What Are Some Considerations In Purchasing A Trailer Hitch?
Consider some things before purchasing a trailer hitch for your Honda Goldwing.
Does It Fit My Bike?
Many hitches are vehicle specific and will only fit on certain models of Honda Goldwing. You must ensure that your bike fits both the motorcycle and is compatible with the trailer you plan to pull. For example, most Goldwing trailer mounts have a 1 ⅞” tow ball, which not all trailers have).
Does It Bolt To the Frame?
Some cheaper units attach to the sub-frame rather than the actual frame. By bolting to the weaker sub-frame, the hitch may not have the strength to endure emergency maneuvers or sudden movements. A towing unit that mounts to the bike’s frame will be stronger and last longer.
Does It Carry The Weight?
Not every trailer hitch will handle the weight you intend to pull. Since a hitch will only tow a specific load amount, you must ensure your trailer isn’t too heavy. Look at the gross vehicle weight rating for your Goldwing trailer (loaded) and the weight of the riders to determine if your hitch is adequate. In addition, calculate the tongue weight of the trailer so you don’t wear out your Goldwing’s rear tire.
Does It Take Forever To Install?
While most Honda Goldwing trailer hitches install relatively quickly, you want to watch an installation video to ensure you understand how complicated the installation will be. Since not everyone can navigate a mechanic’s shop, you should find out what you’re getting into before the kit arrives on your doorstep.
What Does It Cost?
While price shouldn’t be a concern if you want to be safe, it often is an issue for those of us who have budgets. Many cheap hitches are inexpensive but will not last. You want a hitch that is made of steel, powder-coated for corrosion protection, and fits into your budget.
What Are The Best Hitches For A Honda Goldwing?
Several companies manufacture excellent towing systems for the Honda Goldwing. Be careful about choosing a hitch that is built for your specific model.
Kuryakyn 7641 Trailer Hitch For 2012 - 17 Honda Gold Wing
This is one of the easiest hitches to install and use. The Kuryakyn Trailer Hitch has a six-point attachment system for structural stability. The Kuryakyn is made of steel alloy and can be bolted onto the bike with simple hand tools. The framework is almost completely hidden when installed, with the chrome ball emerging from the bike’s rear.
The kit comes with a 1 ⅞” chrome tow ball and is compatible with small trailers with an appropriate wiring harness (which is not included). The maximum gross weight for the hitch is rated at 300 lbs, with a tongue weight not to exceed 30 lbs.
The 7641 is designed for 2012 - 17 Goldwings and F6B motorbikes. Many Kuryakyn hitches are vehicle specific, so you want to ensure that the hitch you are considering does fit your GL 1800. (For example, the 7642 fits the 2001 - 2010 Goldwing GL 1800).
While the hitch is practical and sleek looking, the 7641 connects to the subframe of the bike, which may cause difficulty if the bike is involved in an emergency. (Many other units connect to the more sturdy frame). There have been no reported incidents of hitch failure, although there are some negative reviews on rattle noise.
Kuryakyn is based in Somerset, WI, and has been in business since 1989. They are a part of the Tucker Powersports family. The company has grown into one of the leading manufacturers of motorbike accessories, offering quality parts, including audio products, LED lighting, and comfort and performance parts of all kinds. Partnered with their other sister companies, the passionate team at Kury will be happy to assist you with your biking needs.
The Kury has a 5.0 rating on Amazon and frequently makes many “best of” online lists. It is American-made and comes with a one-year warranty. The hitch is one of the more expensive units, so be prepared to pay around $400 - 450 for the pleasure of towing a trailer.
- American made
- Ease of installation
- Chrome tow ball
- One-year warranty
- Mounts to sub-frame
- Some complaints about rattling
- The warranty should be longer
Rivco Products Hidden Trailer Hitch for 2018 and newer Goldwings
The Rivco Hidden Goldwing Trailer Hitch is a sturdy, frame-mounted vertical trailer hitch capable of 600 lbs of tow weight and 60 lbs of tongue weight. Designed for 2018 and newer Goldwing DCT and non-DCT models, the Rivco is made of high-tensile steel and painted with a black powder coat. The ball unit is not included (neither is a trailer wire harness), which is surprising since the hitch is less expensive than the Kury unit.
There are two significant advantages to this hitch. First, the Rivco is a vertical hitch that mounts to the frame allowing for a more sturdy and stable towing experience. The Rivco holds the trailer well on the road, and the frame mounting keeps the trailer in line with the bike’s movement. (Other units are bolted to the sub-frame, which can provide less confidence in windy conditions or emergency situations).
The Goldwing trailer hitch has an adjustable ball mount for trailers with different coupler heights. The hitch head is easy to remove, and the frame remains hidden when towing is not needed. This is important for Honda owners who want to guard the appearance of their Goldwing.
Honda has fashioned this Rivco hitch with an effective anti-rattle bolt that helps tighten the shank to prevent any vibration while going over road imperfections. Rivco states that the tension bolt helps eliminate the trailer “wandering.” While smaller trailers are not as susceptible to trailer sway issues, they can still happen. The Rivco hitch recognizes the possibility of this happening, and their quiet hitch has excellent pulling power while being incredibly silent. As an added security measure, the hitch kit includes a set of safety chains. The Honda Goldwing trailer hitch comes with a two-year limited warranty. (You want to ensure you register the hitch when you purchase it).
Rivco has been in business for over 35 years and is based in Burlington, WI. The company started as an independent motorcycle and parts shop into the much larger entity it is today. The company specializes in Yamaha parts and accessories, but its other products are excellent. The staff has a dedication to excellence and a company culture of independence. They have an open-road spirit that connects well with a motorcycle lover’s free spirit.
- Mounts to the frame
- Hidden hitch, removable tow ball
- Adjustable heights
- Anti-sway screw
- Two-year warranty
- American made
- The Trailer ball should be included
Bushtec Honda 2018-2023 Gold Wing GL1800
Honda Goldwing owners have known about the Bushtec Honda Goldwing Hitch for a number of years, and this company makes an excellent frame-mounted vertical receiver unit. While the kit doesn’t include a trailer ball (or wire harness), the Bushtec trailer hitch is made from high-carbon steel and has a black powder coat finish. Once installed, it has a sturdy appearance. Bushtec also makes a similar hitch for the 2012 - 2017 Honda Goldwings.
The Bushtec has easy installation, which can be done with simple hand tools and the instructions included. The receiver is solid and is rated for a 500 lb load (maximum GVWR) and 75 lbs of tongue weight.
Bushtec has a fine reputation for building trailers and hitches for motorcycle applications. Their trailers are sleek, athletic units with a 360-degree swivel point and no-bounce air ride suspension systems. The company started in 1982, and since that time, they have grown into a premium motorcycle trailer manufacturer. Known for innovative and sleek athletic designs, the Bushtec trailers will look great behind your rig. Bushtec is headquartered in Jacksboro, Tn.
- Effective hitch
- Frame mounted
- Anti-sway screw
- American made
- Reasonably priced
- No hitch ball
- Hitch does not hide
Show Chrome Accessories 52-825 Vertical Motorcycle Receiver Hitch
When Big Bike Parts branched into Show Chrome accessories in 1985, the four-year-old company knew they were on to something. The Show Chrome 52 - 825 trailer hitch for the Honda Goldwing is a vertical receiver hitch barely visible without the ball mount. It mounts to the frame, is made of solid carbon steel, and has a soft black powder coat finish. This particular hitch is rated for 400 lbs GVCR and 50 lbs of tongue weight and fits 2001 - 2017 Honda Goldwings. (The company also hitch for the 2018 and newer models, too).
The hitch mounts to the Goldwing’s main frame and has a strong cross tie that bolts to the saddlebag substructure. Large chain loops on the receiver hitch, which are perfect for locking safety chains, and the 1 ⅞” chrome ball is included with the installation kit. (We wish it had a trailer wire harness, but it must be purchased separately).
The installation is simple and straightforward, without special tools (we always recommend a ratchet set, crescent, and torque wrench). Most reviews indicated that the installation took about an hour to complete. The instructions are included in the kit, but if you need to review them, here is a link to a good YouTube video as a demonstration.
One of the features of this hitch is the anti-chatter bolt that can be tightened to minimize noise and trailer sway. The anti-sway bolt will effectively apply a more rigid feel when towing, ensuring that the trailer follows the bike’s lead rather than having a mind of its own.
The cost of the Show Chrome Goldwing trailer hitch is very affordable and is one of the most budget-friendly hitches available. The company has excellent customer service and offers a limited one-year warranty. The unit has a 4.6 rating on Amazon.
As mentioned, the Show Chrome is a part of Big Bike Parts and operates out of Rice Lake, WI. (Have you noticed that many motorcycle companies are headquartered in Wisconsin?). They have grown from a small company and are now a leading supplier of Honda Goldwing accessories.
- Hidden hitch receiver
- Vertical mount
- Mounts to frame
- American made
- Anti-chatter bolt
- The warranty needs to be longer
About THE AUTHOR
My name is Matt and I've been around cars all my life! I have owned and worked on many different classic vehicles, so I started this site to share my experiences. If you're new to classic cars, then this website is for you.Read More About Matt Lane