22 May 2011

wasp MX sidecar - kawasaki w650

You remember that speedway bike?

perichbrothers (and sister): weslake/godden speedway bike - cow to the slaughter

the scar has almost healed from my decision to give it up.
Blog posts like this sometimes make me pick at that old scar.

Moto Freako: Road Bikes with a Speedway Influence

Mark, the new owner with a healthy addiction to English-bred motorcycles,
has dumped a few side projects my way,
kinda testing me for this one.

wasp motocross sidecar project

It is a Wasp Motocross Sidecar.
I will admit to being a little green when it comes to these.
I've seen some race videos and pictures but that was about it.
Now I am doing my online crash course!

Wasp sidecar with Kawasaki W650 engine

This bike was originally designed to fit a Kawasaki 750 engine,
but it is going to be repowered with a newer W650 engine,
a 2000ish Kawasaki version of an early Triumph basically.

I was trying to imagine wanting to be the sidecar rider on a 650cc motorcycle,
but from my quick study this one is going to be a tame version.
There are examples with cr500 2-strokes, yamaha and suzuki 1000cc engines...

Vintage Sidecar Motocross - Photo Gallery

So this one is an old racer,
with lotsa post-crash fixes.

sidecar hot seat

The idea is to get it in a race ready condition,
but since there is only a once a year course in southern california,
its a little go-bike, a little show-bike.

No problem.

So now I'm off to study these things a bit more,
focusing on specific details though,
exhaust, brake systems, motormounts, floorboards etc.

are we having fun yet?

One of the cool aspects is that while the frame/sidecar is a somewhat standard early rig,
no 2 bikes are the same.
Different engine configurations produce different exhaust and pedal styles etc.
Looking at some bikes its easy to see where they were repaired and gussetted or reskinned.

here's a quick youtube video I found of these things in action.

I guess they're nicknamed "twin shock" or "twinshocks" cause of they're front fork suspension.
Motocross definitely different in England,
it's not the U.S. style in a stadium with a bunch of artificial whoop dedoos.

this thing would be perfect for the Catalina Grand Prix...



  1. Sorry I opened old wounds with my post about speedway bikes on the road, but hey - you just got a real extreme monster to replace it - Sidecar MX Rocks, just don't volunteer to be the guy in the sidecar... especially on the berms!! I once read about a guy who built a sidecar grass track bike with a Messerschmitt aero engine - no kidding, it was wild!!!

  2. needs a shopping cart car.

  3. It's one thing opening old wounds with an old rusty knife,
    you're able to do it with internet pictures!
    It helps me to keep a lookout for a future motorcycle project,
    something with brakes though.