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30185665956_8e354ff1e0_z.jpgHere is a nice advantage of the high roof on the TC. I installed a Thule Sidearm rack inside my 2016 SWB XLT. I fabricated a plate and used shoulder nuts (threaded rivets) to mount it to the floor. The mountain bike barely fits and the road bike fits perfectly.https://www.thule.com/en-us/us/bike-rack/roof-bike-racks/thule-sidearm-594xt-_-5546509

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Howdy, first post.  Here is my solution in my LWB van.   The carriers can be positioned along the rails easily or even moved to a different rail as needed.   I can easily fit 3 bikes in there if I needed to.  

Carrier 2.jpg

Carrier 3.jpg

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Ah, so you're taking the front wheel off the bike.  I guess if someone is willing to take off the front wheel, they could just as easily take off the back whee.  Then transporting the bikes would be a piece of cake.  A hitch receiver mounted bike rack has always been my preferred method.  On some vehicles, you can also get a front hitch receiver in case you've already got a boat on the rear.

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Front wheel is easy. Rear wheel is difficult and greasy.

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I have been thinking/experimenting/pondering about securing bicycle(s) in my TC wagon LWB for a month and a half. I want to keep all wheels on if possible, be as chea, um, frugal as possible, not have anything permanent in place, be able to use it for mountain and fat bikes, and make it as quick and easy on myself as possible for the times it is way too cold out and my fingers are numb. 

I think I by quite accident stumbled upon a possible solution, need everybody to poke holes in this idea. I think I was making the same assumptions as everybody else in that the bike needs to be upright for anything to work, and that might not be the case.

Just screwing around on the 129th time I have put a bike in just to try to inspire some thoughts on the matter, I pushed the wheels up against the side, which then forced it to lean over about 20 degrees because of the handlebars pressing against the top of the sidewall, but greatly increased the remaining available room in the cargo area. I then experimented with a kickstand-like concept, just using a 2x4 to hold up the frame, which I think has merits in its own right. But then I saw the 2nd row seat-belt anchors. With the wheels (or one wheel) already against the side wedged in nicely, all that is really needed is to keep the top part of the bike from completely tipping over. I hooked an elastic cord to the seat-belt anchor and around the top tube of the bike frame, and two minutes later while I'm typing this I can't think of any major flaws. Appreciate any input on that or on the following...

I think the elastic cord should be replaced with a long Velcro strap or something that won't have as much give as an elastic cord, the elastic cord I put on just happened to be about maxed out with the distance needed for this particular bike. 

The handlebars are pressed up against the headliner, need to make sure they don't rub the headliner raw, maybe just a simple towel in between?

I assume the seat-belt anchors can take this punishment, anybody know otherwise?

I have forward-backward motion covered by my custom DIY set-up to make a ramp up and over the folded 2nd row seats, there is just a natural notch on the ramp for a wheel. The bike is fairly close to the drivers seat so I'm thinking it shouldn't be able to get to much inertia in a crash or be able to attack me from behind. 

I also need to work on solutions for studded tires rubbing against the plastic cargo side wall, probably just more towels.

If this works, this is about as simple, cheap, and easy as it could be. I'm pretty sure there is room for a 2nd bike on the other side doing the same thing.

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Edited by rmcinak

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I have always used ratchet belts and be done with it. Takes a minute to fix. Tried bungee cords as well but too much give even when maxed out. I use 3 straps but you can do it with two as well. Then again I have the cargo version so I have 6 sturdy attachment points.

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9 hours ago, mrtn said:

I have always used ratchet belts and be done with it. Takes a minute to fix. Tried bungee cords as well but too much give even when maxed out. I use 3 straps but you can do it with two as well. Then again I have the cargo version so I have 6 sturdy attachment points.

I dream of having 6 sturdy attachment points!

I ran some errands driving around with the above set-up. The front tire (in back of wagon) rotated around and the rear tire (in front of wagon) got pulled towards the door. I do have an attaching point at the back corners on the floor that I think was for car seats originally, so that can solve the first of those problems. I also bought a 36" Velcro strap and then got home and realized that my 36" measurement from the seat-belt anchor to the bicycle tube didn't account for 6 inches of leeway needed to use said strap. So might be digging out the ratchets, but I think their hook won't fit into the seat-belt anchor (barely got the small elastic cord hooks to get in there). Pondering and experimenting to continue.

If I can get this to work, it will be so sweet to still basically have all the cargo room available while transporting bike(s).

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Attempt 2.0. Got 36" Velcro strap to work (I am an idiot for not knowing what I was doing on first attempt), used 1" Velcro strips to secure one wheel to the rear corner floor anchors, and the other wheel to the respective inboard front seat headrest post (a little worried about using these for this purpose but they are not stressed, only keeping the wheel from bouncing/sliding around). Haven't drove around with this setup yet but have high hopes. It does not appear the Velcro straps while attached to the seat-belt anchors woule interfere with normal seat-belt functionality so I should be able to leave them attached and will just throw the strips into one of the cargo area storage bins and hope to remember I did so when needed.

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Edited by rmcinak

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Getting there.

You might want to try carabiner clips (for ratchets) on the hooks if they fit. Less hassle.

Edited by mrtn
typo

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How about placing the bikes in upside down?  Then the are standing on the handlebar & seat.......it might work.

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11 minutes ago, Fifty150 said:

How about placing the bikes in upside down?  Then the are standing on the handlebar & seat.......it might work.

That's one idea and I've thought of that, but it doesn't offer much advantages and the problem as I see it is that it forces (due to the handlebars) a bike being in the center of the wagon, reducing cargo usefulness in my opinion. 

I think my Velcro set up above will work out for my purposes. Will test it out on a road trip this week. It meets all of my criteria in that it's simple, cheap, keeps mucho cargo room available, and isn't terribly difficult for one person to pull off.

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Just an update, I've made several journeys with one and two bikes using my set-up described above (wheels up against the side forcing bike to lean over, Velcro strap to top tube to hold bike up, and a couple small straps to hold wheels in place). Has worked marvelously.  

Edited by rmcinak

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On 10/21/2016 at 6:14 PM, rmcinak said:

Just an update, I've made several journeys with one and two bikes using my set-up described above (wheels up against the side forcing bike to lean over, Velcro strap to top tube to hold bike up, and a couple small straps to hold wheels in place). Has worked marvelously.  

Hello, rmcinak! I've just purchased a 2019 Transit Connect LWB Wagon and would like to haul my fatbike in it. Have you had any further thoughts on your tethering system since you last posted about three years ago? I've been pondering one additional issue, that being how to manage the mud/snow that might drip from the bike after loading it into the TC. Perhaps a rubber mat with a dam around its periphery would work to catch debris and melted snow. I've also been thinking about ways I might use the wheel trays from my bike hitch rack (which I already have, and will no longer need). With the bike leaning, though, some melted snow might escape the trays, I imagine. Any comments?

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