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  #1  
Old 08-29-2011, 11:45 PM
retmil46's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Mooresville, NC
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Opinions on Hitch Carrier Cargo Bags/Boxes?

Well, here over the last 2 weeks my world has completely changed.

Back on Aug 10th, I started the trip back to NC. My mother had called 2 nights before - my 73 year old father's kidneys had shut down, and with the help of a local hospice association, had brought him home on the 9th so he could pass away in peace at home. I arrived home the afternoon of the 11th, and was with him when he passed on just before 1 PM on the 12th.

We had the funeral the following Monday, and the next day the mail carrier came by to ask what was wrong, as we hadn't checked the mail for 2 or 3 days. She was rather shocked when my mother told her the news of my father's passing, no one had told her.

My mother introduced me to her, upon which she said "Wait a minute, I have a registered letter here for you".

It was a recall letter to my previous job with Freightliner in NC, at the same pay and seniority as when I left. Given that I was now concerned with my mother being on her own, and my present job in SA was going away on Oct 1st, I wondered if someone upstairs were trying to guide me as to which direction to go.

So, over the next couple of weeks I'll be packing up and heading back to NC around the middle of September. To make the job of packing easier, I've picked up a hitch mounted cargo basket to go on back of he Liberty, 53" by 25", mounted on a swingarm so I can move it out of the way and still be able to open the rear cargo door even when loaded up.

Given that, does anyone have any recommendations as far as the available cargo bags and boxes that would fit in this size basket?

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Just say "NO" to Ethanol - Drive Diesel

Mitchell Oates
Mooresville, NC
'87 300D 212K miles
'87 300D 151K miles - R.I.P. 12/08
'05 Jeep Liberty CRD 67K miles
Grumpy Old Diesel Owners Club
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  #2  
Old 08-30-2011, 09:55 AM
SwampYankee's Avatar
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Sorry to hear about your dad, Mitchell. Our thoughts are with you and yours. It sounds like things might be falling in place for you for a reason.

The only thing I was going to mention was to make sure the hitch-mount was on a swing arm but I see that's already under consideration. Back before the advent of the swing arm, I had made my own carrier with a frame and a large poly pickup toolbox (I needed to carry a lot of lighter, bulkier items so volume was more important than weight capacity and all of the available ones were too small for my needs) with a couple trailer lights since they covered up the ones on our van. It worked great but it was a pain not being able to open the liftgate with it fully loaded. That swingarm would make all of the difference!
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  #3  
Old 08-30-2011, 10:03 AM
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Sorry to hear about the death of your dad. Good news on the job. A lot of my boating friends us Action Packer poly boxes. I think they might fit on a hitch carrier.
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  #4  
Old 08-30-2011, 03:19 PM
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Here's the one I picked up -

http://www.stowaway2.com/store/p/575-StowAway-Hitch-Rack-Swingaway-Frame.aspx

Now I'm waiting on a Curt raised hitch adapter to come in this Friday. The spare tire on the rear cargo door of the Liberty is slung so bloody low that I still need to drop the carrier at least another 2 inches for everything to clear. Adapter I'm getting will give me a 4 inch drop when inverted, and is only 5 inches long, still gives me 350 lbs tongue weight - well past the 250 lbs the carrier is rated for. At least for the time being, I can easily get to the spare if needed and reach in thru the rear window.

Fortunately, I bought this beast new without the tow package, and added an aftermarket hitch longer than the factory one and much heftier - 5000 lbs tow/500 lbs tongue. Receiver tube on the stock factory hitch is about 4 inches shorter than mine - I wouldn't even be able to have the carrier rack installed right now if I had the factory setup.

Also fortunate that back in June and July I did a major mid-life refit on the beast - new Monroe shocks and quickstrut assemblies, new rear upper suspension arm, new brake pads and rotors turned all around, front and rear alignment FINALLY done correctly, new Michelin LTX MS2's, rear diff redone with new bearings and seals due to a failed carrier bearing at 58K miles. And thankfully it's the CRD diesel version as well - on the first part of the trip to NC on the 10th, 3 hour run from SA to Hillsboro TX on I-35, after all the above work, it averaged 34.5 MPG - not bad for a 4000 lb brick.
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Just say "NO" to Ethanol - Drive Diesel

Mitchell Oates
Mooresville, NC
'87 300D 212K miles
'87 300D 151K miles - R.I.P. 12/08
'05 Jeep Liberty CRD 67K miles
Grumpy Old Diesel Owners Club
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  #5  
Old 08-31-2011, 01:09 AM
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Be careful when you load the basket. It will change the center of gravity and give you slightly less steering control. You might be better off just pulling a small trailer.
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  #6  
Old 08-31-2011, 07:03 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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Sorry to hear of your loss.

I tend toward small trailer too but of course backing is tricky.
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  #7  
Old 08-31-2011, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retmil46 View Post
Well, here over the last 2 weeks my world has completely changed.

Back on Aug 10th, I started the trip back to NC. My mother had called 2 nights before - my 73 year old father's kidneys had shut down, and with the help of a local hospice association, had brought him home on the 9th so he could pass away in peace at home. I arrived home the afternoon of the 11th, and was with him when he passed on just before 1 PM on the 12th.

We had the funeral the following Monday, and the next day the mail carrier came by to ask what was wrong, as we hadn't checked the mail for 2 or 3 days. She was rather shocked when my mother told her the news of my father's passing, no one had told her.

My mother introduced me to her, upon which she said "Wait a minute, I have a registered letter here for you".

It was a recall letter to my previous job with Freightliner in NC, at the same pay and seniority as when I left. Given that I was now concerned with my mother being on her own, and my present job in SA was going away on Oct 1st, I wondered if someone upstairs were trying to guide me as to which direction to go.

So, over the next couple of weeks I'll be packing up and heading back to NC around the middle of September. To make the job of packing easier, I've picked up a hitch mounted cargo basket to go on back of he Liberty, 53" by 25", mounted on a swingarm so I can move it out of the way and still be able to open the rear cargo door even when loaded up.

Given that, does anyone have any recommendations as far as the available cargo bags and boxes that would fit in this size basket?
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  #8  
Old 08-31-2011, 11:33 AM
retmil46's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip Foss View Post
Be careful when you load the basket. It will change the center of gravity and give you slightly less steering control. You might be better off just pulling a small trailer.
I initially tended toward renting a small U-Haul Sport Trailer as well - 60 cu ft, almost as much as my old Subaru wagon or a Jetta sportwagon, small and low. That would have taken 75% or better of what I wanted to haul, Jeep would have been mostly empty.

But checking with U-Haul, their website claims that the smallest trailer they will rent me is a 4 X 8 - overkill for the amount of stuff I need to haul, and I don't want to learn how to tow a trailer for the first time on I-35 with a trailer nearly as physically big as the Liberty itself. Or learning how to come down the 6% grade at Black Mountain on I-40 with a trailer pushing from the back.

Driving by the U-Haul sites in NC and Texas over the past couple of weeks, it looks as if U-Haul has made the decision to get rid of their trailers - only one or two at any site, but loads of moving vans. Perhaps they decided the trailers weren't profitable enough and are phasing them out.

I packed light when I came down to SA over 2 years ago - only what would fit in the Liberty - and no furniture to take back. Just need some extra space to make packing easier for a few extra small items I've picked up over the last two years.

And I won't be having to do it all in one shot. Freightliner usually gives us 2 weeks off over Christmas and New Years, and the lease on the apartment isn't up until Jan 5th - with what the renters are allowed under Texas law, I'd get raped big time if I tried to officially move out now, to the tune of 4 grand or better.

Plan is to tell them I'll have to be up in NC for the next 3 or so months settling my father's estate, and the monthly rent will be set up on auto-pay. I'l leave stuff like the vacuum cleaner and cleaning supplies that I'll need to finish cleaning up the place when I come back over the holidays. Then settle up with the apartment complex, and grab the remaining items.

__________________
Just say "NO" to Ethanol - Drive Diesel

Mitchell Oates
Mooresville, NC
'87 300D 212K miles
'87 300D 151K miles - R.I.P. 12/08
'05 Jeep Liberty CRD 67K miles
Grumpy Old Diesel Owners Club
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