Pulling a trailer

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by YOUNZ, Sep 6, 2012.

  1. YOUNZ

    YOUNZ Been here awhile

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    Solo with a trailer usually means 3 wheels on the ground, so this should be the correct slot.
    The question is, what are some of the nuances and safety issues one needs to be aware of, before hitching up?
    Such as, braking in a turn or curve and making U turns, etc.
    Is towing a trailer solo, just not a great idea? Thanks
    #1
  2. Bobmws

    Bobmws Curmudgeon At Large

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    Lots of miles pulling a camper on a solo bike. Allow for extra braking distance. Brake well before a turn, then you can power through. Braking in a turn pushes the rear wheel to the outside. You will learn to lean the bike way over when that happens! And buy a new seat cover!
    Be aware of the extra width at dirveways, gas pumps etc.
    You definitely want a swivel hitch on the trailer tongue with your solo bike.
    Be prepared for 20-30% fuel mileage reduction.
    Pack the trailer with the weight slightly biased to the front, just because you have the space, don't overload it!
    I found that loading gear in the camper/trailer reduced the load on the bike and the suspension worked much better.
    #2
  3. YOUNZ

    YOUNZ Been here awhile

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    Just avoid U turns?
    #3
  4. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    Be very careful on steep hills, especially unpaved. With a relatively heavy (small pop up camper) trailer. Let's say the old road into the campground at Meat Cove, Nova Scotia.

    Don't ask me how I know...................:evil

    But with that said, I hauled the trailer thousands of kms all across Canada with no other issues. I still have it and use it with my Ural and Yaris. The swivel hitch is very good to have.

    PS: U Turns are fine (with enough space) and beat the heck out of trying to back up..............although it is no issue with the Ural!
    #4
  5. YOUNZ

    YOUNZ Been here awhile

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    Plan ahead, park smart. Plus, bigger trailer, bigger bike.
    And, I assume, not as many different driving issues, as learning to drive a sidecar rig.
    #5
  6. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    You got it pretty much covered.

    Someone else already mentioned, pack the trailer load with care to keep the weight over the wheel(s) with a slight front bias.

    Do everything a little slower and more carefully, braking distances will be longer and since you won't have trailer brakes, avoiding sudden or hard braking is wise.

    And yes, you are correct, I did not find the trailer learning curve with my K bike nearly as steep as learning to pilot a Ural.
    #6
  7. sledgegreen

    sledgegreen Adventurer

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    Be very careful about parking facing downhill. Especially, don't park downhill and then wriggle the plug to see if that will make the indicators on the trailer work.

    If you do do this, you are likely to find out why rotating hitches are a good idea.
    #7