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Old 12-13-2018, 05:01 PM   #1
Glock22
 
2003 25' Safari
Ridgeville , South Carolina
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Bring the Harley with us

How do you bring your Electra Glide with you, Van or Truck? Do you cover your motorcycle while in the bed of the truck? I have always enjoyed driving a truck but I think the idea of getting the big girl in and out of the lower van and the idea she is almost always protected from the elements is a good thing? We can always sell the AS and buy a S.O.B. toy hauler but we love our A.S. almost as much as Ginger. Any thoughts?
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:07 PM   #2
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I started with this exact dilemma, and ended up buying a motorhome and towed a covered trailer. For 10 years it was a great solution, until my riding buddy was no longer riding, and upkeep on a motorhome was too much. No regrets, but today the Airstream fits my needs better.
I've considered all the options, loading a bike in a truck bed is iffy, and although there are power loaders, they use up all your carrying capacity.
I'm convinced a van is the most practical solution. Get a package with enough power and carrying capacity for the job.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:07 PM   #3
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Going to be tough to put that bike in the bed of that F150 and then pull that 25’ trailer. A 3/4 ton would be in order.

P.S. I’m not trying to be the 3/4 ton truck guy. It’s just the payload of that 150 will be beyond maxed.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:33 PM   #4
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Where to put that Harley

Go look at a Nissan 3500 van with the raised roof. I know a guy who has one and he hauls his BMW 1200 GS in it and pulls his 25' Airstream. Plenty of power, plenty of payload. Secure and out of the weather when towing. Vans are great tow vehicles when properly equipped. Nissan does not charge a crazy price either. Check it out. you may be surprised.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:34 PM   #5
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I have hauled mine in an 8ft bed with tailgate up and towed a trailer.

No cover. It flap and ruin the paint.
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Old 12-14-2018, 09:11 AM   #6
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I have a Chevy Express 3500 and I can vouch that the van can handle it but the doors aren't tall enough (49") - so I have resolved myself to taking my 24' Enclosed trailer when I want to ride and the Airstream when I don't. I have been looking at the new Honda "Monkey" or Grom as street legal bikes that we could use to "get around" when we get someplace with the Airstream.
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Old 12-14-2018, 09:50 AM   #7
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I've seen several HDs in the bed of long pickups towing a trailer. Not sure how they get it down, or up, but they are out there.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:29 AM   #8
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Hauling a Harley plus the tongue weight of a larger Airstream moves one into a one ton dually class to handle the load and have the stability to handle the increased center of gravity having a motorcycle that high in the air in the back of the truck.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:46 AM   #9
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Here’s how I do it. (Just ignore that road runner. He’s been following me for weeks)
Load-all ramp system. Long and short bed ramp designs.
Link to a video I made showing how it works. Fast, safe and easy.
https://youtu.be/zgrQhVTiDoU
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:38 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
Hauling a Harley plus the tongue weight of a larger Airstream moves one into a one ton dually class to handle the load and have the stability to handle the increased center of gravity having a motorcycle that high in the air in the back of the truck.
One more reason for checking out a NV3500 Nissan van. You can position the motorcycle further forward in the vehicle cargo area resulting in a more balanced load front to rear. A large bike like the Harley (approx. 900 LBS) directly over the rear axle of a pickup truck puts a pretty good dent into rear axle capacity. Throw in 900+ LBS of tongue weight and some travel stuff and it may be close to axle rating and total cargo capacity. Whatever vehicle you purchase pay close attention to listed axle and cargo capacity. Happy shopping!
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:39 AM   #11
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I carried my Road King in a 6 1/2 foot bed pulling a tiny camper to Sturgis. Had a aluminum 2 fold ramp to get the bike on. I have 4 wheel drive and would find a small hill to park the truck on so the ramp was horizontal and I drove it on. Do not try to cover the bike as the cover will probably destroy the paint job. I even took off the wind shield. You didn't say if you have a 8 foot bed. When the bike was on the truck, the tailgate had to stay down. Had a blast. But personally I'd be real careful about that much weight with a F-150 pulling an Airstream, I mean you and I both know your WAY over the weight recommendations of safe people. Maybe just stay away from any mountains, stay in the right lane and hope no one cuts you off. Oh yeah have good insurance and maybe even wear your helmet inside the truck lol
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Old 12-14-2018, 12:55 PM   #12
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Airstream did make a 33 or 34 foot trailer with a garage on it. I don’t know how many they made. But I saw one at an airstream dealership in Los Gatos many years ago 2010 or 11. It was awesome. And in mint condition. The folks that owned it wanted to downsize. It’s sold back then for $91,000. What a deal I understood that they made about 30 or 40 units of these Airstream‘s with a garages. And would fit two or three motorcycles. Put the word out and you might find one . Good luck to you. Hope you find one.
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Old 12-14-2018, 01:42 PM   #13
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Have you considered a front hitch.

There are some heavy duty racks that can handle a large bike. I'm considering putting on a double front receiver on my wife's RAM 2500 cummins diesel and bringing my beemer.


I have lots of experience towing with my dirt bike on the front rack and pulling a 2016 Flying Cloud 23FB on a 2016 Tacoma. Loading is really fast because the deck is at bumper level and the loading ramp is at a pretty shallow angle.
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Old 12-14-2018, 05:05 PM   #14
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Motorcycle

Too much work and too much weight. Let alone the potential for personal injury getting the bike out of the bed of a truck. Just take your bicycles for short trips, then rent a Harley when you get to a destination!
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Old 12-16-2018, 02:11 AM   #15
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A Ford Transit or Mercedes Sprinter work very well for carrying a bike. The load height is much lower than a pickup. The bike is inside out of the weather. Either van rides and handles better than a pickup. The diesel models get better fuel economy as well.
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Old 12-16-2018, 05:54 AM   #16
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I’d have my wife drive the rig, and I ride the Harley. Problem solved ��
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Old 12-17-2018, 06:33 PM   #17
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Towing with a Ford Transit van

The towing ratings on the Ford Transit vans are very low. I checked these out prior to buying a 2013 Ford E150 XLT Premium van with factory tow pkg to pull a 2017 23D. My van is the old style with full frame, 5.4 V8, ect. The tow rating of the T150 Transit wagon (van with factory interior, not a cargo style) is less than 5k LBS. The T250 and T350 are not much better. I went old school because those vans are good to tow with. V10 engines and 6.0 diesel were also available. I am sure the Transit van probably drives nicer when not towing, but the rating was just not enough for me. Transit vans do not have a full frame like the E series vans.
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Old 12-18-2018, 10:50 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suncoasteng View Post
Too much work and too much weight. Let alone the potential for personal injury getting the bike out of the bed of a truck. Just take your bicycles for short trips, then rent a Harley when you get to a destination!

Unfortunately, this is probably the best answer. If your a HOG member you get a large discount on a rental.
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Old 12-18-2018, 11:45 AM   #19
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2003 25' Safari
Ridgeville , South Carolina
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Thank you

I love this site and everyone who took the time to reply. It makes me feel better to know others have struggled with the same dilemma. I will likely go with a used Loadall loading system in the back of the truck. And although I might try it cautiously a few times in my F150, I see a 3/4 ton truck in my future (you're right, she is heavy). I had a Kawasaki Versys that was so easy to load. I think a cover over her when she's sitting at the campsite will keep her happy.

I have read all of your posts multiple times and our local HD dealer has quit renting motorcycle and I'm hearing/fearing other places will be doing the same thing. I was trying to convince the wife I needed a lighter HD to take on trips and she was not so receptive

Much thanks, to all of you
Ron
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Old 12-18-2018, 12:21 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightmare67 View Post
Here’s how I do it. (Just ignore that road runner. He’s been following me for weeks)
Load-all ramp system. Long and short bed ramp designs.
Link to a video I made showing how it works. Fast, safe and easy.
https://youtu.be/zgrQhVTiDoU
Nice video!! Looks like a great solution.
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