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I am in the process of building a trailer from scratch. I have the frame welded up (1.25 inch square tubing) 32" x 48". I am trying to decide if I should use a leaf spring or solid mount the axle to the bed. Pros and cons would be appreciated. I will be using 12" tires. If there is anything else you need to help decide let me know. The carrier will be a Sears X-Cargo cartop carrier (18 cu. ft.).Thanks for your help. Randy
 

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I have not ever pulled a trailer behind a bike with no leaf springs, but i pulled one behind a pickup and it was a nightmare. It pulled horrible and bounced all over the place. The only way i could see one pulling good without leaf springs is if it had air ride!

You could look into some small " helper" brand air bags that go between the axle and the frame of a pickup to level a load when hauling. You can find them through JC Whitney
 

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Thanks for the reply. A friend of mine suggested mounting the axle to the frame without the leaf springs but I wanted more feedback.
 

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I already have an axle and spindles from another trailer and I am trying to do this as inexpensively as possible. The leaf springs I have are for about 1000 lb load. I can take off 2 of the 3 springs but am worried that they will still be too stiff.
 

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I've built a few trailers over the years and going solid or no suspension in not a good idea. Torsion bar or leaf spring is decided more on your design or what you have to work with. Either way I suggest the addition of cheap, used or laid to rest shocks in your project. Even old motorcycle shocks opr new UAP cheap automotive shocks. IT REALLY MAKES A DIFFERANCE.

The duty weight of you springs or torsion bar are important. Do not over "spring" your design. Adding or removing springs once it's built or as common loads are establish might be requited. It takes a bit to find the "sweet spot".

The nature of a lightweight trailer induces "bounce". Especialy when lightly loaded and in corners. Not a pleasent experance on motorcycle towing a trailer. Shocks are worth the extra bit of effort. Toung weight is also critical and there a tons of great guides and calculators on the net.

For us Canucks, Princess Auto (http://www.princessauto.com )is the place to go and the on line catalog makes a great referance and guide for anyone. They will mail you a free catologe from applying on line. Cheers
 

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I am modifying a bike trailer that was just tire suspension. I am taking a set of GS400 rear shocks and making independent suspension. I won't be able to try and haul it behind the GL1100 till at least July 15th (rings are back ordered till then). I am hoping to use this as a tow bar for the CB550.

James
 

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Scott
Got to love your tag line.
Fits my GL1100 to a tee. :)

James
 

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I have heard what everyone has said and will definitely be using leaf springs. Thanks for your input. Now just have to get back at it.
 

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Thanks Don, I have everything but the tongue and I am out about $70.00 and I have 12" wheels. Think I will keep what I have, but I appreciate the heads up about Harbor Freight.
 

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I just bought a trailer for my bike and it has leaf springs. The first chance I get the springs are comming out and torsion axels are going in, they run under 200/pair here and I love the idependant movement for behind the bike.I also have a single place trailer for my sled that is solid suspension and that pulls like a dream, much better than any springed trailer I ever pulled. Over springiin the trailer is no good either, might as well go solid then but I do agree completely with putting shocks on the trailer, it will do wonders to control bounce.
 

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That Haul-Master is a great deal. The price is a good deal for a completed unit. Considering the materials and your time. That's not bad. All a guy would need top do is install one of those car top carriers that are water tight and "Bob's your uncle". You can find used ones cheap on Craigs List or Buy & Sell. So for around $300.00 your haul'n.
 

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Years back when I built a trailer to pull behind my bike, I used only the main leaf for the spring, and I did add shocks.
That trailer pulled great.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
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Thanks for the info so far. Now I am ready to locate the wheels. I am thinking about locating them about 2/3 of the way back from the front edge of the frame. 48" frame means about 32" back. Does this sound about right. I am, as always open to ideas. Randy
 

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I know that is typical setback for the axle. Just remember the total tongue weight, I've read somewhere, should be about 45 pounds. Sounds light to me but I've never pulled a trailer with a mc. I built an enclosed trailer to pull with my p/u at 55/45. I have to load heavy in front to prevent whipping. What a PITA. Terry
 
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