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Old 07-02-2014, 08:36 PM   #1
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Bike Rack

Looking for ideas on the best way to transport 4 bikes on my camper. Thanks for any info.
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Old 07-03-2014, 04:48 AM   #2
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My camper has a reese receiver hitch on the back bumper that is unbolted down that will take a reese bike rack. My bike rack is one that can hold 4 bikes.
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Old 07-03-2014, 07:02 AM   #3
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Quote:
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My camper has a reese receiver hitch on the back bumper that is unbolted down that will take a reese bike rack. My bike rack is one that can hold 4 bikes.
If your hitch is only u-bolted to the bumper, and not indepedantly attached to the frame, be very careful the bumper is rated for a MAXIMUM of 100 pounds.

There have been several reported cases of bumpers twisting off.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:06 AM   #4
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Thanks I will have my dad take a close look at it to make sure that it is rated for our bikes. I haven't camped yet with bikes. We just got the camper this spring. Our first real camping trip is to the county fair for a week while my daughter shows livestock.
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Old 07-03-2014, 01:29 PM   #5
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ImageUploadedByTapatalk1404415770.025081.jpg
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Old 07-03-2014, 07:09 PM   #6
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to prevent this
IMG_00944.JPG
I had this 2" tube and 2" receiver welded to the frame to hold my bike rack.

IMG_0333.jpg
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Old 07-03-2014, 09:04 PM   #7
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DO NOT PUT ANY BIKES ON A BUMPER MOUNTED RECEIVER!!!!! I almost lost mine. Lucky I stopped for a break and noticed the bikes seemed to be hanging lower than when I started. The bumper was actually crumpling and twisting under the weight. Welding a receiver to the frame will work, but the bikes will change weight on the tongue. You might want to load some of your gear in front of the tires to compensate.
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:20 PM   #8
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DO NOT PUT ANY BIKES ON A BUMPER MOUNTED RECEIVER!!!!! Welding a receiver to the frame will work, but the bikes will change weight on the tongue. You might want to load some of your gear in front of the tires to compensate.
yep
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Old 07-04-2014, 09:35 PM   #9
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Hauling bikes to the campground and on the camper can be a challenge. And 4 bikes is worse than 2 bikes.

This also starts with, are all 4 adult bikes or 2 kids bikes? (more complex on 4 adult bikes)

What is your tow vehicle? Pending what it is, there may be options there.

The back of the camper has several issues to overcome, while it may have worked for some, it does not work for all. Many things to work through on the back of the camper. Hopefully this is your last resort.

Some have them inside the camper. They have made a special fork mount to hold them in place and not create damage. Others wrap them up in blankets. Depending on the floor plan this may or may not be an option.

In my case I mounted a bike rack on the A frame of the camper. This was unique to my setup. The camper A frame is built big enough and I have a large enough truck to hold the extra added tongue weight. If your truck can handle the added tongue weight and your A frame is heavy enough, 2 bikes maybe fit here, maybe 3


I have also had them on the front of the Suburban when I had a K2500 Burb. They towed well there but there are issues to work through there too. Have to watch they do not block your lights and then there is a cooling capacity issue. 2 bikes are possible, much more then that issues can come from excess tyranny heat.

If you have a pick up, many have made bed racks to hold by the front forks. And some made holders to go left to right across the back of the cab.

My son puts his 2 adult bikes inside the back of his Expedition. And now that he has an Avalanche, he has 2 on a roof rack as it has to carry a Kayak too.

If you can get them up on the truck roof, that is an option.

Getting all our toys to and from camp can be a challenge.

With 4 bikes, you may need 2 places.

Let us know more on your situation.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:05 PM   #10
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I haul all 5 of the bikes for my family in the back of my truck. It is what works for me.
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Old 07-25-2014, 05:11 AM   #11
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My dad looked at my bumper and it is welded to the frame of my camper
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Old 07-25-2014, 07:57 AM   #12
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JennyC..I lost TWO bumpers hauling 2 bikes on Sunnies with welded bumpers and using TWO different type bike carriers!! I had the second one reinforced but it still twisted off..then I lost one on a class C motorhome and the bikes fortunately leaned down onto the towbar towing my car!! We sold the bikes !! The only safe way IMHO is inside your camper or tow vehicle. Janalee
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Old 07-25-2014, 07:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
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My dad looked at my bumper and it is welded to the frame of my camper
He is correct, it IS welded .... BUT the brackets are thin and the square bumper is also thin. It doesn't take much force to tear the bumper off the bracket as Janalee mentioned in her experience.

Some people have welded sturdy brackets to the frame of the camper and heavier bars to the new brackets. It does take someone who understands the stresses involved to weld up the correct assembly.
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Old 08-02-2014, 07:10 AM   #14
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To help folks spot and show a "vintage" of the Sunline bumper, see here

The mounts on the camper vary pending model and frame size. This is the mount is on the larger campers with I shape main frame rails. The slotted bracket is welded to the frame.


Then... the bumper. It is made like this on purpose to only hold enough weight and once exceeded it will literally bend backwards or tear off. This same setup was on my T2499 and the bigger T310SR


Here is breakaway plate


That small thin plate ~ 1/16" thick, is welded to the 4 x 4 tube bumper. There are carriage bolts that start inside the bumper protruding outwards. There are holes in the 4 x 4 OD tube so the bolt only holds the thin 1/16" plate. When the bumper is bolted up to the camper, this 1/16" thin plate acts like a breakaway device. When the load on the bumper is exceeded, this plate will bend in the center allowing the bumper to twist backwards with the weight. The larger the weight, the more this plate setup fails to the point of complete tear off.

Now why did they do this? I do not have this confirmed by the factory folks but here is my deduction on why. Sunline was very good about creating campers that are properly balanced with good weight distribution on the tow ball to create a stable towing camper. Adding weight to the back of the camper can change the loaded tongue weight and when the weight gets high enough, it can create an unstable towing camper. Since there are many floor plans and people do not all load their campers the same or put gear in certain places, they just declared, no more weight on the rear bumper than 100# which is barely enough to hold the spare tire.

The bumper is intended to help in rear collisions. The push is all towards the camper, not backwards. This break away mount allows the bumper to act as a bumper in a rear collision but limits the amount of weight added which may and can affect towing stability.

Over the years and on this forum we have seen at least 2 vintages of this break away bumper. The one I show is the newer/latest vintage. Do not know the model years, I speculate later 90's all the way to 2007 models. I think it was Steve Collins who had a camper with the older style as someone had pics showing it. The concept was similar but accomplished different. And then some may have a bumper of very long ago made differently before Sunline caught on about people adding too much weight on the back of the camper.

We have also seen some bumpers that the prior owner did weld the bumper to the main frame rails. This was not Sunlines doing, but someone modifying it. As we have many new folks to the forum or even some of us long time folks, we may or may not know unless you bought your Sunny new, is this the factory setup or did someone modify it?

So this is some on the history of the bumper and the concerns of weight on the back of the camper. Not all floor plans have the same weight and balance to the camper. Some floor plant have very low effect by weight on the rear of the camper and some have a very large issue with much weight back there.

And then there is the bounce factor. Most Sunline TT's never had shocks on them like most all TT's. The lack of shock extremely aggravate a very large road caused bounce on a bike rack some 4 to 8 feet behind the rear axle of the camper. That bounce and impact can kill a bike rack or your mount if not accounted for.

Hope this helps

John
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