Need bike rack

TX Julie

Member
Nov 29, 2021
29
Richardson
UPDATED: pictures added to show my hitch.
Options for bicycles are very limited- no hitch space
We need to put 2 road bikes on our PUP. We ordered this orange product on amazon, and it is not compatible with our bumper. (and gets terrible reviews)
The last photo is another product that would work (could probably retrofit to fit the bumper)
BUT
Our manual doesn't indicate how much weight the back bumper can support.
Ideas?
UPDATE: Summarizing all of the great input of others. Most rear bumpers of a PUP are worthless! Nothing should be attached to them. And when considering a bike rack of any kind on the tongue, tongue weight is a huge consideration. Great options are ProRac.
I'll post our solution soon.
 

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myride

Super Active Member
Gold Supporting Member
May 14, 2015
1,264
Edmonton, AB
I'm sure you will get others chiming in but the general consensus is and will be nothing as heavy as a carrier and 2 bikes should be strapped to that rear bumper. It will throw your tongue weight off and is not designed for any type of carrier. My suggestion is either roof mount a carrier on PUC, a tongue mounted rack such as the ProRac system (which served myself and others beautifully for many years) or mount them to the TV.
 

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,503
Northern Virginia
Unfortunately when it comes to the popup these bumpers are mainly just for looks. If you strap anything heavy especially something that can bounce that bumper can fall off the camper. Many people look into something called a pro rack system or Jerry rig something similar to the pro rack. I personally used a regular hatch back bike rack on the back of my suv although This doesn’t always work for everyone as a Bike could interfere with things on the tongue. Check out the bike rack section on this forum for more Ideas.
 

TX Julie

Member
Nov 29, 2021
29
Richardson
nothing on the bumper- got it!
looking at a double hitch or a Pro Rac. Our tongue is very compact and not extra space- our lift crank is on the tongue by the tongue foot crank, so very little space to work with.
thanks everybody!
 

myride

Super Active Member
Gold Supporting Member
May 14, 2015
1,264
Edmonton, AB
nothing on the bumper- got it!
looking at a double hitch or a Pro Rac. Our tongue is very compact and not extra space- our lift crank is on the tongue by the tongue foot crank, so very little space to work with.
thanks everybody!
The double hitch idea also hurts your tongue weight...not a great idea either.

The ProRac system takes up VERY little space on your tongue.
 

TX Julie

Member
Nov 29, 2021
29
Richardson
The double hitch idea also hurts your tongue weight...not a great idea either.

The ProRac system takes up VERY little space on your tongue.
we are considering the tongue weight. our PUP only weighs 1500 pounds, so we assume the tongue weight will be fine.
not sure what tongue weight is can support- i'll look for a decal on it this weekend, haven't seen one yet.
tips?
 

davido

Super Active Member
Jul 17, 2014
1,347
A roof top rack on the tow vehicle or a roof top rack on the trailer. Those are the best options for MOST people.

Anything on the back bumper will bend the bumper or the trailer frame as you bounce down the road.

A double-hitch extends the distance between the tow vehicle's rear axle and the trailer's tongue, which increases the amount of tongue weight the tow vehicle's suspension feels; you'll sag more. Plus you'll be adding 100 pounds to the tongue. So if you had a 300 pound tongue, it's now 400 pounds, but because of lever forces your tow vehicle will think you're at 500 pounds.

Anything on the A-frame area of the trailer will increase your tongue weight by the weight of the rack plus bikes. So you could easily turn a 300 pound tongue into a 400 pound tongue.

A vehicle roof-top rack is useful even if you're not towing, but puts the bikes way up high.

A trailer roof-top rack is useful for almost every camping trip. You can strap your easy-up canopy to it, also. And while it does add some tongue weight ,you can mount it such that the weight is fairly well distributed between the tongue and the trailer's axle. So your tongue weight only goes up by 40-50 pounds. To me this is the ideal solution. It's what I use.
 

Steve West

Member
Oct 6, 2019
10
I've just had a hitch put on the back under the PUC's 'bumper' -- bolted to the 2x3s that run the length of the camper and stick out the back. Now I can put my hitch bike rack on the back of the camper. I'll be headed out in May and will see how well that works out. A few years ago, I removed the cooler/heater from the top which gave me even more tongue weight, so the bike and rack gets a little slack. I also put a second propane tank on the front. I don't think it will cause much of a problem, but I'll see how well it works. Since I have an ABS roof, I'm not putting a bike carrier on the roof, and the roof of my Suburban is too high for the bikes. Maybe if needed, I'll add a sway bar. I'm not expecting much of a problem. I should say that the PUC is a Sante Fe.
 

Sneezer

Super Active Member
Aug 8, 2015
3,004
DFW, TX
Swagman works great for lighter trailers that fall within the weight limitations of the unit and your TV. As others have stated, bolt on bike racks to the rear bumper will cause problems. Some pups have a strong enough frame that a welded hitch receiver can be added, but that is extra expense and with a lighter pup it may really screw up your weight distribution.

For a couple years I used a hatch mounted bike rack. It was made to hold 4 bikes, but because of the angle of my hatch I only carried 2 (which was all I needed anyway). These can be had pretty cheap, and just strap on to your rear hatch or trunk depending on your needs. It does prevent you from opening the hatch though, but that was a tradeoff for the cost savings for me.
 

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,503
Northern Virginia
I'll be headed out in May and will see how well that works out.
I suggest to try it out sooner than in the middle of your trip. My father figured he would be fine with his 2 bikes strapped to the back of the popup and once he got to highway speed found out he was VERY wrong. So now on the busy interstate he had to figure out where to put two bikes with a ton of camping gear everywhere. Not the time or place to worry about bikes. So I suggest to try it out before your TV is fully loaded for a trip but I would pack your camper as if you were going on the trip. So the weight is about the same. I would also wight your tongue before and after your bikes to ensure you still have the required 10-15% tongue weight. For your sake I hope it works out for you. It just won't work for everyone.
 

Sabotsailfam

Member
Feb 24, 2021
23
San Diego, CA
I agree with others here that, bottom line, your best best is to put bikes on the vehicle. Alternatively, get a pretty extravagant, costly and heavy rack that extends all the way down to the frame like the Aussies do with their outback rigs. They pivot out of the way when at the camp site. Not a realistic choice for most people, but it helps you avoid perforations and weight on your roof. Both can become a big problem.

It's also good advice not to use the rear bumper at all because I think most of them are garbage. However..... I'm going to be one of the few people on this site who say our rear rack was one of the best accessories (solar is def #1) we've added. I know, I know, thank you, Captain Contradiction.

The truth is, I'll never again go without a rear rack on this pup. In the past couple of years, we've been on many trips, including all the way to Glacier, Seattle, and back to San Diego. Out to Utah, Tetons/Yellowstone, Joshua Tree, etc. Many local trips. Just got back from Yosemite a week ago. If I had to guess, we've had nearly 10k miles of rear rack perfection with tons of extra room. Our local trips usually include at least some desert off-road (bumpy dirt roads, not overlanding), so that's probably the best stress-test. Literally no change, bending, flexing etc of any kind. Our usual setup is mostly lighter gear, not bikes. The exception is a 6 gallon water jug (nearly 50 pounds) directly over the left side bumper. Substantial weight that hangs past the actual bumper more than a few inches is avoided, though I'd be willing to test it with two bikes off-road sometime. I'd never even consider a rear receiver bike rack. The amount of flopping would be hard to mitigate with all that distance from the axle. Expect a disaster with that.

I've never towed with a bike on this setup because the space is usually already spoken for, though I did put two of them on at the house and it looks like it would be ok with two. Not particularly worried about the weight of two if I keep the bikes close to the back of the camper versus in the slats. To be honest, the lousy bumper isn't wide enough for the bikes to drop fully into the slots in the racks mounted closer together, so I took off the front wheels and strapped them on. Looked pretty good. I also installed the racks in an off-the-instructions way, with two racks for vertical protection and straps as well as two horizontal.

I think another guy tried the same setup and posted about it, so it might be a good idea to check with him about whether his rear bumper is still there or on the highway somewhere.

Make sure you check the welds on your bumper. Mine are full welds where they attach to the frame. I keep hearing about partial spot welds, etc. No bueno. There are so many variables (trailer load, vehicle, specific trailer, tongue weight, welds of etc), and you'll need to factor in all of them when you make your plans. 2016 MAC 207 is the trailer if that's helpful. It has a full-frame on the sides, C channel frame on the rear, C channel bumper fully welded (not spot welds) to rear frame with channel off the back. Literally almost zero movement when I stand on these racks; 195 pounds. Trailer itself says 1,400 cargo capacity total, which might be higher than normal -- I have no idea, but the frame seems pretty sturdy.

One of the big factors for me is a real rarity in pop up trailers, which is that I actually need to *reduce* tongue weight. This trailer seems to carry a lot of the weight forward of the axle, including most of the water tank. I love being able to weight the bumper slightly so when we are on long trips with tons on gear, water the car (MDX) is not buried in the back. Tows like a dream even up to 75 mph. Can't tell the trailer's even there most of the time.

My main message is One size does not fit all. Observe. Think it through. Use heavy dose of caution. Test.

Good luck, folks. I hope it works for somebody out there. Here's the post where I detailed the racks and some important considerations, including how to install it to reduce torsion on the bumper and also the location of your pull out bed poles. Cool bonus of the setup is that you use quick pins and remove the horizontal racks when not in use or parked at home.
 

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Sabotsailfam

Member
Feb 24, 2021
23
San Diego, CA
I agree with others here that, bottom line, your best best is to put bikes on the vehicle. Alternatively, get a pretty extravagant, costly and heavy rack that extends all the way down to the frame like the Aussies do with their outback rigs. They pivot out of the way when at the camp site. Not a realistic choice for most people, but it helps you avoid perforations and weight on your roof. Both can become a big problem.

It's also good advice not to use the rear bumper at all because I think most of them are garbage. However..... I'm going to be one of the few people on this site who say our rear rack was one of the best accessories (solar is def #1) we've added. I know, I know, thank you, Captain Contradiction.

The truth is, I'll never again go without a rear rack on this pup. In the past couple of years, we've been on many trips, including all the way to Glacier, Seattle, and back to San Diego. Out to Utah, Tetons/Yellowstone, Joshua Tree, etc. Many local trips. Just got back from Yosemite a week ago. If I had to guess, we've had nearly 10k miles of rear rack perfection with tons of extra room. Our local trips usually include at least some desert off-road (bumpy dirt roads, not overlanding), so that's probably the best stress-test. Literally no change, bending, flexing etc of any kind. Our usual setup is mostly lighter gear, not bikes. The exception is a 6 gallon water jug (nearly 50 pounds) directly over the left side bumper. Substantial weight that hangs past the actual bumper more than a few inches is avoided, though I'd be willing to test it with two bikes off-road sometime. I'd never even consider a rear receiver bike rack. The amount of flopping would be hard to mitigate with all that distance from the axle. Expect a disaster with that.

I've never towed with a bike on this setup because the space is usually already spoken for, though I did put two of them on at the house and it looks like it would be ok with two. Not particularly worried about the weight of two if I keep the bikes close to the back of the camper versus in the slats. To be honest, the lousy bumper isn't wide enough for the bikes to drop fully into the slots in the racks mounted closer together, so I took off the front wheels and strapped them on. Looked pretty good. I also installed the racks in an off-the-instructions way, with two racks for vertical protection and straps as well as two horizontal.

I think another guy tried the same setup and posted about it, so it might be a good idea to check with him about whether his rear bumper is still there or on the highway somewhere.

Make sure you check the welds on your bumper. Mine are full welds where they attach to the frame. I keep hearing about partial spot welds, etc. No bueno. There are so many variables (trailer load, vehicle, specific trailer, tongue weight, welds of etc), and you'll need to factor in all of them when you make your plans. 2016 MAC 207 is the trailer if that's helpful. It has a full-frame on the sides, C channel frame on the rear, C channel bumper fully welded (not spot welds) to rear frame with channel off the back. Literally almost zero movement when I stand on these racks; 195 pounds. Trailer says 1,400 cargo capacity, which might be higher than normal -- I have no idea, but the frame seems pretty sturdy.

One of the big factors for me is a real rarity in pop up trailers, which is that I actually need to *reduce* tongue weight. This trailer seems to carry a lot of the weight forward of the axle, including most of the water tank. I love being able to weight the bumper slightly so when we are on long trips with tons on gear, water the car (MDX) is not buried in the back. Tows like a dream even up to 75 mph. Can't tell the trailer's even there most of the time.

My main message is One size does not fit all. Observe. Think it through. Use heavy dose of caution. Test.

Good luck, folks. I hope it works for somebody out there. Here's the post where I detailed the racks and some important considerations eg location of your pull out bed poles. Cool bonus of the setup is that you use quick pins and remove the horizontal racks when not in use or parked at home.
...Just realized that I failed to mention that they are billed as bike racks. They are Quickproducts racks; two sets didn't use the vertical post, but you could if desired.
 
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