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Thread: Cargo trailer behind an LT

  1. #1
    Bill N
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    Question Cargo trailer behind an LT

    I am considering a cargo trailer to pull behind a K1200LT. I know that BMW does not recommend this, but does anyone have any evidence that it is a "bad" thing. Also, does anyone have any experience with any of the following trailers: Tailwind, Hannigan - Sierra or LT, Colorado Touring? Any suggestions or tips? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Lifetime Member Ridealot's Avatar
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    You didn't list what is in my opinion the absolute best trailer available. Bushtec !!

    I have had 4 trailers. The Bushtec is hands down the best.

    A properly set up and loaded trailer will not slow you down. Other than having to stop for gas more often. I am pulling with a K11 instead of a K12 but I have had no added problems from towing a trailer. My bike has 53K miles and I just had to replace the clutch after about 30k miles of towing the trailer. Not because it was worn, but because the rear main seal leaked and oiled the clutch.

    If you travel with your wife on the bike she will love the trailer. At least my wife loves ours. Heres some pictures of past and present trailers.





    Tom
    Salem Or.
    '93 K1100LT w/Bushtec
    '03 F650CS '09 F650GS

  3. #3
    Seeking Mental Floss
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    Ridealot,

    I am considering this also, with my R1200RT. Tell me about your experiences with the Unigo. Specifically, bike handling, tire wear on the trailer, and how much it can carry. TIA.

  4. #4
    Registered User tourunigo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hlothery View Post
    Ridealot,

    I am considering this also, with my R1200RT. Tell me about your experiences with the Unigo. Specifically, bike handling, tire wear on the trailer, and how much it can carry. TIA.

    While we are out of the sales part due to quality concerns and some other stuff, I will tell you that this trailer tracks beautifully; it is reliable and predictable; holds 5 cu ft; weighs in at 70 lbs and claims to carry 110 lbs max... but unless you're carrying water or sand you'll never be able to do it... 65 lbs is your usual, heavily packed weight (38 on tongue); we have 20,000 on our trailer tire and it still has lots of life; bike handling? Is that trailer really there?? Oh yes, split lane it or take it into your motel room. Lots of fun and looks good too. Anyway, ask around to others who have purchased in the last couple of years. -Bob
    saltyfogriders@gmail.com
    Salty Fog Riders Motorcycle Tourism Promotions
    Larry's River, Nova Scotia, CANADA

  5. #5
    Seeking Mental Floss
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    Quote Originally Posted by tourunigo View Post
    While we are out of the sales part due to quality concerns and some other stuff, I will tell you that this trailer tracks beautifully; it is reliable and predictable; holds 5 cu ft; weighs in at 70 lbs and claims to carry 110 lbs max... but unless you're carrying water or sand you'll never be able to do it... 65 lbs is your usual, heavily packed weight (38 on tongue); we have 20,000 on our trailer tire and it still has lots of life; bike handling? Is that trailer really there?? Oh yes, split lane it or take it into your motel room. Lots of fun and looks good too. Anyway, ask around to others who have purchased in the last couple of years. -Bob
    Big enough for a cooler?

  6. #6
    You stupid, fix it! r11rs94's Avatar
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    A properly set up and loaded trailer will not slow you down. Other than having to stop for gas more often. I am pulling with a K11 instead of a K12 but I have had no added problems from towing a trailer. My bike has 53K miles and I just had to replace the clutch after about 30k miles of towing the trailer. Not because it was worn, but because the rear main seal leaked and oiled the clutch.
    If you travel with your wife on the bike she will love the trailer. At least my wife loves ours. Heres some pictures of past and present trailers.



    I do not see a plate on the Unigo. Is one required or is this traler exempt?
    The thing about traveling is, you never want it to end and you can't wait to get home.
    I answer to Roy, Chief, or Sarg.
    04 R-1150-RT current bike. 94 R-1100-RS74,383, Sold, 78 R-80/7, K.I.A by a D.U.I
    www.OceanStateBMWriders.com

  7. #7
    Bill N
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    Bushtec

    Tom/Ridealot, thanks for the photos. Loved the one with the bike on the back. Takes away my concerns about towing too much. I like the small size of the unigo, but in hopes of cross-country trips and some camping with my wife (as you have done), I'm looking larger. Glad that you've had no troubles - you've done more towing than anyone I've been in touch with.

    The Bushtec was also recommended to me by someone else. I just prefer the syling of some others - particularly with larger tires.

    Since you've towed so much - any thoughts on a swivel hitch? I've heard both good and bad - helps keep you from falling over vs. doing damage if something falls over. Mostly, I'm thinking of it as a non-issue.

  8. #8
    Registered User tourunigo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wnovik View Post
    ". I like the small size of the unigo, but in hopes of cross-country trips and some camping with my wife (as you have done), I'm looking larger. ".
    After 20,000 miles and another 12,000 pending this summer two up, we have not found the Uni-go particularly limiting. It really has more to do with what you really think you need. After being in some rush hour/unfamiliar city situations I was very glad to have the Uni-go rather than a bulky two wheel 300 lb 18 cu ft trailer. But that's just me. Others think very contrary to this and have some very fine trailers to prove it. Bottom line: don't dismiss the Uni-go option too quickly. Just insure that you really need what you think you need. - Bob
    saltyfogriders@gmail.com
    Salty Fog Riders Motorcycle Tourism Promotions
    Larry's River, Nova Scotia, CANADA

  9. #9
    Lifetime Member Ridealot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wnovik View Post
    Tom/Ridealot, thanks for the photos. Loved the one with the bike on the back. Takes away my concerns about towing too much. I like the small size of the unigo, but in hopes of cross-country trips and some camping with my wife (as you have done), I'm looking larger. Glad that you've had no troubles - you've done more towing than anyone I've been in touch with.

    The Bushtec was also recommended to me by someone else. I just prefer the syling of some others - particularly with larger tires.

    Since you've towed so much - any thoughts on a swivel hitch? I've heard both good and bad - helps keep you from falling over vs. doing damage if something falls over. Mostly, I'm thinking of it as a non-issue.
    I would recommend that you absolutely have a swivel hitch.
    On the first trailer I owned I did not have a swivel. All you need to do is gently drop your bike once to wish you had one on.

    You say that you like the styling of trailers with larger tires. I am not aware of any trailers that have larger wheels than a Bushtec. The tires on the Bushtec are 16". The red trailer above with the bicycle rack was an absolute horrible towing trailer. Those little tires bounced and jerked me all around.

    The Unigo I got rid of because of numerous problems. As Tourunigo said it is a great towing trailer. You couldn't tell it was back there. But after several major problems I just had no faith anymore in it.

    I have had the Bushtec for several years now. Having the cooler is great. In our riding group everyone seems to love our trailer at every stop. Especially if its hot outside. Cold drinks will make you very popular. My wife loves the garment bag. We have both cold and hot weather gear that we take. Whatever we aren't wearing is easily stored in the garment bag.

    If you go to many rallies I will tell you the worst thing about having a trailer. Guess who always, and I do mean always, gets "volunteered" to make the store and beer run.
    Tom
    Salem Or.
    '93 K1100LT w/Bushtec
    '03 F650CS '09 F650GS

  10. #10
    Lifetime Member Ridealot's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=

    I do not see a plate on the Unigo. Is one required or is this traler exempt?[/QUOTE]

    In Oregon small trailers do not need license plates. It seems to freak out the cops in other states. We have been stopped in other states and had discussions about why we have no plates. One cop in California thought we should stop by the California DMV to get a plate while traveling in California. I kept saying "no thank you" I'm legal in my home state and that's all I need to do.
    Tom
    Salem Or.
    '93 K1100LT w/Bushtec
    '03 F650CS '09 F650GS

  11. #11
    Registered User MLS2GO's Avatar
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    Here's another trailer option

    Here is another one wheel trailer. I considered this one and the unigo. This one has about twice the cubic feet of a Unigo. It is rated for 100 lbs. or so, but I like it better at 60-70. The advantage of a one wheel is the trailer leans with you and goes where you go. You don't have to worry about deropping a wheel off or going through a tight spot. I don't pull it behind my RT but behind my Ultra. The disadvantage of a one wheel trailer is you are holding it up with the bike. I only use it two up with my wife and have no problem. It costs about the same as the Unigo and is made in Des Moines. It is the N-Line trailer just google the website. Here it is hooked to my Ultra.

    Bob Rippy
    IBA #451
    Tour of Honor Missouri State Sponsor
    14 R1200RT (currently parked) 07 R1200RT

  12. #12
    Registered User MLS2GO's Avatar
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    Oh by the way

    I like that spot you are in on Lolo Pass too. My favorite Road Sign in America.

    Bob Rippy
    IBA #451
    Tour of Honor Missouri State Sponsor
    14 R1200RT (currently parked) 07 R1200RT

  13. #13
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    Trailer pulling

    I have pulled a home built trailer, (Mahogany strips and fiberglass. Light weight and strong and doesn't look too bad either), for 2 trips, 3000 miles each, 2 up, in mountains, behind a '89 K100LT. I now have a K1100 set up to do the same. I can tell its back there, I go through more gas, but allows us to travel comfortably and camp when we want to, motel it when we don't. I will add a swivel hitch this year. I have had no trouble going with the flow of traffic or better. You still have to use your head and take some common sense precautions, but for me, it's the way to travel and enjoy biking!

  14. #14
    You stupid, fix it! r11rs94's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ridealot View Post
    In Oregon small trailers do not need license plates. It seems to freak out the cops in other states. We have been stopped in other states and had discussions about why we have no plates. One cop in California thought we should stop by the California DMV to get a plate while traveling in California. I kept saying "no thank you" I'm legal in my home state and that's all I need to do.
    Thanks for the info. I'm sure I'll need one here in RI, I'll have to check it out.
    The thing about traveling is, you never want it to end and you can't wait to get home.
    I answer to Roy, Chief, or Sarg.
    04 R-1150-RT current bike. 94 R-1100-RS74,383, Sold, 78 R-80/7, K.I.A by a D.U.I
    www.OceanStateBMWriders.com

  15. #15
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    Thumbs up towing a trailer

    I presently have a1993 k1100lt with a reynolds hitch and a trailer with a swivel hitch whitch I have towed for several thousand miles. I put a cooler on the tongue(thanks for the rack, Greg)and it has allowed my wife and I to camp in luxury.The trailer has small wheels and other than no good place for a spare tire I have no complaints. As noted it reduced my mpg but I'm selling my LT and getting another airhead. I will keep the trailer and look for a hitch for my "new" 1992 R100RT. I do miss the '76 R90S i sold several years ago.

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