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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering what the various tire and rim combinations are providing in the way of tire life for pull behind motorcycle trailers.

The most popular sizes are

4.00-4.80 X 8.00
4.80 X 12.00
5.50 X 12.00
3.00 X 16

Please indicate what type trailer you have, what size tires are on it, and how long it takes to wear your trailer tires out.
 

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My trailer has 5.70x8 tires. I am replacing the tires this week after 20k miles at 25 psi.

Buck in NE Arkansas
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Lewis,
As always, Thank you very much. I edited the size.
It is the same number, just upside down. :oops:

I am hoping to see some feedback on this. The TEFCO Streamliner Campers that we built in the 60's and 70's used the 4-00-4.80 X 12 and we got upwards of 50,000 miles on those tires. Of course, the bikes were 600 to 1000 cc in those days. When I pulled my old Streamliner to DC and back a while back with the 04 1800, it saw speeds it had never seen before, like 112 (on a test track, of course).

I guess the range of tread diameters and wheel speeds are:
16.2 = 1244 revs per mile Bias
20.2 = 998 Revs Per Mile Bias
21.2 = 951 Revs per Mile Radial
22.1 = 912 Revs Per Mile (Estimated, although I have not measured a Bushtec tire height.)

 

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Tom,

When I first bought my Escapade trailer (2002), I did a run that comprised a total of 2 years pulling the trailer with approximately 7 to 8 thousand miles, and my trailer tires were completely bald. I maintained 25 lbs in the tires. One observation is that I did a lot of miles in the twisties of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and the trailer was heavily loaded. The reason behind it, that I thought at the time, was the fact of the centrifugal forces placed upon the trailer tires around those tight turns, ie. like a pensil eraser across a piece of paper.

However, when I replaced them, the newer tires seem to have gotten a lot more miles than the OEMs in the same situation. Are they a harder compound? I don't know, but I still have the first replacement tires on the trailer now with a lot more miles than the original ones. Go figure!

Ride safely.

Mike T.
 

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05 Bushtec 300x16 17,000 miles,no appreciable wear yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Mike,

As a test, and because I have been saying you can get replacement stuff for the Tailwind at Walmart, when I replaced the tires that we supply at 60,000 miles, I went to Walmart and got the cheapest tires they had. The trailer now has 78,000 so there are 18,000 on the cheap Walmart tires and they look very good still.

It is starting to look like the tread life is much better at higher pressure, but the ride on gravel and other unimproved roads is worse. I pulled my Escapade with the my 1500 which was always ridden more easily. I run 30 to 31 in all the 4.80-12 tires, myself.

The Tailwind has been on the back of the 04 1800 since new and has been pulled through the turns at much higher side loading, and a lot higher cruise speeds. The Escapade has probably never been in triple digits and the Tailwind is there all the time, not that I condone that type of operation. If there is a problem, I want to be the first to know it. The very first time the Tailwind was pulled, it saw 118. I would expect the Tailwind tires to go 75,000 if the speed limit was always obeyed. My own Tailwind first tires would not have made 75,000, but would have gone 65,000. Those tires spent a lot of time above 80 (now the speed limit in west Texas).

Try Carlisle Sport Trac tires and see how you do on mileage. I bought two of one manufacturers trailers (not Hannigan) that had suspension problems on both and the tires wore out to the cord in less than 8,000 miles on both. Therefore, the suspension has a lot to do with tire life. After I modified the second of these Trailer's suspension, I got 50,000 miles on the same kind of tires.
 

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Tom,

I did have a problem with my Escapade suspension. The right side would compress, but would not rebound. I met the Escapade shop foreman at Wing Ding in Fort Wayne, and made an appointment to bring the trailer to a local Honda dealer (Hayden Honda or something like that) where together with another Escapade employee he took apart the right side suspension and told me that it was tweeked. I don't know what that meant and it seems to work better but not 100%. They also suggested that I keep the suspension at its maximum of 50 lbs. I can live with it, but am really going to look at other trailers when and if I decide to change what I have now. It really depends on what Honda is going to do with their future Goldwing models.

Thanks for your input. Ride safely.

Mike T.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Mike,
I would block up the trailer so the wheels are off the ground and take the wheels off.

Then take the bottom bolt out of the shock/suspension unit so that the trailing link is free. Then rotate the trailing link in an arc that is roughly where it moves in service. I shouls rotate freely. It is at that point pivoting on a small version of the wheel bearings on a 3/4 shaft.

If it binds and is not touching anything, it should be fixed.

At the same time, you should make sure that the trailing link only can rotate and not shake in and out or twist up and down. I would do these checks on both sides. You can also check to see if there is evidence that the shock is draging on the body or trailing link.

Let all the air out of the shocks and push up on the bottom of each. they may take a lot force to compress, but they should return freely.

If one of the shock cartridges is binding, I would ask Escapade what their policy is on exchage.

50 PSI seems high for the air spring pressure.
 
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