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Thread: Motorcycle Trailers

  1. #1
    zepper
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    Motorcycle Trailers

    I think I would like to trailer my R1200C out of the big city (Houston) and enjoy the countryside rides. On the bike the trip out is ok but the trip back often at night and tired could be best done towing the bike behind the Tahoe.The obvious problem is the storing of the trailer all year for the ten times it is desired for use. What have others done? Rented? Borrowed from the Annonymous Book? Please share your thoughts and experiences.

  2. #2
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    What's a trailer?

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  3. #3
    zepper
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    A trailer is a two wheeled vehicle that you can load your motorcycle on and get it somewhere while you load your wife and all of her stuff into the truck so you can get her and her stuff to the same place you take the motorcycle.

  4. #4
    USERNAME
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    sounds like your priorities are messed up...

    youre putting your wife and living in houston ahead of your riding? i think they can revoke your membership for an offense of that nature. yes, it's that serious.

    follow my five-step plan and maybe youll get off with a slap on the wrist:

    step 1: women LOVE presents and christmas is coming. get your wife a bike and enroll her in the MSF class.

    step 2: leave houston. immediately. dont even sell your house or pack up your stuff, just go. youll thank me later. (in step 3.)

    step 3: write username a nice email thanking him for the fantastic advice!

    step 4: take fun rides with wife, elevate marriage to a new level, etc.

    step 5: repeat step 4.


  5. #5
    zepper
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    Sounds like a plan, Username, but not a good one. My wife was the one who encouraged me to get the bike and she is the one who wants to ride all the time. She does not want to drive one herself but prefers to hug me tightly as we buzz along.

    I think she would enjoy the rides more if we began the rides in more scenic areas than Houston highways that take one hour of riding to get into nice back roads.

    We would like to ride around Austin but I would rather drive the truck there and then ride around rather than taking the tough ride up there on the bike.

  6. #6
    GSer JERRY's Avatar
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    what's a wife?

  7. #7
    2014 R1200GSW Rich's Avatar
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    Or you could do what a buddy just did, buy an enclosed cargo trailer, rig it for motorcycle transport, and it doubles as his garage/storage shed. About 3 grand, but cheap for the long term.

  8. #8
    Registered User beemerron's Avatar
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    Tailer?

    I always pictured a trailer as something that you pull behind a motorcycle. You can put a motorcycle on a "trailer" and pull it behind a car?

    You guys are crazy. What will they think of next?
    Ron R

    #39306

  9. #9
    Slowpoke & Proud of It! BRADFORDBENN's Avatar
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    Standup Trailer

    At BMW of South Bend, they have a "Kendon Stand Up Motorsport Trailer" that literally stands up for storage. About $1,500 IIRC.

    The idea of the enclosed cargo trailer is also nice as it can be used for other stuff and provides a storage place for those other items that get in the way of motorcycles ---- lawnmowers, snow blowers ... wait up you are in Texas.
    -=Brad

    It isn't what you ride, it is if you ride

  10. #10
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    zepper, you're just getting all kinds of abuse over here.

    For what it's worth, I think Brad is on to something. I've seen those stand up trailers and they're pretty nice.

    Not that I'm a trailer guy under most circumstances....

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  11. #11
    What's that noise...? basketcase's Avatar
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    Now that the subject is out of the closet ...

    Some of us do sometimes trailer our beemers. And for me, it is the best way to take the bike on a family vacation, or on an extended business trip with free evenings.

    In my bunch, I am the only one who awakens early. I need my eight hours of shuteye, but will nonetheless wake up soon after the sun rises. So I am often able to get in an early morning ride before the crowd comes to life. Also, for 13 of the last 25 years, I worked and lived ÔÇ£away from home,ÔÇØ so family vacations usually included a leg through the hometown to see family and friends ÔÇô among which are numbered several motorcyclists. A trailer quickly became part of the routine travel stuff.

    For several reasons, I started with a standard 5' x 8' wood-bottom utility trailer with a drop gate, and gradually tweaked it to make it a multi-purpose motorcycle, family stuff, and yard-trash hauler. Trailer cost new was $495.

    First off, I went to a local machine shop and had them fabricate a metal foot to secure the front wheel. The foot bolts up to the trailer frame. At the same time, I drilled the frame at a half dozen strategic points to utilize tie downs. Cost of the foot was $55.

    After pulling it a few times, I realized I was getting a lot of wind resistance (and gas mileage loss) because of the gate. Given the design issues, the gate was part of the weight distribution configuration, so culling it for ramps was not the best route. I took it back to the machine shop and had the drop gate cut and hinged at the half-way point. The result was a trailer that pulled easier and with much less wind drag. Cost: $200.

    I added bearing buddies, ($30) and found an old Army equipment box at a salvage store for $5. The box was mounted on the trailer tongue for jack, grease gun, and strap stowage. I found a spare rim and tire at a junk yard for $25. (Regarding replacement tires for the trailer, I use the 15" tires off my truck for replacement trailer tires).

    Last year, the wood was needing replacement. Naturally, the manufacturer had taken the quick (and cheaper) route and spot welded the plates to hold the wood down. So, I cut the old wood out with a circular saw, and took it back to the machine shop again. This time, I had them cut out the front (top) retaining plate, and I purchased a piece of 2" flat-bar that I drilled and painted myself as a replacement. The machine shop labor and cost of the flat-bar was about $30. The new wood (treated 2x) was around $65.

    The end result is not as sporty as some of the motorcycle specific trailers on the market, but the rig meets my multipurpose needs. And the fact is, the K does not know the difference.

    Discounting the new wood as a routine maintenance item, I have roughly $840 in the thing after 10 years.

    For my purposes, the only down-sides are the weight of the trailer, and the eight foot length. The wood bottom is heavy, but works better as a non-abrasive tire surface, and for hauling family and yard stuff. Regarding the length, all of my BMW's have loaded and hauled with no problem. The K11 is the longest, but has about two inches to spare when the gate is shut. However, when I had a Gold Wing, I found the eight foot length too short, making a 10" trailer desirable. The same issue might some into play if you need to haul a K12.

    I first wrote this on online and was going to upload pictures, only to get a ÔÇ£file size too large message,ÔÇØ and then a time out notice. I lost that post into the blackhole of webdom ... This submission was humbly done in WordPerfect before posting.

    When I can get the photo size editing thing figured out, IÔÇÖll upload pictures. Meanwhile, IÔÇÖll email them to anyone who drops me a note.
    Last edited by basketcase; 12-17-2003 at 03:38 PM.
    '98 BMW Z3 Roadster, '00 R1100RT

    If you insist on exercising a right to burn our flag, first be so kind as to wrap yourself in it and then douse yourself with gasoline just before you strike the match.

  12. #12
    zepper
    Guest
    I appreciate your many and good responses. I am still surprised trailers are not shared by a group and I am still to hear from anyone who has thought to rent a trailer. It seems most of the time, even with yard work and such, the trailer would sit without being used and depreciating. I have seen the fold up and easy to store trailers and these I have considered. But still, it will sit in the garage for weeks and months without use and then be used only for a weekend or special week trip. I think I will explore renting a trailer although other rider buddies of mine have offered to share in the expense of a trailer. Thanks for all the kind and otherwise clever comments.

  13. #13
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    My brother and I rented a UHaul enclosed trailer back in 89 to go to Daytona from Boston. The trailer cost us about $125 for an entire week back then. It wasn't a motorcycle specific trailer, but it had a wood floor. We installed some brackets so we could attach the tie downs. It worked great.

    Honestly, though, I really love riding right out of my driveway. There's nothing better than getting home after a long trip, pulling into your garage and switching the engine off. It really does feel like you've completed something special at that point.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  14. #14
    What's that noise...? basketcase's Avatar
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    Here's a stab at a picture ...

    Provided I got the Infranview thing right!
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    '98 BMW Z3 Roadster, '00 R1100RT

    If you insist on exercising a right to burn our flag, first be so kind as to wrap yourself in it and then douse yourself with gasoline just before you strike the match.

  15. #15
    What's that noise...? basketcase's Avatar
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    And another view ...

    No tailgate party in the making here ... the old grill was long since hauled off.

    The foot is just sitting in place and is not bolted down in the picture, and you have to look closely to see the hinging in the drop gate.

    Still figuring out how I did the photo thing ... but it worked. And yes, after 10 years, it is due for a new paint job.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by basketcase; 12-17-2003 at 11:04 PM.
    '98 BMW Z3 Roadster, '00 R1100RT

    If you insist on exercising a right to burn our flag, first be so kind as to wrap yourself in it and then douse yourself with gasoline just before you strike the match.

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