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Old 02-06-2008, 06:29 PM   #15
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I believe Wally's trailers were always highly customized & beefed up as well.

Shari
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Old 02-06-2008, 06:35 PM   #16
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Chassis

There is also a huge difference between an 89 32 foot tandem axle trailer chassis and a 91 34 foot triaxle trailer chassis.

But to each his own.

Shops welcome rear end repairs all the time, as it "IS" very expensive.

Bumps that the trailer hits, does cause vertical movement, therefore the weight of anything on the rear end, becomes a matter of moment arm changes.

No one has yet proved that part of Physics to be in error.

Andy
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Old 02-06-2008, 07:11 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CanoeStream
Wow! That's 30,086 posts of AIR Forums experience voting on one side of this issue.
really this is more like one voice and 30,000 echos...

.... disclaimer, i'd NEVER mount a bike on the rear end *

but the warning NOT to comes from the same source that predicts...

the wrong truck, wrong tires, wrong axles, unbalanced hubs, wrong hitch, and wrong finish...

will result in trailer explosion and a dead zone!

yes 35-40 year old trailers are coming apart, but laying the cause on some unknown bike rack is silly.

when SO MANY ISSUES INCLUDING NORMAL AGEINGnFATIGUE are at the root.

the moment-arm-physics-theory, is so badly quoted, that those who do and can explain it have given up trying.

of course, those who wanna do a rear bike rack need to think it out...

since adding a fork lift on the rear bumper would be silly too.

given how often the 'bike rack warning' is repeated here, by well intended folks...

we should expect at least a few people to post the dreaded outcome on 80s or 90s or newer units...

i've not see ONE POST by someone who broke their trailer (80s or newer) with a bike rack...

but the warning keeps on coming.

i like howie's approach and IF fabricating a bike rack i'd go for something very light, removable and supported from multiple points...

for example...

-select a trunk mount rack model, like those below (the saris bones is really light)...

-use the rear awning track for weight bearing...

-one could even remove the awning and have full access to the track...

-place a light weight stiff backer plate (a small sheet of padded plywood) over the window/rear skin and contact points...

-hang the rack then add adjustable length supports below that fit into holes in the bumper...

-the key being light weight rack, close to the shell, and up higher than the bumper...

then be reasonable about the bikes (2 max, keep 'em light, don't add other stuff)

while i agree 70s units suffer from rear separation, so much so that the factory has a 'repair kit'....

but it's not because of bike racks.

it IS because a/s under engineered these units and continues to use marginally adequate frames (inadequate) to THIS day...

which is why frame separtation CONTINUES to occur, with NO BIKES to blame...

cheers
2air'

*because it's a terrible way to treat a bike!!!
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Old 02-06-2008, 08:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
the moment-arm-physics-theory, is so badly quoted, that those who do and can explain it have given up trying.
This misses the point IMHHAEO. Our members can be asked to understand such a concept in hitch discussions. Ask any boot how the sarge made them squat against a wall and hold a field manual, olive drab, 1 each, at arm's length. Feel the burn? Now start bouncing it. That's a moment arm in action.
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:13 PM   #19
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Hi Andy

I felt the same as you for many years but I had so much pressure from customers that wanted to carry bikes on the back we figured out a way to do it without causing problems. The entire bike carrier weighs 12 pounds and it carries the bikes very close to the back of the trailer. It is supported by the frame and the body so there is no bounce or rotational stress on the end of the frame.

The carrier is made of high strength lightweight steel and we adapt it to fasten to Zip Dee awning brakets. I 5 years we have not had any problems.
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Old 03-22-2008, 07:58 PM   #20
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Cool Bike Rack Rear Bumper

I see that you live in Ontario, Canada.

We are on a one-year trip around the U.S. Currently, we are in Palm Beach,

Florida and would really love to get a bike rack! We do not have an option for one on our tow vehicle(Ford F250 Diesel) with a sheet metal cover on the pick-up, also have an equalizer hitch.

Do you think if we showed your photos, we could trust a steel-fabricator or a U-Haul dealer to build us one?

We are brand-new to Airstream...just bought a 28" International-CCD in January 2008. Unfortunately, neither of us is mechanical at all.

Would appreciate any advice you may have...

Thanks
Judie and Bob Heintz
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Old 03-22-2008, 08:32 PM   #21
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Yikes!

Any moment arm load on the back an Airstream will result in excessive stress. Put the bikes inside the trailer forward of the wheels, or in the bed of the tow vehicle, or better yet, get a front receiver that will accept a bike rack (which I have).

Airstream frames are not overbuilt... they are usually sufficient for the rated load. Repairs are not cheap.
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Old 03-22-2008, 08:46 PM   #22
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I suppose I just don't get it. Why engineer all this when off the shelf items are available? For example, Yakama makes a roof top mount for the Infiniti you have as your tow vehicle, based on your public profile. Additionally, Yakima has roof top carriers for many cars and truck models that can carry many various items, including bikes. I have the King Cobra and find them very useful and priced within reason.

One additional bit of concern I have though (which I know is unsolicited), is why are you towing a 30'+ Airstream with that vehicle. Say it ain't so. Putting bikes on your Airstream's bumper are the least of your worries IMHO.
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Old 03-23-2008, 01:18 AM   #23
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Over the tanks...

Check ths bike rack solution by a SOB.
http://www.airforums.com/reviews/sho...uct=201&cat=20

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Old 03-23-2008, 09:00 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvertwinkie
I suppose I just don't get it. Why engineer all this when off the shelf items are available?
It's just another option, and in our case it was the best one. My canoe goes on top of the Yukon, so roof-top carriers are out. The two kids bikes go inside the trailer, and there's no more room for our bikes. Airstreams have a very short A-Frame which is already crowded (in our case, by the propane tanks, battery, Hensley and spare tire carrier). Besides, lifting bikes on/off A-frame bike mounts can be a PITA and they detract from the looks of the trailer. I looked into a front mounted truck receiver but had it's drawbacks as well (poor aerodynamics and visiblity problems). So for us, the ability to mount two bikes on the rear of the trailer was the best option.
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Old 03-23-2008, 09:13 AM   #25
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Judie/Bob: There are some close-up shots of our Can-Am installed custom bike rack in the Members Photo's -- look under "Garfield". The rack is based on a two bike folding TopPop bike rack that is custom fitted using Zip-Dee hardware. You might want to give Can-Am a call to see of they'd be able to ship you a kit. Any A/S dealer should be able to install it.

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Old 03-23-2008, 09:15 AM   #26
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Front Hitch

I just installed a Curtis front hitch and used a typical bike rack on our first trip with it to the Sarasota rally. After five minutes of getting used to its position it was a piece of cake. Easier to remove once you arrive and easier to load on your way out. The bike rack folds up on itself so driving around with it is fine looks like one of those off-road guards. I am thinking of using the hitch for using a steel mesh tray for hauling a couple of honda small 2000i gens with the bikes on our trip to Nova Scotia this summer. The TV is a GMC 2007.5 Sierra crew outfitted with a Leer cap.
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Old 03-23-2008, 09:30 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garfield
It's just another option, and in our case it was the best one. My canoe goes on top of the Yukon, so roof-top carriers are out.
I can see your point....even with the multi diverse ability of the Yakima, it would be difficult to haul a canoe, and 4 bikes. It is possible though to carry a canoe and 1-2 bikes depending on canoe size and place the other two bikes in the trailer, though I will fully admit, I'm also not a huge fan of using the interior of the AS as a transport, I think, as I am pretty sure the factory would agree, is the lesser of two evils compared to mounting stuff on the rear.

Bottom line, you're right, just all opinions. In the end, we'll see what happens with rear mounted racks. I'm still curious what the factory suggests.
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Old 03-23-2008, 10:02 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InsideOut
I believe Wally's trailers were always highly customized & beefed up as well.

Shari
Wally didn't tow a trailer at 75mph with a bike hanging off the back, either, probably more like 40-45. It's not so much the bumps, as the speed that amplifies the effect of the bumps.
I seem to remember his excursions also resulted in the International series trailer, which usually had, among other things, a heavier-duty frame.
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