HOW TO HAUL YOUR ATV & UTV
Another great way we have found to haul an ATV with our pick-up is on top of the bed with a Black Diamond HD truck cover. This strong aluminum cover can bolt to almost any full-sized truck and provide a platform to haul up to two ATVs on. The HD version has a 1600-pound capacity, so almost any pair of 4x4s would fit on it. Custom, long, folding aluminum ramps are available and allow you to carefully roll your four-wheeler up and down the side of your pick-up. The cover clamps solidly to your bedrails, then you secure your ATV to the supplied tie-down cleats. Check out the complete line of DiamondBack truck covers at www.diamondbackcovers.com or call (800) 935-4002. You can also order them through www.discount ramps.com.
Once you have your machine loaded up, you’re not finished until it’s securely tied down. Good-quality tie-downs are available from companies like Moose Utility, O’Neal, Pro Armor and DragonFire Racing, just to name a few. These days, tie-downs do come with a few bells and whistles that you should consider. The most basic is a soft strap. This was originally designed to be wrapped around aluminum handlebars so the metal hooks wouldn’t wear them down during transportation. We find ourselves using them by wrapping the straps around frame tubes and cargo racks. This foot-long strap basically gives you endless tie-down securing-point opportunities. They can also help you find alternative points on a trailer to secure things. However, keep in mind, don’t let the nylon strap run on any sharp edges. We have seen straps start to fray in just five miles and break in under 50.
For more tie-down power, ratchet-style tie-downs are now available in small powersport sizes. The $46 Moose Utility ratchet strap even has a swivel hook on one end. Any ratchet strap will help you tie down your machine extra tight for traveling on something like a flat bed or truck-bed top. These products are a little more expensive, but keep in mind you only need the ratcheting tie-down on one side. You can use a standard pull type on one end, then cinch it up with a ratchet style on the other.
One of the most unique tie-downs that we have tested in the past is the locking tie-down from Lockstraps. These $40 straps have the carabiner-style hooks with a small combination lock built in. The wide nylon strap has a full-length, thin-braided steel cable embedded inside to prevent them from being sliced with a pocketknife or razor blade. They are not completely theft-proof, but they should turn away small-time crooks. To order these, call (951) 506-3682 and tell them you read about Lockstraps in Dirt Wheels magazine.
TRUCK AND TRAILER TIRES