suspension systems with redundant parts serving the same functions!
You also should consider picking the installer is almost equally important as getting the right unit for you.
Wife and I narrowed our picks to 3 (Hannigan, Motor Trike and RoadSmith)
Decided to visit the "homes" of these trikes and never got passed our visit to Hannigan in Murray, Ky!
We were given a tour of the facility and then shown a brand new Wing w/a Hannigan kit installed. We were told, "We usually close around 5. If you could be back by then, we would appreciate it!"
Hannigan makes a very nice conversion for the 1500 Wing:
http://www.hannigantrikes.com/content/xSpecsPDF/GL1500-Spacs2011.pdf
I would consider getting the weight bearing foot fairings. I removed my pegs and rest my feet on the foot fairings. Much more comfortable and many places to move your feet around.
Also, consider having all forward facing surfaces covered w/stone gard film or investigate having LineX applied to all forward facing surfaces to protect your investment from stone/debri chips.
IMO, you do not need "stiffer" fork springs but, depending on the mileage on you bike, a fork rebuild may be needed. Good time for this is when the rake kit is installed.
Also, Progressive mono-tubes seem to be "sweeping" the Wing world. I have been told to expect a trike friendly version to be forthcoming some time this spring.
At this point we had already tested several brands but, this was the first ride on a Hannigan.
I asked for directions to various road conditions. Then away we went.
Had rode about 6 miles when the wife told me, "This is the one isn't it?"
Yes, come the answer.
Next to last step was to ask the manager of Hannigan, whom, in his opinion would he say I should use as my installer within a reasonable distance from my house.
He told me, I called and the rest is history!
We are in our 3rd year of having this trike and have had no issues at all. Just many "smiles" ridden thus far!
Also, consider a rake kit for much easier steering of the trike. Those w/stock wheel base can be improved using a 4 1/2deg rake. Those w/longer wheel bases can be improved with rake kits as much as 6deg's.
 

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everyone loves the one they are riding and I honestly don't think that any of the big name kits are bad. you can get a bad install and I would research the installers every bit as much as the kit manufacturers. I like my california sidecar trike and if I had to replace it tomorrow, it would be with another CSC........or motortrike, or roadsmith, or hannigan, or champion, or..........................
 

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I agree with everything that has been said, do your own researcha nd test drive what you can and then make the decision, Like real estate is location, triking is all about the installer, they can make or break you.
 

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A friend of mine has had a handful of different ones. He likes the CSC the best. Motortrike, especially the older ones are a shorter wheelbase and solid axle. The CSCs stretch out a little bit and are IRS. My boss also has a CSC, has had it since 08. He says its a comfy ride for him and his bride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the responses, I appreciate that. Another question has anyone installed a troke kit themselves. The directions seem easy enough if you are mechanically inclined. I have a close friend that is a motorcycle mechanic, and I do all my own work on my bikes. Just wondering.
 

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I have a Roadsmith IRS with a 6 degree rake on my 06 GL1800.
If you want some first class info on trikes go to triketalk.com it is a great website devoted exclusively for trikes of all kinds.
Ask this same question and you will hear first person experiences of trike ownership not what someone else has heard.
Good luck and welcome to the world of trikes
 

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I have a Roadsmith IRS with a 6 degree rake on my 06 GL1800.
If you want some first class info on trikes go to triketalk.com it is a great website devoted exclusively for trikes of all kinds.
Ask this same question and you will hear first person experiences of trike ownership not what someone else has heard.
Good luck and welcome to the world of trikes
:?I guess that my reply was what someone else heard.:?

I won't tell someone that the CSC is best just because I have one and like it and your roadsmith may not be someone else's cup of tea just because you have one.
find a good installer and go with one of the top kit manufacturers and you will be happy. there are at least a good half dozen trike companys that make a quality kit and everyone just loves the one that they are riding.

mine is the best


because it is mine:raspberry:
 

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. Also any options that I should be sure to include. Thanks in advance.
Be sure to include a "long range" fuel tank. They have the space to have another fuel tank, so why not use it. There are different ways to fill them, so find one that suits.

No first hand experience, but I have heard that CSC have had some problems with their trike kits - just a word to the wise to be aware!
 

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Thanks for all the responses, I appreciate that. Another question has anyone installed a trike kit themselves. The directions seem easy enough if you are mechanically inclined. I have a close friend that is a motorcycle mechanic, and I do all my own work on my bikes. Just wondering.
I wanted to install my own. That limited me to 3 brands, none of which I cared for after test rides! Also, if you decide to do this, check on what affect a self install has on the warranty!
Also, concerning the aux. gas tanks. That is a expense, IMO, that is not required. I'm sure most are ready to get off for a break about the time you are ready for gas in the OEM tank or sooner.
 

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I agree with dawg on the extra tank. I have never needed it and usually stop way before I need fuel but I haven't been out west where the gas stations may be farther apart. I do wish that I would have had the parking brake installed and still may get it at some point.
 

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Trail Boss,
If you are converting the Wing yourself you are limited to a handful of conversions for a GL1500: Roadsmith (Trike Shop), Champion, DFT and Triwing.
Raked triple trees are a must and the aux fuel tank a plus. Parking brakes if offered are a good idea and in my opinion should be included.
 

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My short list was one that had a longer wheelbase, independant suspension, and a local installer. I didn't want to have to ride a long distance to get the build done, or service and warranty work. Must haves for me: Aux. fuel tank; parking brake; carpeting; fender protection; running boards. Good luck with your decisions. Tom :july4thflag:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I appreciate all the responses and information, after researching trike kits and comparing prices, I have decided to sell my "99 1500SE and purchase a Goldwing that has been converted to a trike. I have found a "03 GL 1800 ABS, with a Motortrike kit installed, and only 10,xxx miles on the bike for about $20K am considering this , I would be the second owner. Any thoughts?
 

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We love our '97 GL1500 SE with 1998 Lehman GTL trike kit and 2004 Champion 6 degree EZ Steer.
I also love the newer Champion trikes that my buddy CR puts together. They come in either solid axle or independent with rider adjustable anti roll bar.
There are others .... shopping is part of the fun.
 
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