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· Registered
2004 Nissan Xterra, 4x4 S/C
348 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got a dirt bike rack mounted on my 1st gen X, figured I'd share my research so others who are interested have this info:


My set up:
  • Shrockworks tire carrier rear bumper
  • Black Widow aluminum dirt bike carrier

Hitch ratings and weight:
  • Hitch: Shrock bumper has a 2" Class III hitch with 5000 lbs max tow rating. Usually max tongue weight is 10% of max tow rating, so Shrock hitch is rated at 500 lbs tongue weight
  • Bike: Most dirt bikes are about 200 - 300 lbs, while the rack is 36 lbs, so well within the hitch max tongue weight. My CRF250L is a pig at 340 lbs with the aftermarket fuel tank filled up, but still well within the hitch rating.
  • Tire/Bike clearance: Depending on the bike, you'll likely have an issue with clearance with the spare tire on the carrier. I'm running 33 x 11.5 tires, and my CRF250L is pretty wide so definitely not enough space between the rack rail and the tire, might fit with other bikes. I took the spare tire off and everything fit with a bit of room to spare.
  • Using a hitch receiver extension: I considered using a 7-8" extension to allow me to keep the spare tire on. However, after some research I decided against it.
    • Talking to a rep at they said that receiver extensions usually will half the hitch max. tongue weight rating. So 500 lbs @ 50% = only 250 lbs
    • Mark from Shrockworks also strongly advised against using a receiver extension; "That’s a lot of weight bouncing around to begin with. I would not give it more leverage."
    • For trips where I definitely want the spare tire I'm thinking I'll just ratchet strap it to the roof, I know that's a common albeit less convenient way to carry it.
My truck has a 3" suspension lift and 2" body lift, so the hitch and moto rack are high! Getting a 340 pound bike up onto the rack takes a bit of muscle/coordination, but not too bad once you do it a few times. Definitely get a longer ramp than the tiny thing that comes with the BlackWidow rack, I'd recommend either a 7 or 8 foot folding ramp. Here is my Matrix Concepts alu A7 (7') ramp:


Hope this helps someone!

· Registered
2004 Xterra XE 4WD Auto 3.3L NA V6
3,342 Posts
Something to be aware of when running around in your rig with stuff on the roof.

If you go over any toll bridges or plazas, you may be charged for being "over-height" just from that bicycle. I traverse a toll bridge daily. If I put a bike on top of my low-slung car, I'd have to pay extra. If it was laying flat, then it'd qualify for the lower rate.
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