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Old 11-27-2010, 07:11 PM   #1
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Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

I'd appreciate advice on hitch racking several items on the back of a 4WD EB350.
Items to rack: spare tire, jerry cans of water and propane, 2+ bikes, 2+ pairs of skis.
The Aluminess set ups accommodate the tire and jerry cans. Not sure about a ski/bike combo rack
Prefer swing-aways and sturdiness. Roof space not available due to solar panels.
Thanks for the tips!
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Old 11-27-2010, 09:04 PM   #2
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Yakima, Thule, and Hollywood Racks all make hitch mounted racks. I have the Hollywood that holds four bikes. It folds down to get access to the back doors. Calclimber has a really nice Yakima rack that swings to the passenger side, which I feel is more convenient. Others have mounted the bikes above the Aluminess Box too, if you have one. Search the site for photos and take a look at members' galleries, and you can see what others have done.

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Old 12-09-2010, 04:54 AM   #3
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Ok, I know, it's 4:30 in the morn...

We had the thule bike/ski rack that dropped down, wasn't that crazy about it, very heavy to pick back up when loaded and needed to access the back quite a bit, so became a PITA. Did some research and really liked the swing away style, although more expensive, you weren't struggling with the load to get it locked. We have not gotten it yet, might end up with a trailer instead, with a fixed bike rack on the back or tracks on top.


http://www.pikespeaktrailers.com/
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:06 PM   #4
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Here's my bike rack solution.

I got a regular hitch mount rack and discarded the lower arm that mounts to the hitch. Drilled a couple of holes and stuck it on the back of the utility box.



I used a bit of steel bar as a backing plate.



Now the whole thing swings out of the way easily, loaded or empty. The top bar drops down when not in use.



And the whole thing removes with just 2 bolts for a non-bike trip.
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Old 12-09-2010, 05:43 PM   #5
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

I have both the Hollywood hitch mount and a custom setup on my rear box swingarm. Photos in my gallery and below.

The Hollywood is very beefy, and the four-bike rack can actually be split and turned into a two-bike rack if you have a lighter load. The only downsides to it are that: 1) It sticks out a long way, especially with the 4-bike setup on the back of the EB. I had an attachment fabricated and added trailer lights for some additional safety factor. And 2) with the box on the back, it can only hold 3 (or 1) bike.

The swing arm rack is pretty sweet. I had a local fabricator add the aluminum structure to the Aluminess swing arm, and then had it powder coated. It can hold two bikes, and I could mount skis or boards on it sideways but haven't yet. If you don't want to go the custom fabricated route, check out Blackeye's or Billwilson's van's for photos of Yakima or Thule towers/bars mounted directly to the box. You should consider a backer plate on the inside of the box like the one in the post above.

Also check Saline's gallery for photos of a swing arm bike rack with the Aluminess standard (open) box. If you do want a lockable box, you can place the jerry cans on top of the generator box as you can see in pic #1 below.

Good luck

Hollywood rack (2-bike setup) and custom rack:


Three bikes on two racks:
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Old 02-08-2011, 07:19 PM   #6
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

We have the same Hollywood 2+2 rack. It is beefy enough to handle off-road treatment and that was important to us. We found no other racks that were both beefy and held the bikes as securely. AND the folks at Hollywood are very helpful.
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:08 AM   #7
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Wow, that is a really sweet rack
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Old 10-18-2011, 09:12 PM   #8
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Maybe Saline will chime in soon. He has a home built rack to his jerry can holder. With the Aluminess bumper/swing away he can carry, four jerry cans, spare tire, and two bikes without losing any angle of departure.

I am buidling one similar to Salines. I have the Aluminess rear bumper with left hand rear tire swing away. On the right swing away I have the standard Aluminess box with the front cut away so that I can store my groover (rafting portable toilet) and a 7 seven gallon water jug. I like the water jug here so that I can get water anytime without going into the van to use the sink. From here I am adding a second standard Aluminess box above the lower standard box to add other items such as wood, more water, etc. The rack will then rise above that like Saline's so that I can add the two bike rack. All said, I will be able to carry anything without adding a lot of weight. I only have a photo of the lower rack with the water and rocket boxes. You can imagine the next standard box above that and then bike rack like Saline's. Hopefully I can get the rest built next week. When I do, I will post photos.

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Old 10-18-2011, 10:34 PM   #9
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Here is my setup, although not nearly as pretty as Phil's (pjpvi) transverse rack. I cut aluminum angle and had a friend weld it together and then bolted the assembly into place on the jerry can tray. It's been great and I use it all the time. In addition, I like having the bike up high and away from danger. I have been known to back into things occasionally.
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Old 10-21-2011, 06:48 PM   #10
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Re: Hitch Bike/Ski Rack

Not my rig, but this might be a solution:

viewtopic.php?p=65400#p65400
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