Bike Rack - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-08-2011, 09:23 PM   #1
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Bike Rack

What's the conventional wisdom on mounting a bike rack on the rear of a 17' Casita SD? I talked to one Casita'er who swore that welding a receiver UNDER the bumper was fine so I bought a 12" receiver but I'm sure not convinced it's high enough to avoid scraping. (I don't have a high lift axle).

Thanks,

Greg
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:29 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Greg Janke View Post
one Casita'er who swore that welding a receiver UNDER the bumper was fine
The conventional wisdom is that the receiver has to tie into the trailer's frame well forward of the bumper for strength and stability. 12" may not be long enough. Placing it UNDER the bumper gives you access to to the frame.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:51 PM   #3
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Gotcha on that. Puzzled on the clearance issue tho. I checked out several at Lake Casitas and had a design in mind but it sure seems that the receiver is tooo low. I don't have a high clearance axle and am still on 14" wheels and tires.

Greg
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:56 AM   #4
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Greg,

I've got a factory installed receiver on the back of my 13 Scamp. The factory added an extra cross beam to weld the receiver to as well as the bumper.

I have 13 in wheels. A 13 Scamp sits much lower than any 17 Casita. There has only been a couple of times that the bike rack bottomed out when I wasn't paying attention. I generally watch the depth of entries and exists of driveways and take it easy.

You really shouldn't have a problem with your 17 Casita.
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Old 12-09-2011, 06:46 AM   #5
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I have a 17' FD, looked into the bike rack deal and have given up. The welding to the frame and things was looking like too much work, I am anxious to hear your design and results.

On the axle front. You can upgrade to 15" rims and tires without the high lift axle. At least on my 2007. I called casita and confirmed, they even offered to sell me the new rims but said it would be cheaper to buy them somewhere closer to me. The new 50$ rims from camping world have raised my rig a bit and I like the added clearance. That is a minimal cost way to give you greater height vs a new axle and rims.

right now I am looking at putting my bikes on a rack on the front of the tow vehicle.

Keep me informed on your design.
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Old 12-09-2011, 07:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don W. View Post
I have a 17' FD, looked into the bike rack deal and have given up. The welding to the frame and things was looking like too much work, I am anxious to hear your design and results.

On the axle front. You can upgrade to 15" rims and tires without the high lift axle. At least on my 2007. I called casita and confirmed, they even offered to sell me the new rims but said it would be cheaper to buy them somewhere closer to me. The new 50$ rims from camping world have raised my rig a bit and I like the added clearance. That is a minimal cost way to give you greater height vs a new axle and rims.

right now I am looking at putting my bikes on a rack on the front of the tow vehicle.

Keep me informed on your design.
Don, you may want to rethink the front mounted bikes. I've read where some insurance companies will not cover medical bills from an accident since the front mounted bikes or whatever may prevent the airbags from properly functioning.
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:48 AM   #7
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Frederick is absolutely right about also connecting a rear receiver farther forward to the frame. Bikes have a lot of leverage when they are hanging on a rack, and they tend to bounce a lot back there. I have built several rear racks and usually extend a 12" receiver tube by welding 2" steel angle to each side. I then bolt it all to the bumper and two frame cross members. Sometimes I will also reinforce the frame by bolting in additional angle iron. I have seen two bike racks break off the rear of trailers, so I tend to overbuild! I have also modified racks to attach to the trailer tongue where they ride much better. I tried one of those double hitch adapters, but had to modify my Yakima rack because it was too far back. The double receiver also messes up the weight transfer of the trailer. Bob
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:56 AM   #8
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I actually like the idea of mounting the bike on the front. It is in the direction of helping to balance the tow vehicle.

Our tow vehicle has front tow bar mounts that could be used for that purpose that are tied to the 'frame'.

It's hard to imagine that the additional 'crushability' provided by bikes would prevent the air bags from deploying in a real crash and might prevent them from deploying in a marginal crash (when you'd probably be happy they didn't deploy).
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:52 PM   #9
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Some areas, the police will ticket you with bikes mounted on the front of the tv-partially blocks headlights and signals. My scamp is a stripped model-no furnace etc, so I made an aluminum box for the front tongue, and mounted a receiver on top of it. That way, I can remove the bike rack when not taking bikes with me. And the tongue box opens to the side so I can open it with the rack mounted if needed(but do have to take the bikes off first).

(picture on the left-not good biking weather!)
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Old 12-09-2011, 01:14 PM   #10
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I already had a Reese 4-bike hitch mounted carrier for many years before I got my trailer. But when I'm towing, I had carry my bikes in the back of the truck which worked OK with 2 bikes, 3 bikes was workable but didn't leave much room to carry stuff. Then I got a Reese front tow hitch (rated 5000lbs, 500lbs tongue) and have put 4 bikes there while towing. It's definitely easier than loading 3 bikes and not much else into the truck bed. Initially it's kind of distracting to have the bikes sitting out in front. View-wise, it's not a problem as long as I remove the bike seats. Even though the headlights aren't completely block by the bikes, I wouldn't drive at night with bikes up front, which is OK, since I rarely tow once darkness falls.
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Old 12-10-2011, 09:59 AM   #11
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Here's the update: I did a little test yesterday and found that mounting a receiver under the bumper with 14" wheels and no HL axle would bottom out right away. I'm going to remove the tire, weld the receiver to the top of the bumper and reinforce the heck out of where the frame and bumper meet with "L" brackets and a plate. We're going to put an "L" bracket under the back of the receiver where it hangs out from the bumper for more strength and the tire goes back on and will rest on top of the receiver. I'll post pictures when it's done. Still undecided about putting a support from the top of my bike rack to the back of the trailer. I'm leaning toward doing it for added strength and to stop the rack from bouncing.

Greg
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:58 PM   #12
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Quote:
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I'm going to remove the tire, weld the receiver to the top of the bumper and reinforce the heck out of where the frame and bumper meet with "L" brackets and a plate.

Greg
I suggest welding in a much stronger Triangle shaped Gusset instead of an "L" Bracket if you're not extending the attachment forward on the frame.
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Old 12-11-2011, 05:44 PM   #13
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Here is a picture of one that I made this fall. I notched out the bumper and put around an 18" receiver in. Then welded some square stock to both sides of the frame & to the receiver. Finished up by welding around the receiver to the bumper. Nice & Strong.

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Old 12-11-2011, 05:49 PM   #14
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Here is a picture of one that I made this fall. I notched out the bumper and put around an 18" receiver in. Then welded some square stock to both sides of the frame & to the receiver. Finished up by welding around the receiver to the bumper. Nice & Strong.

Attachment 41794
Tim;
Nice looking work!
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