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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone have any experience using those motorcycle tow devices that holds your front wheel and lets the rear wheel roll on the ground behind the car/truck?

Any issues with chain, belt or shaft drive bikes of the rear wheel turning w/o the engine running? I would think it's the same as flat towing a manual transmission car.

It's some kinda craddle you roll the front wheel into and you just strap the front wheel to the craddle. Some have a little ramp and some actually raise and lower with a crank handle.

I have a regular trailer but these things would be neat for when I'm traveling and come across a bike I might like to pick up and bring home. Also usefull for if you might need to load-unload the bike quickly or often.
 

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Considering you can buy a utility trailer that'll get it done pretty cheap, a dolly would be sort of stupid. There's even companies that make a little rail style trailer you can fold up and store in a corner.
 

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odie said:
Does anyone have any experience using those motorcycle tow devices that holds your front wheel and lets the rear wheel roll on the ground behind the car/truck?
I think you would be very unhappy with what happens to your bike. ever ride behind even a clean auto, or truck, without a face sheild. all those bits of sand and stones will destroy your bike. In fact you shoud think twice about a trailer without some kind of windstop in front, you will not believe what a few trips will do the paint job.
 

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I saw a tow/trailer on Speed vision the other day on Corbin's Ride- on that looked pretty interesting if nothing else. It folded up and fit in the trunk of a car. The front axle came out and a pin went in place of it, They claimed 15 minutes to be ready to roll. Looked kind of cool anyways.
 

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I regret having to admit I've used this or something very similar, I believe it was called "Trail-a-bike".
While I really didn't have any problems with it I wouldn't use one again. I've met guys who have lost their bikes with these things.

I was moving to Fl. 20 some years ago and was to cheap or dumb to think of a trailer

It was exactly as you described and mounted to a trailer hitch.
I loaded my 900 kawasaki onto the hitch, went into the house to start loading the car, by the time I came out with the first suitcase the front tire was back on the ground.
After a trip to a friends shop and a bit of welding I was good to go.

Another piece of advice DO NOT MISS AN EXIT AND TRY BACKING UP. There is little that matches the feeling you get when your bike lays down so far it disappers from site. lol

I'd never dream of putting my HD on one.

If you do decide to buy one I'd suggest using it only for very short trips and driving very, very slowly.

Rick
 

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I do believe that I read in my Owners manual not to tow the bike with the rear wheel on the ground. May have to do with proper lube of the tranny and primary .. think about the angle the bike is at when hooked up to a car.
 

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I questioned this very same thing here sometime ago and the warnings I got involved the unnecessary rotation of the tranny and belt at high speeds for long durations. I thought it would be a great thing to have to get the bike in for service, etc. Although the concept is nice resorting to friends results in a better piece of mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'l skeptical of them too. It looks neat and would cut the towing weight in half. But I've never seen anyone use one. My 5x8 trailer handles two bikes.
 

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fourhour said:
I questioned this very same thing here sometime ago and the warnings I got involved the unnecessary rotation of the tranny and belt at high speeds for long durations. I thought it would be a great thing to have to get the bike in for service, etc. Although the concept is nice resorting to friends results in a better piece of mind.

I should've added that I removed the chain so the only thing rotating was the rear wheel
 

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I don't relish the thought of dragging a $20,000+ motorcycle around by the front wheel. Seems to me it would put undue stress on the frontend components and driveline not to mention the finish as DJW mentioned. Use your trailer if you need to haul it and a stone guard is a good idea as well.
 

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flamedlowrider said:
I should've added that I removed the chain so the only thing rotating was the rear wheel
I don't have that option!
 

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Personally, I would only spend on a trailer the proportionate amount of what the bike was worth to me.

What price would you be willing to pay for peace of mind? Good quality, small open trailers are inexpensive and not hard to find.

Just my opinion... and we all know about opinions!
 

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My major concern would be for the trans, as fxsts103ci mentioned. You'd run the risk of overheating trans bearings at the least. Disconnect final drive chains / belts. With a driveshaft bike, ???
 

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So what if i have a 2017 dodge durango that has a 6200 lbs tow limit and 620lbs tounge weight. I want to tow my pop up camper that weighs 2700lbs loaded with only essentials. No water or anything unnecessary. Great easy tow. Now i want to tow my bmw g 650 gs that weighs 450lbs with all accessories. (Except hard cases) with the pop up. I've racked my brain trying to figure this out. Looked into eveything. The only thing i think might work is to weld a 4 inch metal tube to the back of the frame on the pop up. Then weld on a 2 inch receiver. I bought a tow dolly that is decent and now great once i made a few modifications. Wondering how much tounge weight would that be on the pop up? Just the front wheel of the bike. Can someone smarter than me do the math and figure that out? Lol The dolly itself weighs 33 lbs bike 450. I've thought about scales but don't have one close by. Will buy one if i have to but figured I'd ask

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Does anyone have any experience using those motorcycle tow devices that holds your front wheel and lets the rear wheel roll on the ground behind the car/truck?

Any issues with chain, belt or shaft drive bikes of the rear wheel turning w/o the engine running? I would think it's the same as flat towing a manual transmission car.

It's some kinda craddle you roll the front wheel into and you just strap the front wheel to the craddle. Some have a little ramp and some actually raise and lower with a crank handle.

I have a regular trailer but these things would be neat for when I'm traveling and come across a bike I might like to pick up and bring home. Also usefull for if you might need to load-unload the bike quickly or often.
Yes I have towed my Classic and my Sportster to and from work, 24 miles one way and have never had no issues. I’m on call once a month with no way to get to work or retrieving my personal vehicle while using a company truck while I’m out of town. So for me the unit works.
1st -Make sure tranny is in neutral,
2nd - This to some people is not good advice but it secures your front end solid - Make sure to bottom out your front forks when ratchet tiedowns so the there is no slack, the only draw back is possibly seal leakage and coil damage, And
3rd - make wide smooth turns, still a normal turn but no sharp turns for the bike will lean more than I’m personallynot comfortable with, keep your eye in rear view mirror on your bike.
4th - no backing up.
I have been doing this for 7 years and no problems yet.
Harleys are tuff bikes. My front ends are still solid and no issues with tranny or any other internal parts.
It’s a personal preference decision. Hope this was helpful.
 

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So what if i have a 2017 dodge durango that has a 6200 lbs tow limit and 620lbs tounge weight. I want to tow my pop up camper that weighs 2700lbs loaded with only essentials. No water or anything unnecessary. Great easy tow. Now i want to tow my bmw g 650 gs that weighs 450lbs with all accessories. (Except hard cases) with the pop up. I've racked my brain trying to figure this out. Looked into eveything. The only thing i think might work is to weld a 4 inch metal tube to the back of the frame on the pop up. Then weld on a 2 inch receiver. I bought a tow dolly that is decent and now great once i made a few modifications. Wondering how much tounge weight would that be on the pop up? Just the front wheel of the bike. Can someone smarter than me do the math and figure that out? Lol The dolly itself weighs 33 lbs bike 450. I've thought about scales but don't have one close by. Will buy one if i have to but figured I'd ask

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same answer I gave my brother when he and his wife decided they just had to have a toy hauler (they have no "toys) just cause his wifes a desperate keeper upper with the jonses.. she had a just paid off 2015 Chevy collorad he a 1/2 ton 2014 Silverado, which was not enough truck for the toy hauler with its heavier frame etc.. (thats how they support the weight behind the toy haulers axles for rear garage units and added weight on tongue for front platform units) to him to get a 3/4 ton which was my advice back when he bought the 1/2 ton.... I own a trucking company hauling specialized loads we are very well versed on load distribution etc.. and I've been a welder for 40 years so pretty well versed on structural fabrication in fact we build most of our semi trailers in house.. he is onea these people who is into just doing the bare minimum so bought the 1/2 ton, he thinks if ya have more than 2 days food in your pantry your a hoarder and if ya own more than 1 gun your a gun nut (I own way more, and have a spare bedroom converted to a pantry etc..) well they just hadda trade in both trucks and bought a 2019 GMC 3/4 ton Denalli.... $74K but he's dragging his toy hauler and his wife can join in with co workers on conversations about taking their toy hauler here and there... never mind its still got no toys in it

if ya want to tow a popup AND a bike get a vehicle suited to the load ya wish to haul otherwise ya gotta leave something behind, the popups frame is not going to support being used as a front trailer in a set of doubles and also it will not be a legal load in most states which restric non commercial vehicles to only towing a single trailer, also as mentioned the tires on the popup nor the brakes are designed for the popup to be dragging an additional load... travel trailers utilize the absolute minimum for frames in order to keep the units total weight down..... thats why when dudes strip a travel trailer down thinking they are gonna build a bada$$ flatbed they discover it flexes like its made outa pasta..., I just hadda explain to a friend why he couldn't put his rhino side by side in the bed of his 1/2 ton Dodge AND tow his travel trailer together even after he moved the trailers tongue jack and built a platform etc.. he tried to do it anyway and on every downhill grade it nose dived and tried to generally steer itself... finally front tire blow out on a right hand curve with a 8* down grade.... not enough truck for his ambitions

as far as flat towing manual tranny vehicles as already mentioned tranny bearing wear BUT its a problem with many cars/trucks as well before flat towing any vehicle check with manufacturer first as many manual trannys use a front driven lube pump.. an example is the Getrag 5 speed in 1st gen Dodge diesel p/us if ya flat tow one ya'll burn out the bearings because with tranny in neutral no 5w30 oil is being circulated several others are designed same way and ALOTA front wheel drive vehicles
 
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