MTB Hitch Rack for 2009 Forester- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    New question here. MTB Hitch Rack for 2009 Forester

    Hey guys,

    Brand n00b member, first post so please go easy if this is so commonly asked but I have a 29'er MTB and a 2009 Subie Forester. I've been looking at this one for hitch racks but am overwhelmed at the number of options. Any recommendations?


    Thanks!

    - Colin

  2. #2
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    they are more expensive but I would go with a rack the bikes don't hang from. http://www.amazon.com/Kuat-Transfer-...kuat+bike+rack

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by armii View Post
    they are more expensive but I would go with a rack the bikes don't hang from. http://www.amazon.com/Kuat-Transfer-...kuat+bike+rack
    I'll second Kuat. I have an older model rack and I'm very happy with it. It fits everything from my BMX bike to my downhill bike. I've had to use their lifetime warranty once and the service was fantastic - getting the part was much easier than I had planned.

    Not that it matters what car it's behind, but I have mine behind a Forester as well (04).
    Instagram = @njcshreds
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  4. #4
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    I have this one. Nashbar Shadow 2-Bike Hitch Rack

    Used it on my old 04 WRX wagon and now it's on my 15 XV. A little heavy, but half as much money than most hitch racks. A friend has a Kuat NV with the bike stand attachment and it is beautiful!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by pebbles View Post
    I have this one. Nashbar Shadow 2-Bike Hitch Rack

    Used it on my old 04 WRX wagon and now it's on my 15 XV. A little heavy, but half as much money than most hitch racks. A friend has a Kuat NV with the bike stand attachment and it is beautiful!
    I usually put our bikes inside the Honda Element, but when we have three people, we put one inside and use my friends Kuat NV, for the other two. Great rack, I'm just not willing to spend that much.

  6. #6
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    I had an 05 Forester XT, which I used a Swagman XC2 rack. It's almost all steel, so it can last forever. In fact, it's outlived 4 cars.



    I've had that Swagman ever since my 02 WRX, which was replaced by an 05 Forester XT, then an 08 Yaris, and finally a CT200h:





    I sold the Swagman when I sold the CT200h.

    I'm now sporting a Saris Thelma 3 because I occasionally have to carry 3 bikes.



    The Thelma 3 is a much lighter rack due to the use of plastic trays and the lightweight metal tubing backbone (the U shaped frame). It works fine, but I catch glimpses of the bikes bouncing around sometimes in the rear view mirror.

    My Thule T2 sits in the garage because it's like 65 pounds and I don't feel like carrying it from the garage to the car over a distance of more than 50 feet. But it is a very solid rack. Bikes don't move around when snugged up on the T2.


  7. #7
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    I can't say enough good things about the Kuat NV also. I have it behind my 2010 Forester. Its rock solid after a year of use and I have had no issues whatsoever. Do you already have the hitch on your Forester? If not, check out etrailer.com.... They often have free shipping and on a bike rack and/or a hitch that's a good chunk of money saved.

  8. #8
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    Wow thanks guys, super helpful! I'll take a close look at these and compare some deals on eBay and CL. I haven't looked yet but if we (this forum) has a buy/sell/trade I'll check that out too.

    Thanks again, happy [muddy] trails!

    - Colin

  9. #9
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    I bought the same Thule hanger rack you linked, and regretted it immediately. Saved some on the rack, but the straps scratched the paint on my expensive carbon frame, which made the not worth the savings. Just bought a Kuat NV2 and couldn't be happier. It's extremely solid, doesn't hurt the bike finish, has a built in lock and stand, and is much easier to use with multiple bikes without scratching each other. Highly recommend the Kuat, it's worth the extra money.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTrekBr View Post
    Wow thanks guys, super helpful! I'll take a close look at these and compare some deals on eBay and CL. I haven't looked yet but if we (this forum) has a buy/sell/trade I'll check that out too.

    Thanks again, happy [muddy] trails!

    - Colin
    Please, please, PLEASE don't buy a rack the bikes hang off of! These are a major pain when it comes to transporting bikes. Just so many negatives, I'm not even going to start listing them (friends have had them, so I know). Spend the extra bucks on the recs above, it's well worth it.
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  11. #11
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    I used to have a Thule 934XTR rack and I also hated it. Unless you have early 80's steel road bikes with traditional top tubes, it's almost impossible to fit more than one bike on the thing. There are cross bar adapters, etc, but in general, this type of rack is a pain to use. Harbor Freight and Pep Boys routinely have this style of rack on sale for $30. I can't see why the Thule is over $200. Ended up giving it away and was glad to be rid of it.

    There is a way to cheap-out on a rack without resorting to buying one of those awkward racks that hang by the frame.

    The Highland Sportwing hangs bikes by the wheels. It's like $90 shipped for the 1.25" hitch 2 bike model:


    https://www.amazon.com/Highland-1375...wing+bike+rack

    Then if you need to elevate the rack higher, a new shank should do it with minimum cost:


    https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories...d/1370800.html

    There is a discussion of this rack here:
    https://forums.mtbr.com/car-biker/sp...ck-507548.html

    I actually own the 2" hitch version of this rack on my SUV (used whenever I need to carry 4 bikes). The rubber straps are garbage. Other people have successfully replaced them with ball bungee cords. I had nylon straps made to secure the tires and use the ball bungee cords to prevent the bikes from swinging around during transit. Given the price and the ease of finding suitable replacements for them, the crap rubber straps is not a deal breaker.

  12. #12
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    Kuat transfer on my '03 Forester (and a Kuat Vagobond on top). I've been Super happy with Kuat products so far, and the price of the Transfer is tough to beat considering it kids bikes all the way up to fat bikes.


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyle_vk View Post
    Kuat transfer on my '03 Forester (and a Kuat Vagobond on top). I've been Super happy with Kuat products so far, and the price of the Transfer is tough to beat considering it kids bikes all the way up to fat bikes.


    Great thanks guys, sounds like the Kuat is a resounding winner. I'm checking prices on CL and eTrailer. I have an '09 Forester that needs a hitch as well, perhaps they have come combination-buys.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTrekBr View Post
    Great thanks guys, sounds like the Kuat is a resounding winner. I'm checking prices on CL and eTrailer. I have an '09 Forester that needs a hitch as well, perhaps they have come combination-buys.
    Not to endorse any particular merchant, but check out Bikebling if you want the Kuat NV2. they had by far the best price on it, free shipping.

    I was set on getting a Kuat Transfer, then considered the cost of a locking pin, and cable lock...... the price was so good at bikebling for the NV2 I couldn't resist.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTrekBr View Post
    Great thanks guys, sounds like the Kuat is a resounding winner. I'm checking prices on CL and eTrailer. I have an '09 Forester that needs a hitch as well, perhaps they have come combination-buys.
    FWIW, i purchased my hitch off eTrailer (bought the Kuat at the LBS other wise i would purchased it of eTrailer as well). Great service, fast shipping, and received everything as i would hope/expect.

  16. #16
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    Super happy with my Thule T2. It IS heavy though, but I leave it on my hitch year round so... I have seen some Kuat hitch racks driving around that looked impressive also.

  17. #17
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    I agree with everyone in this thread who say to purchase a platform rack instead of a traditional rack that bikes hang from. The best bike-related purchase I've ever made... besides maybe Speedplay clipless pedals and cleats for my road bike... was a Hollywood Racks platform rack.

  18. #18
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    Wanted to let you all know I ended up with the Kuat NV2 based on an overwhelmingly-positive user experience here, as well as reviews off product sites. As soon as I mounted the hitch, then rack, it was pretty clear why - I'm tickled pink at the features on this and it couldn't be easier! As many have said, this feels and looks every penny.

    MTB Hitch Rack for 2009 Forester-13342912_10102086092386128_566798338435325910_n.jpg

    MTB Hitch Rack for 2009 Forester-13267760_10102086092391118_1231500493647375969_n.jpg

    MTB Hitch Rack for 2009 Forester-img_7492.jpg

    I have some DOT red reflective tape coming to put on the back and bottom (since it can be tilted up). Any maintenance tips for the hitch other than a wipe down and a bit of Tri Flow in the locks?


    Thanks again!

    Colin

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