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Fred Hill
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May '86 in the Winnipeg Yamaha shop. Cruisers on one side, crotch rockets on the other, rear wall all dirt bikes and right in the midst of all this, a real motorcycle. "What's this?" I ask, "it looks just like a Matchless."

"That's the last of the three '84 XS650 Heritage Specials we brought in from Montreal. Yours for $2,400 Sir." I've been riding it ever since. Not changed it much over the years. First off, those buckhorn handlebars had to go. CB750 bars were better, GT750 bars are perfect (well, for a 5'-8" old fat guy they are.) After riding around Lake Superior in July '86 I found out that my '84 Heritage had a 36T rear sprocket, no wonder it rode like 4 speeds + underdrive. Put 18T/33T sprockets on after I got back. Had to carve the rubber off that inner chainguard to get the 18T sprocket in there. Later I installed an o-ring chain, those larger sideplates meant the entire inner guard had to go. When that chain finally died I noticed the little chain gnaw-marks on the shifter shaft so chickened back to new 17T/33T sprockets to go with the new o-ring chain, plus I installed a Scottoiler. I also lived with the pathetic little Special gas tank until 3 years back then found through theYAM650 list that the larger Standard tank would fit right on AND a list member who had one to sell. Guess what? The tanks swap but the gas caps are different, had to buy the right one from MikesXS.

The first photo of my XS650 was taken in July '89 when Alva and I were married.   Note the saddlebags keeping Alva's wedding dress out of the back wheel for our parade round town.

Job transfer moved us to Saskatoon in '93  and early retirement in '97 keeps us here. Meanwhile Alva's reluctance to ride pillion for more than a short distance brought me back to sidecars after a 40 year lay-off. Alva will happily ride all day in the sidecar, playing Elvis on her discman.




Forty years ago you could go to Halfords and buy sidecar fittings off the shelf. Not so today. I ended up building my own. The only thing I didn't have to make myself was the 38T rear sprocket. For interest, here are some drawings of my attachments. 
There are five pictures of the mounting system for my sidecar and I include them for others in the hope that they will help anyone who gets a sidecar and needs help installing it themselves. Because these pictures are large and will be more helpful if they remain large I have zipped them for you to download them, place them in your own program and print them. That will give you the best quality. Please contact me for help if you need any, Fred Hill

Download zip file of mounting pictures 634K


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