Motorcycle Carrier how Wide for Rear tire?
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Thread: Motorcycle Carrier how Wide for Rear tire?

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    Member wmgeorge's Avatar
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    Motorcycle Carrier how Wide for Rear tire?

    Just purchased a "New" Harbor Freight hitch carrier for a someday purchase of a TW. I know the rear tire of the TW200 is pretty wide and will Not fit down into the rear of the carrier. So how wide does it have to be? I am thinking of adding some aluminum angle to bring up to the right height and width. Would 8 inch wide be enough?

    Thanks... and yes I did do a Search as I hate new people who come on and ask without doing so.
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    Senior Member admiral's Avatar
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    Welcome,

    You could add sides if you wanted to but you don't have too. I have a new double hitch carrier and a single hitch carrier. In both cases, the rear tires sit more on top of the rail rather settling down into it. The new double did not come with straps to secure the tire to the rail but suggested it. In the picture of my single, you can see I used a strap. If you strap both ends of the TW like I did you may not have to use straps but could if it brings you peace of mind.

    I haven't nor will I use straps on the front tires of either carrier.

    We were using the carrier as a work stand but I wanted you to see the strap. I quit using the strap for shorter trips but for long trips, I still used tire hold down straps...for peace of mind!


    I haven't bought the rear straps yet as I just put this together a week or two ago and am just practice loading. I'll have rear tire only straps for trips.
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    Super Moderator littletommy's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum!!
    Quote Originally Posted by wmgeorge View Post
    Just purchased a "New" Harbor Freight hitch carrier for a someday purchase of a TW. I know the rear tire of the TW200 is pretty wide and will Not fit down into the rear of the carrier. So how wide does it have to be? I am thinking of adding some aluminum angle to bring up to the right height and width. Would 8 inch wide be enough?

    Thanks... and yes I did do a Search as I hate new people who come on and ask without doing so.
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    Member wmgeorge's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reply so does 8 inches wide or so cover the tire width?

    I finished putting the carrier together and really for a Harbor Freight item I am impressed. Grade 8.8 Metric bolts, powder coated and well designed and put together. I used to be anything from HF was a DIY job out of the box!!

    I may weld those smaller tie down brackets forward of the carrier but they are on pretty tight with my Bosch battery impact wrench. I also liked the design of the hitch tightener brackets shown in the one photo. So tight I get no wobble when I put my 215 lbs on and jump a bit.
    Yes I will use tire straps, I am hoping just for the rear tire only as perhaps the front will fit down inside. Yes and straps holding the MC in place for sure.


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    Last edited by wmgeorge; 02-24-2017 at 03:51 PM.

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    Senior Member old w/??'s Avatar
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    Kris, why are you adamant about not strapping the front tire down?
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    I brought my TW home on the HF carrier like you have, also used it for heavier dual sports and a scooter. I don't drop the wheels into the carrier like they recommend anyway because it is too hard to get it off the rack if the wheels are dropped down. Instead I use straps to tie the wheels to the frame. I check the aluminum that attaches to the hitch receiver tube part because it is reported to crack but mine hasn't failed with some reasonably hard use on bad roads.
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    Member wmgeorge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by like2wlz View Post
    I brought my TW home on the HF carrier like you have, also used it for heavier dual sports and a scooter. I don't drop the wheels into the carrier like they recommend anyway because it is too hard to get it off the rack if the wheels are dropped down. Instead I use straps to tie the wheels to the frame. I check the aluminum that attaches to the hitch receiver tube part because it is reported to crack but mine hasn't failed with some reasonably hard use on bad roads.
    It (the carrier) seems well made and I do a lot of fabrication in my home shop so that might be a endorsement. I just want to add the angle to the back wheel area just to add a little more piece of mind about it sliding off the ramp forwards or backwards. Dropping the wheel in the holder, I can see where that would be a big issue when it came time to take it off.
    This setup will be used on my 1/2 ton 2014 Chevy Silverado pickup which in the past has been used for some heavy trailers.
    Last edited by wmgeorge; 02-24-2017 at 04:03 PM.
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    Senior Member admiral's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by old w/2 many guns & bikes View Post
    Kris, why are you adamant about not strapping the front tire down?

    Well, I'm not adamant about not strapping the front tire down, I just have never done it. Thus far with the single carrier I have never had a tire jump out of the rail, so there is that too!

    The front tire drops down pretty far on the new carrier, but it has the option of insert some bolt across so the tire would sit down as far. Instructions said this was for smaller bikes like a PW50. After reading like2wlz's comments, I suppose I could put this bolt in even for the TW's because it is a little difficult tugging the TW front tire out of the front tire slot. If I do this I would strap the front tire down for sure.
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    Senior Member peruano's Avatar
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    The rear tire is wide but it is not flat, i.e. its convex and the rounded middle of the tire contacts the bottom of the tray and the sides of the curved tire surface contact the sides. Its is no more likely to jump out of the tray than any other tire (other than it might be easy to steer it out in the loading process). Your carrier should do fine. Straps do wear on long trips and I have seen at least one mc that was drug down the road when it tipped out of a rear carrier. (not pretty). Lets all get out there and use those carriers and go some place exotic.
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    Senior Member ToolmanJohn's Avatar
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    I also have to strap around the rear tire/wheel to cinch it to my carrier. My carrier only has provisions for tie downs in one location (near the center of the carrier). This means when I strap the handlebars and tie them down, it is tugging the bike backwards. I am trying to figure out a way of strapping at the rear and adding two more tie downs which pull it forward. This way it will not want to bounce out, or roll when going around a turn.

    I had a scare the second time I had to use it, I only used 2 tie downs at the handlebars, and wrapped a cam pull strap around the rear tire and carrier. When I turned left, the bike wanted to move to the left, becasue the tension on the pull downs was taken out by that! If the rear tire strap was not on, the TW would have been dragging behind me. I stopped, inspected, realized what had happened to make it shift , and drove home very very carefully. I need more straps.
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