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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The primary use for the bed of my truck is to haul two dirt bikes ( motorcycles, not bicycles). I have some small concerns about the bed area. I currently have an 03 Tundra & my 16 Ridgeline RTL-E is due mid Oct.
1) Since the rear edge of the rear of the bikes wheel sticks out past the gate, I can't use my current bed extender. (The bottom will be resting well past the edge.) The Honda bed extender appears to be designed for one bike, centered in the bed. I usually have two bikes, so it won't work for me.
2) In the past I have a wheel chock bolted to the front of the bed to stabilize the front wheel in loading as well as transport. ( This is the one I currently use: Universal Samson Bed Rack - Motocross Feature Stories - Vital MX.
Anyone using anything like this in their Gen2 yet? I'm not sure I want to be the 1st one to drill from the bed into the passenger compartment, but it just might turn out that way no matter what I prefer! I recently PM'd VinceP63 since he has mentioned hauling dirt bikes and he in interested in this: https://www.usrack.com/cradle_motorcycle_carrier.php
It looks like avery possible alternative, but still untried in a Gen2 as far as I know. Anyone else find something worth looking at?
3) My tailgate will be down when hauling the dirt bikes. Anyone relocate the rear view camera to the license plate or bumper area so the camera still gets a decent view to the rear while the tailgate is down?
Thanks in advance. Really looking forward to the arrival of my Ridgeline!
 

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Hey Grumpy, I came from a full size beater truck and had the same questions before I bought the RL. I will be heading to my first enduro this weekend and will be using an Ultimate MX hauler that popped up on Craigslist. When I went on a test drive with the RL, I put two bikes in the bike to check it out and it was fine! You are correct though, the bed extender appears to be for one bike and I find that for $50, the MotoNet will be easier to store in the trunk and can be used to secure items in the bed besides Bike Hauling.

As far as the items you listed, I not sure they would work with the composite bed and I have never felt the need for them. I have had good luck with just strapping down the front forks (with a suspension brace) and have never had a front wheel walk.

https://www.moto-gate.com/
http://ultimatemxhauler.com/

I will throw some pics up after the races. Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So at this point, to my knowledge, no one specifically makes a motorcycle tie down bar for the '17 Ridgeline. Every Saturday I haul 2 bikes to parks around Northern CA. I designed a tie down bar (1"x3" rectangle tubing) that fits just under the 'ledge' at the bottom of the back window. Using this recess saves me from taking any extra real estate, so the bike should fit also the same as w/o the bar. It bolts to the sides of the bed under the upper tie downs, retaining the existing OEM tie downs. The bike handlebars are 40" wide, so each bike is centered 20" off center. The bed side tie down is 9" from bike center, so I made the other tie down equidistant. My only concern is I wish I could have spread the tie downs further apart for better leverage. I'll try it this weekend, and if all is good, I'll paint it. I'm thinking I may throw on a centered wheel holder for solo rides.
Comments and thoughts are appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the reply. Here's my tie down bar finished & installed. I added a few more large tie down loops to lock the bikes to the bar. I also measured the bed w/ 2 bikes to see how long a net it would take to securely close up the rear. I figured 9' x about 22" tall to securely wrap around most of the tires and catch gear bags, etc. It took me hours to sew the damn thing, but I'm digging it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've always used a trailer, much easier, faster, works better with one person, plus the bed storage trunk, becomes useless.
trainman
I agree trailers are neat if you've got the space to store one. My friends in WA have some pretty neat set ups in enclosed trailers. Stuff is neatly laid out & secure. And it's a nice place to get your gear on & off in the rain. I'm not sure about Texas, but in CA, we are limited to 55mph when we pull a trailer and then become easy picking for the highway patrol if we match everyone's speed (65 & above). And I don't have the space to easily store one. These things can make trailers less desirable for me. Thanks for the reply.
 

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I agree trailers are neat if you've got the space to store one. My friends in WA have some pretty neat set ups in enclosed trailers. Stuff is neatly laid out & secure. And it's a nice place to get your gear on & off in the rain. I'm not sure about Texas, but in CA, we are limited to 55mph when we pull a trailer and then become easy picking for the highway patrol if we match everyone's speed (65 & above). And I don't have the space to easily store one. These things can make trailers less desirable for me. Thanks for the reply.
I can see where speed limits would be a problem, here in Texas the highway limits are in the 70-75 mph range, thus making trailer hauling more advantageous. I do believe tractor trailers and some large trailers have to run 5 mph below the posted speed limit, but that's so the normal flow of traffic can get around them. I have the room to store a trailer, but many of my riding friends that don't have those stand-up trailers that are great for small space storage.

trainman
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
I've always used a trailer, much easier, faster, works better with one person, plus the bed storage trunk, becomes useless.
trainman
Fun fact: The bed storage trunk I s not useless with two dirt bikes in the bed. I was able to open the trunk about 1/3 - 1/2 way with the two bikes on top. I would not have believed it if I hadn't done it with my own two hands. It's a nice surprise if you want to get something small out while the bikes are still in the bed.
 

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Since Honda has all kinds of photos of the new (2021) RL and earlier models ripping around off road with 2 dirt bikes precariously perched in back, you'd think someone would make an old fashioned bolt-in header bar to secure two dirt bikes with rear wheels resting on the tail gate. The "motorcycle bed extender" looks pretty useless and is on sale, probably because no one bought it.

This is just another example of Honda marketing the RL to the off road crowd. No way is this thing better than a Subaru off road! We should know better and skip the RL and buy a 1/2 ton Ford or Chevy with an 8 ft bed, but those are nearly impossible to find. I use a trailer but it kills my fuel economy and it's just an open utility trailer. RL's simply aren't built to tow - again more marketing hype!
 

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One of the reasons I bought my ridgeline was after watching a guy unload and load up two KTM 250 motocross bikes to the local park. He used the method where both bikes turn towards each other and meet in the middle at the front of the bed. There is a video on dirt bike channel about how you can put two bikes into any bed. The method is nice too because angling the wheels towards each other helps you keep the handlebars from colliding/rubbing.

The biggest downside I see is that the bed height of the RL is pretty damn high. So a good ramp is a must. I'm shopping for a good ramp now, and looking for suggestions.
 

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I've hauled countless dirt bikes in the back of pickups over the years, including our new 09 Ridgeline. Never chocked the front wheels, and never had the need. The concept it fine, but if you do it right, I really don't see the need. Well attached straps should be equally pulling the bars it opposite directions. Even if the wheel kinks somehow, the straps will secure it from falling over.

As long as the tie points are facing forward, pulling the bike to the front, you'll be fine. I only use two straps, non-ratching, and loop them around the top of the fork tubes (handle bars on smaller bikes). Had to have been well over 2000 miles in the past three years, never had the tailgate up, never an issue. Sometimes i'll throw a small strap on the swingarm of our kid's KTm 65, cause its a bit light and i don't want it bouncing towards my wife's bike! I really should drive more carefully with bikes in the back, but the ridgeline is fun to drive and handels very well ;-)

The trick is not to compress the crap out of the front forks, just keep firm pressure on both sides with maybe a few inches of travel on the forks, and always have the straps oull forward (key) toward the cab, you'll be fine. Another issue i see if people strapping the back of the bike with backward force to the rear tie points. This is not good,for you're causing the straps to fight each other, and the bike can move front to back. Very bad! All pressure should go forward. Maybe a light strap on the back just to keep the rear from bouncing towards the other bike if you want.

As far as the Ridgeline and hauling bikes, I can't think of a better vehicle out there. Sure, a long bed F-150 would be more room, but the millage and ride of the Honda is far superior for those 8+ hour drives to the track. And WAY better REAL world millage. I haul my KTM 690 and a Beta 125 will zero issues; we can even squeeze our kid's KTM 65 backwards in there.

And the trunk is awesome!

Another great trick with the honda is the swing tailgate. You can load one full size bike at an angle, and with the tailgate in the swing position, close tailgate against the rear tire and secure it closed with a simple strap. Secures a few more items in the bed, plus gives you back the back up camera (although a bit skewed). Much easier to park and back up too.

Parallel parking a pick up with the tailgate down is a pain in Manhattan! Every little trick helps!
 

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Here's what I made for my 2017 RT. Looks OEM. It bolts into the factory bedliner bolt locations, is made of stainless, and incorporates extra tie-downs too. I could probably be convinced to make a couple more, if anyone was interested. I think these are a must-have for bike tie-down.

A complete write-up of the design / fabrication / install:

Hood Wood Automotive exterior Bumper Gas
 

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Here's what I made for my 2017 RT. Looks OEM. It bolts into the factory bedliner bolt locations, is made of stainless, and incorporates extra tie-downs too. I could probably be convinced to make a couple more, if anyone was interested. I think these are a must-have for bike tie-down.

A complete write-up of the design / fabrication / install:

View attachment 414398
That’s awesome!
 

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Hauled two bikes today...here's how I tie them down. I have three total chock locations on my rack, two on the ends and one in the middle. The middle one gets used when hauling one bike, and the two end ones when hauling two bikes. There's just enough clearance to prevent bars from running into each other when two bikes are hauled.

I'm super cautious and use extra tie-downs in case of failures of the primary tie downs. The black/red ones are my primary straps, and they are always affixed to the lower triple clamp. I run the extra tie downs to the bars but only cinch them lightly.
 

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