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  1. #1
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    Newbie Looking for hitch bike rack

    SO I have my rig now….just need to haul it. Belated thanks to all of the information in this forum about beginner bikes, it helped with my selection to get my 2014 GT Karakoram Elite.

    Ok, on with the question. Now that my wife and I have our bikes, we need to be able to haul them. I've consulted LBS and friends, but wanted to hear your thoughts. Our first instinct was to go for the Thule T2, but now I found this one, and it seems to have great reviews everywhere I search. We won't be doing any cross country hauls, but the idea of keeping both bikes and truck unharmed and safe are at the forefront of our decision making process. Here is the rack, I'd like to get your thoughts:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...PC73P9ARMNW2P2

  2. #2
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    I don't know about that particular rack, but I do have a Saris hitch rack that I have been pretty happy with.

    That one looks like it will work well with a GT frame. I'm kind of addicted to them so I have an old one a new one, my wife has one. Problem is the triple triangle frame design makes it difficult to hang them on the regular trunk/hitch style racks that have the 2 arms that a normal frame sits on without problems.

    The worst part in my opinion about hitch racks is getting a bike destroyed in a fender bender and road grime. If you ride in the winter where it's messy, the bikes get covered with road salt & grime. Not fun.
    Yes! Whenever bicycles are broken, or menaced by International Communism, Bicycle Repair Man is ready!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjydrafter View Post
    I don't know about that particular rack, but I do have a Saris hitch rack that I have been pretty happy with.

    That one looks like it will work well with a GT frame. I'm kind of addicted to them so I have an old one a new one, my wife has one. Problem is the triple triangle frame design makes it difficult to hang them on the regular trunk/hitch style racks that have the 2 arms that a normal frame sits on without problems.

    The worst part in my opinion about hitch racks is getting a bike destroyed in a fender bender and road grime. If you ride in the winter where it's messy, the bikes get covered with road salt & grime. Not fun.
    Appreciate the information. It's as difficult as picking a bike finding the right rack. I'll keep all options open and hopefully end up with the best bang for the buck.

  4. #4
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    Best rack hands down you can buy, Kuat NV. Spend the money once and you will never need another hitch rack.
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  5. #5
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    +1 on the Kuat NV. Had an Apex swing and replaced it with Kuat and haven't looked back. 4 bike options, lifetime warranty, great ground clearance, super easy to use.
    Last edited by LegionX; 2 Weeks Ago at 09:40 PM. Reason: spelling error

  6. #6
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    The Saris you posted is a decent rack. It will have a lot more plastic pieces than some of the nicer racks like the Kuat...the Kuat is also around double the price of the Saris you posted about. Personally, I'm more of a fan of the racks that have the ratcheting arm that secures against the front wheel. Racks like the Kuat NV and Sherpa, and the Thule 918 XTR T2.

  7. #7
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    If you're looking to spend $250-350 on a rack, then you probably won't be able to get the Kuat which retails for $530 but I see them in stores for $499.00. Not the cheapest rack around, but well worth the money. Yakima Holdup is a nice rack as with the Thule 918 XTR. Both can usually be found used on CL for decent, negotiable prices. If you can get this rack for $250-275, then it would be a great deal.

    Yakima HoldUp 2" Bike Rack for Sale

    I've used Thules and Yakimas. I went with the Inno INH305 and I've been a happy camper ever since. Its built like a tank and the customer service is awesome if you ever had to deal with them.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by owensjs View Post
    The Saris you posted is a decent rack. It will have a lot more plastic pieces than some of the nicer racks like the Kuat...the Kuat is also around double the price of the Saris you posted about. Personally, I'm more of a fan of the racks that have the ratcheting arm that secures against the front wheel. Racks like the Kuat NV and Sherpa, and the Thule 918 XTR T2.
    Saris looks like a nice rack and the price is certainly right. If you are not concerned with attaching to down tube and any paint rub over the long term, it's a great option. I look at the racks as a 5 year (at least) investment in transportation and care of my bikes and Kuat was worth the extra cost. It's a personal decision and I don't think you can go too wrong. Worst case scenario, get the Saris now and if your needs change (think carbon road bike or something like that) sell it on Craigslist. Yakima, Thule also good options as they allow add-on to carry 2 extra bikes. Don't forget to consider what size hitch you have when selecting rack as some require 1 1/4" or 2" receiver. Best of luck.

  9. #9
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    Tray racks are really the best, especially with mountain bikes since the top tubes make it tough to mount and you will get some paint rub. I have both including a tray rack I had made up in 1990 that weighs a good 50lbs and is such a beast that I don't use it anymore.

    There is another aspect to this and that is security. I have a Yakima mast type rack right now and IMO, I would never trust the security of my bikes to that flimsy locking hitch pin. I am actually running some 10mm security chain to a couple of disc locks so that the thief will at least have to work for a few minutes and not just knock off the lock on the hitch pin and mount my rack with the bikes on his vehicle.

    John

    PS... the good thing about the Kurt is that the thief would probably take the rack and leave my bikes.
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  10. #10
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  11. #11
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    Don't buy a rack that touches the frame of your bike.

    My friend bought the rack the OP posted and it almost wore a hole in frame of his bike. The silicone rubber grommet wore through so it was metal to metal contact for a few hours on a long drive.

    I have the Saris super clamp 2 and it works great. It's also under $400.

  12. #12
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    I concur with the tray style rack with a couple of important caveats:

    Your vehicle with the rack installed has ample ground clearance for going up and down inclines like a steep driveway or a large gutter. An SUV will work with most racks but a low clearance car might have problems.

    The tray rack you choose can carry the number of bikes you need to carry. Some racks can only ever carry 2 bikes, some can be expanded to carry more, and some can only carry more than 2 bikes if you have the 2" receiver instead of the 1 1/4".

    I've had two Yakima hanging racks which, at the time, I was happy with. It wasn't until a long road trip back from Moab with my expensive and not light bike where a stiff cross wind knocked the bike out of the cradle and nearly off of the rack entirely on the highway that I realized that I needed a better solution.

    That solution for me was the 1 Up rack. Yes, it is expensive but it really is a world apart from any other rack on the market. The rack is securely fastened to the car and the bikes are securely fastened to the rack. No shaking or rattling and the bikes are supported from the tires. It fits all tire sizes and can be adapted to fat bikes if needed. In the 2" receiver size the rack is modular and can be adapted from 2-4 bikes with easily removable and stored add-on parts. It's not cheap but it's the best.

    There's a sub-forum dedicated to these sorts of discussions, in case you haven't seen it yet: Car & Biker - Mtbr.com
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  13. #13
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    great info guys. I want to make sure that i get a rack that lasts and doesn't beat up on our 4-runner or my bikes. Saris was an option, so is the Thule T2 and the Kuat NV now. I will keep shopping around and keep an eye out for deals on CL.

  14. #14
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    If a Kuat is on the list, you might as well put the 1up USA on there as well. For two bikes, it will be around $100 more than the Kuat NV if you were to buy them brand new and it seems as if the 1up is the holy grail of bike racks.

    1UPUSA.com :: Double Quik Rack Black

  15. #15
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    Here is a cool place to see all the types and great prices too:
    Hitch Bike Racks | etrailer.com

    I bought a RinoRack 4bike 2" receiver, it came with a pad so the bike frame and rack are happy with eachother
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  16. #16
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    I have the Swagman XTC (the first result of Burt4x4's link). I bought it for a bit under $200. I've used it for one season now and have been very happy overall. There are places that I can see that it is a (bit above) entry level rack, such as the plastic pieces that are part of the sliding tray attachment, but I've seen nothing so far that suggests that it won't last me many more seasons.

    If money was no object for me, I'd probably have a 1up or some other high end rack, but right now, I can't really justify spending an extra 3-400 on a rack when I could spend it on my bike or gas to go riding. I can honestly say that there wasn't as single time last year where a higher end rack would have made my day more enjoyable.

    This is semi-on topic, but I think that while "buy quality once, don't buy again" can be good advice, but I think that it gets oversold on forums. I suspect that there is more lost value from people overbuying and then losing interest so that their high end bike/rack/skis/tools/etc. end up gathering dust in the basement than from being forced to replace racks that will only survive regular use rather than a nuclear blast.

    After being burned by this myself a few times, my new model is buy reasonably cheap the first time, if I prove that I use whatever enough that I can wear out the basic consumer model, then I can justify swallowing the cost of a professional quality edition of whatever.

  17. #17
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    Vote for Thule vertex 2/4. Fantastic product that is easy to get out of the way. A little pricey but no regrets here.

  18. #18
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    Newbie Looking for hitch bike rack

    One of the rack I ever had was a strap on one I got for $10 at a yard sale.

  19. #19
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    Craigslist.. I scored Thule dual, hitch mount for $65.. .02

  20. #20
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    My Saris was a gift.

    I concur with the ground clearance statement. My GTO has been lowered and I've drug it a couple times but my tundra hasn't had any issues aside from not being able to lower the tailgate all the way.

  21. #21
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    I have the Thule T2 with the additional extension. It easily carries my families' 4 29ers every weekend. I would buy it again if I needed another rack.

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  22. #22
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    I'm very happy with my Thule DoubleTrack 990xt. I had to modify the receiver to fit my mustang (cut off the old one and welded in a longer one to clear my rear bumper) but now it works great. Very stable considering its holding 70lbs of mountain bikes most of the time. I couldn't afford the T2 after purchasing two brand new bikes, and I'm sure the retaining hook will eventually wear off the paint on my top tubes (need to get some clear 3m vinyl to cover where it rubs) but it holds the bikes solid and secure. I like the built in locks and the fact that it holds all of our bikes level.


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  23. #23
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    Another vote for the T2......I've had mine for 5 years now and it has been a great rack. Solid construction and very durable. I'd buy again without hesitation......

  24. #24
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    Thule

  25. #25
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    All great inputs and I'm thankful to get all of the experience in here with the different racks as a gauge on what to buy. We will be trekking to canyons NP this summer and I want to make sure the bikes arrive and return in the same condition they left.

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