My solution for carrying bikes & towing the ttt

Bicycles for campers, rvers, or just riding around where ever you are

Postby MountainBiker » Thu Jul 08, 2010 8:46 am

Actually, Thule sells good solid racks, and if they tell me not to mount one there, I will take their word for it. Talking with them actually cost them a sale, because they could not come up with something that would work for me.
I spoke to a trailer dealer at the last trailer show we went to, while I was still looking for ideas to mount the bike and he said that people don't realize how much of a bounce the bikes do get at the back end of the trailer. His suggestion was either mount it on top of the trailer, or on the tongue if possible. Mounting on top of a Tear drop is very hard, though ours has roof racks to carry a canoe.
His best reccomendation was to mount it to the tow vehicle itself.
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Postby kennyrayandersen » Thu Jul 08, 2010 10:41 am

MountainBiker wrote:Actually, Thule sells good solid racks, and if they tell me not to mount one there, I will take their word for it. Talking with them actually cost them a sale, because they could not come up with something that would work for me.
I spoke to a trailer dealer at the last trailer show we went to, while I was still looking for ideas to mount the bike and he said that people don't realize how much of a bounce the bikes do get at the back end of the trailer. His suggestion was either mount it on top of the trailer, or on the tongue if possible. Mounting on top of a Tear drop is very hard, though ours has roof racks to carry a canoe.
His best reccomendation was to mount it to the tow vehicle itself.


I never said they didn't make a good rack, just that they aren't engineers. I think it makes a difference if the trailer suspension is working properly; if so, then there is no reason to think that the bike would bounce any more on the trailer than it would on the TV. Many axles are over-rated for the load and may be too stiff, but that another issue. I wouldn't hesitate to but a rack on the back of a tear (and my cheapest bike runs about $4500 bucks -- I'm not bragging, just saying that's how confident I am that I could do it without any issues).

There are certainly more than one way to skin this cat. You could mount them on the front of you TV (bugs, light blocker), or on top of the TV (increased drag), on the aft of the TV (not so bad but it does add almost directly to the tongue weight which has to be considered if the bike count is high), the front of the tear (nearly like the back of the TV, or the aft of the tear (reduces the tonue weight (possibly too much).

So, no matter where you put it, there will be issues and they have to be considered and worked around. The advantage to breaking them up and putting some on the front and some on the aft of the tear is you get the ability to fine tune the weight to get it right. The PO's problem is a little out of the normal scope as he's talking about 6 bikes. IMO, that isn't as easy to deal with as 1 or 2. and even hauling that many bikes on the TV is a fairly substantial challenge.

:thinking:
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Postby MountainBiker » Thu Jul 08, 2010 11:07 am

Ya, I guess this is one that you could talk about till the cows come home. It is what you are most comfortable with. Me, I am paranoid about my bikes and don't want to get to a race only to find out it fell off the back of the trailer :lol:
The one point I do want to make is to be aware of what sort of warrentee your bike rack comes with. The one we bought staes that any damage to the bike due to failure of the bike rack will be covered, unless we subject it to excessive loads due to rough roads or "other misuses"...mind you, they don't define other missuses :thinking:
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Postby john warren » Fri Apr 01, 2011 4:30 am

they make a trailer hitch plug with a double tube. one on top of the other. bottom one for the ball,,,, top one for a bike rack.

of course it doesn;t work on my wifes jeep with that stupid spare tire hanging in the way.

so i throw our bikes in my ford ranger, hook up the tear and go.
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Postby mary and bob » Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:13 pm

I'll throw my opinion into this issue for whatever value it may be. I've built a few recievers onto the rear of popup campers, and made them so that they extend under the trailer to at least two crossmembers. They seem to work OK but the bikes bounce alot. My brother-in-law had someone do his popup, but the reciever was just butt welded to the rear bumper. Bouncing bikes on a rack have a lot of leverage, and the result was his reciever broke off and the bikes were dragged down the road til another motorist got him to stop. I have one of those double recievers, one above the other, but it put the bike rack back too far, so I modified things to put the rack directly above the ball. I also have a 1980 Coleman Versa utility trailer that I lengthened the tongue to hold a 3 bike rack on it, and a rear extension for another 2 bikes. I'm now considering fitting a Thule tray type rack that clamps to the bike frame onto our teardrop tongue. The double hitch thing, or a hitch extender moves the ball back and changes the weight capacity of your hitch, so that's another problem to consider. Also have roof carriers for our Honda CRV but haven't tried them yet, and sometimes take kayaks to add to the problem. So all this is my opinion, and no good answer to the question, just take info and do what works best for you. Lot of good solutions here, thanks to all that posted. Bob
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Postby john warren » Sat Apr 02, 2011 7:08 am

true you need to watch tongue wieght with the extended thing. but my overall is under 800 pounds,,, and tongue is a one hand pickup. bikes and hitch are under a hundred combined. on a 3000 pound hitch i think its safe
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Postby iamscottjones » Sun Apr 17, 2011 6:53 pm

I know this is my first post but since there is a lot of talk about extra weight on the back of their TD with a bike rack you may want to look into KUAT racks. No I don't work for them I did used to sell them when my bicycle shop was still open a bit over a year ago. But they are silly light and super dooper well made. (and made in the U.S) I had a demo one on my car For 3 years non stop never took it off. thats three years of Colorado winters and 4 trips to southern AZ and it almost looks new. just my two cents
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Postby camptyler » Tue Apr 26, 2011 12:04 pm

I am using a Northern Tool 5' x 8' trailer for my build and I wanted to be able to put my Yakima hitch mount bike rack on the back. At first I thought I would be able to just weld the 2" receiver to rear most cross member but after feeling how much flex there was in it I knew I needed a little more support. As you can see I welded a 2" tube in between the two rear members then welded my receiver to the bottom of that. I wouldn't pull a wave runner with it but for a bike back it is plenty strong.
I had to strip the paint off the trailer to weld the components and then just repainted everything with Rustoleum.

Tyler

<img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_qjLlTK_LM0I/Tbb1cLRl71I/AAAAAAAAA6o/a4gZF5Z2LP0/s800/2011-02-25%2017.271.JPG" height="576" width="768" />

<img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_qjLlTK_LM0I/Tbb24XE89aI/AAAAAAAAA6s/He5YfI1YKpM/s800/2011-02-25%2017.272.JPG" height="576" width="768" />

<img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_qjLlTK_LM0I/Tbb3IdOzrQI/AAAAAAAAA60/jmybhSv-GKE/s800/1.JPG" height="576" width="768" />

<img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_qjLlTK_LM0I/Tbb3P89un-I/AAAAAAAAA64/faBf6F6p1Es/s800/2.JPG" height="576" width="768" />

<img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_qjLlTK_LM0I/Tbb3WmeeMvI/AAAAAAAAA68/27zai3cIgKM/s800/3.JPG" height="576" width="768" />
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Postby mary and bob » Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:37 pm

Tyler, looks good, an easy solution to the problem. The ones that I made I extended the reciever tube with 2" angle, then welded on a couple cross pieces of 2" angle about 18" long that I then bolted to the frame crossmembers and rear bumper, but those were for popup campers. Made 5 of those for various campers, no problems yet with any of them. Can't use that method for our teardrop because the frame is enclosed in the aluminum body at the rear. Bob
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Postby ashleygries » Mon Jun 20, 2011 9:04 am

Hi all, saw this thread and thought I'd put up our solution for our bikes. We are going with the double hitch receiver solution, with a swing-arm bike rack: Image

Image

Hopefully this will work- we're still building our teardrop...
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Postby GlamperGirl » Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:27 pm

Ashleygries - did this work for you? We have just traded in our Toyota Sienna van for a 2006 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab with a short box. There is a roof rack but we want to carry the canoe so need some support at the back. There is a bed liner and tonneau cover so we can't mount it to the truck bed frame. I was wondering how/if the dual hitch extension has been used by anyone as we would like to carry the canoe and the a-liner trailer. Do you have any pix?
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Postby ashleygries » Wed Aug 03, 2011 6:36 am

GlamperGirl- I don't have any photos of it yet, but we did receive the swing-out bike rack, and it looks like it will work just fine. As for the double hitch mount receiver, I was looking for one online through Amazon, and they got really good reviews, with some photos of it in use there. Hope that helps! (When I do get photos, I will make sure to post them here.)
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Postby Oldragbaggers » Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:09 pm

We had a 2" receiver welded to the back of our teardrop frame also with the intention of using our hitch rack back there, but after talking to a couple of bike rack people we thought better of it. Without exception, everyone we have talked to has advised us against using a bike rack at the back of the trailer for all of the reasons in the above posts.

So we have decided, if they will fit, that we are going to mount two of these on our A-frame tongue. We haven't really gotten to that point yet, but if it will fit, that's the plan.

Image
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Postby Wolffarmer » Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:31 pm

I have a folding beach cruiser that I put in the back of my little RV. Sometimes it pays to be a mean old fart and travel alone

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Postby GuitarPhotog » Fri Dec 16, 2011 10:32 pm

Oldragbaggers wrote:We had a 2" receiver welded to the back of our teardrop frame also with the intention of using our hitch rack back there, but after talking to a couple of bike rack people we thought better of it. Without exception, everyone we have talked to has advised us against using a bike rack at the back of the trailer for all of the reasons in the above posts.

So we have decided, if they will fit, that we are going to mount two of these on our A-frame tongue. We haven't really gotten to that point yet, but if it will fit, that's the plan.

Image


It's my intention to do use that same bike rack cross-wise on my tongue also. Let me know how it works and what issues you encounter.

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