Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Cedar City UT
Model: 1988 GL 1500, 2012 GL1800, 1977 GL1000 2012 KLR 650
Here is a photo of how I tied down my 1500. The 1800 is done the same way.
Please do not use engine guards, rear tip over bars, hand grab bars, straps over seats or on the side stand. These attachment points and bolts are not designed go take the forces that can be generated when towing. At least on the 1800, there are many posts on the GL1800 forum where people use the crash bars for tie down points and then find the mounting bolts are broken. The moving company that transported my bike from PA to CA use the rear crash bars as tie down points. When I put on my trailer hitch, sure enough, one of the bolts on each side where the strap was were broken.
The info that DBohrer is great! It will depend on how many tie down points and location on your trailer on how you tie it down. Using soft straps with ratchet straps on the lower triple clamp is a must. This pulls the bike to the front of the trailer. I prefer the frame as my backup to pull the bike forward. This also helps with the bike moving from side to side. Without a wheel chock, I would also put straps from the frame directly to the side of the trailer. The bike will want to tip over without the chock. This will stop this side to side movement. The rear tire point is good. This is keeping the rear of the bike from wanting to wag side to side on bumps. I had already removed the tire strap when I took the picture of the 1500.
I have been towing things on trailers for over 40 years. I have found that ratchet straps are the best. When you stop, check your straps, they will loosen up as the load finds it's spot on the trailer. With the ratchet straps, you just give them another click or two and things are tight again.
2012 GL 1800 Level 3
1988 GL 1500
1977 GL 1000
2012 KLR 650