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Old 06-16-2015, 06:41 AM   #1
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Bike Rack

While I'm waiting to get the issue resolved with the AS brakes and my TV brake controller (two week wait) I am considering getting a bike rack. This leads to to few questions.

My new 2009 AS is a FB model. Am I correct in assuming that a bike rack can be installed on a FB model?

Which bike rack is best for a FB or does it not make a difference? What are your recommendations?

Is the installation easy enough for a fairly handy guy to do it himself?

Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2015, 06:55 AM   #2
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This issue has been discussed quite extensively before. Basically, a bumper or frame mounted rack is a bad idea because AS frames are not as strong as with SOB trailers. AS' use a semi-monocoque design that relies on the frame, floor and shell collectively for it's strength. Use the search function and look for "bike rack" and you will have more opinions than you can shake a stick at.
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Old 06-16-2015, 07:25 AM   #3
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I have the Arvika system that mounts the bikes over the propane tanks. Easy bolt on install. Adds a little weight on the hitch. The other popular system is the Airstram rear mounted Fiamma rack. I went with the Arvika because my Classic has the rear bumper pull out tray. Bikes would be easier to put on ans take off but the installation requires drilling holes into the shell and bumper.

Kelvin
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Old 06-16-2015, 08:28 AM   #4
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Bike Rack

3 Large Mountain Bikes. Quick easy on and off.
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Old 06-16-2015, 09:15 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2012FB View Post
3 Large Mountain Bikes. Quick easy on and off.
Is this a commercially available rack? I've never seen this one before but it is intriguing. Would you be willing to share more information?

Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2015, 09:59 AM   #6
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This is the route that I'm most likely to take as well (and have used in the past).

I just picked a 2010 F150 and 2015 Intl 25FB last weekend. First question my wife asked was "where do we put the bikes?". The TV came with a hard bed cover that is perfect for mounting the rack to.

The pictured rack (in #4) looks like a Yakima Bike rack which comes with about a bazillion mounting options, including the option to bolt rails to a bed cover that will receive the rack towers. I think most of the big rack makers have options like this, but I've always used Yakima in the past. Thule is another good company. Basically, any roof mounted bike rack option can probably be adapted to mounting on a hard bed cover or directly to the bed rails if you don't want/use a hard cover.

The dealer offered the Fiamma option (for ~$800) or to custom weld/attach a hitch to receive my existing hitch mounted Yakima Rack (also ~$800). But it sounds like the AS frame is not particularly well suited to having a hitch attached. The bed cover option is a lot less expensive option for me since I have most of the expensive components already, but a complete Yakima setup for 3 bikes like this might cost about the same as the other options..

Hope this helps

-Kevin
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Old 06-16-2015, 10:32 AM   #7
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I used an E-Trailer front Tow Vehicle 2' receiver, works well. I may shorten the upright so as to reduce the reduce the visual sight of the bikes. Otherwise works great!
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Old 06-16-2015, 11:42 AM   #8
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There are plenty of bike carrying options. Related to anything added to your Airstream should always be a consideration for weight (and balance) added to the truck and trailer.

Any weight added between the truck's rear axle and the center of trailer axle(s) adds to the lifting and transfer task of your weight distribution hitch. Weight added in front of the truck's front axle or behind the trailer's axle reduces the weight distribution need.

Two bikes and a rack may only weigh 100#, but if this is mounted on the front of the trailer it adds to the hitch weight. If mounted on the rear of the trailer it reduces hitch weight. Reduced hitch weight helps keeping under your Airstream's 1000 lb hitch weight limitation, allows less weight distribution tension on the w.d. bars, and most probably results in a less jarring ride for your Airstream. Reduce some hitch weight here, some there, it all adds up.

So the choice is about more than the bikes. For this reason and convenience of use we use the Airstream Bike Rack. It's designed to carry two bikes on the back of the trailer without stressing the trailer frame by including brackets mounted to the Airstream shell. There are others. Can-Am Airstream makes and sells a simpler version of this, several companies make mounts that will work on the front of the truck (there may be visibility and headlight issues).
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans627 View Post
Is this a commercially available rack? I've never seen this one before but it is intriguing. Would you be willing to share more information?

Thanks!
Local dealer RackAttack wanted nearly $1,600 to install with rails.

I ordered it online from rackwarehouse.com

Name Code Qty Each Options
-------------------------------------------------------------
Yakima 48", 58", 66", 78" y0411 1 71.20
Round Bars for Car Roof
Racks, Pair - Yakima 78
inch Round Bars, Pair

Yakima 8002093 Raptor y2093 3 119.20
Aero Upright Bicycle
Racks Bike Carriers for
Car Roof Racks

Yakima 8000227 Landing y0227 2 34.40
Pads 7 Permanent Bolt-on
Fasteners for Control
Towers on Vehicle Roofs

Yakima 8000214 Control y0214 1 156.00
Towers for Roof Racks on
Fixed-points, Caps,
Factory Racks, Tracks

Yakima 8005015 Strap Caps y5015 1 16.00
for Yakima Round Bar Car
Roof Racks

Yakima 8007233 SKS Self y7233 1 31.20
Coilng 9 Foot Lockable
Cable

Yakima 8007208 SKS 8 Pack y7208 1 68.00
Locks Cores for Yakima
Racks, Carriers,
Accessories

Yakima 8007220 Accessory y7220 3 13.60
Lock Housing Locks Yakima
Accessories to Roof Racks

Subtotal 809.60
Shipping 0.00
Tax 0.00


Took me a lazy afternoon to get it all mounted and installed. Bolt the bases directly through with slightly longer 1/4-20 bolts with nylocks. I did cut the bars down a bit.

Let me know if I can help further.
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:45 PM   #10
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We tried this method with our two Izip electric bikes over the back of the tailgate. It didn't go well due to the added weight on the back end of the truck, the trailer wanted to bounce around. The electric bikes are heavy. I'd like to figure something out though, it sure is nice to have them along.



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Old 06-16-2015, 01:12 PM   #11
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I just realized that I wound up with Yakima FrontLoader Product Code : 202103 bike carriers (as shown in the photo) because they did not have 3 of the Raptor Aero in stock. The FrontLoader was another $30 each more I think.

Another note is that the setup can be easily removed in one piece with help. The low profile bases stay on the truck bed with protective caps that snap in place. It really is a nice way to go.
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Old 06-18-2015, 12:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KJRitchie View Post
I have the Arvika system that mounts the bikes over the propane tanks. Easy bolt on install. Adds a little weight on the hitch. The other popular system is the Airstram rear mounted Fiamma rack. I went with the Arvika because my Classic has the rear bumper pull out tray. Bikes would be easier to put on ans take off but the installation requires drilling holes into the shell and bumper.

Kelvin
Hi Kelvin:

Would you please provide the part number(s) for the Arvika system you have on your trailer? We are thinking about doing the same thing with our two bikes and the Arvika site is somewhat cumbersome to get around. We are in a new, 2015 Classic.

Thanks!

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