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Shanniah’s Story – From Hiring to Building a Wheelchair Accessible Sidecar

Dreamfit Sidecar

Search for an Engineer willing to build a Wheelchair Accessible Sidecar – Led to Hire

We were searching far and wide to locate an engineer willing to manufacture a wheelchair accessible sidecar for our daughter to be included in our family rides. We contacted DreamfitFoundation in Perth to see if they could help fund or build Shanniah her own sidecar. Unfortunately Dreamfit Foundation would not be able to assist Shanniah in obtaining her own sidecar, however we were invited to ride the Dreamfit Sidecar.

The Dreamfit Foundation is a not for profit organisation that uses innovative engineering to fulfil dreams and overcome the challenges and frustrations of people with disabilities. Unfortunately this does not include projects that will need to be registered or licenced for the road. The Dreamfit Foundation, had been donated a Yamaha XS750cc motorcycle with a wheelchair accessible sidecar.

Being in need of repair, the Varietyclub were able to assist with the funding required, which allowed Chris and Spider to begin the restoration project. Shanniah, our daughter, was the first to ride in the Dreamfit sidecar at the 2012 Variety Bike Run in Perth.

Dreamfit_sidecar

Dreamfit_sidecar

A big thank you to all that made this possible and a message to anyone in a wheelchair reading this:
You have to contact DreamfitFoundation for a ride, you’ll love it!

Wheelchair_Sidecar

Left to Right. Chris, David, Shanniah and Darren

Wheelchair_Sidecar

Shanniah “Ready to Ride”

Wheelchair_Sidecar

The smile Says it all

Wheelchair_Sidecar

C’mon Let’s Go

Wheelchair_Sidecar

Up We Get!

Wheelchair_Sidecar

Shanniah and David leaving Dreamfit Foundation

Wheelchair_sidecar

Sidecar at Variety Bike Run

Wheelchair_sidecar

Shanniah with Variety Bike Run Riders

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

A special thank you to Lal who kept Shanniah smiling during her 5 month stay at hospital

Shanniah and Lal

Shanniah & Lal

Shanniah_Jim_Lal

Thank you Jim & Lal for being there on Shanniah’s big day

Wheelchair_sidecar

Shanniah at Cottleslow Beach

Wheelchair_sidecar

Blue Neon Lights Shine Beneath the Side Car

The following year, the Dreamfit Foundation were very kind to allow us to ride the sidecar 572 kilometers from Perth to Katanning and back. Shanniah loved the open road

Wheelchair_sidecar

The Williams Roadhouse

Wheelchair_sidecar

Parked at the Wagin Ram

Wheelchair_sidecar

In Front of the Shire of Katanning

Wheelchair_sidecar

At Woodanilling

Shanniah’s Wheelchair Accessible Side Car

Shanniah’s Project: To Build Her Own Sidecar

Thanks to TheDreamfit Foundation and TheVariety Club, Shanniah was able to have her very first ride in a sidecar.

However, her original dream of owning her own side car remained unfulfilled.

Rather than Shanniah being left with a carer while we (her parents) ride around Katanning and surrounding towns, we and Shanniah would like to ride together as a family. Because Katanning is 3 hours from Perth, to continue using the Dreamfit Side Car would involve Shanniah travelling to Perth in her van with her parents, and then in Perth, only one parent would have a bike to ride.

We also would have to find wheelchair accessible accomodation which can be quite expensive. With her own side car, Shanniah could ride more frequently without the expense and challenges of travelling to Perth. For this reason, we purchased a sidecar.

Towing Shanniah’s new sidecar to Katanning on an Erdie Trailer behind a Honda Shadow

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Shanniah’s Sidecar Assembled

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The first stage in the modification was to cut the back out

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

With a portable ramp, the wheelchair entered the sidecar to see how it fits

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

A section of the front was removed to allow the wheelchair to go further forward

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Much Better

Wheelchair_sidecar

The sidecar chassis was lengthened to accommodate the wheelchair rear wheels and some sides were added

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

It was necessary to see how the princess and her wheelchair fit in the sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The front was measured to allow clearance for her legs

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The sidecar was checked to see it with the wheel on

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The sidecar was placed beside a Honda XLV750R to see how it looks

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

A frame was added to accommodate a windscreen and a ramp was attached

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Pine boards were added to the sidecar floor and ramp

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The perfect size for a princess

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Gaps in the body were filled and an access door was fitted to enable the front of the wheelchair to be tied down

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The Windscreen was removed

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The windscreen frame was removed, because the Australian Design Rules require it to be made of Laminated Glass. Which is strange considering all motorcycle windscreens are perspex or polycarbonate. Therefore we decided to fit a motorcycle windshield at completion. The ramp was extended, as neither an electric or manual wheelchair, could ascend the ramp as it was too steep.

Legs were added to support the 150kgs that will travel across the hinges. The Princess isn’t that heavy, her wheelchair weighs 110 kgs

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The sidecar was put on the Erdie trailer and taken to a weighbridge. 140Kgs

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Shanniah’s Sidecar beside the Dreamfit Sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

The purchase of Shanniah’s Yamaha FJ1200A

Wheelchair_sidecar

To be able to carry the extra weight and for the top end torque,?we purchased an FJ1200.

Locating an Engineer willing to take on the project

We approached many engineering firms, asking if they would attach our sidecar, to complete the project, all declined.
Then finally we found someone willing to take it on. Thank you Brendon!

The sidecar and FJ1200A have been attached by:
BF Customs Motorcycle Fabrication
Email: bf.customs@yahoo.com.au
Website: http://bfcustoms.com.au/

Legalities

We submitted a Modification Application with the Department of Transport Western Australia to obtain an Approval in Principle which allowed us to begin attachment to the motorcycle.

Funding

Funding: The attachment of our sidecar was funded by the IndependentLiving Centre. Thank You ILC!

You may visit our Project Funding Page: Click Here

The Fitting of a Subframe and Attachment Points to the Motorcycle Frame

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

With the Rear Stand removed, a perfect attachment point was provided

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Under Seat Attachment Point

Wheelchair_sidecar

Sidecar Attachments

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Conversion of Telescopic Forks to Leading Link

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Attachment to the Sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

We asked Brendon to manufacture us a nice ramp. Much better

Wheelchair_sidecar

Adjustment of Lean Out and Road Testing was carried out using a crate with 170 kgs of barbell weights

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Wheelchair_sidecar

Fits Nicely in an ACROD (Disabled) Parking Bay

(Disabled)

(Disabled)

We added a Window for the ACROD (Disabled) Parking Label

(Disabled)

(Disabled)

Shanniah, her Mum, Dad and Aunty at the 2014 Vintage Motorcycle Club/Salvation Army
~ Albany Christmas Toy Run ~

(Disabled)

(Disabled)

(Disabled)

(Disabled)

Selection of Motorcycle Tyres (Tires USA)

As the FJ1200A will no longer lean or travel at high speeds, we swapped the High Speed Round Profile rear tyre, with a Square Profile Motorcycle Tyre.
This will improve the Load Carrying Capacity and increase the Surface Area between rubber and road for better Traction.

We chose to keep a Round Profile Front Tyre, after reading comments on Internet Forums that stated Square Profile on the steering can cause the motorcycle to follow every contour in the road, especially if the road has been worn by heavy traffic.

We fitted an Excelsior 500/525-16 tyre and tube, purchased from Antique Tyres in Victoria Australia: Website

FJ1200
Manufacturer’s Rear Tyre Details:
Metric 150/80 V16-V250 (V) tires for 240 km/hr and up
Max Load: 345 kgs
Square Profile
Tyre Details: Excelsior 500/525-16 Motorcycle Tyre, 4 Ply Nylon.
L/S Index (load/speed): 74 P
74 = 375 kg load rating
P = 150 km/hr

(Disabled)

Complete – Job Well Done!

?Brendon has completed attaching the sidecar. We are so blessed to have had Brendon’s amazing skills on this project.
We have obtained our Modification Final Approval and our combination is now registered to carry a sidecar and wheelchair.

Time to paint the bike to match the sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Angela adds her Airbrushing Talent. Shanniah chose her Favorite Musicians promoting Peace on Earth

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

A Photo Stop in Darkin during a ride from Katanning to Bunbury

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Airbrushing Wheelchair Sidecar

Shanniah, Angela, Michael and John

Angela adds her Airbrushing Talent. Shanniah chose her Favorite Musicians promoting Peace on Earth.

 

Together we can make this an accessible world.

Check out my other website, click the link below 🙂

Roadmap Make Money Online

The Ability Motorcycles website was created to enable the sharing of information and projects to benefit others. We do not sell motorcycles. If you believe this world should not exclude anyone, and you love motorbikes, then Ability Motorcycles is the place to share that passion.

We like to hear from readers so please leave a comment below and let us know if this post helped you or if you have any questions.

Thank you for visiting Ability Motorcycles. Dave

Sharing is caring!

6 thoughts on “Shanniah’s Story – From Hiring to Building a Wheelchair Accessible Sidecar

  1. Hi Julia, thank you for your kind words. Shanniah is truly a princess, she deserves to have her dreams come true. Building the wheelchair accessible sidecar was a difficult journey, but her smile confirms it was worth it. Thank you for sharing with your friends, I think this will help many others understand disability and that anything is possible if you put your mind on it and don’t give up. I think you would also find the following webpage inspiring: http://abilitymotorcycles.com/off-road-access-disability-becomes-ability-in-the-wild
    Especially the underwater deep sea diving wheelchair. Have a wonderful day. Dave

  2. I cried. So much love! So much talent and creativity!
    Dave, your daughter’s smile is precious. I know the feeling.
    Shared with my 750+ world-wide Facebook friends

  3. I saved your site. I have a friend who has a child in a wheelchair. I’m gonna show this to her and her family.

    1. I am glad you will share with your friend. I hope she and her family will be inspired by my daughters story. If they already ride motorcycles it will give them hope to include their daughter, if not, they may be able to locate a sidecar for hire, like we did at the beginning. Have a great day. Dave

  4. Hi Ross, thank you for your kind reply. Yes there is a lot of passion and love that has gone into this website. Hopefully it will fill it’s purpose and help others get back on the bike. I could say your never too old, however I am not you and do not know your situation. But I can say that rain is no barrier if you have passion, the correct riding gear and the right bike. Have an excellent day. Dave

  5. Wow, this site Ability Motorcycles, is a work of love, both for the love of motorcycles, which I had several in my life, just to old now. and the ability to help anyone share that joy of the open road. Sometimes I wish I had one again, but I live in Washington State USA and it rains a lot here

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