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Old 11-30-2020, 11:49 AM   #1
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Harley full dresser in a pick up bed

Folks, if anyone has done this please let me know if it is easily done and how well you like it. I have 2004 winnebago Vectra That we flat tow a Jeep Wrangler behind it. Problem is that I have a Harley that stays home all the time. I am thinking of selling the Jeep, getting a Ram 1500 and putting the Harley in the bed of the truck. Has anyone done this does it work well, tow well. Kwife insists on crew Cab, 4 door truck. What size of bed do I need. I appreciate all responses. TIA.
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Old 11-30-2020, 12:02 PM   #2
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PM "Fire Up" he has the setup your asking about.
There is a photo of his bike-carrier in this thread https://www.irv2.com/forums/f85/inst...ml#post4105170
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Old 11-30-2020, 12:06 PM   #3
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You'll need a long bed, and yes, getting a Harley dresser into and more importantly out of the back of a pickup bed is a royal pita that has a high potential for failure.
I would not attempt it if it were just the wife and I. I hauled ours in a 8x5 utility trailer with a ramp gate. Downside, that is your only toad.
Upside, that left plenty of room in the trailer for other "stuff" too.
However, if you do opt for it in a pu bed there are several options available to make that process easier, but not inexpensive. Good luck.
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Old 11-30-2020, 12:21 PM   #4
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if you are set on the pick up,
1) make sure it is a long bed
2) always try to load and unload using a berm/embankment so the angle is lessened

now lots of guys will do a hydrolift i look into them when i had my v rod with cost of unit, install and the hard shell bike cover it was 7k

i ended upgoing with a 2018 20x8.5 enclosed car hauler hauls the car the rollaway tool box the motorcycle with the cost of the custom hitch having the tool box bolted though the floor into the frame 7k

to me best option for you is the jeep worth trading to a mini cooper or getting a larger trailer? only you can say
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Old 11-30-2020, 04:56 PM   #5
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If you buy on of the lifts like Fire Up you can load the motorcycle on the ground and it will power itself into the bed of the truck. If you want the tailgate to close get a long bed truck. If you don't mind it riding on the tailgate a short bed truck will be fine. There are several manufactures who make lifts like this. Most are very stable, locking in the front tire and then adding straps. Once the bike is secured it raises either electrically or hydraulically.
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Old 11-30-2020, 05:28 PM   #6
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Get the "Biker Bar" secure to bed of pick up. using a berm or, loading platform, attach biker bar to bike, ride/push onto bed of truck and lock in place. very stable and don't need straps.
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Old 11-30-2020, 08:17 PM   #7
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Been riding Harleys since 1977.....

I currently have an FX softail, an FL softail, and an Ultra Classic bagger.... I wouldn't put any of them in the back of a pickup... let a lone do it as a routine.. Just too many things that can go very wrong, very quickly, if you lose your concentration/focus for a split second..

If I was planning to use the bed of a toad pick-up truck for routinely bringing a large motorcycle along, I would definitely spend the money on one of the auto loading ramp systems... like this one..

https://www.discountramps.com/power-...amp/p/RAMPAGE/

It's about the cost of a decent open trailer, but you have the convenience of putting it in the bed of your toad..


Both your back and your bike will thank you in the long run...
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Old 11-30-2020, 09:04 PM   #8
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Search for Rampage bike lift. It lies flat on the ground, you ride the bike on to it and tie it down. The lift then pulls itself up in to the bed of the pickup. No dangerous ramps, etc to worry about. It can hang over the tailgate so it works in some shorter beds.
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Old 11-30-2020, 09:50 PM   #9
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Can't imagine attempting to load a full dress Harley in a pickup without the help of 4 big guys. Good luck
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Old 11-30-2020, 10:25 PM   #10
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The worst campground accident I ever saw was a guy riding his great big motorcycle up into the bed of his pickup truck on a narrow ramp.

They fell off and it took 5 of us to get the bike off him. The whole time his girlfriend was there yelling at him because she told him not to do it.

He was hurt pretty bad and they took him to the hospital. I never heard anymore as it was in the morning and we were leaving.

I don't know what kind of bike but it was HEAVY I know that.

So it you are going to be doing that do it where there are people around to help you get out from under the bike....
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Old 11-30-2020, 10:33 PM   #11
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I have a short bed and a Cruiser Ramp loader. As long as you reinforce the tailgate supports it works pretty good. We have hauled a Suzuki Boulevard and a Honda VTX 1300 several times over several hundred miles. The loader will take up to 1200 pounds. It is much safer and easier than trying to load it off a berm or ride it in. I have yet to load up my Goldwing.
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Old 11-30-2020, 10:50 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanGlo52 View Post
Folks, if anyone has done this please let me know if it is easily done and how well you like it. I have 2004 winnebago Vectra That we flat tow a Jeep Wrangler behind it. Problem is that I have a Harley that stays home all the time. I am thinking of selling the Jeep, getting a Ram 1500 and putting the Harley in the bed of the truck. Has anyone done this does it work well, tow well. Kwife insists on crew Cab, 4 door truck. What size of bed do I need. I appreciate all responses. TIA.
DanGlo52,
Well, first off, anyone who advises NOT to load a full dress bike, i.e. Harley, Honda Goldwing, BMW K1600, Yamaha, Indian or any other top of the line, full weighted bike into the back of a truck because the earth will cease to rotate, is just not informed. And NO, YOU DON'T NEED A LONG BED!!!!!!!!!!!

Our truck is an '11 GMC Sierra 1500 Extended Cab SHORT BED. Well, to be honest, it's a 6' bed, not a 5.5'. Annnnnywaaaay, we use the Rampage lift/carrier to haul our '08 Goldwing. The Wing hovers real close to 900 lbs. That's *very* close to a full dress Harley. I used to have a Hydralift that I installed on the back of our '04 Itasca Horizon 36GD with the CAT C-7 330HP and it hauled the Wing with absolutely ZERO issues in over 2 years and over 8,000 miles.

No wandering, not tire issues, the coach handled the additional weight of the Hydralift and the Wing without even hesitating. Some thought the world was gonna end if I put a Hydralift on anything less than a tandem axled coach. Well, something's wrong because, the world is still turning AND rotating, I think!

But, for various reasons, we opted out of carrying the Wing on the back of the coach and opted FOR using the truck and a Rampage lift/carrier. We've carried that Wing in the back of the truck for well over about 8+ years now and, contrary to some popular belief, the truck handles it just fine.

Heck, there used to be a gent on here that hauled a full dress Harley in the back of a FORD RANGER! He did have to install some additional air bags to compensate for the droop of the truck with that kind of weight in it. But, that worked really well for him. He'd pop that Harley into the truck, zip some air into the bags and, the truck would ride completely level. How about that!!!!

Anyway, I designed that Rampage install system in such a way that, it's not carried in the truck at all, unless we need it. I built a cart for it. And, I built the cart so it holds the Rampage at one inch above the height of the bed floor of the truck. I installed a mount plate on the underside of the bed of the truck and welded nuts on it, so that when the Rampage was loaded, I'd screw (2) 1/2" x 3.5" x 13 bolts down through the front of the Rampage, and into the welded nuts on the bottom side of the bed. Then, in the rear (the tail end of the Rampage) I installed (3) 3/8" nutserts in the bed.

Now, when it comes time to load the Rampage, I park the truck on my flat, level concrete side yard. Off comes the tail gate because, It's totally useless when the Rampage is going to be used. Then, I roll the Rampage up to the rear edge of the bed. Since the Rampage is 1" higher than the bed floor, the cart continues to roll right up to the point the cart bumps up against the rear bumper. At that point, I lift the rear of the Rampage and, the wife wheels the cart out of the way.

I then slide that Rampage forward (it comes with phenolic type plastic blocks attached to the bottom side so it does not scratch the bed) and into position to screw the front bolts into position. I then align the rear section so the three 3/8 x 1.5" x 16 bolts screw through the Rampage frame and into the bed. DONE! Then, I plug in the 12V winch to a 50 amp Anderson plug that sits in the front left corner of the bed. Done.

Now, when it comes time to load the bike, I attach the Winch control to the winch and, pull a couple of pins and, the sections of the Rampage begin to move backwards and tilt down to accept the bike. Ever seen a *Roll back* wrecker that picks up cars at accidents? Well, the Rampage is the SAME EXACT CONCEPT.

NO, YOU DON'T NEED 4 GUYS to load your Harley!! You need only ONE, YOU!!!!! The bike is rode right up to the wheel dolly that is now positioned at the pavement/concrete. The front wheel is entered into the wheel dolly. The bike is parked and kick stand placed down. Then, you apply two tie downs to the front (where you'd normally apply them for transport) and attach them to the cross bar that is attached to the wheel dolly.

That is primarily it, in prep for lifting the bike into the back of the truck. You then stand back and PUSH A BUTTON, to lift a 900 lb. bike into the back of your truck. Does it look precarious, hell yeah it does. Does it look *Scary*? hell yeah it does!! Has there EVER BEEN AN ISSUE doing it this way, he....... ,no there hasn't!!!! It's worked every single time I've used it. And that's around oh, maybe a hundred or more times. Yes, I've used it that much because, when we travel, then find a place to stay for more than a day, I off load that Wing and, we're off and riding some place.

People are often amazed at watching it off and on load off and onto that Rampage and into and out of, the back of the truck.

Now, when we get back home, within a 20 minute period, the Wing is off-loaded and, the Rampage is unbolted and, remounted on it's cart and wheeled away from the truck. The tail gate is re-installed, DONE!

Can the truck be driven with the 900 lb. Wing in the back? Yep, without any issues what so ever. There's been many, many times when we were not going to unload the Wing due to a short stay in a campground/RV park and after setting up the RV, would run to dinner etc. with the Wing in the back of the truck. No issues at all.

So, that's the story. Will the Rampage lift/carrier work in anything less than a full length bed, WITHOUT A DOUBT! I and many others have proved it time and time again. The payload of our '11 GMC is 1,500 lbs. The Wing and the lift hover real close to 1,200-1,300 lbs. How much does our truck sag when the lift and Wing are in it? About 2"-2.5" or so. No big deal. If you have any questions about it, surely PM me and I'd be glad to help.
Scott
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Old 11-30-2020, 11:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FIRE UP View Post

Well, first off, anyone who advises NOT to load a full dress bike into the back of a truck because the earth will cease to rotate, is just not informed.


NO, YOU DON'T NEED 4 GUYS to load your Harley!! You need only ONE, YOU!!!!!

One of us must have misunderstood the advice he was given....

I don't recall anyone saying a toad truck wouldn't handle the weight of a large motorcycle...

I also don't recall anyone advising against the use of an auto loading ramp... some believed you NEED a long bed truck. However the websites of several auto loading ramps say they can be used with a short bed truck, so that's not an issue..

People, myself included, were advising against loading into the back of a pickup truck, due to the safety issues of dropping the bike while loading it via a simple push up or ride up style ramp...

The 4 guys comment was again, referencing loading the bike via a simple ramp, not an auto loading ramp....

I believe an auto loading ramp, like the Rampage, would be the hot ticket if using the toad pick up bed for a motorcycle, especially a heavy street bike...

You are proof of that working well....

If using an auto loading ramp to put a motorcycle on the toad, staying within the payload limits of the toad and the max tow weight limits of the RV doing the towing, would be my only cautions...

OP... let us know what you decide...
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Old 12-01-2020, 01:33 AM   #14
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Two things.....there is a company (DG) that makes a metal strap that that slips onto the locks on both sides that adds extra support, to the tailgate cables.

https://www.dgmtailgatesupport.com/p...lgate-support/

Second, I towed a half ton Silverado 4 door, with a 50" RZR in the bed. About 1200 pounds. I felt much more comfortable/stable with air bags, leveling the truck.
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