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2 Inch Receiver Added to Hitch

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March 29, 2006: We would like to take our bicycles with us when we travel, but where to carry them. I don't want to carry them on the back of the trailer nor on the inside. I've seen other fifth wheels with bikes Hitch before work is done
Measure the Receiver
carried in the front using a rack mounted to a 2" receiver. I like this idea. A little more difficult to put the bikes on the rack and more difficult to remove them if not disconnected from the trailer.

But they are also better protected from thieves in this location and won't get sprayed with road dirt.

Brad is my welder. Above, he measures the angle to

Cutting the receiver
Burnish the paint

cut the 12" received before welding to the hitch. At the top, he's cutting the angle.

Before Brad can weld to the hitch, he must burnish the paint on the hitch to get a good weld.

Here we go ... the receiver is being welded. Welding the receiver
Brad completes part one.
We decided to add gussets for extra strength.
Gussets are added for extra strength
  Gussets completed Here it us, gussets and all.
This is what it looks like when painted with flat black metal paint. The loop on top is to connect a security cable to secure the bikes. I don't own a hitch-bike-rack yet but I have one on order. I'll add a photo of how it all looks when it arrives. Finished and Painted
The bike rack has arrived April 7. 2006: The Allen 530RR bike rack has arrived and fits perfectly. The vertical arm will lower when pulling a pin and the horizontal arms will lower by pulling a pin. I don't know yet whether either of these will be a benefit to loading or unloading the bikes since the bikes will be in the bed of the pickup. The thing that is strange about this rack is that I could not find one locally or even in a nearby state for the price I could get one from a bike shop in Florida including the shipping charge. The rack cost $106 total. Locally, I could find a Thule or Yakima rack for $160+ . So far I don't see a problem with the quality of the rack, it seems fine to me.
April 9, 2006: The rack leans forward for easier loading. I originally thought I would have to load the bikes from the bed of the pickup but with the rack leaning forward I can reach the straps that connect the bikes to the rack. The bikes covers were given to me several years ago and I have never used them until this trip. Park of the cover protects the saddle. Rack leaning forward for easier loading
Rack in upright position

It's important to protect the saddle since they are of material which can be affected by moisture. Who wants to sit on a wet saddle anyway.

I was able to push the rack into the upright position while standing on the ground. The bikes seemed to settle down into an "OK" position.

December 13, 2008: I've been looking for a bag to protect the bikes. I did find bicycle bags but did not like them for one reason or another. I purchased a motorcycle cover instead. It's plenty large enough to cover all three bikes and is 100% waterproof. Note that I removed the front wheels and pedals so the bikes fit better on the rack. Bicycle bag to cover and protect the bikes
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