Shortbed truck above-the-bed rack- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Shortbed truck above-the-bed rack

    Howdy, all. Need some creative ideas on a rack setup. I currently have a Yakima/Thule setup that I removed from my BMW 5 Series (Q Towers, 48-inch bars, Thule 594 Sidearm). I gave the car to my wife and got an '01 F150 Supercrew, which suits my needs better.

    Of course, the bed in the Crew is too short for my preferred method of mounting (a Thule Instagator). I do have a bed extender, but prefer not to deal with flipping that back and forth.

    Here are my preferences: No wheel removal, no flipping of bed extender, no hitch mounts. I'm looking for a convenient method to throw the bike on the rack, securing it and driving away.

    The Yakima site doesn't specifically state it, but I think I could get new clamps for the towers, the wider load bars and clamp the rack right to the bed rails of the truck. Anyone done anything like this? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    ugh... shoulda kept the bimmer

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blatant
    Howdy, all. Need some creative ideas on a rack setup. I currently have a Yakima/Thule setup that I removed from my BMW 5 Series (Q Towers, 48-inch bars, Thule 594 Sidearm). I gave the car to my wife and got an '01 F150 Supercrew, which suits my needs better.

    Of course, the bed in the Crew is too short for my preferred method of mounting (a Thule Instagator). I do have a bed extender, but prefer not to deal with flipping that back and forth.

    Here are my preferences: No wheel removal, no flipping of bed extender, no hitch mounts. I'm looking for a convenient method to throw the bike on the rack, securing it and driving away.

    The Yakima site doesn't specifically state it, but I think I could get new clamps for the towers, the wider load bars and clamp the rack right to the bed rails of the truck. Anyone done anything like this? Thanks.
    Yeah, I have ....more or less.

    Just get the landing pads and mount them to the bed rails. Run the bars and whatever rack you want.

    The problem I had was mine wouldn't fit in the parking garage at work with this setup, so it never got used. I sold it all (Yak King Cobras and bars).

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Bob
    ugh... shoulda kept the bimmer
    Ugh, you should read first. The BMW is in my garage. The Ford is more useful for me.

    CZ: I'm not familiar with Landing Pads. Is that something I use in conjunction with the Q Towers? Do you remember the length of your cross bars? Thanks.

  5. #5
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    Did some research. Doesn't appear the Landing Pads can be used with the Q Towers I already have. If possible, I'd like to use as many of my current parts as possible.

  6. #6
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    Q Towers are not your best choice. You need Control Towers. The Landing Pads, I believe will give you fixed mounting. You could put tracks on instead (still need control towers) and be able to slide the bars if you need to move them out of the way.

  7. #7
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    That stinks. After spending $700 on this rack three months ago, not super-stoked to spend a bunch more money.

  8. #8
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    Why not just put the bikes over the tailgate?



    I do this for trips down to the bike park. I run a bike lock over to a tiedown inside the bed to keep it secure.

  9. #9
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    You have four options:
    1st - get new Q clips & put your exsisting rack including Q towers on top of the cab
    2nd - get the landing pads & whatever tower that allows your current rails and racks to mount to your bed or rails
    3rd - use your the set up you already have on the BMW, since it is still in the garage.
    4th - buy a completely new rack that will work for your new truck. hitch rack or something else.

    Number three seems to not be an option because you want to use your new truck, so it comes down to number one or two, either way you are going to have to spend more money to make your existing rack work with your new truck, as it was purchased for a different vehicle. With number four you can sell your whole rack on ebay or craigslist and take a bigger loss and buy a new rack.

    Either way you are going to have to spend some money to get a rack for your new truck, it is up to you as to how much or little.

  10. #10
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    why the need for these fancy $700 racks? my $5 option. toss the bike in the bed diagonally. it'll fit with the tailgate closed. 1 tie down from each side of the handlebars to the corner tiedown hooks in the bed. done. bike isn't going anywhere and no extra hardware hanging off your bed. if you need to lock it, bring along a padlock and long cable.

  11. #11
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    I concur with that assessment. Did some work on it today and it's clear the Q Towers aren't going to work. Don't want to put the rack on the cab as it's too tall. The BMW is the wife's daily driver now, so that won't work.

    I think I'll try to adapt an Instagator by bolting it down at the head of the truck bed and just putting the tailgate down when the bike is inside.

    Thanks

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by d33pt
    why the need for these fancy $700 racks? my $5 option. toss the bike in the bed diagonally. it'll fit with the tailgate closed. 1 tie down from each side of the handlebars to the corner tiedown hooks in the bed. done. bike isn't going anywhere and no extra hardware hanging off your bed. if you need to lock it, bring along a padlock and long cable.
    Really, isn't the point of owning a truck being able to carry large things with ease? Use your truck like a truck and not a sedan.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by d33pt
    why the need for these fancy $700 racks? my $5 option. toss the bike in the bed diagonally. it'll fit with the tailgate closed. 1 tie down from each side of the handlebars to the corner tiedown hooks in the bed. done. bike isn't going anywhere and no extra hardware hanging off your bed. if you need to lock it, bring along a padlock and long cable.
    If I'm going by myself, thats exactly what I do. I have a loop of cable I lock to a tie down in the bed, so I just leave it there locked. If the GF and I are going out, front tire over the tailgate. You want it to be standing up? Get some fork locks and a 2x4. My bed has notches to fit 2x4's into, and the bikes are secure and leaves room for cargo.

  14. #14
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    Just wanted to follow up on how I solved for this.

    I ended up modifying an Instagator I had from another truck. I mounted it at the head of the bed and bolted it through the bed floor with U-bolts. I'll let the pics explain the rest. It's very secure in this position. Not quite as quick to mount in post-ride as I'd like, but 15 seconds or so and it's set.





    A simple ratchet strap mounted side to side through the rear wheel really locks it down.

  15. #15
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    Why not just open up the tailgate and let the bike sit all the way down?

  16. #16
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    Damn, I thought my bed was short.

    My bike wedges perfectly in place. The front wheel rests at the front of the bed, the rear wheel is held snug when I close the tailgate. A u-lock secures the bike to the side of the bed.

  17. #17
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    I tried it with the tailgate down and didn't like it. The photo doesn't really illustrate it, but the rear tire kinda tucks down inside the lip of the tailgate. The ratchet locks it down. The tailgate down method is nowhere near as secure.

  18. #18
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    Nice.
    I'm still looking for something I can rig up along the top of the bed rail as I have a truck full of tools, roll-top, & a trailer I need to pull at the same time for work...
    can be a bit of a pain. A bike will fit in the extended cab of the truck though, with the front wheel off.

  19. #19
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    I might still play around with another idea. I have a Thule Sidearm tray that was on my roofrack. My idea was to build a type of vertical brace up off the passenger side bedrail with a piece of square tubing welded to the braces running parallel with the bedrail. Then just mount the sidearm to the square stock like you would regular rack bars.

  20. #20
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    Here's a couple quick thoughts (I apologize, I've not read all the responses)

    Get the Softopper sport rack and bike add-ons. Fork mount so you'll have to remove the front wheel, but this is pretty versatile.
    http://www.softopper.com/Truck_Accessories-list.aspx

    I know you said no hitch rack but here's a good option if you change your mind...
    www.raxterracks.com (I LOVE my Raxter! see pics in other post).
    www.northshoreracks.com/

    Something else I did on my Dakota was I built a frame from 1x4's that gave me 2' clearance under the rack. I could carry 4-bikes on it, strap a kayak to it or whatever and still had my cargo area. I don't have pictures of it unfortunately. I also used fork mounts but you could use upright mounts as well. It just sat into the bed and I bungee'd it to the tie downs in the bed to keep it in place. I used this set up for about 4 years then when it rotted out, I just bolted 2x4's to the top of the bed rails so I still kept the bikes up off the cargo floor.

    Honestly, now that I have a hitch rack, I'm not likely to ever carry bikes in the bed again. The exception will be IF I need to pull a trailer and my bikes. At which point, I'll likely use some electrical raceway brackets bolted to the upper tie downs on my new Honda Ridgeline bed and still keep the bikes elevated.
    Charles Myrick
    33North Adventures | Owner
    Bike | Climb | Hike | Paddle
    New trips: Tibet & Bosnia!

  21. #21
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    If you are still open for options, this is what I have on my truck.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?...7&postcount=13

    And another similar setup
    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=536460
    =========================================
    Minnesota Off Road Cyclists www.morcmtb.org

  22. #22
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    if you are trying to save some space in the bed, and mount to the berail, you might like the yakima locking bedhead. it clamps to the bedrail, so it's not permanent.
    the advantage here is that your handlebars would be turned 90degrees, so not sticking out farther than your rearview mirrors. you could also use a locking blockhead or other fork block for the front wheel.
    for your rear wheel, you could purchase just the rear tray from a yakima boa. or some other short tray that you come across. you could drill this through the bedrail and attach underneath with large washer and locknut/lockwasher combo.
    while it may be hard to find this part alone, we have it at the shop and could get you into 1 or 2, based on your need.

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