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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Simple question, I'm gonna get the mini trailer from Harbor Freight to tow behind my bike (40x48, weight 130lbs). They have the same trailer with either 8 inch or 12 inch wheels. Is there any advantage to either size wheel? seems like the 12 inch would be better and track a little better. Price difference is only $40 so no big deal.
The capacities are WAY higher than anything I'd ever haul. I just wanna haul some camping gear, maybe a hundred lbs of stuff.

I don't need to hear about if you can't pack it on yer bike you don't need it, been there and done that for MANY YEARS. I am way past being able to sleep on the ground and sit in a little tent to dress etc. I'll be hauling a large tent (as in one you can stand up inside), one of those air beds with aluminum frame that sit the height of a regular bed, some lawn chairs and some kind of fold up table and a nice size cooler, maybe a bbq. OL and I were gonna get a camper but figured for the expense, we'd be better off staying in hotels when touring. We wanna camp at a few semi local events though, that's where the fun always is, the campsites so this is a good alternative.

Anyhow, 8 inch or 12 Inch (no jokes, OL already said "DUH?" when I asked what she thought!)
Would also love to hear from others who have made this or any small trailer into a bike trailer.......
 

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Did the same trailer when I had an older Goldwing I restored. Used the 8 inch wheels and removed all but a single leaf spring, then bought a car top hauler from sears, made a nice little custom hauler. Springs are really strong, but the single leaf was perfect. Tracked well and no excessive bounce on rough roads.
 

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Definatly the 12s. Those little 8 inchers(he-he) will be turning so fast they'll wear out a lot sooner. I'm suprised the even offer them for road use.
 

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Size between 8 and 12 are really not that significant. It is all about the speed rating and weight load capacity. Check that and pick the best of the two.
 

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Rkpickett said:
Did the same trailer when I had an older Goldwing I restored. Used the 8 inch wheels and removed all but a single leaf spring, then bought a car top hauler from sears, made a nice little custom hauler. Springs are really strong, but the single leaf was perfect. Tracked well and no excessive bounce on rough roads.
I did the cartop carrier thing too with a similular trailer from Central Tractor. Works great. Definatly go with 12 inch wheels though. The bigger the wheel the better they will handle bumps and potholes. Also will last longer and roll easier. I left the trailer as it came at 40" wide but a lot of people I know who have done this cut the axle and frame down to make it narrower. How narrow depends on the with of your cartop carrier. I have pulled the 40"x48" cartop rig, a Bushtec Turbo and currently pull a Kompact Kamp trailer. Never had any trouble with any of them. The cartop rig is best bang for the buck. Bushtec is great if you want the bells and whistles but prices for Bushtec start at $3000.00 and go up from there. The Kompact Kamp is great if you want something in between, a budget trailer that looks good and has a good finish. You can't beat the LED tail lights on the Kompact Kamp trailer.
 

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Fatb0y said:
Size between 8 and 12 are really not that significant. It is all about the speed rating and weight load capacity. Check that and pick the best of the two.
I beg to differ. Increasing the size by 50% over the 8" wheels is hardly insignificant. Either wheel will handle the speed and the load quite well but you will feel a big difference over bumps and potholes with the 12" wheel vs an 8" wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the input. I like the thing about removing a couple of the leafs in the springs. Might have to give that a try. Gonna go with the 12" I guess....
 

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I've pulled with both 8" and 12" trailer wheels. Not really that much difference if you've got decent suspension on the trailer. I pull a Neosho Starlight trailer with 8" wheels an average of 8,000 miles a year. Never a problem. Either one will work fine. Over-inflating the tires (regardless of size) cause more bouncing than small tire size. Also keep in mind that on some bikes, the difference in wheel size will definitely change the angle of the trailer tongue to the bike. Obviously also depends on the hitch.

Here's a site where you can get all the info you'll ever need about trailers including the HF ones. You may have to register though. You might also look at the "Piggybacker" trailers. Very functional for a really good price.

I also would highly recommend using LED lights on any trailer. Easy on the bike's charging system and are much more visible.

http://forums.delphiforums.com/MCTrailertowing/start
 

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One thing that has not been mentioned is that if you have to replace atire on the road, you will most likely find a replacement 12 inch easier than a 8 inch.
 

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you want the tongue to be as level as possible. so i would use whatever wheel that will do that. when you load the trailer 20 lbs. tongue weight is about as much as you can go. any more and stearing becomes an issue.
 

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utrvp said:
I beg to differ. Increasing the size by 50% over the 8" wheels is hardly insignificant. Either wheel will handle the speed and the load quite well but you will feel a big difference over bumps and potholes with the 12" wheel vs an 8" wheel.
@gree: @gree: @gree: @gree:
 

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Helped a neighbor build one for his 'Wing. As mentioned above we narrowed his trailor to match the carrier he bought, also aesthetically it looked more correct. The stock trailer just looked too wide behind the bike. I think we cut 8 or 10 inches out, can't remember, I was just the 'torch man' I would go with the 12" wheels also.
 

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I just searched on Harbor Freight site and the difference was only $5 bucks as the 12 wheel unit is on sale for $179.99
 

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hdmarsh77 said:
Definatly the 12s. Those little 8 inchers(he-he) will be turning so fast they'll wear out a lot sooner. I'm suprised the even offer them for road use.
Give that man a seegar! Definitely 12" for highway use. Much easier on the tires and bearings...........Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Thanks alot for the tips guys! I am definately pulling the trigger on this thing.
What about hitches? anyone got one they want to part with that's for an FL?
I was also wondering about wiring, is there a plug in adapter for HD's?

Yeah, I saw it on harbor freight site for $179 also but that's mail order with freight. The local store has it for $199 on sale right now and in stock.
I am definately going with the 12 inch. Already found the carrier, The one I like is <4 inches narrower than than the trailer, I'll set it on there and see how it looks.

Thanks again for the tips, keep em coming!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Got a 20% off cupon in my email for harbor freight today, guess I am off to get the trailer!!

Still looking for tips on hitch and wiring... anyone??
 
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