Best enclosed trailer suggestions? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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Best enclosed trailer suggestions?

Ok, so i am looking to buy a trailer for my soon new Versys. Given that the bike is 7' long I need opinions on whether a 5'x8' enclosed trailer is sufficiently long enough to take this bike around, given that the tie downs need to be placed ahead of the wheel chock? Also, can anyone comment specifically on trailer brands, pros and cons? im looking at carry-on, trecker, pace, haulmark, kristie. I do know wells cargo makes a very good one but pricey. Thanks, Rick
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 05:56 PM
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A 5x8 should be fine. Open trailers are much cheaper and create far less drag with the drawbacks being exposure to elements and lack of security.

I have a 6x12 V-nose and I can tow two bikes. It's rated at 2990 pounds (no need for trailer brakes) and I get between 10 and 12 mpg towing with my Nissan Frontier with 4.0L V6. A buddy with an open trailer tows his bike with a Toyota 4Runner and gets 18 mpg.

I have tracking installed in my trailer that allows movement of D-rings for tie downs. Install a front wheel brace and I tow with the rear on a paddock stand. My tie downs are not much in front of the front tire, if at all.

Don
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Last edited by hacktracker; 01-02-2009 at 05:58 PM.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 06:28 PM
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You don't HAVE to have the tie down points in front, but it is helpful. Regardless, if the 8' of length (in other words...however they measure it) is enough to get the bike in and close the door, then you'll have no problem.

I would suggest a chock, but you can create something as effective with lumber screwed to the wood floor. You might also consider a way to tie down the rear wheel to the floor. When I feel the need for that, I use a simple cinch strap used with D-rings mounted to the floor on either side of the rear wheel...approx center or slightly in front of the center.

With the rear wheel tied down (verrry important with an open trailer) and the front in a chock and strapped, you'll pretty much eliminate the risk of movement on even the bumpiest of roads.

For my dirt bikes, I use a Rance Renegade 5.5' x 10', plus about 2 feet of the "v" in the nose. It's all aluminum other than the wood floor, which is marine grade plywood. Not cheap, but it's built to last. I recommend a high quality aluminum trailer IF you're sure that you'll keep it awhile.

I know guys who have Pace and Haulmark trailers, and they are satisfied with them. I don't know anything about the other two brands, but I wouldn't hesitate with the aforementioned if they met my needs.

Finally, I don't know what your tow vehicle is, but I'd guess a 5x10 will have a 2500 lb axle, giving you about 1500 lbs after allowing for about 1000 lbs of trailer. If you haul the Versys with a full tank of fuel (about 475 lbs,) you'll still have 1000lbs more capacity. Just be sure your vehicle has at least 3000lbs of towing capacity without electric brakes. A lot of vehicles could probably be coaxed into pulling 2500lbs, as long as you don't have to stop.

My trailer doesn't have brakes, but I have a 3/4 Ton Dodge Diesel, and sometimes I think it laughs at me when I hitch up that particular trailer.


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 06:44 PM
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given that the tie downs need to be placed ahead of the wheel chock?
Don't understand this. I put my V in my Ridgeline and use a chock. (obviously this is my KLR in the photo-but same idea).



Picked up the chock at www.harborfreight.com for $39.00

I use a tie down through the front wheel to the front truck anchors, two tie downs from the forks again to the front anchors.



Two tie downs round the rear frame below the saddle to the rear truck anchors and one tie down through the rear wheel to the rear truck anchors.

Not great pictures, but you get the idea. I do not squash the suspension down front or rear. I find that the bike rids much better when you hit bumps and the suspension has full travel. I go from Seattle to Palm Desert every year with this set up and never had a problem. Bike can't shift forwards, backwards sideways or god forbid if the truck ever tipped-it won't budge. The four orange tie downs you can see are basically to stop left and right movement, not to hold the bike down to the truck, the blue tie's through the wheels and the chock does that. I used to cross the tie downs front of bike to back of truck and vise "Versys", but found it wasn't necessary.

Your set up on a trailer could be much the same. You do get a few bugs on the bike and if it rains it gets wet, but no big deal, as hacktracker says, I wouldn't bother with a closed trailer, way too much $$$ and poor mileage with the towing rig.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 07:29 PM
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I took Machog's advice and bought one of the Harbor Freight chocks. It's really solid. Any other chock on the market that looks any good is $200.00 plus and this one works just fine for $39.00.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 03:55 AM
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Here in Oz many people just run the bike into a chanel and tie the front wheel to the front of the trailer.

The back wheel takes this gadget.
http://www.motorcycletiedownpro.com/

This way there is no load on the suspension and the bike sits happily over bumpy roads.

The prices are Aust $.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 12:09 PM
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The back wheel takes this gadget.
Shifty, that is a brilliant idea. Probably something I can steal and bodge up my own concoction. I put a tie down through the spokes, resting on the inside wheel rim, to achieve the same effect, but a bit more height wouldn't hurt.

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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Ok you guys have convinced me. I do have a tacoma and seeing as how the Versys fits into the back of a ridgeline it will fit into the back of mine. I have anchors to the bed mounts now and not having a trailer will save me much space at my house, yearly trailer registration fees, trailer maintenace, gas mileage, plus having done both, is is more comforatble to drive with a bike in the bed than with a trailer. Plus when going to FL its not always easy to find a place to park the darn trailer. One question for Machog, is that a piece of plywood painted black you laid down in your bed first to dissipate the weight?
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 05:08 PM
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jow, yes that was its orginial purpose, spread the load-probably totally unnecessary.

But, I also found it a great place to bolt the Harborfreight chock-didn't really want to drill holes in the truck bed.

Plus, I made a 'clip' to hold the ramp so it would be firmly fixed to the plywood. This shot was pre-chock.


When loading and unloading find a slopping driveway to make the ramp as shallow as possible-yea blindling obvious-but it hadn't occured to me until someone mentioned it.



One final thing I did, put some split pipe insulation on the front edge of the plywood, that way when you slide it into the bed it won't tear up the bed surface.

My neighbors think I'm a total wack job and its the most over engineered piece of plywood on the planet.

Machog
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Manchog I LOVE over engineering!
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