After looking around at trailer hitches to pull my new trailer behind my Harley-Davidson Road King, I decided to just go ahead and make my own. The motorcycle trailer hitches I found for Harley's that were affordable looked kind of cheaply made. And a poorly made huitch on the back of a motorcycle is a lot more dangerous than a on a car or truck. And the high-quality bike hitches seemed a bit over priced for some bent and welded metal - yes I am a cheapo!
The hitch I made for the H-D Road King is strong (probably stronger than I will ever need). The total cost of the hitch was $50 - before powder coating which I still have to do. I got the metal I needed from a local shop that makes cutom bumpers for 4x4s. Basically waste pieces he had laying around.
The base plate for the hitch is 1/4" steel plate - 1/4" is a little ruff to cut with a saw and to bend in a vise, so I had the guy at the bumper shop cut it with his plasma cutter and bend the tabs with his press.
The side supports are 3/16" steel plates - those were fairly easy to cut and bend with a little heat.
The ball mount is an off the shelf mount (from Pep Boys) made for a 1 1/4" receiver. I was going to mount a receiver to the base plate so I could remove the ball mount, but the truth is I forgot to get a piece of 1 1/4" in square tube to make a reciever, it was Sunday and I wanted to take my trailer for its first ride so I welded the ball mount right to the base plate to get it done. (yes I am impatient when it comes to stuff like that).
Note: If you are going to make a hitch like this, do NOT weld the side support brackets to the base plate. It is much easirer to install and remove if you bolt them together.
Now all I need is to powder coat.
You are more than welcome to copy. Post some pics when you are done.
The reason I went with the eye hook was I painted the hitch with just spray can and I didn't want to scratch up the plate hooking up the safety cables.
Which brings up one more point... Use safety cables, not chains. I had chains and they would bounce and rattle that I could hear slightly and made me think there was a problem somewhere. Cables are legal at least here in CA (never checked the other state laws though)