HDT RV CONVERSION

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Our Home Build Bike Loader

How to load your bike on the back of the truck by yourself!

Loaded on our HDT "Whitelightning"
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It was easier than I expected

When you own a HDT to tow your trailer it is nice to have an alternate way of getting around once parked in a camp ground or RV park, rather than taking the truck to go shopping or site seeing it is nice (and a whole lot cheaper) to get around on your bike or scooter! After previously trying to load our Yamaha T-Max 500 on the Volvo's back using a simple ramp it quickly showed that the bike was build to low to overcome the angle the ramp had with the trucks frame! it also showed that this wasn't the safest way of loading the bike on the back of the tractor!
Searching the Internet for an alternative idea of loading, I came upon several websites that sell sophisticated bike loading ramps, problem was that each and every one I saw was quit expensive to buy and still had to be forwarded to Newfoundland, Canada, the additional freight cost of such heavy package made this ill affordable! The only alternative for us was to take some of the idea's and examples from the various websites I visited and use them to manufacture our own!
Our loader is not exactly the same as any that I had seen on some of the websites but works on the same principle, a bolted down main frame, a secondary frame fitted within the main frame travelling on rollers and a "Dolly" travelling the secondary frame on four steel wheels to ride the bike from ground level to the back of the main frame.

Front wheel secured inside "Wheel Chuck"
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Ready to be hoisted on board the truck!

Dolly with front wheel at the top of the f rame.
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Pinned and ready to be hoistes on board.

Bike being pulled inside the trucks deck.
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I started with a drawing as to what I thought was necessary with regards to the dimensions and the subsequent purchasing of steel, planning a project such as this to detail I believe is the best way to avoid mistakes at the end of the day and corrections can be made a lot easier if you follow your plan! Once this project was finished I had to make minor adjustments during the testing of the loading ramp, but nothing major!
I am furtunate to own a very nice work shop with many tools including tig and stick welding machines which makes things a lot easier and more comfortable. If you are not the type of handy man that can weld I am sure you will know or find someone that can do the welding for you once you have the steel cut to size and ready to weld together!

Wheel Chuck bougth at Prinses Auto
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Ready to manufacture the dolly for the wheel chuck

4000 Lbs ATV winch with remote control!
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Some of the parts and wiring that came with the winch

Wheel Chuck Bolted down on finished dolly frame!
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Frame rides on four rollers inside 3" channel bar!

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The main frame which is @ 22 inches wide has three sets of home made rollers with each rollers supported with side bearings within the frame, one roller is at the very edge of the frame and opposite of the winch, there is a second roller not far from the edge roller and a third roller between the winch and the second roller, one has to be careful where to place the second roller because if its position is to far from the edge roller, the traveling frame will fall before it reaches the second roller and thus get stuck! I figured the second rollers position by simply giving the assembly a test run (without the bike) and see where the frame would fall once equilibrium was reached! giving the second roller more than two inches closer to the edge roller I was assured the frame would not miss the roller itself!

More on the manufacture of the ramp click here!

Sliding frame which will house the dolly
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in the final stages of welding.

Main frame with winch assembly
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This is bolted to the trucks frame

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