How Many Bicycles Do You Put on Your Hitch Carrier?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by gordonr, Jun 2, 2005.

  1. gordonr

    gordonr Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2005
    117
    5
    0
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(bacinmass @ Aug 29 2006, 05:22 PM) [snapback]311295[/snapback]</div>

    The sportsrig seems very nice and has lots of configuration options. There is someone else on this site who has a similar micro-trailer from www.rackandroll.com. Check a recent post regarding installing the coastal hitch for the info. Maybe that guy has some feedback. Seems like an interesting alternative to putting stuff on the roof. I guess you have to learn to back up a trailer, and deal with finding longer parking spots.
     
  2. davidf

    davidf New Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    41
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(bruceha_2000 @ Aug 16 2006, 10:15 AM) [snapback]304163[/snapback]</div>
    Sorry it took so long to get back on this. We just got our bikes back from our friends today.

    The bikes added up to about 130 lbs total, and the rack itself was another 45. This makes the hold thing 175. Recognize that the rack sticks out about a foot from the mouth of the hitch, so I would suspect torque is a piece of this.

    When I picked up the bikes from our friend's (she took 2 and I took 2 on the rack), she followed me and mentioned that the rack didn't appear to bounce any (beyond what the rest of the car was doing).

    So, my conclusion:

    Fewer bikes probably would have been okay. 175lbs -- with torque action -- is obviously too much. I will probably spend a few hundred dollars to go get a hitch welded on so I can take all four bikes. It's either that or buy another hitch and rack for our other car to carry half of the bikes, and that would cost more.

    Hard to blame Coastal on this, but be aware that there is a limit, and I seemed to pass beyond it.

    David
     
  3. mtsarpilot

    mtsarpilot Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    87
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(davidf @ Sep 9 2006, 11:35 PM) [snapback]317252[/snapback]</div>
    Is your hitch now permanently bent down or did it spring back up once the weight was removed from the hitch?

    I had 4 bikes on mine and was concerned with how close it all was to the ground. There were two factors playing in:

    1) The hitch was bending down about 3/4" more than where it sits unloaded
    2) The weight on the back of the car, specially being canitlevered out so far aft, lowered the back end a lot. The clearance of the wheels to the wheel wells did not seem safe

    So we took the bikes off and left them behind.

    Yesterday I had 2 bikes on there and it bounced a lot but returned back to it's stable point. My concern was primarily the amount of flex in the hitch that allowed it to bounce so much.

    I had one of my Mechanical Engineer collegues analyze the setup. The issue is that the one horizontal crossbar on the Coastal hitch is twisting under the strain. Not a lot of twist in angular terms, but since it's over a foot forward of the rear of the car, then the length the rack sticks out back, it turns out to be a lot of vertical distance.

    His belief is the system will not break, but loaded enough for long enough and it will bend and not return.

    I am considering having a welding shop weld two more angle brackets from the vertical braces to the receiver box close to the hitchpin. This might give it a little more support and less bounce. It would take some of the twisting strain off the horizontal bar. I'll see what a welding shop thinks and if I do it I'll post some pictures.
     
  4. davidf

    davidf New Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    41
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(mtsarpilot @ Sep 10 2006, 06:32 AM) [snapback]317301[/snapback]</div>
    It did actually bend down the hitch. The hitch used to ride up right under the rear cowling, now is down about an inch.
     
  5. dspguy

    dspguy Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    49
    1
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(davidf @ Sep 10 2006, 10:53 AM) [snapback]317321[/snapback]</div>
    I have the same issue. I put a thule 4 bike swing away carrier on with 4 bikes and the weight of it after driving around a bunch, bent it down about inch. That also causes the rack to angle downward. The problem I have is that with the thule rack sitting about a foot back from the hitch, I had trouble with the rack bottoming out on the road over bumps (speed bumps, bad potholes etc.) What I did to remedy this was to drill another hole in the thule rack about 7 inches behind the threaded hole, and use a regular pin to hold it in. The coastal hitch is plenty deep for this. Now, there is much less torque on the hitch and I get a lot more clearance. It bounces a lot less as well.

    I would recommend using a brand of rack which doesn't sit as far out of the hitch as the thule ones do.
     
  6. mtsarpilot

    mtsarpilot Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    87
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dspguy @ Sep 10 2006, 08:22 PM) [snapback]317558[/snapback]</div>
    I have the same rack and the same concern. Brilliant solution, I think I will follow your lead. Thanks.
     
  7. davidf

    davidf New Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    41
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dspguy @ Sep 10 2006, 07:22 PM) [snapback]317558[/snapback]</div>
    I like that solution. I'll have to give it a try before biting the bullet for a new hitch.

    Thanks,

    David
     
  8. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    6,057
    382
    0
    Location:
    Northern CA
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(gordonr @ Sep 2 2006, 09:40 PM) [snapback]313366[/snapback]</div>
    I'm going to get back to this from last year (gasp) because I'm now about to buy one of the sportsrig trailers. Mostly so I don't have to reach up onto the roof every time! And I'll be able to carry MORE crap. ;)

    One note - the rack and roll solution is a Chinese-made rip-off of the sportsrig patented design. I mean it is pretty obvious when you look at it, but still. The Rack and Roll is aluminum, and has sexier looking wheels. It is also made in China, comes with square bars (because they couldn't figure out how to get round bars to not twist) and is more expensive. they weigh about the wame. Unless I find something better, I'll be ordering a SportsRig soon. Anybody want to talk me out of it? Lots of money for seemingly little product. But at 150 pounds, and excellent suspension, I'm pretty much sold. I'm about to obtain a tandem bicycle and a long kayak, so the roof space is at a REAL premium!
     
  9. dspguy

    dspguy Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    49
    1
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dspguy @ Sep 10 2006, 10:22 PM) [snapback]317558[/snapback]</div>
    OK, so much for my brilliant idea. It seems that even with the lowered torque the Coastal hitch receiver can not take the load of my 4 bikes on the thule swing away "trailblazer" rack. I would estimate the total weight of bikes plus bike rack is about 170 lbs. The hitch receiver bent down about another 3-4 inches and is now broken. See the attached pictures of the receiver. :eek:

    I am going to take it off the car, I'll post a picture of the hitch receiver off the car so you can see the damage. Simple rule: Don't use the coastal rack for 4 bikes![attachmentid=7621][attachmentid=7623]
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Scott_R

    Scott_R Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    391
    12
    0
    Location:
    Long Island
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dspguy @ Apr 23 2007, 08:15 AM) [snapback]428251[/snapback]</div>

    Wow, that thing got rusty. How long have you had it attached?
     
  11. dspguy

    dspguy Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    49
    1
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(ScottR @ Apr 23 2007, 09:25 AM) [snapback]428256[/snapback]</div>
    I put it on in July '05. So not quite two years.
     
  12. timm

    timm Medical Transport Driver

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    121
    9
    1
    Location:
    Spring Green, WI
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four Touring
    Here is a pic of two bikes and a trike on our bike carrier. Sometimes there is another full size bike (mom's) also attached.

    [attachmentid=7668]

    Here are pics of how I beefed up the Coastal 2" hitch to handle the weight of four bikes and also to tow my river boat and other small trailers. (I wired the vehicle with the DrawTight Camry harness mod)

    [attachmentid=7669]

    No problems to date! ;)
     

    Attached Files:

  13. cobra94563

    cobra94563 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    48
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Timm @ Apr 25 2007, 10:56 PM) [snapback]430244[/snapback]</div>
    I don't know what the orignal costal hitch includes, so is the mod the bar extension toward the front of the car? what is that bolted to? Looks nice - Thanks.
     
  14. timm

    timm Medical Transport Driver

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    121
    9
    1
    Location:
    Spring Green, WI
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four Touring
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(cobra9 @ Apr 26 2007, 10:21 AM) [snapback]430502[/snapback]</div>
    Yes... I had an extension welded onto the front of the hitch and connected it to the mount thing hanging down fron the Prius underbody with an angle bracket (also welded to the extension bar) Attached is a larger pic to show you better.

    [attachmentid=7675]
     

    Attached Files:

  15. cobra94563

    cobra94563 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    48
    0
    0
    Thanks! I'll copy your design, when I get the hitch.
     
  16. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    6,057
    382
    0
    Location:
    Northern CA
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Timm @ Apr 26 2007, 08:52 AM) [snapback]430528[/snapback]</div>
    That's damn good thinking! Resists the torque from the other end with a compression load. That solves a big part of the issue I had with the Coastal hitch. Of course so does the ready-made Curt.
     
  17. timm

    timm Medical Transport Driver

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    121
    9
    1
    Location:
    Spring Green, WI
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four Touring
    Hey guys,

    Thanks for the "Thanks", but I cannot take credit for coming up with the Coastal hitch mod idea. (I read about it somewhere else here on Priuschat.) I'd love to give credit to whom it is due, but I can't remember who it was. :(

    Timm
     
  18. priussoris

    priussoris New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2007
    1,005
    3
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Timm @ Apr 26 2007, 09:52 AM) [snapback]430528[/snapback]</div>
    Nice install Timm.
    BTW what is that mount thing from the prius used for besides your hitch? what was it intended for by Toyota ? does anyone know?
     
  19. cobra94563

    cobra94563 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    48
    0
    0
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(darelldd @ Apr 26 2007, 02:53 PM) [snapback]430723[/snapback]</div>
    I don't see any extension on the CURT hitch..what do you mean?
     
  20. Devil's Advocate

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2005
    922
    10
    1
    Location:
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    If you get the U-Haul or Curt hitch you do not need to do the mod to avoid the sagging hitch. And Curt has apparently fixed the issue with hot exhaust gasses. After really looking at the coastal tech design and the curt design I could not recommend the coastal tech hitch to anyone. It's desing has inherent weaknesses, as exposed by the sagging and rusting through.
     
Loading...