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Old 08-08-2019, 09:05 AM   #1
Woodworker
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bike storage

Traveling with the 3811MS. Had our bicycles fastened to the 5th wheel hitch with an expensive "tilting" bike rack, and it bounced so much it tilted onto the highway and completely ruined the rack and one of the bikes. Circa $500.

I'm looking for another method to mount, have considered mounting on the front of the truck but concerned about the lights, blinkers and line of sight vision from the drivers seat.

Any suggestions are welcome.
Thanks.
Steve Patterson
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Old 08-08-2019, 09:16 AM   #2
timandsusan
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Front of my truck has worked great for us with about 16,000 miles and 4 years of great RVing. No problems with any of the issues that you mention. We have a Thule bike rack with about $2000 of bikes on it. I even leave it attached when we are in the stick house and carry the bikes to my various ride locations near San Antonio. This recommendation came from other MOCers on the website. I had to get a square receiver mounted on the front of my F250 but that is a one time expense.
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Old 08-08-2019, 10:21 AM   #3
RichardD
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We have a 3810MS. We have our Thule bike rack and 2 bikes mounted in the rear receiver hitch. I am thinking that is where you had yours mounted, on the rear of the camper? I only had the rack & bikes mount on the OE hitch for about 5 miles, it was bouncing around so much the bikes were hitting the ladder. I replaced that receiver hitch with one that I made using much heavier tubing and have been on the road for more than 20,000 miles with absolutely no issues or concerns. Go to a good welding shop and they can do the same for you.
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Old 08-08-2019, 10:44 AM   #4
BB_TX
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I made a pin box receiver to mount my bike rack. Works great. Keeps the bikes up and out of the way when not needed. And no bouncing.

I have seen rear mount bikes riding very steady. And I have seen rear mount bikes bouncing rather violently wondering how long they would last. Probably most people don't know what their bikes are doing back there.

Frame mounts using pin box bolts. It is very close to, but not touching, the top of the pin box. Did not want to drill holes in the pin box to mount it. Frame is made from 2"x2" angle iron and a $20 receiver tube from Harbor Freight.
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Old 08-08-2019, 02:36 PM   #5
Woodworker
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The pin box mount looks like the best idea yet. Could you take a couple of more pictures? mostly need closeups that I can show my welder buddy next door.
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:11 PM   #6
mazboy
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Front is no problem with any lights
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Old 08-08-2019, 06:07 PM   #7
Jamesb
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Bike racks, spent forever researching that subject. Main focus: secure and absolutely NO movement of any kind !! That requires the platform type bike rack. Next, HAS to be a 2” receiver fit. Never purchase one that has been reduced to 1 1/4, or goes from 1 1/4 to 2”. They are hard to find, a totally 2” tubular steel made rack. Also, even though it sounds nice, never purchase one that flips, folds, lowers, raises, or any other moving feature. This is a major flaw when it comes to bouncing down the road. I have owned 3 good quality racks and they all moved a little. I’m talking Thales, Yakima, and Saris. FINALLY, I found the perfect rack at a very inexpensive price. We carry two heavy mountain bikes, and I promise, they don’t move not one bit. And no bungy cords. I will try and find the make and model shortly. And if that is not enough, as I am so OCD about not moving, I also purchased a anti rattle hitch stabilizer for $12.00. I’ll go look at the rack shortly. This setup is amazing.... be right back.
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Old 08-08-2019, 06:20 PM   #8
PNW Fireguy
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I chimed in on this subject on another thread earlier this summer. The fact of the matter is that there are not too many bicycle racks that are approved for mounting on a towable. Non of them are less than a 2Ē receiver and do not support adaptors for 1-1/4. We purchased a Swagman from etrailer for two heavier e-bikes. No bouncing and secure. The etrailer site clearly displays which of the bike racks they sell are approved for towables vs drivable RVís.
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Old 08-08-2019, 08:16 PM   #9
BB_TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodworker View Post
The pin box mount looks like the best idea yet. Could you take a couple of more pictures? mostly need closeups that I can show my welder buddy next door.
My trailer is in storage a short distance away. First chance I get I will take more pictures and start a new thread so that I donít clutter this one.
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Old 08-08-2019, 08:27 PM   #10
Jamesb
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Originally Posted by Jamesb View Post
Bike racks, spent forever researching that subject. Main focus: secure and absolutely NO movement of any kind !! That requires the platform type bike rack. Next, HAS to be a 2Ē receiver fit. Never purchase one that has been reduced to 1 1/4, or goes from 1 1/4 to 2Ē. They are hard to find, a totally 2Ē tubular steel made rack. Also, even though it sounds nice, never purchase one that flips, folds, lowers, raises, or any other moving feature. This is a major flaw when it comes to bouncing down the road. I have owned 3 good quality racks and they all moved a little. Iím talking Thales, Yakima, and Saris. FINALLY, I found the perfect rack at a very inexpensive price. We carry two heavy mountain bikes, and I promise, they donít move not one bit. And no bungy cords. I will try and find the make and model shortly. And if that is not enough, as I am so OCD about not moving, I also purchased a anti rattle hitch stabilizer for $12.00. Iíll go look at the rack shortly. This setup is amazing.... be right back.

Ok, not having luck with pasting a link on my iPad. The rack does fold up, but you can tighten it down so it doesnít. It comes with a knocking pin bolt. Rust proof and lifetime warranty. The length of the hitch is perfect for the Montana receiver. Our handlebars are several inches away from the FW. I would put this one up against any manufacturer. I promise, solid as a rock. Other relatives and their motor homes were behind us for 1200 miles, and they all confirmed no movement.
* Venmo 2 Bike Bicycle Platform Style Carrier 2Ē Reciver Mount
* Maxxhaul Tightener Anti Rattle Stabilizer for 2Ē Hitches
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File Type: png 6B65FCA3-E27E-4467-A640-4B32DB08CCBA.png (631.4 KB, 45 views)
File Type: png 0E32D459-11BA-4ABF-88BC-CA8C77D17D87.png (783.7 KB, 33 views)
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Old 08-08-2019, 08:48 PM   #11
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We had one just like the picture and mounted it on a drop down hitch on the rear bumper of the TRUCK:
Out of rain and bugs.
Out of direct line of sight.
No chance of bikes accidentally hitting something if you get too close in the front to a pole or something.
Plenty of clearance to trailer (we could still walk between trailer and bikes).
IF you use drop down hitch you can unhitch 5th wheel with a v gate or you can get same bike rack that tilts which makes it easy to unhitch if you have to drop tailgate for clearance. Or like me you can simply use a longer extension on the hitch such that you can slide the bikes back when you unhitch (only have to slide a couple inchs for a regular tailgate to drop low enough for 5th wheel hitch to clear).
Its nice to have the bikes when you go to town or the beach without having to reload them from somewhere else.
Unlike some other locations (like on the trailers king pin box), the bikes are close to the ground and easy to load/unload.
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Old 08-08-2019, 08:52 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BB_TX View Post
I made a pin box receiver to mount my bike rack. Works great. Keeps the bikes up and out of the way when not needed. And no bouncing.

I have seen rear mount bikes riding very steady. And I have seen rear mount bikes bouncing rather violently wondering how long they would last. Probably most people don't know what their bikes are doing back there.

Frame mounts using pin box bolts. It is very close to, but not touching, the top of the pin box. Did not want to drill holes in the pin box to mount it. Frame is made from 2"x2" angle iron and a $20 receiver tube from Harbor Freight.
No disrespect intended and glad that works for you but I really don't like the idea of the bikes being 4'+ off the ground and more or less having to back the truck up every time I want to take one down.
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Old 08-09-2019, 08:35 AM   #13
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No disrespect intended and glad that works for you but I really don't like the idea of the bikes being 4'+ off the ground and more or less having to back the truck up every time I want to take one down.
I am glad your system works for you. But it would not work for me.
First I do not have room between the truck and trailer for bikes. Mine is so close I have to back at a fairly straight angle so the lowered tailgate does not hit the trailer. And no, the hitch is not mounted too far forward. I have the factory hitch prep and my hitch can be mounted slightly skewed toward the front or to the rear. And it is to the rear.
Second, we like our bikes but are not avid cyclists and do not tour the local areas on bikes or seek local bike trails. We typically ride only in or near the park in which we are staying. We often visit attractions in the area (museums, memorials, entertainment attractions, etc.) or go out to a nice restaurant on occasion, all of which often have tight parking. And that 22' long truck is hard enough to park without a 3' extension. Sometimes the bikes never leave the bike rack depending on where we are staying and how long.
Loading/unloading the bikes is no issue. After unhooking, I just pull the truck forward until the lowered tailgate is just in front of the bikes. Then later after completing my setup, and if we plan to use the bikes, I just step in to the bed of the truck using the tailgate step, lift each bike off and set it in the bed, step down from the truck, and lift the bikes to the ground. And reverse to put them back when we get ready to leave the campground. Since we only ride near that park there is only one unload/load sequence. Not hard even for this 73 yr old.
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Old 08-14-2019, 02:23 PM   #14
CaptnJohn
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All that was just too much for me. The expensive bikes stay home. Bought 12 speed goody bikes on sale at CW. The Montana 3761 FL has more storage than anyone should need in the back or pass through. Most of the time just bungee in the truck bed in front of the hitch.
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Old 08-14-2019, 03:00 PM   #15
jpwhite
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I use the Swagman Dispatch "RV Approved" 2 Bike platform rack. There are no hinged joints, all heavy duty steel construction, bolts into the hitch receiver and solid as a rock. No problem with the bikes on my last 500 mile + trip (on Michigan roads!). I highly recommend this rack if you are putting your bicycles on the back of your RV.

I purchased the Swagman after my bicycles were brutalized bouncing on the back on a trip to Virginia and back using my Thule Helium rack. The Thule is a good rack, but not cantilevered out on the back of a recreational vehicle.

Purchased it on Amazon. They have them at eTrailer as well. I paid $244 on sale, so watch the price.
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Old 08-14-2019, 03:31 PM   #16
Charlie W
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This is an old motorcycle hitch, works great, doesn't move, I can see it from my backup camera. It's good for 500 lb
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Old 08-14-2019, 03:57 PM   #17
dvines
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Swagman XP4

I am happy with this rack. Can haul 1-4 bikes. I can transfer the rack to the truck when I want to take the bikes to another location.
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Old 08-14-2019, 04:06 PM   #18
bigred715
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We have the Swagman bike rack purchased in 2009 for $140. 1 1/4 receiver on trailer which came with 2010 Montana. Have driven from Eugene to Mesa to Florida and back home with no problem of bouncing and coming loose. 6 trips to Arizona on crappy California highways and numerous other trips with no problems. I don't believe my rack is RV approved either, but hasn't failed me in 10yrs. My 3000RK is only 35 1/2' compared to some of you over 40'. Swagman is located low so it isn't difficult to unload bikes.
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Old 08-14-2019, 04:29 PM   #19
cgeis48
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Yup, I have the SWAGMAN from amazon and it's very sturdy. I also bought the pin that threads tightly through the receiver and it's solid going down the road. If you like the pin box idea (I do) make sure you have a long bed truck or at least a slider that allows the bikes to clear the truck cab on the sharp turns. If your experience makes you a bit paranoid you can keep an eye on the bikes with your backup camera, just wire the camera to be on with the running lights of your truck.
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Old 08-14-2019, 04:50 PM   #20
rames14
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Probably the most expensive method is the roof rack, but with discussions with bike shops in Albuquerque where they steal a lot of bikes, they see fewer thefts with roof racks. Two reasons - no front wheel and the fork lock (plus getting up to them). We have also put ours in the basement, which is the cheapest and most secure. Of course our road bikes are light enough to lift with one hand.
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