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Old 08-31-2014, 09:17 PM   #1
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Two Scoots...one G'town

Well before we got our coach we determined that we didn't want to haul a toad...so we bought a couple of Scooters...not mopeds...the Vespa 150 and Stella 125Auto will each travel over 55mph. ...we aren't gonna ride them on interstates but everything else is fair game!
Before we bought them this spring, I did a lot of research about how to carry two scooters on a hitch mounted carrier ....could it be done on a class A gasser? Well I know now that the answer is a qualified YES.
1. The 600+ lb load cannot be supported by the class 3 hitch supplied with most F53 based class A's.
2. A class 4 hitch will support a 1000 lb. tongue weight ...but if the F53 chassis has long welded extensions on the frame...THEY won't support the hitch.
3. A couple of WIDE body traditional scooters take up a lot of room and carriers designed for two dirt bikes can't supply the width needed between the first scoot and the coach.... and between the 2 scoots.
4. The 600 lbs. of scoots and hitch off the back end requires that much free CCC on the rear axle... and the suspension and carrier must be able to support the lever arm effect of that much weight outboard in real world dynamics...i.e. speed bumps, potholes etc.

So the message is that it will NOT work for every situation but by doing the homework in advance...we were able to make it work between FORD, My Hitch Guy and the carrier fabricator. The Georgetown 280DS has no long welded extensions...Ford confirmed the chassis could handle the Class 4 hitch and weight as long as it was within listed capacities and I had some great help from the guys who did the work in figuring out exactly how to do it. Here's some pix and brief descriptions of the final product.

First pic shows how the included 7 ft. ramp lets me load up the scoots. Actually can power them up the ramp with the twist and go tranny.
Second pic shows them on the back of the coach...not NO sag.
Third pic shows the tie downs AND that you have to clear the ladder and the coach body!
Fourth pic shows where the ramp is stored on travel days and clearance.
Fifth is the rack without the scoots.

Kudos to joehauler.com for building a hi quality carrier with the proper clearances for scooters (the ONLY one!) and for his unique system to tighten the hitch in the carrier with a "bicycle handlebar" type wedge system that is a snap to use and stable as a rock. He built this in CA and shipped to the East Coast...about 2.5 weeks total. Great guy to work with and he made sure we considered all the critical dimensions.
My guys at SouthsideHitch.com in Midlothian VA cut off the old hitch and installed and welded every inch of the class 4 hitch and made sure Joe's work had the proper clearances and would support the load. Awesome work.
I've been on the road with it loaded up just once but everything is solid and I am thrilled. Bottom line...His & Her Scoots will work on the right coach!
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Old 08-31-2014, 09:31 PM   #2
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Me likey!
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Old 10-04-2014, 09:55 PM   #3
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Thanks Camaraderie. That is a sweet set up you have. My motor home won't arrive until mid- late next month so I am looking at next spring to pull the trigger on this set up..
Thanks for the info and pictures.
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Old 10-04-2014, 10:43 PM   #4
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Thanks Gilm...keep in touch when you do and I'll try to help a bit more. Your Forester model looks like a nice C...good luck with it!
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Old 10-04-2014, 11:47 PM   #5
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Thanks Camaraderie. After reading some of these threads on the issues people have had I will take all the well wishes we can get. We are very excited but disappointed we are getting it so late. November in Idaho is the beginning of the snow season. Will try to get it out once, weather permitting before we winterize and put it to bed for the winter!
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Old 12-02-2015, 11:41 PM   #6
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We are considering a Piaggio MP3 500. Due to its 600 lb. I don't want a central hitch receiver to carry the weight. I saw a fold up carrier with the hinge welded to the two frame beams which attach to the bumper. This looks very strong and stable, and you guessed it, didn't find a label nor did I take a photo. Any one have such a set up and what is your experience. Also would appreciate any experience with the MP3 500 as the substitute for a toad. Thanks again.
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Old 12-03-2015, 02:39 AM   #7
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FWIW...I'd be doubtful that your Sunseeker could be beefed up enough to handle 600 lb. tongue weight PLUS the weight of the rack... and believe you should check with Ford. I think you'll need an air bag spring lift system at the very least & I've never seen a hinged version that could hold that level of weight dynamically. You also need to calculate the lever arm effect of your static weight since the bike sits well outboard of the frame. Don't just think 600 lbss is all you need to think about...my 600 lbs added roughly 1100 lbs to my rear axel load dynamically. Make sure your coach and rear axle GVWR and GaWR have plenty of spare room since you are not towing extra weight but carrying it.
If you do have the ability to carry your MP3, Versa Haul mkes a high quality unit. Piaggio MP3 Carrier from VersaHaul VH-MP3 | DiscountRamps.com

The other alternative which might be right for your situation is the swivel wheel whch will both work without modifiying and flips up when not in use.
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Old 12-03-2015, 06:02 AM   #8
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Nice set up. Just keep in mind there are a few campgrounds that will not allow any type gas motorcycle or scooter to the driven under its own power within the grounds. Could be a long walk to the gate.

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Old 12-03-2015, 11:58 AM   #9
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Good point...but it is often also just a policy designed to discourage noisy big bikes or in heavy kids oriented parks. Many allow driving in and out slowly but not driving around the park. Stayed in roughly 50 parks across the country with the scoots this year and had 0 issues. Still...the original question asked about potential problems vs. toads so it is definitely something to consider and I always read a parks policies online before making a reservation.
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Old 12-03-2015, 12:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camaraderie View Post
Good point...but it is often also just a policy designed to discourage noisy big bikes or in heavy kids oriented parks. Many allow driving in and out slowly but not driving around the park. Stayed in roughly 50 parks across the country with the scoots this year and had 0 issues. Still...the original question asked about potential problems vs. toads so it is definitely something to consider and I always read a parks policies online before making a reservation.
I agree, but Ocean Lakes the largest campground on the East Coast 300 acres / 850 campsites 2500 permanent sites has a zero tolerance policy and it is enforced. So as you stated best to check in advance where you are headed.

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