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Old 10-04-2014, 03:57 PM   #43
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I can see there are several best ways to carry bicycles here. Don't fully understand how you travel with them inside the Airstream. At the end of a days travel you must surely take them out? If so they are then in the weather, so why not carry them outside? Or is this a weekend destination solution, maybe having a cover when you get there?

Hard to imagine pulling them out every night on a tour of the country to use the Airstream for comfortable living.
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Old 10-04-2014, 04:08 PM   #44
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Marty- I still use the mounts. I originally made them to use in my vehicle.

doug- It just gives flexibility. I usually travel with a couple of bikes in the car.
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Old 10-04-2014, 06:46 PM   #45
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I have one fork mount for each bike. I drilled holes in the MDF seat bases and installed them there. For travel, I put the table down into the sleeping position and just toss the pillows on the bed.

As mentioned in the original post, I replaced the regular nuts on the fork mount bolt with wing nuts so I can remove them quickly. Usually I just leave them in place and toss the cushions back on. It makes the cushion lift off the bottom a little visually, but I can't feel it when I sit down.

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Old 10-04-2014, 06:48 PM   #46
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I'm a weekender, not traveling from place to place. That said, taking them in and out isn't anymore work than pulling out the awning.


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Old 10-04-2014, 06:57 PM   #47
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Thank you, Lynn.


Marty from Maine
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Old 10-05-2014, 09:03 PM   #48
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Carry-Bikes by Fiamma
I installed one myself a few months back. Looks great, works great, it makes life easy, love it.
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Old 10-05-2014, 10:12 PM   #49
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We are really enjoying our Fiamma as well.


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Old 10-05-2014, 10:17 PM   #50
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I have ordered two fork racks that I will mount on a piece of wood, due to the low cost and simplicity of carrying bikes inside. If that doesn't work out well, I can get a bike rack for outside of the trailer.
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Old 10-06-2014, 11:01 PM   #51
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Best Way to Carry Bicycles

Lot's of very good information with accompanying experiences. No one has mentioned a custom fabricated receiver hitch on the back of the trailer. The rear cross member was welded to the skid plates on the trailer frame, and the forward cross member was bolted to the trailer frame. I did this on our 2002 25' Safari, and was very happy with it. Used a Thule tray style rack (bikes suspended by their wheels). Convenient, as not a high reach to place the bikes on the rack, and then can use the same rack in the truck receiver when not towing. On bad weather days, we covered the bikes. My only concern was tail light visibility when the bikes were covered, and I didn't think much about all the weight in the back.

We now have a 2015 27' International, and I am wondering if I really want to do the same thing. The same hitch shop is available and does great work. I can't bring myself to do the Airstream Fiamma because of drilling into the trailer, and the lack of flexibility of taking the bikes on a day trip with just the truck. But, I wonder if the extra weight of the custom fab steel receiver + the pretty heavy Thule rack + the bikes will have too great of a reduction in tongue weight?

I'd love to put them on the roof of the truck, but way too high a reach & too heavy for this geezer. Where's the gas strut lift assist?

Any experts out there on weight & balance, or any other opinions, for that matter?

FYI - my first post - hope I didn't mess it up
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Old 10-07-2014, 06:18 AM   #52
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You did fine AT. Don't they make bike racks that fold down towards the ground for loading and unloading? You don't happen to have any pictures of your previous set up?
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Old 10-07-2014, 07:37 AM   #53
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The reason no one mentioned a rear hitch rack is because of the semi-monocoque Airstream design where the body and shell of the trailer support each other. The connections between are secured to the aluminum shell and not strong enough to withstand the bikes/rack/crossmember bouncing on the frame alone. The risk is frame and shell separation and has a long history with Airstream because of their construction.

The usual answer is simply, don't do it.

The Fiamma bike rack is designed to rest on the frame, but is attached to the shell to hold the rotational downward forces imposed by bumps in the road (where do you ever see those).

Don't worry about drilling a few holes in the shell for this, there are already 3,000 of them. It's an accessory like awnings and such. I took the time to seal each screw hole, then around the head of the screws, and then all around the base of the two mounting brackets. In the unlikely event you don't want to use it again, take it off and replace the screws with rivets and sealant, increasing the total rivets to 3,004.
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Old 10-07-2014, 07:44 AM   #54
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Very clear and helpful explanation. Thank you.
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Old 10-07-2014, 10:15 AM   #55
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Been thinking about this airstream rack for a week now. Because I really like the way it looks and the convenience of just making the bike rack part of the trailer.

But then, in addition to my misgivings about putting 50-70 lbs back there and letting it jerk on the trailer hundreds of thousands of times on bumpy roads, there is the fact that it DOES make the bike rack part of the trailer.

And that's also a problem. For example, right now we're back in a KOA for a few days after a couple weeks boondocking. We want to go explore the hills above Horsetooth Resovoir, and so we want to take the two bikes up there and explore. We don't want to ride from here to there and back, not because we can't but because we don't want to spend half of the day getting to and from the place we want to explore. So we need to transport the bikes ......uh...explain to me how you do that with the Airstream bike rack? Do I haul the entire trailer to a rough parking lot to transport the bikes? No. I need ANOTHER rack to transport the bikes. A $ 500 Airstream rack that gets the bikes from campsite to campsite, and then an additional rack of some kind to get the bikes from some campsites to where I want to bike. You know, the places without the freeways.

Well, in my dumbass east texan thinking, it seems to me that if I can buy ONE five hundred dollar rack setup that will transport the bikes wherever I want to take them, then that would make the most sense and be the most cost effective.

And sorry, but no matter how pretty that Airstream rack is, I don't need a $ 60,000 bike rack that takes up 30 ft. of parking space and won't fit in little dirt trailhead parking lots.

Makes more sense to transport the bikes with the truck. Not with the trailer. A receiver on the front of the truck means I can carry the bikes whether I have the trailer hitched up or not. And I can move that hitch to the back of the truck when the trailer isn't hitched up. It also means that if I want to carry a bunch of other stuff, I can put carriers front and rear on the truck. Lots of bikes. Kayaks. Overhead pipe racks. Ladders.

I don't get the feeling I could do that if I just screw a rack to the Airstream.
It sure is pretty, though. Does it come in Ford Red?
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Old 10-07-2014, 10:36 AM   #56
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Anything carried outside will be subject to road grime collecting on all oiled parts of the bicycle. If it is an inexpensive bike, you probably will not care ... mine go inside the AS or the TV. The rear "low pressure collection area" of the TV / front of AS or the rear of the AS is the worst place for picking up road grime / debris. Look at your chains and derailleurs ....

After banging our heads under the pickup topper while bolting down bikes into fork mounts... worrying about them (or us) falling from the top of the topper while mounting / dismounting bikes in the bike racks ... poking ourselves in the stomach moving around them in the FC ... we sold the bike racks - even the front hitch mount ...bike storage / moving was just One of the reasons we bought the EB ...
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