I just got a used tandem to use with my girlfriend (we are both women), got it off eBay for a little over $300. It is an older Columbia, a five speed. So now I have to figure out how to carry it around and I am a bit aghast that new racks cost more than I paid for the bike! So I am trying to figure out what the best solution is and I have some questions:
Is it OK to carry these sideways on a hitch rack? The bike does not have a quick-release hub on the front so it would be best to leave the front wheel on although I could take it off if necessary. It would be a lot easier for me to hoist it onto the hitch than a roof rack although I think I can manage either. I found someone's plans for making such a hitch rack but I wondered if carrying the bike that way is kosher.
For a roof rack, I drive a Ford Ranger with a set of Yakima bars attached to the cap, I carry my canoe that way. But the bars are about 48 inches apart, and it looks like the bike trays are not that long. Do they make longer ones?
It seems to me it would be possible to get an upright roof rack off eBay, take some of the attachments (like the frame clamp) and move them to the right position for the tandem. So maybe I could strap on both wheels and have a clamp for the frame too as some of the single bike carriers do. Does that sound like it would be strong enough?
Thanks if anyone has ideas....