Bike racks


thomasvandyke

New member
Help! Saw a really cool rack for bikes which fit onto the tow points below rear bumper of Westy. I shoulda copied down the 800 number of the manufacture posted on the rack BUT I DIDN'T. Now the only thing I can find on the web is the XR2 model by gearonthego.com and it doesn't look like the same rack. The one I saw, I think, had gutter-like wheel mounts, not the traditional post and arm which fits through the bike frame. Does this ring anyone's bell? By the way, I'm off for a 2-month trip to Alaska from San Francisco via Bonner's Ferry, Idaho and the Canadian Rockies. Thanks Cap'n Mike!
 
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Capt. Mike

Moderator
Transferred from another post to consolidate like topics.

Bike Racks for tow hitches.

zadar, Member # 490 posted 02-11-2001 11:45 AM

I know everyone is talking about hitches to tow hooks. But I am looking for a 2" reciever hitch for my '83½. Not even for towing, but a bike rack instead. Does anyone produce such a beast? Since I am having no luck. Have any other Westie owners dealt with this? Thanx
 
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Capt. Mike

Moderator
Transferred from the reply another post on wrong forum.

Colby Junior Member # 858 posted 06-14-2001 08:00 PM

I just bought a bike rack for my '87 westy that holds three bikes. it is made by Rhode Gear and they have a few similar models, includes one for four bikes. it is a trunk style rack that straps on to the back hatch. there are six straps that attach around the hatch and two places where the rack touches the van. i have adjusted it so that those two places are above and below the rear window. i was concerned that the flat window back there would not take much pressure. the rack cost 65 bucks.

Another option is the type that attaches to a trailer hitch receiver. they are in the $120-200 price range, and you need a place to mount 'em. it will cost around that to set up a mount if you don't have one. these are nice because they don't touch the van will fold out of the way to open the back, though, i can still open the back of my van with two bikes attached. good luck,

Colby
 

Dave Hampshire

New member
I drove all over Europe in the early 90's with my '78 Westy hauling what was then a cutting-edge mountain bike on a folding rack strapped to the rear hatch. Rack, which I still have, has the standard foam-covered bars with a curve in the end that would hold possibly two mtb's. Was never happy with having my "other" ride way out in back, and of course the security was only as good as the honesty of the potential thief. Bought my second Westy, a '79, in May last year and discovered that you can buy a quick-release fork mount clamp that allows bike storage in pick-ups, suv's etc. Bought one of these clamps, and mounted it horizontally to the bench seat cabinet, just below the oval cabinet door. Off comes the front tire of the bike, and the forks lock in tight to the adjustable clamp, with the rear tire sitting just to the rear of the drivers seat. Keep in mind that my Westy has a Vanagon stove-fridge cabinet mounted, so I don't have the normal Type 2 sink unit in the way. I have mounted one of these fork clamps, but there is room for a second. Of course the bike uses up interior room and I can't open the oval cabinet door when the bike is mounted, but it's far more secure and the pedals aren't going to scratch the paint on the engine hatch! If I need to access the gear stored under the bench, I just lift it up and reach in. With my bike, I can still haul two passengers on the bench as well. Enjoy! /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif
 

thomasvandyke

New member
Most of the folding-type bike racks I have seen since my post on this last year are for 2-inch recievers on tow-mount. I have the standard tow hook-to-tow hook tow bar and trailer hitch now for a small trailer I use to haul dirt bikes. So I'm thinking of having the neighbor's kid weld a 2" piece of channel onto the tow bar just to mount the bike rack of my dreams. I'll let you know how that works out in and if I get around to it. Meanwhile, I found a NEW Hollywood brand bike rack for $3 in Oxnard, CA while I killed time waiting for a new axle to be installed. Can't beat that!
 

Capt. Mike

Moderator
Please read the topic on tow hitches & towing. There is evidence that the 2 rear "tow rings" on a Vanagon are NOT designed to withstand any verticle tongue-weight type stresses and that they are primarily intended for horizontal tie-down forces.
 

icarus

Moderator
Two thought regarding racks and bike racks.
1. there is a company in Bellingham wa ("Advantage rack" www.rackbiz.com or 888-722-5240) that makes a really cool bike rack that CLAMPS! over a 2"ball hitch. YOu don't need a reciever hitch. IT holds 2 bikes just fine, folds flat for easy storeage. No wierd straps or clamps. I move it from car to car. I just bought a 86 syncro and would like to find a cheap trailer hitch for it, just for the bikes.
(I got a nice hitch that bolts on the tow eyes (rdgid htich, Burnsville, Mn.)on my syncro. It is a simple square tube with a welded flange for the ball. It holds my bike rack (above) just fine.I'm not sure I would want to pull anthing heavier than my Zodiac with it though. I also bungee skis on in the winter. I'm thinking of adding a yakima box to it to carry skis out of the salt.)
2. There is a guy in Calgary Ab that makes a number of cool powder coated racks for westies including for gas cans, bikes, ladders, spare tires etc. They are very reasonably priced, and look well make. I have't seen one in person though. try http://www.telusplanet.net/public/gary2a/rack/vanagonrack.htm
 
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Capt. Mike

Moderator
Transferred to consolidate same topic.

DrPangloss Junior Member posted April 10, 2003 03:38 PM

I have a 1990 Westy. I want to add a bike rack to my van similar to the kind I've seen on the front end of metro buses. Basically, it folds down and lets you place two bicycles comfortably into grooves. I know I could have a custom hitch mounted to the front of my 1990 vanagon to support this kind of rack. What I'm concerned with is the possible blocking of airflow across the radiator. I would take the bra off of my van to help out with this problem. My reasoning for the front mount has to due with not wanting to block the hatch and not wanting to add more weight to the rear of my bus which already has to deal with the heavy engine being on that end. Any advice?
 

frito

New member
I looked at the racks at the link above www.telusplanet.net. I agree that these look super slick.

I was stopped by the police here in Washington state last month coming home from a short stay in Canada. I was told that it is against the law here to obscure the license plate as my hitch mount bike rack does on my 85 Westfalia. This turned into a delay as the border patrol was interested in a VW van that let out a passenger to run across the border. Well, I was let go (not me nor my van involved) but I have decided to change my rack to keep under the radar.

So here is the question. How much weight can you hang from the rear door? I have seen other German racks do this but I wonder if this has caused any problems with the door alignment etc?
 
I was looking for some answers to what my options were when it came to a bike rack. Since my pop to p already carries my space case and my kayaks that did not leave me any options except fabricate a reciever hitch to work on the rear. I made a reciever hitch type so that i could use any hitch mounted bike rack. I've recieve many compliments n the rack and it does a great job. If any of you are interesed in seeing some pictures of how it is done please email me and i'll send you some shots. Ben@yard-works.com
 

icarus

Moderator
I just bought a really nice rack from a Rustifalia owner in Minn. on Ebay. It is anodized alluminum, clamp on the back door Paulchen style. It has a tray that folds up when not in use. The tray also has groove in it for two bike tires. (It is made as a bike/cargo rack. It is very heavy duty while being light weight (15lbs)). The only ID is a sticker in german that says load limit 40kgs. The previous owner said that he got it in germany and has no idea who made it. It is a great rack and if anyone knows what it is, it would be nice to share the info.

Icarus
 

skink

New member
Icarus- it might be a Fiamma. I think Eurocampers.com sells them. You might want to check out the site as it has pics of the rack. Good luck.
 

icarus

Moderator
It might indeed be a fiama, although an older version of the new ones, except that I think it was made in germany.
Icarus
 

Yukon_Girl

New member
Help! I am totally discouraged... we borrowed our friends Thule rack that fit into our 2' received hitch and went on a weekend with our bikes. (4 altogether) it was great -- it was wonderful having the bikes with us now that the kids are old enough to bike without complaining their legs hurt! Anyway, I came & logged in and nearly had to get the paddles when I saw the posting about tongue weight!!! So, here is my question... we have 4 bikes that we want to take. We often have to take ferries and the length of the vehicle ends up costing a fortune, so a trailer isn't an option... Does anyone have any ideas that might help us?
 

Capt. Mike

Moderator
You didn't give year or model, but if 4 bikes are exceeding the tongue weight, why not split it up with a couple up front? If a Vanagon, there are two nice flat frame members at the front that would make good anchor points for a custom mount and then attach one of the commercial racks for 2 bikes. Along the idea of the city buses I routinely see with bike racks on the front.
 

Yukon_Girl

New member
Thank you! Yes we do have a Vanagon (1990). I'm wondering however if the bikes on the front will block the headlights at all when we are down south (not so much an issue up north in the summer).
 

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