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Old 01-13-2013, 02:12 PM   #1
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RV Bumper mounted receiver for bike rack

I'm trying to find out if the 2" reciever that you can purchase that bolts on to your 4 or 4 1/2 inch square bumper is the right thing to do for a bike rack holding 2, 3 or 4 bikes. Has anyone had anything bad happen like the bumpers bending and destroying your bikes.
I have. Last year I purchased a spare tire rack and while returning home I was flagged down by a person passing me that I should pull over. When I did I found that the steel that the spare tire mount was made out of had torn like a piece of paper and our brand new bikes were destroyed from the pavement. It was obvious that the carrier was not made to handle 2 bikes hanging from it.
Back to my question.... In the RV catalogs they show a 2" reciever that bolts on to a bumper. Any problems with this ???
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:36 PM   #2
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I have read several post of the same thing happening with the receivers that bolt onto the RV bumper. I have also read several posts of folks doing that with no problems. It all depends an the strength of the bumper. When I had a TT I had a receiver hitch on the front of my truck, worked pretty good. For the Motor Home I use a 2" dual hitch adapter with a 4" drop for the toad. Bike rack goes in the top receiver. Works very good.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:45 PM   #3
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On my class C that did not have a receiver I bought a 2 bile rack that mounted to the ladder. Worked very well.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:16 PM   #4
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I've passed more than a few of those tire racks or bike racks fastened only to the square bumper oscillating back and forth so violently I could predict metal fatigue in a few more hours! Seems that the movement of the trailer gets magnified in the flexing of the bumper and the rack. I wouldn't use one unless it could be additionally secured to the back of the RV or braced in a way to limit all the back and forth motion. Just MO.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:41 PM   #5
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I have a 36" MH with a 2" reciever mounted two bike rack. In over 2,000 miles of trailering have had no problem. Note that mine is RECIEVER mounted, NOT bumper mounted.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:24 PM   #6
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I do have a TT. I meant to edit my post before submitting. Thanks for the info. when the weather gets a little better I"ll get out there and see if I can beef up the bumper and or manufacture a for real reciever and somehow mount it to the camper framework.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:54 PM   #7
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Find a good local welding shop and have them fabricate a receiver and have it welded and reinforced?
A front mounted receiver as Hipshot mentioned works great too. We had one when we had a TT and I actually had our motor scooter mounted there.

Our old rig with scooter:
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:20 PM   #8
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We have a cougar 327RES 5er, which has a bumper that pulls out with enough room for 2 bikes. The only concern I have is once pulled out the spare tire attached to bumper endures triple the vibration/motion and over time the rather weak looking bar supporting the spare would fail. I would talk to a fabrication shop and see what they recommend. I would think that the bumper with a receiver would be weak and over time would fail
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:55 PM   #9
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The typical 4" square bumper does not have enough structural stiffness to support 30 or 40# of bicycles shaking on it as you roll down the road.

Ken
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:57 AM   #10
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The front mount receiver that you had was custom made or did you purchase it somewhere ?
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:52 AM   #11
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Our bike rack mounts into the receiver on the back of the motorhome and it's pretty sturdy, but I still secure the bikes with a cargo strap to keep them from shaking to much or falling off from road vibration. Maybe a surface mount flat hook like shown below would help out. A strap from the hook to the bikes would give a little extra support if you think the bumper can't withstand the full weight of the bikes. I'm considering installing a couple of them on the back of the motorhome for extra support of a cargo carrier with heavy firewood.

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Old 01-15-2013, 07:54 AM   #12
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I have one of the bumper mounts that CampinginADK was seeking. I believe Swagman makes them. You can get them on line or Camping World at a premium price. I used it together with a Swagman XC-2 bike rack for a 600 mile trip.

The first thing I did before installation was inspect the welds where the 4" square tube bumper was attached to the frame of my fifth wheel. The welds were substantial. After the trip was over I never used it again while in motion, only to store the bikes off the ground, not to transport them. The reason for this is that the thickness of the bumpers today are not adequate enough to take the punishment of the bikes weight and added fulcrum arm provided by the rack itself. The result is my bumper is now warped where the receiver mount was attached, enough so that removing the sewer hose meets with some restriction.

In the good ole days, my first Travel Trailer back in the late 60's early 70's had a very strong square tube bumper that would take the punishment. I had a fold down spare tire and rack attached to it and after thousands of miles the bumper never knew it was there.

So, there you have it, real world experience with the bumper mount in question. Would I buy one again, no.
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Old 01-15-2013, 10:11 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfpack Fan View Post
Our bike rack mounts into the receiver on the back of the motorhome and it's pretty sturdy, but I still secure the bikes with a cargo strap to keep them from shaking to much or falling off from road vibration. Maybe a surface mount flat hook like shown below would help out. A strap from the hook to the bikes would give a little extra support if you think the bumper can't withstand the full weight of the bikes. I'm considering installing a couple of them on the back of the motorhome for extra support of a cargo carrier with heavy firewood.
I've thought about doing the same, but what structure would the 'hook' connect to? The rear is mostly just a fiberglass cap. The rear wall behind the cap is 'framed' from 2x2 soft wood. These anchor points would be under a lot of stress with the repeated 'tugging' of the vibrating rack, not sure they wouldn't cause more structural damage than the cost of bikes or firewood.

In addition, transporting firewood is discouraged or outright illegal in many parts of the U.S. because of the problems of insect or disease being transported in the wood.
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:27 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CampingInADK View Post
The front mount receiver that you had was custom made or did you purchase it somewhere ?
I think I bought it from jcwhitney.com, I think was about $160.00
Just about any online hitch store should have it.
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