A systematic comparison of random copolymers, derived from poly(dihexylsilylene) (PDHS) by incorporation of monomeric units with shorter unbranched alkyl side chains, has been carried out based on calorimetry, variable temperature UV spectroscopy, and 29Si MAS (magic angle spinning) solid state NMR investigations. Also, hexylmethylsilylene units and branched monomers have been copolymerized. Up to 10% comonomer with shorter linear side chains (i. e., pentyl to propyl) could be incorporated into PDHS without impeding the all-trans order of the crystalline phase. In this case, the UV absorption maximum of the crystalline low-temperature phase was affected only slightly according to the length and fraction of the comonomer side chains. A less ordered crystal structure (λmax = 345-355 nm) was observed when the content of comonomers with shorter side chains was about 20%. Yet, all these materials form conformationally disordered mesophases. A clear disordering transition and corresponding thermochromism was not observed any more when 50% of propyl side chains were incorporated. The order of the crystalline and the mesophase is also strongly perturbed if only a small fraction (4%) of the side chains are branched at C2.