Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

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Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by 1chapelcredit » Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:12 pm

Me and the wife were in a wreck on the 2016 cT the other night. It could have been really bad; we were going about 30 mph when a car flew past a stop sign (in his defense, it really isn't well lit at that intersection) and right in front of us. Fortunately the sidecar makes for a really stable left turn, so I grabbed the clutch and break and threw the bike to the left; we ended up just barely skidding the tail end of the sidecar (actually it collided right on the first aid kit) into the front of his car. No ejections, no injuries. The only damage to the bike is a big dent in the rear of the sidecar and some damaged first aid kit and trunk hinges. We were able to drive it home with no problems.

I called the local Ural service place expecting them to recommend new hinges and some body and paint work for the trunk, but instead they recommended an entire new sidecar ($2,500-$2,900 plus labor). The pain is all chipped off but the metal itself is only dented, not broken; it's hard to imagine needing a new sidecar just for this.

Now, we have the other driver's insurance info and his statement saying he caused the accident, so if it had to go through insurance, so be it; but they are a young couple just starting out and this would wreck their insurance premiums, so I'd like to settle privately if we can.

I'm attaching some pictures and would love to get the community's opinions on whether ya'll think a new sidecar is really necessary, or if you think I could just bring it to a local body shop and have them fix the dent and get some new paint on there, then bring it to the Ural place to just check the sidecar alignment.

thank you guys,

-TJ

https://photos.app.goo.gl/Fhh9i2NSpFtMJYZdA

https://photos.app.goo.gl/X1aVNB5JsSQ6r5Sh9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/jbc3QdsVnZEwDSDRA
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by Lofty » Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:32 pm

TJ,

I'm glad to read that you and your wife escaped injury.

Just last year, a local independent body shop performed excellent restorative metal work when repairing my wife's SUV after a not-that-serious incident (that was not her fault). I'm reminded of that experience when looking at the images of the damage to your sidecar.

I could argue both ways here. I'd wager that the appearance of the sidecar's sheet metal could be restored to new looking by a skilled shop. That said, once metal is stretched, it's never the same. Other, hidden damage may be discovered during the estimate and/or repair processes, too. Personally, that latter knowledge would always be on my mind. I'd likely file a claim and go from there. That's just me.

Insurance is intended to restore us and our property to the condition it was in, immediately prior to a given incident. Do you want to be made truly whole again here? Objectively, wanting this outcome would indicate having the sidecar body replaced with a new one. It's probably not accidental that the Ural service shop made that particular recommendation.

You say that you'd prefer to settle privately. Insomuch that proper repair work would still cost hundreds of dollars, at least, do you know if the at-fault couple can afford to reimburse you in this manner? Would you accept payments from them? I can't imagine that any premium increase that might occur here, should a proper claim be filed, would be as crippling to them as you suggest. Just a thought.

Again, glad to read that you're injury-free and here to discuss all things Ural. :cheers:
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by wooden nickel » Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:40 pm

Most Ural dealers are not set up to do bodywork. A smaller independent body shop is usually more likely to do this sort of job. I went to one that does bodywork and builds hot rods when I needed some work on my tub. They fixed a lot worse spot than that for $600 or $700. I forgot the exact amount.
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by 1chapelcredit » Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:04 pm

Thank you both for your insights! I'm definitely considering filing a claim through insurance but will call around a bit first and at least get a body shop to look at it. Wooden Nickel have you had any problems with the tub since then?
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by snowymonkey » Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:06 pm

wooden nickel wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:40 pm
Most Ural dealers are not set up to do bodywork. A smaller independent body shop is usually more likely to do this sort of job. I went to one that does bodywork and builds hot rods when I needed some work on my tub. They fixed a lot worse spot than that for $600 or $700. I forgot the exact amount.
I second this. Find a good reputable body shop in your area and see what they say. I have fixed .... or had a body shop fix..... much worse. It was on Classic VW’s, but metal is metal (to a certain extent).
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by rougaroo » Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:32 pm

Glad you're both ok.

Unfortunately, your experience is what has happened to a lot of Ural owners. Insurance and body shops are both set up to take off a dented body panel, paint it, and off you go. There are so few body shops that really do "body work" in the old sense that they are just not equipped to fair out a sidecar body. It also means that those of us with older bikes who get into an accident like yours face getting our bikes totalled. Roughly $3,000 worth of damage on a pre-2005 or so bike and it's gone, insurance-wise, even if the rest of the bike is pristine.

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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by rivers » Tue Mar 10, 2020 3:48 pm

Looks not too bad. Shouldn't be hard for a pro to do properly without using a gal tub of Bondo. Won't be cheap though. Shop time is expensive :( Get a couple "pro" estimates before making any deals. Prolly cheaper for the couple that hit you to pay the ins rate increase than come up with the cash.
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by Lokiboy » Tue Mar 10, 2020 4:07 pm

Too bad about the damage. Only could see three pictures so it may be worse than I saw. If you weren’t/aren’t concerned about looking new, a 4lb sledgehammer and wood will work to put back the basic shape

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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by Snakeoil » Tue Mar 10, 2020 6:54 pm

First, the damage does not look bad to me either. But please no sledge hammer and wood. You'll only make it worse. (No offense Loki. I've seen the results from this technique and it's usually fugly.) It does look like it crack the lip, which should be welded or that crack will continue after the repairs have been done. The lid is an easier fix because you can put it on a your bench and work out the major portion of the dent and then on a shot bag to work out the details. The tub will be a little harder. I'd start with dead-blow mallets until I got it close and then work the details with body hammers and dollies. That raise stiffening rib will be the challenge to get straight.

That all said, I understand your sympathy for the young couple. But had you been a kid on a bicycle, the results could have been much worse. The driver was not paying attention. It's that simple. I think you need to drive home the point that paying attention is job one when behind the wheel. Better he suffer a bit financially now than find himself in court for vehicular manslaughter down the road because he got off the hook this time. Turn it into insurance, get a new replacement tub, painted to match your bike and then see if you can buy the damaged tub for small money and sell it here to one of the members to offset your inconvenience. You'll be doing that driver a favor by making this incident a lasting memory. You might save a life somewhere down the road as well.
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by zookster » Tue Mar 10, 2020 8:02 pm

I had similar damage to my sidecar in January of 2019.

viewtopic.php?f=10&t=53421

Very soon after the accident I took it to a local Ural dealer for repairs, but did not get it back until May (4.5 months!). Like several have mentioned, most dealers are not setup to handle body work, as was the case with the dealer I took mine to. The dealer told me the hardest part was finding someone who was willing to do the repair. They ended up taking it to a retired "old school" hot rod builder who agreed to do the job.
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by stagewex » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:28 pm

A good bodyman can take care of that repair and paint. And I mean a REAL bodyman/craftsman. I don't think it is going to be cheap.
But even if you go thru your insurance company I doubt they would total it unless there is other damage you don't know about throwing the frame out of whack. Your choice in getting a couple quotes. Here in NY you really are supposed to report it within a certain amount of time to cover your butt. Yet it doesn't mean you have to necessarily use or go thru your insurance. It's to protect you.

Get the quotes and present it. At the worst they say no and unfortunately your deductible will come into play. So you are going to pay something going that route.

Most important is you and your wife are OK. You had a 3rd passenger riding and looking over you guys that you don't need to see. Just know he was there.
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by :FI:Igor » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:35 pm

First off...glad you both could walk after the 'incident'. Ural is not in the business of fixing wreaked machines. See what a local body shop can do. You didn't cause the accident!... Let their insurance pay for fixing it. I had a similar 'incident' a few years ago (jeezus the tubs are expensive!). I understand you want to cut 'them some slack...young drivers...yeh..yeh.." It will be a 'learning experience"....it's not nice to not pay attention and cripple someone. It will work out!
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by jvan1954 » Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:04 pm

Relative newbie on a ural, but been on a motorcycle almost every day of my life since 1966. The only times I did not ride was when I was twice deployed and three times while recovering from injuries when cages took me out. None of these people were drunk or monsters or under demonic possession They were not however paying the right amount of attention to the road. I'm not being vindictive but agree with the folks here who have said turn it in and let them accept the consequences of their actions. I'm sure you've heard the old saying that there are only two types of bikers. Those that have wrecked and those that will. When you get right down to it most folks drive distracted for one reason or another and too many people are killed or maimed because of it. We all have horror stories about performing feats of daring do to stop from being killed by some one who simply was not looking. Had your reactions been a fraction slower you could be shopping for a casket instead of trying to save money for the very people who caused the accident. While your sentiments are noble, riders in general and maybe even this nice couple may be better served by turning it in.
This is in addition to the fact that the most thorough inspection can't pick up weaknesses in other parts of the rig resulting from the crash which could bite you later down the road.
I am so glad that you were quick and clear headed enough to prevent disaster this time. Hope it does'nt cause your wife to shy away from riding . Good Luck Brother

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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by :FI:Igor » Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:15 pm

Jvan, well said!
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Re: Damaged Sidecar (could have been a LOT worse)

Post by harryball » Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:42 am

First, glad to hear you and your wife are OK.

When I bought my wife's first rig (2010 Patrol) I took the sidecar body off and to a local body shop. He charged me $200 to remove a large dent from the front of the tub and prime the damaged area back into good paint. I then brought it home, sanded on it and painted it myself. That was in early 2016 and I just saw that rig at HUG this past December, still looked good!

This is the Playlist on YouTube, the first video shows the as delivered damage. The 12th video shows the repaired primed work. Not damaged as badly as yours is, but still, I think a good body shop that was willing could sort it out.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 9KkBk5H9w3

Good luck!
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