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Old 03-16-2014, 05:52 PM   #1
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Bike rack on toad

I have been contemplating this for a while. We have a 2010 Dodge caliber for a toad. Since our kids are growing that means the bikes are getting bigger. In the past we were able to put the bikes in the basement but we are running out of room. My question is this....can I put a bike mount on the back of the caliber? The concern I have is that we dolly the toad and I am concerned it may hang to low. I prefer not to hang them on the ladder. Any suggestions? We have a total of 4 bikes.
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Old 03-16-2014, 06:07 PM   #2
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You just need to find a rack that carries them high enough that they don't drag.

Alternatively, Blue Ox sells a rack that mounts above the tow bar, you might be able to use it with your dolly if your hitch ball stinger is long enough.

Or you could use a roof rack system on your toad.
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Old 03-16-2014, 06:32 PM   #3
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I'm not worried so much about the bikes dragging as I am the hitch itself dragging.
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Old 03-16-2014, 06:35 PM   #4
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In that case, I recommend one of the alternatives. I've never used a dolly, so I have no idea how low the hitch gets.
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:05 PM   #5
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Yakima roof rack?
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:14 PM   #6
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I also have a moon roof to think about..I need to see if anything will rest on it.
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:25 PM   #7
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That tow dolly is the variable I have no experience with. Sounds like the bike rack that mounts on the hitch to the toad is gonna be your best bet. \ken
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:43 PM   #8
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We have a receiver hitch on the back of our Ford Focus with a bike rack. We carry 3 bikes and room for a 4th. It's nicer having the bike carrier on the car than the motorhome as it lets you easily take the bikes with you on side trips.
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:48 PM   #9
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Is it used on a dolly?
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:19 PM   #10
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You are facing a few issues.

4 bikes - Any carrier based on a platform will be long and generally closer to the ground. The overall height and length of the platform will require some consideration.

Here is an example of a platform and one that I own.

Saris Cycleon Pro

It is expensive and has a 2 bike extension for a total of 4 bikes. I would be concerned that unless you have a hitch relatively high above the ground that the 2 bike extension would be a problem. I'm less concerned about the base unit for 2 bikes.

Bike carriers like those where you hang the bike by the top tube generally will put the wheels higher off the ground but if you value the paint job, they can be problematic. OTOH, if you don't need to protect the paint then the Blue Ox solution earlier posted can help with 2 of them on the coach and then a second one on the car hitch can carry 2 more. Yes, you can get one that can hang 4 bikes but I'm not a big fan of them and they might be long enough to offer a chance to drag the last 2 bikes in your situation. However, the hardware itself shouldn't drag except in an extreme situation that should be avoided in the first place.

Saris Hitch Racks

Some of the bike hanger styles do offer the ability to lower the bikes without removing them to have access to the hatch.

You could consider a trunk/hatch bike carrier but then depending on the configuration you have to watch out for the paint on the car.

Finally, there are carriers that can be used in some cargo areas like this one.

Saris Trap Single Track
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zippo View Post
We have a receiver hitch on the back of our Ford Focus with a bike rack. We carry 3 bikes and room for a 4th. It's nicer having the bike carrier on the car than the motorhome as it lets you easily take the bikes with you on side trips.
Totally agree.

This is how I am set up.

Any serious cyclist (bicycle) Rving?

I can use the bike carrier for storing the bikes between trips with the tarp and then move it to the Honda CRV for travel without the tarp. It takes about 10 minutes to move the bikes and rack between the MH and car. It may sound like a PIA but having a place to keep my bikes off the ground and covered is important to me. We full time and I don't have a garage. LOL
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:31 PM   #12
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Actually, the Blue Ox carriers come in either 3-bike or 4-bike models. The picture in post #7 is the three bike model (three slots for bike, two clamp positions). They also come in an extended version which is 18" longer to provide more clearance under the bikes.
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:58 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingDiver View Post
Actually, the Blue Ox carriers come in either 3-bike or 4-bike models. The picture in post #7 is the three bike model (three slots for bike, two clamp positions). They also come in an extended version which is 18" longer to provide more clearance under the bikes.
True...I just don't like 4 bikes on a bike hanger type. Lots of whiplash for bikes 3 & 4 even on a car. Some bike carrier manufactures will void the warrantee for carriers mounted on a MH. The overhang (especially on a gasser) causes lots of whiplash at the hitch. Granted that Blue Ox probably doesn't have that prohibition but the bikes will get more bouncing around behind a MH with long overhangs.

My major beef with bike hanger carriers, besides paint damage, is when they don't have something to reduce bike sway and thus banging together. There are ways to reduce this but that further exposes the bikes to paint damage. Some hangers have good systems to reduce sway built in to them but I don't see anything with Blue Ox's version that does.

Yes...I do care about my bike's paint. LOL However, I really don't want them to bang into each other.
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Old 03-16-2014, 09:52 PM   #14
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Well it looks like I will have to stuff 2 bikes in the car and look for another option for the other 2.
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