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View Full Version : trailers behind bikes...I know they suck, but...



heretic530
12-27-2012, 11:23 PM
I know that this will stir shit, but does anyone have any experience with a trailer behind a bike?

I have been wanting to build one that was just big enough for a couple guitars, effects pedals, and the small misc crap necessary for gigs. I used to work at a lot of bike rallies, and I want to start doing it again, but it really sucks to pull up to one with a pickup. IF I could drag my guitars behind my bike, I would be able to get a lot more riding time in, and it would be a lot more fun to pull up to a bike rally gig, with my gear behind my bike.
I am kind of leaning toward taking the coffin case shape that was popular for the BC Rich warlock basses of the 80s and 90s. I could make it out of aluminum and put a thin wood veneer over it to get that vintage pine coffin look...

before I get all the crap about trailers and what is or is not cool, this IS work for me. IF I can book gigs at rallies, and use that to pay for my trip to the event, I am all about getting the job and the money. It is not about what gear is important, only what way is most fun getting it there. I will let someone else worry about the PA, but I am responsible for my own instruments, and I am pretty touchy about anyone handling them

Brendden
12-27-2012, 11:28 PM
Showing up at a gig, on your bike at a bike rally, towing a trailerfull of gear on your bike, in a coffin case. I would ride with you either way.

heretic530
12-27-2012, 11:33 PM
I am kind of hoping someone has actually pulled a trailer and can give me a little insight as to what works so far as tongue length and such
When I reread what I wrote, I realized I had not made that clear


plus I am fighting myself over this. I have always been the one who traveled light, and the idea of pulling a trailer just bothers me....but it is the lesser of the evils

904Punk
12-27-2012, 11:36 PM
I'm pretty sure you'll get some shit here for it, but I totally understand why you want to do, so no shit from me. Whenever you figure out how you're doing it start a build thread for it, I always enjoy seeing them even if it ain't my style, and I'm interested in seeing what you come up with.

heretic530
12-27-2012, 11:59 PM
it is not really my style either. I have only ever pulled one trailer behind a bike, and that was because of a wiring repair and wheel bearing service on a customer's bike. It was a gold wing and trailer, and I had to deliver them. I was nervous as hell

Brendden
12-28-2012, 12:02 AM
I'll talk to one of the old salesman, hes got a pretty large fireman looking trailer he pulls behind his souped up ultra fireman shriner, (Which he got to hold all his wifes shit)

heretic530
12-28-2012, 12:12 AM
I'll talk to one of the old salesman, hes got a pretty large fireman looking trailer he pulls behind his souped up ultra fireman shriner, (Which he got to hold all his wifes shit)


Thanks

Jetblack
12-28-2012, 12:17 AM
Here's a how to a 454ltd website owner made for a trailer; with pulling tips that should give you some idea's, for your project. http://www.websxtreme.net/ebook/scr/How%20To%20Build%20A%20Custom%20Cargo%20Trailer%20 .htm

Doesy
12-28-2012, 4:18 AM
How about a side hack instead of a trailer?

AtomicAddiction
12-28-2012, 5:13 AM
.
I am kind of leaning toward taking the coffin case shape that was popular for the BC Rich warlock basses of the 80s and 90s. I could make it out of aluminum and put a thin wood veneer over it to get that vintage pine coffin look...


Why not just build a skinned wooden frame that you could attach to your metal trailer frame? You could than cover that with fiberglass and resin. People build plywood kayaks and canoes all of the time. Water tight and strong enough to hold a couple of people and gear in the water. Would be strong enough to hold your gear.

Would be pretty fast too. Most of the time building a kayak is spent bending the plywood sections to make the curves. Your coffin design wouldn't require the curves just good joints at the edges. There are plenty of suppliers online like West Systems to get the big rolls of fiberglass and resin.

Get a good rubber seal to seal the lid and some hardware to make it close nice and tight and it should work.

Just a though.

aaronrkelly
12-28-2012, 7:18 AM
Ive got a touring rig I ride pretty often......either pull a cargo trailer or a camper behind my Victory Vision.

What bike are you pulling with and how much weight are ya thinking (gear plus trailer)?

http://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/45967_1246785709080_5573466_n.jpg

http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/385703_2675108296252_1518235397_n.jpg

heretic530
12-28-2012, 7:22 AM
How about a side hack instead of a trailer?
ease of removal, and I want my guitars to lay flat

heretic530
12-28-2012, 7:36 AM
Ive got a touring rig I ride pretty often......either pull a cargo trailer or a camper behind my Victory Vision.

What bike are you pulling with and how much weight are ya thinking (gear plus trailer)?

http://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/45967_1246785709080_5573466_n.jpg

http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/385703_2675108296252_1518235397_n.jpg

that camper trailer was my inspiration... Well not that specific one, but that design. We have a group of the Christian guys who travel to all the rallies and set up a breakfast feed. Quite a few of them pull camper trailers. I am not wanting anything that weighs near what they are pulling. . I want something light, that can pack 50-65 lbs of gear.

53rigid
12-28-2012, 7:52 AM
I would take a good look at those travel pods people put on top of the mini vans. Get one of those and make a trailer frame for it. they are weather proof, light aerodynamic and i bet will fit a guitar.

aaronrkelly
12-28-2012, 8:24 AM
that camper trailer was my inspiration... Well not that specific one, but that design. We have a group of the Christian guys who travel to all the rallies and set up a breakfast feed. Quite a few of them pull camper trailers. I am not wanting anything that weighs near what they are pulling. . I want something light, that can pack 50-65 lbs of gear.

That camping trailer weighs about 280 lbs empty.

The cargo trailer I have weights about 150 lbs empty.

The key, mostly, is tongue weight. When I setup the trailer Im shooting for 15 lbs.......and I use a fish scale to do it. At 15 lbs the trailer pulls very easily. When Im pulling the camping trailer on a long trip stuff gets taken out and put back in differently and it changes significantly. After some stuff moving around I re-weighted the tongue and it was 32 lbs. Doesnt sound like much but it pulled drastically different. Ive got enough power (and Im lazy) so I just left it there.....but t was very noticeable.



I would take a good look at those travel pods people put on top of the mini vans. Get one of those and make a trailer frame for it. they are weather proof, light aerodynamic and i bet will fit a guitar.

Thats almost exactly what that black trailer in my pictures is.....except I went the lazy route. Harbor Freight has already done the work.......their Tag Along trailer is pretty much that......a cargo carrier on a frame.

http://www.harborfreight.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/i/m/image_11385.jpg

http://www.harborfreight.com/600-lb-capacity-78-inch-tag-along-trailer-66771.html

Its listed at $399 but I bought mine when they were on sale for $250. Then I used a 20% of coupon and got it down to $200. I upgraded the lights to LED all the way around.....and put some chrome golf cart hubcaps on it......and then found a little scooter trunk to mount on the tongue (worked great for things like rain gear......stuff you want to get to without opening the main cargo area). Total cost was right at $275.

The little HF trailer is well made......but the bearings are packed in vaseline like grease....and not enough of it. So I took the hubs all apart and used quality grease. I spent a few more minutes here and there tweaking some of the fasteners while I was assembling it and it turned out top notch. I pulled it several thousands of miles with no problems. 90 mph down the interstate and it didnt so much as shimmy......great little trailer.

That bikes 3 years old and has 80K miles on it (bought it new)......and that trailer spent quite a bit of time behind it......still was working and looking good when I sold it on to the next owner.

heretic530
12-28-2012, 8:35 AM
I would take a good look at those travel pods people put on top of the mini vans. Get one of those and make a trailer frame for it. they are weather proof, light aerodynamic and i bet will fit a guitar.

I had considered that...the problem is that I need 49 inches of length, interior space, and it must be flat on the bottom. It does not have to be very wide, Guitar cases are long and narrow...but if I build a trailer I want it large enough to fit my largest case. I may never put that case in it, but I want that option if I ever do decide I need to