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trying to gauge interest in this concept.....


co_g30
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Fellow Uralisti....

 

As you've drunk the ural kool-aid that I have....would you be interested in something like this for your next vacation:

 

Booking rentals from a company which provides Ural Sidecar rigs on a rental basis, for touring the scenic byways of Colorado, year round. Group Tours could be organized if enough people expressed interest of course.

 

Otherwise, you prove your endorsements, training, sign all the waivers and away you go....kind of like how Harley rents motorcycles for riders.

 

I am just wondering how much interest there would be in such availability. Fly in, ride into the mountains.....

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Well, if Arbalet and those companies overseas can get folks to sign up (how many we don't know), Why couldn't someone over here? Yes, when over there you're riding a bike in it's natural habitat, but there is a melange of terrain for people to ride these machines... I guess one would think that a traveller from over there may want tto do as the Romans and ride a Harley around the US (God forbid) Sorry HD dudes...

 

Up keep would be a bi@tch, but what about an off road scenario? Maoab, Pac NW, Appalachians???

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interest is one thing, folks actually willing to pay the money is another. Your inventory is going to be a serious cost figure a couple backups and a means to get them to customers broken down. As will insurance. Any good lawyer can shred the signed liability waiver in court...Don't bet everything you own or ever will own on that piece of paper. Don't know how you'd verify a riders experience or if he's ever even been on one. Not all states require 3 wheel endorsements. Remember even with an endorsement that doesn't prove you know what you're doing, all it proves is you can pass a test. Years ago I thought of a scooter rental thing for visiting pleasure boaters looking to do some land exploring, grocery/parts getting etc. Enough insurance/liability hassles it wasn't worth the grief or expense to me.

By the time you add all your costs and even with a marginal "expected" profit your rental rates will probably be pretty unattractive. If you have a well written business plan "already", call the SBA Small Business Adnin. They used to have a pool of retired business people program (S.C.O.R.E.) who've been there done that and can point out things you may have not considered. A valuable resource for sure. You may know Urals and the CO. countryside but the lawyers know litigation. Even if you're legally right and they can't win they can still sink you with legal costs. Any time you're sticking a toe into water dependent on lawyers. Don't do it, those bottom feeders are vicious. On a tangent from a rental business maybe consider a sidecar tour business. Just a thought.

Good luck BUT DO YOUR HOMEWORK don't decide from what you see on the internet.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I like it and I’m willing to open the NJ franchise some day. I'm not intimidated by the liability aspect since i see so many moto rental shops around i figure it's a realistic business to get into. I think if the customer service is good and you run a respectable, legitimate business then you shouldn't worry. Inventory and emergency assistance would be a challenge though.

 

Let me know when you have your grand opening. I'd like to be your first customer. Then i'll submit a job application.

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It might just be better just to rent all kinds of bikes and "specialize" in sidecar rigs as well. Something so specific probably won't do too well and may atract a dangerous crowd of ignorant newbs just waiting to roll your rigs. Some people look at these things and think they are easier to ride than 2 wheelers.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well... I don't wanna rain on your parade, but consider this.

 

I bought my Ural (The Gremlin From The Kremlin) on Ebay. It was sold by a guy who runs a Bed & Breakfast on Washington Island, out in Lake Michigan, roughly off of Green Bay.

 

The island is a little, touristy kind of place with a few miles of 2 lane blacktop on it. He got the Ural for use by his guests; he thought that it might be a useful attraction.

 

I guess things didn't work out that way; I got a SUPER deal on a 2000 Bavarian Classic with about 635 KM on the clock. His bad luck was MY good luck... I picked her up off of the ferryboat and took The Gremlin home with me.

 

YMMV...

 

 

Gavno The Ugly

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I've thought of that business idea here in the southeast corner of Tennessee. However, the more I thought about the details, the more I didn't want to do it myself, I just wanted to rent the Ural from someone else that had started the business. Or become an employee!

 

1. If people fly in, you may have to rent helmets to them, which means having many helmets in stock of various sizes and the ability to delouse them after each use. And other ATGATT as well.

2. Staff to drive the truck out into the forest to rescue a broken rig. And the means to communicate with that staff member from the broken rig when cell coverage is not available.

3. Extra Urals for that staff member in the truck to deliver to the guest who's rig broke so the guest can continue on the ride. Consider the noob that breaks three Urals on his one day ride (think fried clutch).

4. Endless hours of mapping out the routes for the guests. It might get pretty boring to your guides to run the same routes over and over again.

5. Natural hazards may be a showstopper as far as insurance coverage goes. Those off-camber mountain roads if not negotiated properly could result in a nasty crash to the bottom of the mountain (and the TN mountains are not even as steep as the CO ones!)

6. You would have to provide drinking water and the container for it for each guest. And sunscreen. And maybe a box lunch.

 

But if you want to fund such a venture here in TN, I would most certainly be interested in managing it for ya!

 

:smileypopcorn:

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  • 2 months later...

I recall a poem that went something like ....who shall answer the bugel's call..... There are businesses world wide that run on the guts and presistance of the owner, ask any self employed person and they will tell you that they work harder for their buck than the dude working for the big factory, bank, investment funds etc. And we all know how depression proof they are....You first determine if their is a need, how long the need will last, how many customers, how many with the scratch, whats the overhead, taxes and on and on....then if you have the balls to do it, the money to survive till it makes a profit....you son, are now a businessman. My two bits....Ken

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I recall a poem that went something like ....who shall answer the bugel's call..... There are businesses world wide that run on the guts and presistance of the owner, ask any self employed person and they will tell you that they work harder for their buck than the dude working for the big factory, bank, investment funds etc. And we all know how depression proof they are....You first determine if their is a need, how long the need will last, how many customers, how many with the scratch, whats the overhead, taxes and on and on....then if you have the balls to do it, the money to survive till it makes a profit....you son, are now a businessman. My two bits....Ken

 

Hey Ken

You make it sound hard. It is hard but "exciting" is a better way to put it. I have 38 years of full time self employment under my belt and I still learn something new about it every day. It usually isn't a get rich job.

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  • 1 month later...

I think this is a fantastic idea and working out all the logistics sound like an exciting prospect. I think in the states this might appeal more to a person looking to buy a Ural where they could test it out but not have that ultimate commitment yet. But I also like the idea of giving people the option to "ride in" with their own bikes as most people who own are probably most comfortable with their own rigs. As another person stated the thrill of going to Russia to do this is not only because the bikes are in their natural habitat, but also the thrill of adventure of destination. So maybe a trip of shorter duration might be better?? perhaps a weekend thing?? So if you dilute it down, the big benefit of doing something like this to the participant is not only travelling to a different area of the country but also catering to those of us who are unable to attend all the ralleys we'd like to due ot time restaints, etc... and offering them a slice of the Ural community. Also of course from there the cost/benefit ratio comes in to play.

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What if you were to "sell" them? Then buy them back after the ride for a few hundred dollars less (equal to the cost of rental).

 

Or become a Ural dealer and really sell them, but advertise for people to come out to the store and test drive one...for the whole day, or two, or three...

 

*** $500 non-reimburseable deposit required for all day test drives. ***

*** $900 for two day overnight adventures/ $1,100 with supplied tent, sleeping bag, stove and food. ***

 

*** Our Deluxe test ride includes four days and three nights of a guided excursion deep into the National Forest tracts within the Appalachian Mountains. Complete with support vehicles that truck in and prepare the evening's gourmet meals. However, this test ride is not for the meek or the inexperienced. Stream crossings, muddy conditions and rocky hillclimbs are to be expected. This test ride is conducted regardless of the weather. There is a required minimum of four test riders, and is conducted by two experienced and fully capable tour guides. Cost: $2,700 non-reimburseable deposit per person. ***

 

What are the legal ramifications of that?

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