Steve Saunders Goldwing Forums banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
imported post

I've been thinking about making/buying a trailer... cycle camping is looking better and better to me. As no one here has ever steered me wrong... I'd like to ask few questions to the forum...

I have a 1996 Aspy... 44k original miles. I currently average between 41 to 36 MPG.

1. What's pulling a trailer like. (I never done this before) Can anyone write a synopsis?
2. Whats the best brands and are there any available kits?
3. All told... hitch wiring and everything... how much did it cost you to add a trailer?
4. How does it effect the the ride, is steering and cornering a problem?
5. How did adding the trailer effect the gas mileage?
6. General thought, suggestions or words of wisdom?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15 Posts
imported post

my trailer doesnt put much of any strain on the bike , mileage i still get 40 mpg with it . at faster speeds of70 youll get some wind wip from semis , nothin major . trailer weighs about 100 lbs loaded. avg people say it drops mileage 3 to 4mpg. i would sudjest a swivel toung on them they allow the bike to corner better.after buying one to camp with wont leave home without it . cost wise its all up to personal prefrence of what you spend ,function or looks, 200.00 to 3000.00. i like to spend the moneys on good times.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,148 Posts
imported post

I put one together using the Harbor Freight basic trailer and a Sears car top carrier.
http://www.hrot.org/martino/goldwing/trailer/index.htm
It wasn't very expensive, I think I have about $500-$600 when all is said and done.
I spent about $300-$325 building the trailer.
I have about $100 in the hitch (I got it on E-bay).
I have another $100 in the wiring. I went with an isolator relay kit.
Then later I added spare tire and hanger under the trailer, that was about another $30.
I had problems with wireing on the trailer. I spray painted the trailer pieces before putting it together, and it wouldn't carry the electrical ground anymore, so I had to run a ground wire to the lights. Other than that I haven't had any problems at all with it.
Pulling the trailer is actually very easy. Going straight down the highway, I don't even feel it.
I feel it a little bit when cornering, but not much. I noticed it tugging a bit when going uphill or accelerating hard. I had to downshift more often then usual. But I never felt like I didn't have enough power. Except while in the mountains. You know how in some places in the mountains, they give you a passing lane while going up hill and then it goes back to one lane when going down hill? Well in some of those places I didn't have enough power to quickly pass, I felt like I belonged in the slow lane with the 18 wheelers. Just as well, in the mountains, I didn't have any business passing while riding two up with a fully loaded trailer. Seriously, tend to ride a little on the agressive side. Not like a zoomsplat rider or anything like that, but I don't like to let any grass grow under me either. If you are going to pull a trailer, you have to behave and be patient.
You have to practice remaining aware that it's there, because of the extra width. You don't want to run it into a curb when entering driveways, parking lots, or going around curves and corners. Likewise you have to be more careful of your lane position so the trailer doesn't cross over the line.
It does drop my gas mileage but not really bad. Normally I get in the upper 30's. When I ride easy, I can get as much as 41 mpg. When I do interstate riding it drops to the mid or low 30's depending on how fast I ride. When I took my trip from Virginia to New York, I pulled the trailer fully loaded and my wife rode with me, I got in the low 30's. But I was riding at interstate speeds (70 mph +/- 5 mph) just about the entire trip. So I wouldn't have expected much better mileage if I hadn't been pulling the trailer.
Another note, I have only used my trailer for one trip. I hope to do more, but my wife isn't really into travelling on the bike. But I use it a few times a year for errands. It's extra effort, so you have to do it for fun, because you want to. But some times I just hook it up and use the motorcycle to run an errand that I would otherwise have to do in my car or pick-up truck. For example one time I went to a motorcycle club meeting and I had to bring 3 cases of t-shirts. Well it is a motorcycle club after all, so I wanted to ride the bike. So I did....
My next intention is to modify the trailer and put some rails around it. I want to set it up so that it is interchangable, and I can take the car-top carrier off and put the rails around it. Then I want to put a hitch on the car. I rarely use my pick-up truck any more and I want to sell it. I figure the trailer can pull double duty and I can get rid of an insurance premium on the truck.
 

·
Gregarious Greeter
Joined
·
16,809 Posts
imported post

When pulling a trailer down the road you really do not know it is back there. You lean into corners and everything else that you would do if it was not there. When going through towns at slow speeds and the trailer hits a manhole cover, pot hole, etc.. you will feel the bike shake a little in the back but not much. I think the most important thing is remembering that it is back there for stopping purposes. I currently haul a 500 pound camping trailer plus approx 65 pounds of packing clothes, chairs, etc... Look to the left in my avatar. I do not think there is a "better or best trailer" out there. You buy what you want to suit your needs. I have pulled trailers well over 12,000 miles total and have been in 32 states with no problems. My best advice is to just be extra careful when pulling and remember to give extra time with stopping, and use gear as well as brakes for slowing or stopping.



Happy trailering!!!!!:action::action::action::action::action::action::action::action:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
168 Posts
imported post

SETHAN12 wrote:
When pulling a trailer down the road you really do not know it is back there. You lean into corners and everything else that you would do if it was not there. When going through towns at slow speeds and the trailer hits a manhole cover, pot hole, etc.. you will feel the bike shake a little in the back but not much. I think the most important thing is remembering that it is back there for stopping purposes. I currently haul a 500 pound camping trailer plus approx 65 pounds of packing clothes, chairs, etc... Look to the left in my avatar. I do not think there is a "better or best trailer" out there. You buy what you want to suit your needs. I have pulled trailers well over 12,000 miles total and have been in 32 states with no problems. My best advice is to just be extra careful when pulling and remember to give extra time with stopping, and use gear as well as brakes for slowing or stopping.



Happy trailering!!!!!:action::action::action::action::action::action::action::action:


I'm watching this thread as well. as i am looking to build a trailer from a car topper i have. but i am loving your teardrop! sorry to partially hijack this..but did you build that teardrop?

Barry
 

·
Gregarious Greeter
Joined
·
16,809 Posts
imported post

Bschofield wrote


I'm watching this thread as well. as i am looking to build a trailer from a car topper i have. but i am loving your teardrop! sorry to partially hijack this..but did you build that teardrop?

Barry

I am definetly not that talented:DI had to buy this one.:action:
 

·
Administrator
Piaggio MP3, was 02 GL1800
Joined
·
61,478 Posts
imported post

...I would suggest on the heavier trailers to add electric brakes to the trailer wheels.

A spring attached to the foot brake pedal could operate the controller for the trailer brakes. Just enough braking action to make the trailer want to stay behind you, not in front of you.

A little practice braking will let you know how much braking power to assign to the trailer. :cooler:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
imported post

Thanks... that's what I needed to hear. Some one to tell me what it's like. I looked at all your pics. That's pretty much what I had in mind. Something simple and direct. I also like the fact that both the car carrier and the flat bed trailer pull double duty. how hard would it be to set the trailer up with removable side rails and loops for bungie net. Home Depot here I come!

I too a long trip out to West Texas and the towns are so far apart... that to be close to anywhere I wanted to be... I would have had to camp. Hence the interest.

Thanks for your help!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,183 Posts
imported post

Another thing you'll get used to is parking lot turn arounds. Once you make a sharp turn, the trailer will give you a tug when it straightens out letting you know it's still back there.

Not a violent tug, but it does get your attention at first.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
286 Posts
imported post

Also the best rule of thumb is keep your tongue weight @about 10% of your load I pull a kwik kamp &it works for me & for the tongue weight use a bathroom scale
 

·
Premium Member
1993 gl1500, 1976 gl1000
Joined
·
3,878 Posts
imported post

I have pulled a trailer for thousands of miles with no problems except that you can't park where you used to. While visiting Yellowstone this year, for example, I had to bypassa couple of areas because there wasn't enough room inthe parking lots when other carswere there. Without the trailer there wouldn't have been a problem.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,509 Posts
imported post

I just saw a real nice older car top cargo box for sale at a yard sale yesterday, perfect for a home made trailer. They wanted 20 bucks for it. I may run up there tomorrow and buy it as I know it didn't get sold.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
imported post

You wouldn't be interested in selling it to another winger... wouldya?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,183 Posts
imported post

us385south wrote:
You wouldn't be interested in selling it to another winger... wouldya?
I see them all the time in the Austin CL. Let me know what kind you want and I'll keep an eye out for one. I found another Sears 20 cu ft Sport SV for $40, and it looks brand new. I am gonna use it on my next trailer.

Just do a search for Cartop Carrier or Car Top Carrier in the Austin CL.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
168 Posts
imported post

I picked a car topper up for $10 in perfect shape at a garage sale.. my problem is that i'm not finding trailers in the price range i want.. i know i can pick up a harbor freight for @ $200 but isn't there anyone who has bought one and now doesn't need it? still looking...

Barry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
imported post

Good Advice about CL, Silicon Sam... as for the trailer... the really sad thing is I once bought one of those "Harbour Freight" type trailers at a Ridgeway store in Chattanooga, TN and used it to bring some tools I inherited from my first wife's father back here to Texas. It sat around the house for a few years until my wife made me sell it... because it was taking up space. Now, twenty years later, the wife is gone and I wish I had that little trailer back...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
imported post

I agree... I would rather have a used one! I can weld reasonably well and honestly feel all I would really need is the axle and springs. That way I could build the trailer I wanted... to fit the car top carrier, balance the tongue length properly.

Hey! This brings to mind another question... what's the best hitch and wiring harness to buy? Any advice there?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,391 Posts
imported post

I calculated by the time I purchased axle, wheels, springs mudguards and the steel and lighting etc to build a trailer it was cheaper at Harbour freight to by the kit.

I used the lighting that came with the kit, used a 5 to 4 adapter and put 1157 LED's that I got for $3 each (13leds)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
imported post

I have to agree. I have been prowling online and today I found myself in Tractor Supply looking and axles and fenders... and honestly I don't feel I can build it for what the "Harbor Freight" kit is offering. yet none the less, I find myself worrying about the length of that tongue. One and half times the center to center axle length.

Do you have one? Does it trail alright? Did you modify the tongue length? Does it have a cooler rack? Do you have pics?

Man-O-Man... I know I am being troublesome.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top