Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

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Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby ahopkins1988 » April 15th, 2019, 5:59 pm

I currently have a thrown together bike rack in the bed of my truck using two old roof racks and and some 2x6’s. It works great but I’m honestly getting sick of taking my front tire on and off. Plus anytime I ride with a friend who has a 27.5+ and we drive together, he has to drive as his bike won’t fit in the racks. So I’ve been looking at tailgate pads as they seem like a good, cheaper, option that will still allow me to take my bike up north if we are towing our boat and it will check the boxes of front tire staying on and all, or at least most, bikes will fit.

My questions for anyone who has used them is how are they to take them on and off? I’d rather not leave it on all season as I’d worry about scratches and not having my bed covered. The one linked below seems like it checks most boxes for what tailgate pads offer but wanted to post here asking first. I did search and there are a few posts about people liking them but not much.

Demon Bicycle Tailgate Pad with Bike Mechanic Apron Combo Pack (Large (62" Wide) for Full Size Pickups) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0711YJ3TW/re ... TCbDJFHJY3
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby deuxdiesel » April 16th, 2019, 4:42 am

They work, but getting the bikes to not move around takes a little practice. I have one and have only used it for one long trip years ago. I had to tie the front wheels to the hitch in order to keep the bikes stable. In the end it doesn't save that much time but it nice to be able to take the "rack" off your bike in seconds after you are done with it. You are welcome to try or borrow mine to see if it works before you buy one. I am located in Dexter.
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby DynoDon » April 16th, 2019, 6:32 am

You could make a removeable wood chock for the front wheels to stop them from moving, and strap 3 bikes down just like people do with mx bikes.
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby Jared13 » April 16th, 2019, 12:34 pm

The truck pad I have has three straps that wrap around the tailgate to cinch it down. Pretty easy to take off, but can take some effort (or two people) to install if you have shorter arms. I'm pretty much hugging the tailgate to get the strap all the way around.

There is probably an easier/smarter way to install them but my "if it's stupid and works, it ain't stupid" method is effective. :mrgreen:
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby ahopkins1988 » April 16th, 2019, 6:37 pm

So no one has had issues with it scuffing or scratching your tailgate? I’m 6’1” so I hope I can reach the straps just fine. Lol
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby Jared13 » April 17th, 2019, 12:35 pm

ahopkins1988 wrote:So no one has had issues with it scuffing or scratching your tailgate? I’m 6’1” so I hope I can reach the straps just fine. Lol


No issues with scratching/scuffing and I've used it multiple times in Montana and when moving from Montana to Michigan. You can cinch down the straps pretty tight so there's not much movement.

That said, my truck is also silver so any light scratches probably wouldn't show up very well anyway and I also have the bed rhino lined.

LOL! You should have zero issues reaching the straps!
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby ahopkins1988 » April 17th, 2019, 1:06 pm

Jared13 wrote:
ahopkins1988 wrote:So no one has had issues with it scuffing or scratching your tailgate? I’m 6’1” so I hope I can reach the straps just fine. Lol


No issues with scratching/scuffing and I've used it multiple times in Montana and when moving from Montana to Michigan. You can cinch down the straps pretty tight so there's not much movement.

That said, my truck is also silver so any light scratches probably wouldn't show up very well anyway and I also have the bed rhino lined.

LOL! You should have zero issues reaching the straps!


Good to know! My truck is black so I guess I'll have a higher risk. I have a bed liner too so only worried about the outside. I ended up buying that demon pad last night so will see how it goes.
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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby Roy » April 19th, 2019, 8:09 am

From my experience , if you carry bikes in the bed, you are going to scratch and dent the truck sooner or later. That pad will help, but some kind of fixed bike rack would serve you better, even if you make it from 2x4's. To prevent damage to both bikes and the truck, the bikes need to be strapped down. The sooner the bike is stabilized in the bed, the less damage will occur. Loading from the side is most risky. Damage can also occur when loading and unloading (when tailgate is down) from the rear. In this case that pad will help.


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Re: Experience with a truck tailgate pad?

Postby cramer » April 19th, 2019, 8:13 am

I have the Dakine model and I like it a lot. I had six bikes in it just this weekend. Mine has three straps. It can be a little tricky to weave the strap under the tailgate to put it on and the middle one was the worst so I actually just tied that one up in a knot and I only use the outer two straps which works fine. Without middle strap and now that I'm proficient, I can install it pretty quickly. Removal even easier.I don't strap the bikes down in it at all, just throw them on and they stay put exactly where I put them, even on long (hundreds of miles) camping trips. I have scuffed my tailgate on both sides but it was my error. Basically out of worry that the wheels would hit my travel trailer when making really sharp turns, I put bikes as far over to the side as possible and didn't notice the fork was rubbing the bare metal at the edge on each side. I don't put them way over like that any more so hasn't been an issue after that initial mistake.
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