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Whats the Best Bike Rack for Venicle Transportation.

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    Whats the Best Bike Rack for Venicle Transportation.

    Since making my Giant Anthem conversion I'm starting to discover some awesome back country trails. My new conundrum is now transporting the bikes, Folding down the back seats on my Landcruiser and lying them down in the back has already bent one of my Bofang standard cranks. (the Shimano replacements are doing fine). My attention has been drawn to the platform type racks that plug into the tow hitch connection as a possible workable solution. I realize they work for standard mountain bikes but will they handle the extra weight of e bikes.
    Could anybody suggest a rack system for transporting two 29er Mountain e bikes that's suitable for an SUV.

    #2
    I have used the other type, a heavy duty model from hollywoodracks. It sucks compared to the hitch platform types. My biggest issue was lifting the bikes that high. The platforms are so much easier in that respect .

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      #3
      I'll chime in about hitch platforms. I haul 2 fat ebikes (60# or so, each) on a platform rack, hanging off a 2" receiver. It's a real cheap Harbor Freight rack. $60 or something like that....expanded steel floor and several bolted joints, but cheap low grade fasteners are provided. 10 years old, the newer ones look more solid and are still only about $60.

      Loading one bike is easy; getting 2 on is tricky but do-able. Couple 2x4s screwed to the rack keep tires where they belong. This is just my 'once in a while' rig, I don't really like the system, but it works. Ratchet straps, plus bungies, keep everything safe, but it's a 5 min job to mount each bike cleanly.

      The bolted joints kept loosening, and it rattled and flexed a lot, so I welded it. I need to tie it it off to the truck to keep it stable, too, or it really flops around and hammers the receiver joint on bumpy roads.

      It's a little crowded but works and is cheap, strong as used. I don't have to loft th bikes, I just clamp the rear brake, wheelie it, set the front wheel on, then roll the rear wheel on. But as-supplied, it was not up to the task, it would have fallen apart or beaten my bikes to death. The whole rack flopped around on the truck. Any rack with only a receiver joint will do so, in my experience. For transporting light bikes on paved roads, no big deal, but for ebike hauling to trailheads on sometimes bumpy roads, I think it is important to stabilize the rack to the vehicle, somehow. A strap to the car is worth the trouble, if there isn't a manufacturer solution provided. Just tension the rack one way so it can't rattle around.

      This load range generally requires you have a 2" receiver. This if fine for an SUV. The receiver mounts available for smaller cars such as my new sedan only have a 1 1/4" receiver. I'd like a simpler, nicer system, but I haven't found a good "off the shelf" solution to haul my 2 heavy fat ebikes on that lighter-duty 1 1/4" interface. There are adapters to bolt a 2" tube onto a 1 1/4 receiver, though. Might work, but "cheating" on the load ratings, and one more layer of potential floppiness is added to the structure which would need to be addressed.
      Last edited by JPLabs; 12-28-2017, 09:42 AM.
      Fabrication is fun! Build something today. Show someone. Let them help. Inspire and share. Spread the desire.

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        #4
        Thanks for the feedback. I don't fancy attempting to loft my bikes onto a roof rack system so the rear rack type device looks appealing. My only concern is the way they mount over the tow ball. I'd much prefer a socket that actually slides into the tow hitch cavity. Like you say JP Labs, people put a lot of faith into the load carrying capabilities of those small hitches that were never designed to carry a vertical load.
        I notice Thule make a rack specially for e bikes/fat bikes but still the fit over tow ball socket arrangement.
        I'll keep searching and let you know how I get on.

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          #5
          I have this and I love it. But you must swap out the elastic straps for regular velcro straps.

          https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

          https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

          It can also haul coolers, mulch, grills, etc.

          Robert

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            #6
            Thanks Robert. I do like that concept. Unfortunately Amazon won't ship that particular model to Aus but might end up knocking up one of my own along similar lines.

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              #7
              Too bad. And the price went up too. I only paid $150
              R

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