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Old 05-24-2007, 08:46 PM   #15
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Motorcycle bracket

I owned a 1984 29' Excella that had a bicycle carrier (capacity two) installed on the back bumper/frame. The PO and installer was an engineer but even so there was what appeared to be the early stages of rear end sag. BTW, the trailer was a mid-bath model.

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Old 05-29-2007, 11:58 AM   #16
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1991 25' Excella
Pace , Florida
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Thanks everyone for your great input . We just got back from the long weekend (tcpc).

We had heard a comment about not putting a rack on the back of the Airstream, but wanted to get some opinions from the folks who know. We're thinking using the truck bed will be better than the front of the truck. No concerns about air flow that way.

Again, thanks

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Old 05-29-2007, 01:14 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by danlesr
Hi All,

We're fairly new Airstreamers and are still learning something with every trip we take

We will be doing extensive workamping/travel in a couple of years when my husband retires and we'd like to be able to visit in an area without having to use our truck (Chevy Silverado 2500 HD diesel). While it gets reasonable mileage (20+ mpg when not towing), we want to reduce our fuel consumption where possible, so are thinking of getting a small motorcycle. (We're both experienced bike riders). Can we safely add a rack to the back of our Airstream large enough to carry a small motorcycle, about 250cc, and possibly two bicycles. If so, are there any brands/types which are recommended?

Any help would be greatly appreciated

Danny and Leslie
Hi Danny & Leslie;
it was my problem to take the motorcycle and the Airstream during the holidays... So the only solution to carrying both was to buy a Pick-up truck with a long bed... I've found ( in FRANCE and it's not easy...) a Ford F150 for that and it was a good solution. I've ordered a strong aluminum ramp to park the Harley Davidson in the bed and the rig can go safely... Just I've mounted a Timbrens suspension to keep the level right when all is charged ( HD & AS on the F150 ). So I suppose you 'll nt replace your chevy for a pick-up truck... so you can't take both in one time....

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Old 05-29-2007, 04:03 PM   #18
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2008 27' Safari FB SE
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Experience Hurts and Teaches

Our 68' had no evidence of rear end sag when we bought her. I proceeded to lash a vintage evinrude outboard motor to the back bumper on a home-made plywood/carpetted "gurney" for use on our aluminum canoe. Figured 75lbs max and tightly secured to the bumper will not present a problem......This was my pre-AIR days. The 11 hours up and back from Lake Chataua, NY with my outboard rig was enough to start the rear frame to droop on the side holding the motors heavier top end. The damage is obvious when you can pull up and down on the bumper and feel it "give" not to mention the sheared off rivets on the effectd side between belly panels and rear panel around access hatch.


I installed a front hitch and can easily carry a bicycle rack or cargo rack that will hold a light motorcycle/moped/scooter for hops around camp. This leaves the truck bed open for cargo etc and we dont have to try and lift out bikes from the side when the trailer is still hitched up.

Another option is pictured at link below - last thing in the trailer and first thing out (not good idea if motor/gas is involved). Bradk states "this contraption has soft rubber feet to prevent sliding. It sits right at the base of the dinette in the trailer and keeps the bikes secure. I bungee the rear tires together and put them on the welcome mat. Many trips with no tips or movement. Very good system."

One last idea to explore is a cargo rack above the truck bed with the bicycles mounted above - we carry our canoe in this fashion and still have room for 2 bikes on the left and right side of the boat.

Good luck!
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Old 05-29-2007, 05:05 PM   #19
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Re: The front hitch/motorcycle carrier. Before you get to far into the front hitch thing check the bike dimensions. I have found that scooters and motorcycles block the headlights and have been using the back of the truck. I have placed the folding aluminum rack (8'X42") on the front hitch. You will also find that the front hitch set up normally requires a 2500lb truck.
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Old 05-29-2007, 06:48 PM   #20
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General Disarray is exactly right. The dynamic loads are what kills them, not the static loads. In other words, 50lbs on the bumper in the driveway is 50lbs. Whoopdeeedo. 50lbs on the bumper on the highway hitting bumps is magnified by the acceleration. So that 50lb static load could very easily be like a 300lb dynamic load on big bumps. (could be more or less) Not only that , it gets repeated over and over and over. Aluminum doesn't like fatigue loading either. So you hammer the thing apart.

I do believe that the OEM rear connection could have been better. But this is the way they are.

And for a motorcycle, the real problem is the handling. I was looking to build a new frame for my own trailer that would absolutely not bend. However, the problem of handling still comes up. You want the mass to be centered just ahead of the axles. You put 350lbs on the back bumper and its 12' aft of the axle centerline. Every time you make a side to side oscillation, that weight out on the end is trying to wreck you.

It's like holding 25lbs on the end of a barbell vs. holding the 25lb plate in your hands and trying to dance the twist. WAY easier with the plate in your hands.

In EngiNerd terminology, we call that "polar moment of inertia." You want the mass centralized.

You could always build a new frame, enlarge the door to about 40" wide, and park the bike in the trailer when you travel

I actually saw one that did was pretty cool!
- Jim
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Old 05-29-2007, 06:50 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by danlesr
Hi All,

We're fairly new Airstreamers and are still learning something with every trip we take

We will be doing extensive workamping/travel in a couple of years when my husband retires and we'd like to be able to visit in an area without having to use our truck (Chevy Silverado 2500 HD diesel).
Have you considered carrying the motorcycle in the bed of your tow vehicle? We have done that in the past when we wanted to bring our motorcycle camping.
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Old 05-29-2007, 07:44 PM   #22
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After reading all the threads, searching the forum, etc....the basic answer is...NO! do not hang ANYTHING from the rear bumper!!!.Period!
Nuff said.
but just in very were warned.
Air 16426

Fully retired now!
Never start anything before noon and always plan on being finished by 5.
I will never HAVE to be anywhere ever again!
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Old 05-29-2007, 08:31 PM   #23
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If the road journey is not too long, you could enjoy your airstream from behind as you ride your motorcycle in its slipstream. It may cost a tad more in gas but not as much as having a welder strengthen your sagging rear end!
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:19 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by peegreen
Way, way, way back when, ...... Airstream used to sell a bicycle rack for the rear bumper, but that was a looong time ago.
I have one of those bicycle racks you refer to and I wish I didn't. I finally took it off our 31ft Sov. last year. But before that I mindlessly carried two kid's bikes on the back for about 3years. I know this extra weight along with the worn out axles contributed to the rear end separation I have spent the last 2months repairing. This repair has included a new section of floor, a new lower corner skin, one repaired floor channel and two new axles that I have yet to install. I can only guess the number of sheered off rivets that I found between the inner and outer skins during repair. I assume they resulted from the constant bounce of the rearend during our trips.
FWIW, I will not add any weight to the back of our trailer again.

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