Hauling your motorcycle, whether it's cross country or just up the road, means that you will need the right type of trailer. You don't want to trust the safety of your bike to just any stock utility trailer, since it won't be made for the unique needs of motorcycle safety. The following guide can help you choose the right trailer.
Pick the right decking
Two types of decking are common on newer utility trailers – wood and aluminum – and they both have their pros and cons. Aluminum trailers are low- to no-maintenance, durable, and lightweight. It also will require installation of the wheel chock and tiedown bars, usually by bolting through the deck, which can be more difficult if you don't have the ability to drill through metal.
Wood, on the other hand, is heavier, requires periodic sealing, and is more prone to damage. Its main benefit is that you can easily install your tiedowns with nothing more than a hand drill. Generally, though, an aluminum trailer is the best choice since once it is modified for the bike, it won't require much more deck maintenance.
Consider the trailer style
Your next choice is enclosed or open. If you only plan to haul motorcycles, and especially if you haul any distance, then enclosed is the best option. For any overnight stays while on the road, the bike will be much safer from both weather and thieves if it is kept in an enclosed trailer. The trailer will also protect it while on the road, while providing storage space for a few other pieces of gear.
Opt for open if you want a multi-use trailer, such as one you can also use to haul loads to the dump or help your buddy move, and if you don't foresee many long road trips hauling your motorcycle.
Don't forget the ramps
Ramps are one of the most vital extras to consider, since waiting to install them until later can limit your options. If you want built-in ramps that slide out from underneath the trailer deck, make sure you only look at trailers constructed with this option as it is difficult to add as an aftermarket feature. Otherwise, you can have ramps that slide out from the top of the deck, or removable ramps that either double as rails on an open trailer or slide out of the way to the side of the bike in an enclosed trailer.
Contact a trailer dealer in your area to begin shopping for your next bike hauler.