Originally Posted by sfgiantsfan
Yeah it's a lot of fun, one of the fastest cars I've driven once it gets going, great off road too. Gas sucks and maintenance really sucks but I love itAttachment 703293Attachment 703294[/QUOTE]
Dude, Kuats are expensive! I ended up buying a used Thule T2 off craigslist...
regarding pulling the bumper.....
Not unlike my MK3 GTi. I had to remove the bumper to install the bolts that hold the hitch on. It was actually easier than it sounds. Just 4 big bolts, a couple of clips that hold the bumper cover on, and the whole works just slides off.
IMO, the 1Up rack is the best out there. Best rack I've owned by far.
<a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/AaFWsbCYZLPXJT4xZ23daCQMO8n9GnWPFc-scvYAVhE?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-HMRAgd081Mg/T5V_MlDJtLI/AAAAAAAAdog/2VK37wcUnvc/s800/IMG_3184.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>
I second the DIY method....it was stupid easy and only took me 45 minutes. Look for the Youtube install videos for your model car.
I got a Curt hitch for my Mazda 3 from Amazon for $130, no tax and free 2 day shipping (Prime Trial membership). I could not be happier with the $$ I saved plus the satisfaction of doing it myself :-)
You will need a Torque wrench and some ramps if you go this route unless your car has some clearance in the rear.....you won't need much.
Good Luck.....you will LOVE your new hitch rack!!
I had to drill holes in my car's frame to install my hitch. I did everything myself and it was a bit of a PITA, but doable.
I just ordered the 1Up rack, based on all the good reviews here on MTBR. (I made sure to credit mtbr on my order).
Originally Posted by pimpbot
Is there a built in way to lock the bike to the rack, or do you just leave a cable and lock in the car?
WOW! This is EXACTLY what I was worried about when I installed mine. The "frame" is barely more than a little thin sheetmetal. I went with the 1UP USA single bike rack (since 99% of the time I only carry 1 bike and the 1UP only weighs like 28lbs) but I do have the add-on as well that I can put on to carry two bikes. I didn't even want to consider thinking about 4 bikes back there for this reason. I've also heard of 4bike racks mounted to hitches on trucks (which have massively strong frame rails - not the unibody sheet metal of our cars) and the weak link is the hitch itself. They will bend and elongate when bounced around on a forest service type road.
Originally Posted by BigLarry
I worked in a welding / hitch shop for a summer. You might check where various brands of hitches are mounted. Frame or sheet metal. If Subaru has a factory one, it's worth looking at where they mount it. Then see if another brand uses the same attachment points.
We made a custom light ball hitch for my Datsun 510. Two bolts went into the bumper. Two bolts went into the sheet metal of the trunk area. On the inside, we put a large steel plate to spread out the load on the sheet metal.
Yeah, no cables on this one. Built-in rack cables suck anyway.
Originally Posted by GuruAtma
I use a disc type lock around my hitch receiver, to a big fatty hardened chain through a U-Lock around my frame and rear wheel.
posted in wrong place ... ignore
The Subaru OEM hitch mounts differently than all the aftermarket hitches. The aftermarkets mount only to the frame (see Larry's pic above) but the Subie one mounts there PLUS they remove the original bumper support bar and the hitch becomes the bumper support (and there are an additional 4 more bolting points). I didn't go with it since I'm never going to tow and only put two bikes back there and, the biggie, the OEM cost over $350 vs $112 for the aftermarket. I should probably scour the boneyards for a OEM hitch and sell my aftermarket.
I am not surprised, which is why I said to look at the OEM hitch and compare. Sometimes aftermarket is focused on speed of installation vs strength of mounting points. However, you really need to look at what is on the bumper rack. Bicycles vs Motorcycles.
Originally Posted by campisi
My own solution. I turned a "bumper thumper" (front guard) into a bumper rack / bug deflector.
My big plan originally was to use the hitch to transport one of my motorcycles. But that was before I learned about hitches and racks and load ratings etc. I knew I wouldn't be able to transport my XR250 on the hitch (even though it's a comparatively light bike) but I thought for sure I'd be able to transport my CR80/XR100 conversion bike as it only weighs 150lbs. After researching and putting on the hitch there is NO CHANCE I'd even try the lighter bike. It would tear the rear of my Forester to hell. I'll have to get a utility trailer. The hitch rack is strictly for one or two bicycle duty. The Forester replaced my Dodge Ram 1500
Originally Posted by KevXR