How to Save Garage Space w/ Wall Hitch Mount for a Bike Rack

Free up floor space in your garage by installing a wall hitch mount to store your bike rack and bike.
by Updated August 26, 2018

I recently decided I needed to make some more floor space in my garage and wanted a better place to store my mountain bike in the winter when I wasn't using it (up off the ground). I initially considered getting a Topeak Swing-Up Bike Holder, which would just hold my mountain bike vertically on the wall with some side to side movement. But then I came across a hitch mounted wall mount for bike racks (2" and 1-1/4"). Since I already owned a 1UP USA bike rack with a 1-1/4" hitch, it seemed like an ideal choice to use a wall rack mount to store both my hitch mounted bike rack along with my mountain bike.

During mountain bike season, a wall rack mount would also give me a quick spot to store the 1UP bike rack when I wanted to remove it from the hitch on the back of my car (instead of leaving it on the floor of my garage). Also I'm now able to lock up my 1UP bike rack to the wall mount using the 1UP USA hitch bar lock, and then use a cable lock to lock up my bike up to the bike rack (while not super secure, it's still a deterent to stealing my bike if I accidently forget to leave my garage door open).

There's a few brands that make bike rack wall mount receivers:

I ended up purchasing the Jamas Rack Mount 1-1/4" receiver, since it seemed like it would fit my wall pretty well for my needs and be sturdy. The Jamas Rack Mount does not include any lag bolts or washers, so you will need purchase those separately to install the rack mount.  They recommend using three 3/8" x 4" lag bolts (to go into wall studs) or concrete anchors.

DON'T DO THIS

The wall in my garage where I wanted to install the rack mount is concrete cinder block, so I initially decided to use a small 2x4 and mount it to the cinder block wall with 3/16" x 2-1/4" Tapcon Concrete Anchor Screws, and then I screwed the Jamas Rack Mount into the 2x4 using 3/8" x 2-1/2" lag bolts with washers. Unfortunately, this was a BAD idea... the Tapcon screws just don't have the holding power that is necessary for doing the job correctly.  The first time I went to take the bike off the rack, the whole mount fell off the wall.

I pre-drilled pilot holes for all the screws / lag bolts in both the 2x4 and the cinder block wall. I used a 5/16" drill bit for making the three pilot holes in the 2x4 for the 3/8" lag bolts. The Tapcon Concrete Anchors that I bought come with a drill bit to make pilot holes, but if you don't have a Hammerdrill for drilling into concrete and only have a regular hand drill like me it can be a painfully slow process to drill holes into cinder block.

/END

Instead, I finally ended up using 3/8" x 3" sleeve anchors to secure a 5' long 2x4 to the concrete (cinder) block. I needed to purchase a DeWalt DW511 Hammerdrill & Drill in one which is absolutely needed for drilling the holes in concrete. I also picked up the appropiate sized 3/8" Carbide Hammer Drill Bit which is also needed for drilling into Concrete, Stone and Masonry.  Do not place any anchor within 10 anchor diameters of another anchor (in the case of a 3/8" anchor, the next closes anchor needs to be at least 3.75" away, I placed mine at least 5" away from each other). Once you've drilled the hole out, make sure you clean out the hole of all dust and debris, using a vacuum, compressed air or wire brush.

After I installed the Jamas Rack Mount up on the wall, I grabbed my 1UP USA bike rack and tried to slide it into the receiver. Unfortunately, I discovered that the Jamas Rack Mount (female) receiver metal was pinched too tight and I could not even budge the rack in at all.  It looked like when receiver part was made, they bent/folded the metal/steel over to make the four bends, and in doing so this caused the side walls of the receiver to bow in. Also the metal around the holes in the two sides and the front opening were jagged. So I quickly found out is that there are a number of quality control issues going on with the Jamas rack mount.  I didn't want to mess around with grinding steel down, so tried contacting Jamas through their website, but after I didn't hear back from them for a day or two (I probabaly should've called instead), I decided to do what THEY should have done in the first place and went ahead with trying to hand file and dremel the metal on the inside of the Jamas receiver down to fix the problems. I was finally able to make it work, but overall, it took me a good two hours to finally get the inside filed down and smooth enough to be able slide in my bike rack easily enough so that it would not get stuck. So just keep that in mind...

Now that I got it working, I'm pretty happy with the extra floor space I have in my garage and that I can store both my bike rack and mountain bike up off the ground, and out of the way. The Jamas Rack Mount seems pretty solid, but I just wish they had machined it correctly and tested it out before shipping it out to customers like myself.

 


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2 Comments

anonymous by Harry Cruz on 6/9/2018
Is it recommended that you use a 2x4 or can I just mount it on the wall using tapcon screws?
doug by doug on 6/9/2018

If your wall is not concrete block (like mine), you can attach the hitch mount directly on the wall, using the inner wall stud (2x4), with 4” lag bolts. You do not need to mount an additional 2x4 on the outside of the wall (like I did). Don’t use tapcon screws.

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