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  1. #1
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    5 bike transport - thoughts?

    We have an F150 and an Outback and need to be able to transport 5 bikes for our family. The girls are getting older and are one step away from full-size bikes themselves, so the approach of laying all of them down in the pickup bed is probably not a great idea any more.

    I used to have a 4-bike hitch carrier but don't anymore, so am starting from scratch. I want a solution that is inexpensive, but effective.

    While we have the Outback and F150, we want to travel in one car the majority of times.

    Thinking this has to be a common problem, what have you guys come up with?

    Thanks!
    Mike

  2. #2
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    Individual fork mounts bolted to the bed rails down each side. I was able to do 6 bikes in an F-350 short bed with a bit of extra room. Cost me less than $130.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    Individual fork mounts bolted to the bed rails down each side. I was able to do 6 bikes in an F-350 short bed with a bit of extra room. Cost me less than $130.
    Perfect, that's what I was hoping for. I just wasn't sure how it would all fit. If you have a picture of all of them in there, would love to see it.

    Are there any fork mounts that are better than others for this purpose than others?

    Were you able to remove them as needed easily or did you leave them on all the time? I'd like to be able to remove them easily if I can...

    Thanks!
    Mike

  4. #4
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    I have the delta stableload bar in the bed of my truck. It's not fancy or flashy by any means, but I can get 5 bikes on it and it's worked great so far. It does tend to try to roll on its mounts but has yet to go anywhere. I can take it in and out in about a minute, which was a must for me. It came with 2 QR mounts and I added 3 15mm mounts to it. Don't have any pics.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferguson65 View Post
    I have the delta stableload bar in the bed of my truck. It's not fancy or flashy by any means, but I can get 5 bikes on it and it's worked great so far. It does tend to try to roll on its mounts but has yet to go anywhere. I can take it in and out in about a minute, which was a must for me. It came with 2 QR mounts and I added 3 15mm mounts to it. Don't have any pics.
    I really like that one...Being able to add/remove it from the truck quickly is great versus putting mounts into the bed rail. Good to hear/know that you can get 5 bikes on it.

    Thanks!

  6. #6
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    Re: 5 bike transport - thoughts?

    This is it with just two bikes in the back. At this point I don't think I'd added the additional mounts. I think any would work but I liked the ones I could throw a padlock on to I bolted them through the bed rail and when I took them out, I had plastic plugs that filled them in. The nice thing about mounting them this way is that it is a piece of cake to put the bikes on the rack. No need to climb in or out of the truck.

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    do the girls' bikes have QR skewers? A lot of kid's bikes have a bolt through front fork.
    a series of skewer mounts like the Yakima blockhead (locking option too) to a sheet of wood will work well. For 5 bikes, I would mount them in a stagger front to back, so that you won't have much handlebar interference....something like a 2x12 laid flat..or even a 12"-16" wide piece of 3/4" ply. If you cut it to fit the width of the bed, it will work will for you, or you can somehow mount it with a velcro just to keep it from sliding around.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by vaaccess View Post
    I really like that one...Being able to add/remove it from the truck quickly is great versus putting mounts into the bed rail. Good to hear/know that you can get 5 bikes on it.

    Thanks!
    It is a bit of trial and error to get the 5 on it, they all go on a specific way due to different head angles and wheel sizes. I have the mounts all staggered on the crossbar, and with the right placement I've had 3 29er's, 1 26", and my 650b all on it. But they all have "their" spot and any other way wont work.

    I have an F350 with a tailgate step so getting in and out of the bed isn't an issue.......... That step is the greatest thing.
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  9. #9
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    I can say Ferguson's setup works pretty well. My bike has been in it for a long trip and it worked great.
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  10. #10
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    Throw an old comforter over the liftgate and hang the front wheels over the back. Done it a million times; works like a charm and costs zero. No installation, no removing wheels, throw em in and go. Leaves more room in the bed for other stuff as well, which helps when you're hauling over 10 bikes + riders at the same time.



    If you're the fancy type, you can rock one of those Dakine Shuttle Pads.



    This is definitely by far the easiest, most versatile, and cheapest way to haul bikes w/ a truck.
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  11. #11
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    Toss em over the tailgate.

    Agree with Slap, transporting with fork and wheel hanging overlapped over the tailgate is the easiest way, for security just run bungies or rope and fasten each TT and tie down. I've got an old Toyota Hilux and can easily fit 5 bikes in the back of mine like this, prob could fit 6 and 7 at a push.
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  12. #12
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    This works. Until it doesn't. I've seen a couple of dented down tubes from bikes bouncing on the tail gate.

  13. #13
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    Hence, good padding and tie them down so they can't move
    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    This works. Until it doesn't. I've seen a couple of dented down tubes from bikes bouncing on the tail gate.
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  14. #14
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    PVC rack won't break the bank.

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  15. #15
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    I've been on some pretty rough rides with bikes hung like that, unstrapped, and haven't seen any notable damage. I wouldn't be worried about it driving on pavement at all. Can definitely strap them down too. Seen a few homemade contraptions that work along the same principle too:

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  16. #16
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    Thanks everyone, great stuff. The idea of putting the bikes over the tailgate is intriguing...I need to see how well that would work for the bikes we have. As someone noted, since I'm dealing with different bike sizes and styles, I need to look more closely at how they differ.

    I really liked the idea of putting a triangle tire rack in the front of the bed and then just leave them standing up, but then measured and realized that I wouldn't be able to close the tailgate. I can get a little paranoid so don't know that I'd want them sitting there like that...!

    I think right now I'm going to consider what it would look like to either bolt fork mounts to wood that I put down, or consider the over-the-tailgate option, though will have to validate how I would fasten things down. I know in theory they probably wouldn't move much, but I don't want to risk it...

    Thanks again!

  17. #17
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    Yeah, it's worth trying - only take ten minutes and a blanket; I was actually a little surprised how well it worked the first time I tried it. I don't think bike size should matter much.

    I'd assume that running a bungee from the handlebar (or whatever works best) down to under the bumper combined with a good thick pad would probably keep things nested in pretty well. I like the idea of not having to take off and put on a bunch of wheels too.
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  18. #18
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    Don't be worried about the size variances, if oyu look at my pick you will see I've got from 22"/XL to a 16"/SM in there and no issues. I had to borrow a few kids bikes for a family who wanted to ride and the 20" and 24" fit in there just fine as well. Friend has kids and comes to ride with them and he puts all over the tailgate, no issues at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by vaaccess View Post
    Thanks everyone, great stuff. The idea of putting the bikes over the tailgate is intriguing...I need to see how well that would work for the bikes we have. As someone noted, since I'm dealing with different bike sizes and styles, I need to look more closely at how they differ.

    I really liked the idea of putting a triangle tire rack in the front of the bed and then just leave them standing up, but then measured and realized that I wouldn't be able to close the tailgate. I can get a little paranoid so don't know that I'd want them sitting there like that...!

    I think right now I'm going to consider what it would look like to either bolt fork mounts to wood that I put down, or consider the over-the-tailgate option, though will have to validate how I would fasten things down. I know in theory they probably wouldn't move much, but I don't want to risk it...

    Thanks again!
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