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Ultimate MX Hauler MC Carrier - Initial Impressions

Joined
Oct 23, 2008
Messages
127
Location
Katy
First Name
Chris
I have been through a lot of bikes from a massive cruiser, to 2 stroke dirt bikes, to medium sized adventure bikes and have settled for now on a small displacement dual sport. I found that long hours in the saddle on pavement were not my thing so I wanted something light that I could hit the trails with and cruise on pavement as needed with no extended highway time planned. This meant I needed a way to transport my CRF250L on the slab. I do not have a truck or room for a trailer, so started looking into hitch mounted options.

I have seen the ramp style in action and they did not inspire a lot of confidence for me, and I needed something I could load solo. Despite the price, I elected to take the chance on the Ultimate MX Hauler because it comes equipped with a deck that can be lowered below the belly of the bike and jacked up via a hydraulic jack for transporting.

The unit is heavy duty, weighing in at about 80 lbs, and putting it together was fairly simply and straight forward with good instructions. The instructions on how to safely mount the bike on the rack are not good though, so I embarked on a testing phase. The rack has two, threaded keepers that you run through the foot pegs with large wing nuts to secure them. There is also a ring for using a tie-down on one side for securing the front. This is not enough because the bike wobbled around too much for comfort. It should be noted that on the first test, I did not tie down the front because the directions did not indicate to do so and the bike tried to pick up on the front. It was then I noticed the ring for a front tie down so just attaching the pegs is not enough.

On the final test, I used a ratcheting tie down on both sides of the handlebars. The bike was then very secure on the platform (not shown in pics). At this point, I went for a spin around the neighborhood and was presented with the next issue. The slack between the bar and the receiver allowed the bike to wallow around, even enough to make a "bump" sound on occasion and there was enough movement to make me uncomfortable. This would not do.

I had a hitch keeper which is essentially a bent plate and u-bolt that secures the bar to the receiver to keep it snug. I mounted the keeper parallel to the ground, and it helped, but the bike was still swaying right to left too much. I re-mounted the keeper perpendicular to the ground and that was the trick. I spent about 10 minutes driving around and even found a road that was littered in pot holes. In the end, I was satisfied with the security of the bike in place.

The removal process for the bike was quite easy. I removed the tie downs, lowered the platform until the bike was supporting it own weight, extended the bike's kickstand (on the outside), removed the inside peg bracket, loosened the outside peg bracket until the bike leaned and rested on its kickstand, removed the bracket and lowered the platform all the way. At this point, you can jump in the vehicle and pull forward a few feet, jack the plate back up and/or remove the hitch mount all together.

This system works great on a taller, dual sport machine but the platform may not go low enough for some street bikes without finding a hill or curb to assist. In the end, I think it will work quite well.
 

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Joined
Apr 22, 2011
Messages
3,004
Location
Princeton, Texas
First Name
Gary
Last Name
Waugh
I don't know if they have updated the design, but I found there was too much play between the receiver on the car and the lift when I just used the supplied chromed pin and R clip, I ended up buying a threaded securing pin, you weld a large nut just inside the hitch bar, then you thread the securing pin in and do it up tightly, this removes all the play/slop and makes for a much more stable setup. In case my description made no sense, hopefully the pictures will. The threaded pin was about $8 on ebay, you can see where I had welded some other bolts to the frame to try and stop the wobble prior to finding the threaded locating pin.

Gary
 

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Joined
Oct 23, 2008
Messages
127
Location
Katy
First Name
Chris
Here is the keeper that I am mounting perpendicular to the ground. It takes about 85% of the movement out of the rack.
 

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Meriden

Forum Supporter
Joined
Jan 22, 2011
Messages
5,851
Location
At the back of the pack and out of the dust
I stole the MX Hauler idea from ThrasherG when he met us in California for a ride. He had just driven down from Seattle with a plated Honda 450 on the back of an Excursion. I'm using one on the back of a standard Gen II explorer. It works with my X which is 363 loaded, but it's not a fun ride. The KTM 300 and the Sherco trials bike are fine on the back through most conditions. One of the issues is leverage. The MX Hauler seems to stand out farther from the hitch than a standard rail type. I think mine has a threaded pin from the factory. I just strap the bike to the bumper to stop the wobble.

One thing to consider is putting a set of trailer lights on the bike. It's pretty simple, just mount them on a board and hang it on the bike. Another idea I stole from Gary.

m
 

Monica

Forum Supporter
Joined
Oct 4, 2009
Messages
814
Location
Texas
I've used the MX Hauler for the last year and a half. Had both the TTR125 and the WR250R on it. I use a stabilizer thingy on the extension into the receiver. Also 45* tie downs from the bike to under the rear truck frame/bumper(Rusty taught me that one). The tie downs alone add a world of stability. I've driven like a heathen on a section of roadway I should have not have driven like that on and the bike stayed put. Nearly peed my pants and thought that was the day I lost my bike off the truck, but it amazingly stayed on. I got to drivin like Grandma real fast after that.

Something not thought about is your haul vehicle's setup - your shocks. I've used different shocks on the truck and some do better than others to control the rebound. It's the rebound that will toss your bike off. I'm on Fox 2.0s now which work beautifully.

Someone mentioned lights, do it. I'm rigging up an LED strip to stick to the platform face for a brake light.
 

CZ47racer

Forum Supporter
Joined
Sep 23, 2018
Messages
86
Location
San Antonio
First Name
Craig
Last Name
Wilson
I have carried a heavy XR650L (near the top of the manufacturer’s recommended weight limit) on multiple long trips with the Ultimate MX Hauler, and it has performed very well. The bike does not move after it is secured. I also use tie downs from the frame to the vehicle frame for added stability and peace of mind. This is a very good product and easy to operate with one person and no lifting.
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