Thule T2 problem?- Mtbr.com

1. ## Thule T2 problem?

<object width="400" height="300"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><param name="movie" value="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=9898642&amp;server=vimeo.com &amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=1&amp;show_portr ait=0&amp;color=&amp;fullscreen=1" /><embed src="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=9898642&amp;server=vimeo.com &amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=1&amp;show_portr ait=0&amp;color=&amp;fullscreen=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" width="400" height="300"></embed></object><p><a href="http://vimeo.com/9898642">Thule T2 Bike Rack malfunctions on interstate causing injuries and destroyed mountain bike</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user3307675">Angie Hyndman</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

Is this for realz? A friend sent me the linky.

Edit: Thule has contacted us to request their action on this issue:

--------------------------------------
Our response is…

We have heard of a few instances regarding the issues that have been described with the T2. Our quality testing team has been unable to replicate this scenario in our lab or on our road tests. As always, this testing is carried out with correctly assembled and installed products. Thule is committed to making products which have the highest safety and quality. Even though we were unable to duplicate the problem, as a precaution, we started installing a bolt on the underside of the T2 last year. This bolt helps to keep the T2 trays on the rack even if the tray bolts were not secured correctly during the installation.

The Thule T2 uses a similar 4-bolt design as a bicycle stem. As with a stem, each of the four bolts needs to be tightened down evenly with a tool that can provide adequate torque. Although we have not yet inspected this rack first hand, the tool used in the video appears to be a common multi-tool which is good to use for emergencies, but doesn’t provide enough leverage to fully tighten the lock-tight coated bolts on a T2.

We have been in contact with Tim to learn more about his experience with this rack. Repeated efforts by Thule to obtain a police report, make contact with witnesses or potentially injured individuals, gather any insurance claims or obtain the name of the trucking company that hit his bike have not been successful. Finally, our quality department has not received his T2 which is a must have for our internal analysis. Until we receive this information and rack we cannot determine what happened.

As with all Thule products, the T2 comes with a lifetime warranty and we stand behind the product 100%. If anyone has an issue with any of our products, they can call our customer service 800-238-2388. As soon as we do receive the rack in question back and figure out the cause for the failure we will let you and your readers know.

-Thule-

----------------------------

2. ## Dont use a FREAKIN multi tool!!

What a moron! I've been using a T-2 for five years and never a problem, multiple 8 hr. trips to so cal etc. But oh, I use a ratchet to tighten those bolts!

3. Why wouldn't it be for real? There are engineering limitations for all racks and some failures are greater than others.

My Saris rack failed at the hitch receiver insert welds a few years ago. Thankfully, it failed in datenschwanz's driveway instead of on the highway as we were loading the bikes. It was probably close to failure as derelict and I pulled up to his house but locking the wheel latches with enough downward pressure to cinch the wheels was enough to pop the welds.

We were able to salvage the ride by putting a couple of bikes on the roof and a couple taken apart inside the back of my truck. Daten, derelict, Slide Mon and I were able to salvage that ride at Demo. It really would have sucked to plan such a great day and not go ride. It would have sucked worse if it had failed on the highway - 4 bikes plus the remaining part of the rack makes a mass of twisted metal - about 150 pounds - bouncing along on the highway.

Saris has replaced all of the parts that have failed over the years without question and including shipping. I've now had the rack for over 4 years.

I'm not sure how Thule can fix that problem short of replacing the entirety, assuming that they have fixed the obvious engineering problem. The predecessor Sportworks rack had welded cross sections and could not fail the same way as shown in the video.

4. this is way old news. IF you're really concerned, drill a hole and insert a bolt down into the side or the top of the end piece, causing a STOP for the end tray.

Voila.

And I'm an econ major, not a mech engineer.

I have this problem with my T2, especially after it has been rear-ended a few times. I just keep an eye on it, sometimes, I tie down the rack, and one day, I will drill a hole.

Probably after my bike falls off.

6. Yeah, behind my vehicle, my bikes don't wiggle or move due to wind. Granted, it's an Explorer, but generally there's going to be a pocket of still air behind the vehicle. This seems to be a maintenance issue.

I've lost a wheel tie off a roof rack that wasn't buckled, came off the back, I guess that design must be defective too. Properly secured, they stay on there forever.

Anyway, real problem or isolated incident, the simple fix is a drilled hole with a bolt or a simple self tapping screw even.

EDIT: Now that I think about it, there's already holes in the back of the 2" square tube, for the 4 bike extension kit, all you'd have to do is drop in a bolt.

Plum

7. ## My T2 rack did the same thing

Four of us were riding up at Gooseberry Mesa last March. After riding we loaded four bikes on the T2 rack on the back of my truck. We returned to our camp along the highway, 9 miles outside of Zion. That dirt road coming down from Gooseberry was quite rough and it caused the rack to bounce a round a lot. We were just a quarter miles from pulling into our campground when my wifes bike (thank God it wasn't my friends carbon Specialized) fell off the back of the rack. Traffic was light and nobody was behind us to run over her bike. When we got back to the bike, we saw that the bike did not just fall off the rack. The entire tray, holding her bike, slid off the back of the rack, just like in the video. The bike was still secured to the tray.

We got so lucky. The first thing to hit pavement was the tray, then her right pedal and bar end. All were salvaged. I slid the tray back on, tightened the bolts, again, and then put a large bolt through the tray support, into the main heavy metal beam. Now it can't slide backwards. We also purchased a great and simple anti-wobble device that prevents the entire rack from bouncing around while traveling over rough roads.

Thule should have designed the rack (2 or 4 bike trays) with a stay of some sort, that bolts on after you slide your bike trays on, to prevent any slippage during transportation.

8. I've had mine for about 4 years now and it's been installed on 3 different vehicles (Sequoia, F150, and Trailblazer) and my mounts are all in the same place as day one. I think I've tighten it down once in 4 years...and I've been hit from some idiot once and the thing was unscathed and saved my bumper from any damage.

9. ## Well...

Very strange. I'd second, and third, the recommendations not to use some crappy, flexy, multi-tool to tighten critical hardware. You can see it flex in the video, so why would anyone with even half a brain trust it?

I have no connection to Thule in any sort of way. But I've put at least 80,000 miles transporting bikes on a Thule T-2, between driving Downieville shuttles 15,000 miles per year and my person rig close to the same amount, and had no issues with them. Granted I do check bolts from time to time, but if I torque them down, they don't move like shown in the video.

I have had the clamps loosen after stress, like backing into something, but if an incident like that happens, wouldn't you check things out?

10. This is a definite design flaw or a flaw in manufacturing tolerances. The T2 I had on my 325 did the same thing. The bolts were tight. It got to where I was so paranoid about them coming loose that I checked them every time I used the rack. Then I just returned it to REI.

No bueno. For as much as the T2 costs, it's a pretty cheesy design. The bike trays need to bolt to the load carrying arm with heavy duty hardware.

11. ## Great Idea!

Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son
....We also purchased a great and simple anti-wobble device that prevents the entire rack from bouncing around while traveling over rough roads......
Hi Mr. Son,

Would you mind sharing what the "anti-wobble device" was and where you purchased it?

Thanks!

Michael

12. For sure a problem with some T2 racks.

If you load heavy bikes on those trays and bounce them around enough, the flimsy little 4 bolt brackets will stretch and slide or break. Well documented problem.

With that said, overall, I think the T2 is a great rack. The rear wheel holder is clumsy, but the arm ratchet is the best.

13. Originally Posted by rensho
For sure a problem with some T2 racks.

If you load heavy bikes on those trays and bounce them around enough, the flimsy little 4 bolt brackets will stretch and slide or break. Well documented problem.

With that said, overall, I think the T2 is a great rack. The rear wheel holder is clumsy, but the arm ratchet is the best.
that was mine - I still have nightmares about that day.

Coming back from your FIRST ride on a BRAND NEW bike - just to see it slide down hwy 280 is any bikers worst nightmare.

to add insult to injury - that T2 was a replacement for my old Sportworks which has also failed (reason why it's still branded Sportworks)

14. I've got two Thule T2 racks (and used in Dville for a season, sometimes by Erik), one of which has that same issue as the OP. Fixed with some shims, never had a bike come off because of it, noticed first when checking things out after seeing some extra wobble in the rear view mirror. On the other rack the fit is fine, still tight from original install.

15. Originally Posted by rensho
For sure a problem with some T2 racks.

If you load heavy bikes on those trays and bounce them around enough, the flimsy little 4 bolt brackets will stretch and slide or break. Well documented problem.

With that said, overall, I think the T2 is a great rack. The rear wheel holder is clumsy, but the arm ratchet is the best.

Something to keep an eye on for sure.

that was mine - I still have nightmares about that day.

Coming back from your FIRST ride on a BRAND NEW bike - just to see it slide down hwy 280 is any bikers worst nightmare.

to add insult to injury - that T2 was a replacement for my old Sportworks which has also failed (reason why it's still branded Sportworks)
Ouch! So sorry to hear that. It would be a nightmare for sure to lose a bike on the fwy.

I was adjusting the 4 bike mounts on the T2, and noticed that the clamps were really tight, to both loosen and tighten. This worried me, as one can easily tighten the clamp pass the yield point of the metal and not know it. Then, without vigilant checking, the clamp could fail at any time. Though, this is much more of an issue for guys with 303s and V10 weighted DH rigs bouncing along some dirt road.

17. Originally Posted by rensho
Ouch! So sorry to hear that. It would be a nightmare for sure to lose a bike on the fwy.

I was adjusting the 4 bike mounts on the T2, and noticed that the clamps were really tight, to both loosen and tighten. This worried me, as one can easily tighten the clamp pass the yield point of the metal and not know it. Then, without vigilant checking, the clamp could fail at any time. Though, this is much more of an issue for guys with 303s and V10 weighted DH rigs bouncing along some dirt road.
Luckily, when this happened, it was early Saturday morning (I was coming back from a night ride), so traffic was at a minimum. I was in the fast lane going 70 and saw the bike/tray slide across 3 lanes before coming to a stop. Considering how heavy the traffic is on Bay Area highways, it’s a miracle that nobody was behind me! I would have been liable for any accident cause by my bike falling off.

Literally - the day after this happened, I went in and traded my WRX for a Honda Element just so I could carry my bikes inside.

If I was to get another hitch rack - it would be a Kuat NV. Those things look bomb proof - but then again, thought my Sportworks/Thule were as well. .

18. Originally Posted by rensho
For sure a problem with some T2 racks.

If you load heavy bikes on those trays and bounce them around enough, the flimsy little 4 bolt brackets will stretch and slide or break. Well documented problem.

With that said, overall, I think the T2 is a great rack. The rear wheel holder is clumsy, but the arm ratchet is the best.
Ugggh, disturbing. A well documented problem?? No safety bulletin or recall? I read some info here with a response from Thule even.
http://bikeintelligencer.com/2009/09...ilure-exposed/

There seems to be a safety issue here and they're choosing to warranty it on a case by case basis. But there maybe a bigger issue here where a very expensive and heavy bike can come flying off a rack at highway speeds. What about the people behind you??

Anyway, workarounds and bigger wrenches are good but what about the many others who are not aware of the problem until it's too late. It's not hard to fix once you're aware but I'm afraid many are not aware. Check your racks and tell your friends. I'm not one to call mutiny here but if we need to make people aware, then maybe that's a good idea. I don't want to taint Thule unjustifiably though.

I didn't find this sliding off issue in our reviews:
http://www.mtbr.com/cat/accessories/...010_98crx.aspx

thanks for the feedback so far.

Hi Mr. Son,

Would you mind sharing what the "anti-wobble device" was and where you purchased it?

Thanks!

Michael
I saw a couple:
http://www.hitchrider.com/nowobble.htm

http://www.rvsupplywarehouse.com/pro...d/343/pid/1253

I have one with a threaded bolt that goes inside the 2" hitch but I can't find info on it at the moment.

fc

20. The T2 uses a threaded hitch pin, and at least for the two tray racks, I don't think there is a necessity for anything else. The same thread (M12) is used for both size receivers, so there might be an advantage if you have a 2" receiver and are using four trays ... on the other hand, I'd be more worried about the whole thing sliding out of the receiver at that point.

Edit: the T2 for the 1.25" receiver would benefit from the Swagman, unless you've already found a way to shim it.

Originally Posted by francois
I saw a couple:
http://www.hitchrider.com/nowobble.htm

http://www.rvsupplywarehouse.com/pro...d/343/pid/1253

I have one with a threaded bolt that goes inside the 2" hitch but I can't find info on it at the moment.

fc

21. Originally Posted by anotherbrian
The T2 uses a threaded hitch pin, and at least for the two tray racks, I don't think there is a necessity for anything else.
Threaded hitch pin. That's what I had. I bought it for $20 and it takes away most of the wobble as you crank down on the pin. fc 22. ## Thanks for the Info! Originally Posted by francois I saw a couple: http://www.hitchrider.com/nowobble.htm http://www.rvsupplywarehouse.com/pro...d/343/pid/1253 I have one with a threaded bolt that goes inside the 2" hitch but I can't find info on it at the moment. fc Hi francois, I have the 1.25" receiver and I'm using the threaded bolt but there is still some movement that your solution should fix. This is the best part of this site....getting the info you need, when you need it. Thanks again, Michael 23. Kuat has a very cool 'built in expander' anti wobble device. You crank down on a big knob to expand the rack into the receiver. photo: <img src="https://www.etrailer.com/Merchant2/graphics/00000001/pics/a/1/A102-114_ee_250.jpg"> Here's a nice test rack on a test car with some test bikes. Nice RACK! https://picasaweb.google.com/fcebedo...Lu4stWRnvrTRQ# fc 24. Originally Posted by michaelsnead Hi Mr. Son, Would you mind sharing what the "anti-wobble device" was and where you purchased it? Thanks! Michael Francois listed a couple of the designs available. I know that the chaeap looking one he listed is junk and will fail immediately. It is simply not heavy duty enough to handle clost to 100 pounds of bikes and rack swaying and bouncing. The T2 rack in most 2" receivers will have 6" of side to side movement and almost 12" of upward movement if you hit a big bump in the road. You have to eliminate 90% or more of that motion or you will experience catastrophic failure. https://www.cargocatch.com/eliminato...ml?printable=Y " width="549"> This is the device I chose. Once you slide it onto the end of the Thule and secure the allen screws, you can leave it attached. Then, after you slide it into your vehicles receiver and insert your pin into place, you crank down on the allen screws around the large end of the device. That is what removes the play, both up and down and side to side. I use the four bike Thule T2 and there is a lot of weight to control. I also swap the rack onto the back of my fifth wheel camper and want to know that I won't arrive at my destination missing some or all of the bikes. This is a bomber setup. " width="549"> 25. ## Unfortunately they don’t make a 1.25” model… Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son Francois listed a couple of the designs available. I know that the chaeap looking one he listed is junk and will fail immediately. It is simply not heavy duty enough to handle clost to 100 pounds of bikes and rack swaying and bouncing. The T2 rack in most 2" receivers will have 6" of side to side movement and almost 12" of upward movement if you hit a big bump in the road. You have to eliminate 90% or more of that motion or you will experience catastrophic failure. https://www.cargocatch.com/eliminato...ml?printable=Y " width="549"> This is the device I chose. Once you slide it onto the end of the Thule and secure the allen screws, you can leave it attached. Then, after you slide it into your vehicles receiver and insert your pin into place, you crank down on the allen screws around the large end of the device. That is what removes the play, both up and down and side to side. I use the four bike Thule T2 and there is a lot of weight to control. I also swap the rack onto the back of my fifth wheel camper and want to know that I won't arrive at my destination missing some or all of the bikes. This is a bomber setup. " width="549"> Hi Mr. Son, Thanks for sharing this information. However, I have a 1.25” hitch and these folks don’t accommodate that size. Their solution is only for a 2” hitch. However, what they have looks bomber…too bad they don’t make anything for us little folks. Thanks again, Michael 26. Originally Posted by francois Kuat has a very cool 'built in expander' anti wobble device. You crank down on a big knob to expand the rack into the receiver. photo: <img src="https://www.etrailer.com/Merchant2/graphics/00000001/pics/a/1/A102-114_ee_250.jpg"> Here's a nice test rack on a test car with some test bikes. Nice RACK! https://picasaweb.google.com/fcebedo...Lu4stWRnvrTRQ# fc This rack rocks. The expander works great. Saris has a u-shaped insert that goes inside the hitch insert and a pin that pinches the insert against the receiver, then you use a simple pin on the other end as insurance. That system works great too, and you could make one yourself with some thin sheet metal, a long bolt, a nut for the inside and some JB Weld to keep the nut in place after you remove the bolt. 27. All, Thule is taking this problem and this thread seriously and they have contacted mtbr about it. Personally, I do have two Thule roof rack systems and they have performed A+ for me. Here is their response: -------------------------------------- Our response is… We have heard of a few instances regarding the issues that have been described with the T2. Our quality testing team has been unable to replicate this scenario in our lab or on our road tests. As always, this testing is carried out with correctly assembled and installed products. Thule is committed to making products which have the highest safety and quality. Even though we were unable to duplicate the problem, as a precaution, we started installing a bolt on the underside of the T2 last year. This bolt helps to keep the T2 trays on the rack even if the tray bolts were not secured correctly during the installation. The Thule T2 uses a similar 4-bolt design as a bicycle stem. As with a stem, each of the four bolts needs to be tightened down evenly with a tool that can provide adequate torque. Although we have not yet inspected this rack first hand, the tool used in the video appears to be a common multi-tool which is good to use for emergencies, but doesn’t provide enough leverage to fully tighten the lock-tight coated bolts on a T2. We have been in contact with Tim to learn more about his experience with this rack. Repeated efforts by Thule to obtain a police report, make contact with witnesses or potentially injured individuals, gather any insurance claims or obtain the name of the trucking company that hit his bike have not been successful. Finally, our quality department has not received his T2 which is a must have for our internal analysis. Until we receive this information and rack we cannot determine what happened. As with all Thule products, the T2 comes with a lifetime warranty and we stand behind the product 100%. If anyone has an issue with any of our products, they can call our customer service 800-238-2388. As soon as we do receive the rack in question back and figure out the cause for the failure we will let you and your readers know. -Thule- ---------------------------- 28. For the record, when my rack failed I did contact them They didn't even ask to get it back for "analysis". same for when my Sportworks failed... 29. http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group.../message/44477 another incident and Thule T2 rack failure in the link above 30. Originally Posted by soulcraft http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group.../message/44477 another incident and Thule T2 rack failure in the link above That's the same incident from Francois link above. Perhaps the racks these loose/bent/broken brackets are on were hit by another vehicle while parked, without the owners knowledge. 31. Wow! I'm happy to say that after owning my T2 for two years and half a dozen trips up to Tahoe and three trips to Downieville along with two to three rides a week, no problem so far. I checked the bolts and they are as tight as they were the day I put it all together. To be safe, I went to the hardware store and bought a bolt and nut for .60 cents and installed it in one of the holes where you attach the bike add on. This will prevent the rack from sliding off like in the video if for some freak abnormality the thing loosens up and starts to slide. I wonder if the cause of the problem is that people don't tighten the bolts up equally on both sides. 32. This might be a good reason to register your product, if there is an issue and a fix, then you can be notified. I admit I rarely register any new products I buy but if I do I always use a secondary email and PO box to keep any spam away.... 33. Until now , I have no problems with my T2 . Works great. 34. Originally Posted by Guesswho117 To be safe, I went to the hardware store and bought a bolt and nut for .60 cents and installed it in one of the holes where you attach the bike add on. This will prevent the rack from sliding off like in the video if for some freak abnormality the thing loosens up and starts to slide. Me too. 35. drill a 1/2 hole through the rack on the outside of the last rack and put a bolt in it. That should keep it from sliding down the tube and onto the freeway because when it doesn't the bolt will catch it. I would hate to have my ride bouncing down the freeway into others. This is a sad sorry but a story that thule can fix moving forward. By this thread it sounds like that have changed current models. 36. I bought my T2 used from CL from a girl who had backed into a pole with it. The rear bracket was tweaked and you could wiggle it off like the video even with the bolts tight. I ordered a new upper and lower bracket direct from Thule (and a plastic cap) for less than$30 shipped to my door. If your rack is getting old and loose from bumpy roads or years of wind abuse, you may want to order new ones.

I don't have any problems with wind (big 'ol Odyssey to block the wind) but I'm definitely drilling a hole and putting a bolt through it as a failsafe.

37. Originally Posted by worthy_4242
drill a 1/2 hole through the rack on the outside of the last rack and put a bolt in it. That should keep it from sliding down the tube and onto the freeway because when it doesn't the bolt will catch it. I would hate to have my ride bouncing down the freeway into others. This is a sad sorry but a story that thule can fix moving forward. By this thread it sounds like that have changed current models.
No need to drill any hole. Use the existing holes and put a bolt and nut through it and it's done.

38. Originally Posted by sanjuro
Yep! Those Sportworks are indestructible. I backed mine into a telephone pole (Doh!). Just had to bend the bar back. It's starting to rust at the bend, but still strong like ox!

39. Again, there is no need to drill any holes. Used the existing holes and place a bolt and nut and you're good to go.

40. How much would it cost to include a bolt and nut so this couldn't happen? Maybe $0.50? They charge$400 for this rack!

Originally Posted by Guesswho117
Again, there is no need to drill any holes. Used the existing holes and place a bolt and nut and you're good to go.
I posted a thread on Cars and Bikes forum a while back on my T2 problems.

https://forums.mtbr.com/cars-bike-racks/thule-t2-rust-589800.html

I've never had the problem with the tray sliding off, but the locking mechanism on my <1 yr old T2 is rusting out so it doesn't lock-down the front wheel properly. I'm afraid my bikes are going to fly off one of these days.

<IMG SRC=https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2737/4414999450_a789eaf47a_o.jpg alt="Thule T2 rust">

It seems that Thule's all about cutting corners (i.e., quality) to maximize profit. You can't see what they put inside the arm, but it's likely garbage. How much would it cost to make the locking mechanism from brass/stainless steel or simply coat the mechanism with a lot of grease so it wouldn't rust?

I think Thule's a company that NEEDS to go under.

41. Originally Posted by Guesswho117
Again, there is no need to drill any holes. Used the existing holes and place a bolt and nut and you're good to go.
They don't have a preexisting hole if you have the two to four bike extension...

42. Originally Posted by Bikinfoolferlife
They don't have a preexisting hole if you have the two to four bike extension...
I have the 2" receiver version. I am able to add the 2 bike add on which I do have but seldom use. The preexisting holes I am referring to are the holes where one would place the bolts to secure the add on. There are two, one on the left side and one on the bottom. As for the end of the 2 bike add on, one may have to drill a hole.

43. [QUOTE=MarkMass]How much would it cost to include a bolt and nut so this couldn't happen? Maybe $0.50? They charge$400 for this rack!

I heard on the new racks, there is a bolt that prevents this from happening. And as for your rack rusting, pretty much the reason I got the T2 was so I can take the rack off after each use with ease. I live in San Francisco near the ocean. Between the salt air and the fog my old roof rack was just taking a beating. I switch to a hitch mount because I wanted to remove it when I wasn't using it. I know it may sound like a hassle but really it's not that bad. My T2 is coming up on two years and is in great shape. Now if I left it on the car all the time, I may have problems like yours.

44. I'm doing it wrong, because my trays haven't moved in 4 years.

45. Originally Posted by MarkMass
but the locking mechanism on my <1 yr old T2 is rusting out
Try contacting Thule.

46. Originally Posted by Guesswho117
I have the 2" receiver version. I am able to add the 2 bike add on which I do have but seldom use. The preexisting holes I am referring to are the holes where one would place the bolts to secure the add on. There are two, one on the left side and one on the bottom. As for the end of the 2 bike add on, one may have to drill a hole.
Yes, if you have the two bike add on there's no preexisting holes...they probably didn't want to encourage the DIY 6 bike carrier

47. That is unfortunate, Ive always used Tie-Downs to add additional security on my Sportworks and T2. They are quick to install and add huge stability. Simple.

48. Sure that isn't a pic of my T2? Mine has been on my car for almost 100% of the time since its initial release (5+ years), so it gets wet in the winter. Days/weeks after the last rain, I can lift the arms and they'll dump out water. Some of it dribbles out and leaves a similar stain, but most stays inside the sliding mechanism.

I'm assuming it gets covered under their lifetime warranty, and worry about it later.

Originally Posted by MarkMass
I've never had the problem with the tray sliding off, but the locking mechanism on my <1 yr old T2 is rusting out so it doesn't lock-down the front wheel properly. I'm afraid my bikes are going to fly off one of these days.

49. ## Clarifications re T2 failures

Hi all, I've been following T2 failures for some time on my blog and have talked/corresponded with a number of folks who have had problems. I own a T2. I'm also in touch with Thule. Some thoughts:

The little end-stop screw that Thule put on newer T2s is inadequate imo, but Thule makes the point that no claims have been filed on racks with that upgrade.

YMMV depending on how you use the rack. If you're sticking to highway driving it's doubtful you'll have a problem. But in the Northwest where I've seen several failures, we have fire roads that eat Subarus for breakfast. I've seen T2s get whacked repeatedly on water bars, and you really don't want to watch your bikes on a T2 from behind a vehicle carrying 'em on a bad road. That isn't to say the T2 will fail every time, only that you have to really make sure the brackets are on tight, and keep yer fingers crossed. At a certain point, as Tim's video shows, tightening will not do the trick. The brackets become too stretched.

Same issue if you get rear-ended repeatedly by careless parkers. Check your rack frequently for signs of impact, etc.

Thule has as far as I've been able to tell handled all claims professionally and responsibly. They're a good company, they just sell a flawed rack.

We've repeatedly urged Thule to recall the T2 before lives are lost. In our opinion they need to do bolt-throughs on the main strut, not just rely on friction to keep the brackets firm. The link below has full breakdown technically. You've read their stance on Francis' lead post.

For an alternative, we've looked at the Kuat NV and consider it a better constructed rack (we have yet to test it.) MTBR has a forum on it as well.

We're continuing to monitor the dialog between Thule and Tim Cook, the guy who did the video, and will keep folks updated on our blog.

More if you can stand it here

Paul Andrews
BikeIntelligencer.com

50. Originally Posted by RipRoar
That is unfortunate, Ive always used Tie-Downs to add additional security on my Sportworks and T2. They are quick to install and add huge stability. Simple.

I posted a few days ago regarding my own T2 four bike carrier that failed when the rear tray slid off the main beam, onto the highway, shortly after a very bumpy drive down a dirt road from Gooseberry Mesa. In my mirror, we could see the rack moving a lot from left to right and even more up and down. The weight of my wifes bike was creating a lot of stress (especially since we had four bikes and hers was so far out there from the mounting point) on the clamp that held that tray to the beam. It looked so strange to see her bike laying on the highway, still connected to the tray.

Bikes hanging way out off the back of a vehicle are treated about the same way as children riding in the way back of a long school bus. Evey bump is magnified, causing much more jolting movements than passengers are experiencing in the front of the vehicle. The bikes are mostly secured with the T2, but it might be prudent to add aditional measures to secure them even more.

51. Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son
On the older style rack, where the arm fit over the top tube, he went on a long road trip and arrived to find the padded arm had worn through his paint and had even left an impression in the top tube. .
Seems odd since the T2 is basically what Thule purchased from Sportsworks, and I don't remember the design ever using the top tube on the Sportsworks design; the crux of their design is the hook over the front wheel (and was when Thule took over). That material on the hook of the arm will wear thru stuff pretty good, though, have several forks that show that wear (and I usually back the arm off of the fork these days or put a rag between). Maybe the other guy was thinking of another rack?

52. Originally Posted by redmr2_man
this is way old news. IF you're really concerned, drill a hole and insert a bolt down into the side or the top of the end piece, causing a STOP for the end tray.

Voila.

And I'm an econ major, not a mech engineer.
Theres already one one there from thule. Its just a small philips, but its there.

53. ## Are you kidding me?

-Paul the FGN (farging new guy)

54. Originally Posted by Frog51

-Paul the FGN (farging new guy)
Finally, somebody with some sense!

55. Originally Posted by Frog51

-Paul the FGN (farging new guy)
nice to see you "assume" that all of us who's had problems with our T2's never performed any maintenance.

Tell me, what kind of preventive maintenance are you doing to your bike(s) that will guarantee you 0% chances of them ever cracking/breaking?

56. ## Thule = fail

I watched my buddys T2 snap off and his DJ bike go sliding across 85 just after the junction w/ 101. Luckily it didin't cause a serious accident. Simple metal fatigue of a way too thin part. And if I recall Thule didn't even offer to repair the guys bike!

Sorry Thule, but when you guys bought out Sport Works (right?), you ruined one of the best racks by cutting cost and quality as much as possible (in my opinion as a manufacturing engineer).

Yakima makes a new upright hitch receiver rack however, way more beefy and well thought out. That is where my money is going.

Tell me, what kind of preventive maintenance are you doing to your bike(s) that will guarantee you 0% chances of them ever cracking/breaking?
I don't see anyone making that claim. I do think the poster is right though, some problems could probably be avoided with minimal (regular) maintenance.

My old bike rack plain broke when someone backed into it. No hidden problems there. Is that better than a bracket becoming lose without you knowing? Quite possibly.

The Yakima Hold-Up is not as adjustable (actually not adjustable at all). I needed to slide the brackets all the back to make the T2 fit on my car (so that the front wheel mold clears my bumper when the rack is folded up).

nice to see you "assume" that all of us who's had problems with our T2's never performed any maintenance.

Tell me, what kind of preventive maintenance are you doing to your bike(s) that will guarantee you 0% chances of them ever cracking/breaking?
How can some compare a rack to a bike? The poster's response was absolute bull&(%$, in my opinion. Every bolt and nut that you can see on the T2 is galvanized and the bars are painted. All of these things are done to prevent rusting. You can't see what's inside the locking mechanism on the arm so that's where they cut corners. If I knew I needed to open up the arm, grease everything, and reassemble it regularly then I wouldn't have bought the T2. Originally Posted by Guesswho117 I switch to a hitch mount because I wanted to remove it when I wasn't using it. I know it may sound like a hassle but really it's not that bad. My T2 is coming up on two years and is in great shape. Now if I left it on the car all the time, I may have problems like yours. I live in the South Bay and this region doesn't get a lot of rain compared to the rest of the country. Also, the T2 is ~50 pounds and it gets old really fast swapping it every week or so. Originally Posted by xls Try contacting Thule. Actions speak louder than words so I'll return it. As for helping Thule solve their problems with the T2--they bought an awesome design from Sportsworks and they more-or-less ($*%ed it up. Are the people at Thule really that incompetent? If so, then they should go out of business.

Originally Posted by anotherbrian
I'm assuming it gets covered under their lifetime warranty, and worry about it later.
I'm not worried about the rack. I'm worried about my bikes. The $400 I spent on the T2 isn't much compared to my bikes. The lifetime warranty is great, but I don't want to deal with stuff like this so I generally buy things that are bulletproof. The T2 didn't make the cut. I'll get my money back and let Thule deal with their defects. 59. Let's not let this turn into another inet battle royale. Thule T2 is a good rack and has a couple key warts. If your rack is doing it for you, that is awesome. Both Thule and Yakima have lifetime warranty. That top rail clamp on the T2 has got to be redesigned. That is a MAJOR fail area, and the fail will likely be sudden. The sportworks racks cracked on the arms, but you would see the cracks well in advance, and even then, your bike couldn't fall off on to the road. I have a Sportworks 2nd gen with the white wheel hoops, and a Yak holdup2. I've used plenty of T2, and I'll put the T2 2nd, and the Yak 3rd. 60. Originally Posted by MarkMass How can some compare a rack to a bike? The poster's response was absolute bull&(%$, in my opinion.
....
dood, chill......

It's been a long winter but the good rides are coming. The time change is happening this weekend and I forecast good rides with bike racks.

fc

nice to see you "assume" that all of us who's had problems with our T2's never performed any maintenance.

Tell me, what kind of preventive maintenance are you doing to your bike(s) that will guarantee you 0% chances of them ever cracking/breaking?
I wasn't singling anyone out just making a general statement. I know we all work hard for what we have, I just know that the nicer you keep something the longer it will last, in therory anyhow. Listen we have all owned things that don't work the way we want but work great for the majority of others. Back in the early ninties I went through three bonded Reflex MTB frames before I sad no more and bought a Yeti.

It could be worse you could drive a Toyota, oh wait I drive one. Crap!

62. Originally Posted by Frog51
I wasn't singling anyone out just making a general statement. I know we all work hard for what we have, I just know that the nicer you keep something the longer it will last, in therory anyhow. Listen we have all owned things that don't work the way we want but work great for the majority of others. Back in the early ninties I went through three bonded Reflex MTB frames before I sad no more and bought a Yeti.

It could be worse you could drive a Toyota, oh wait I drive one. Crap!

My difference of opinion is with this statement;
I can't believe how many of you disregard your equipment and are blaming the manufacture for things like loosening bolts and rust.
I use my T2 rack a lot. I check the bolts to make sure thay are tight, but that is not the point being made on this thread. The point is there should have been a failsafe. Like those lawyer tabs on your folrks dropouts. If the quick release comes loose during a ride, they can prevent a serious accident, and probably have many many times.

For mere pennies, Thule could have added a stop of some sort on the end of the main beam. I believe that my T2 rack failed because I was hauling four bikes, which created much more stress on the tray mount brackets, causing them to deform a bit, which loosened their grip on the main beam, allowing the continued bouncing, caused by the rough road, to shake the rear tray off the beam. It's not a big problem and I still love my T2 rack. I have solved the problem with a single bolt. Like the foam that was overlooked on the space shuttle, you can't always know what sort of dangers result in inadequate design.

As a Toyota owner, you should look at the upside. From now on, you can speed everywhere you travel and just tell the trooper, and judge, your car accelerated all by itself.

63. The point I was trying to make is that there isn't much I could have done to prevent what happened to my racks.

Ask anyone that knows me and will tell you that I'm extremely anal about maintaining my gear. My first rack (sportworks) failed at the welds - my front wheel retaining arm simply broke off. I did inspect this rack on a regular basis and never spotted any cracks.

My T2 wasn't even a year old and as you can see from the pics above, the tray clamp simply snapped open like a coke can. Again, nothing I could have done to prevent this. Good thing about mine, the trays never moved like in the video (OP).

64. I have a T2, my 2nd one. The first one I exchanged at REI when the wheel arm trigger lock stopped working. I haven't noticed much play at the hitch, I bought the Thule threaded bolt hitch lock (for a ridiculous price) and it seems to hold it tight. Recently, I purchased a new Mazda 3 which can only take a 1.25 receiver hitch. I bought an adapter for the 2" T2. Guess I'll have to watch for slop since there is now an adapter between the receiver and the rack, but I haven't noticed anything so far.
My only beef with the T2 is the locking trigger on the wheel arm. This is a plastic piece of junk, imo. Once dirty or wet, it doesn't always lock into place. I bought the lock cylinders (price gouged again) mainly to keep the trigger locked tight. The locks on the wheel arm are junk in terms of actual security, they will do very little to keep the bike secure from theives. That's why I also have flex-weave cables and u-locks for appropriate security.

Overall, I think Thule and Yakima are both way over priced for the poor quality of their products. I would be happier with them if their $400 racks include a 'real' security/locking mechanism. FWIW, everytime i buy a Thule add-on I come away feeling ripped off and price gouged. Same is true for Yakima, when I had a Yak ... just my .02 65. ## No such thing as a secure bike rack If you're looking for real security on any car mounted bike rack, you're foolin' yerself. Pretty sure that any pro thief could get any bike out of any rack in less than 30 seconds. Add another 15 to 30 seconds if you added a cable or chain lock. Best you can hope for is a slight delay, so keep yer precious jems within eyeshot. Or just hope that maybe the criminal will pick an easier target. 66. I've had my T2 for 3yrs and Love it.... aside from the slight sway. I was planning on drilling a through hole and then welding a 3/8-16 nut to my 1-1/4 hitch add a jam nut. The hitch is mild steel and there's no heat treating to worry about. I've had 2 - 30lb.+ Bikes on at 110+ MPH in my subie XT - no problems at that speed on extended 30+ minute runs through the high desert - testing... It's mechanical - machines need inspection prior to use.... duh. Pilot's do pre flights..... Military experience has ingrained that habit in me too. When lives depend on sound equipment you are obligated to CYA. For Security - In addition to the keyed lock inserts, I U-lock the bikes together. A bike thief typically rides away with their ill gotten gains. Looks suspicious lugging 2 bikes locked together. my 2c. 67. Originally Posted by MtnBikerDan It's mechanical - machines need inspection prior to use.... duh. Pilot's do pre flights..... Military experience has ingrained that habit in me too. When lives depend on sound equipment you are obligated to CYA. I will have to disagree. This is not an airplane. I've had a Thule roof rack for five years and I look it over about once a year and it's needed nuthin. Originally Posted by Erik If you're looking for real security on any car mounted bike rack, you're foolin' yerself. Pretty sure that any pro thief could get any bike out of any rack in less than 30 seconds. I don't think anyone is expecting to thwart a pro thief. I think we're thinking about medium or rookie thieves or the opportune thieves. This Kuat lock system is purdy good and stealthy. <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/CchXmhJZyi_G71jj7Z65yA?authkey=Gv1sRgCLu4stWRnvrTR Q&feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.ggpht.com/_JefO7lXGKAg/S3TRkCRG3wI/AAAAAAAAgig/MhXTmQUr_kI/s800/IMG_8747.JPG" /></a> <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/6lRmZSmsAZyw4XY7xjVx0A?authkey=Gv1sRgCLu4stWRnvrTR Q&feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.ggpht.com/_JefO7lXGKAg/S3TRjxELVVI/AAAAAAAAgic/b3VOlVUIU3M/s800/IMG_8746.JPG" /></a> <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/OMv1Z4HAUNXOhf0WhRpMVw?authkey=Gv1sRgCLu4stWRnvrTR Q&feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.ggpht.com/_JefO7lXGKAg/S3TRjb8vxHI/AAAAAAAAgiY/pnJLgRxpd6Q/s800/IMG_8745.JPG" /></a> fc 68. That hiding cable lock is clever on the Kuat, does that come standard? Or just a laundry list item? 69. Originally Posted by Bikinfoolferlife That hiding cable lock is clever on the Kuat, does that come standard? Or just a laundry list item? Standard. I just noticed that 'keyed' bolt to hold the cable too? Nice detail so an allen tool can't uninstall the cable. 70. ## I'm a security fanatic No such thing as a secure bike rack -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- If you're looking for real security on any car mounted bike rack, you're foolin' yerself. Pretty sure that any pro thief could get any bike out of any rack in less than 30 seconds. Add another 15 to 30 seconds if you added a cable or chain lock. Security is directly related to your willingness to spend. Good security isn't cheap. Cheap security will provide protection from everyone but the professional thief, so many stop at that level, feeling their insurance is cheaper than going to the next level. The bike magazines occasionally run articles about the different type of lock available and how long it takes a pro to defeat them. When I bought my Quadra-Chain Lock, over ten years ago, it was after reading how a former thief stated he couldn't do anything other than scratch the lock or chain. I now own two additional hardened steel chains and locks. On Guard makes locks for motorcycles that have exceptionally strong chains. My second bike chain uses something called a Panzer Lock to secure it. The irigibal Quadra Chain lock was more simple to use but the Italian company no longer sells them in the U.S. I use two of these 6' chains to secure my bikes to the T2. I have a thru-axle on my Canzo that helps prevent a front wheel theft when I can't run the two chains through all four bikes wheels. I try to loop the chain around the main beam in a way that makes it impossible to remove the bikes while leaving them chained together. I have the T2 locked into the truck receiver as well. If you are going to invest thousands on your bikes, why not spend a few hundred on security. I believe a pro would pass on my bikes. I know this because they have tried twice. Once they got my friends bike that was locked next to mine with a cable lock ( we were sleeping inside a pop-up camper not more than 24 inches from where the bikes were leaning ). My bike was unharmed and the Quadra Chain still secured it to the camper frame. The second time I got hit was in Sacramento, visiting a friend. I woke up and the tail gate was down and my Scalpel was hanging halfway out of the bed. The thief had cut three cheap caples that I use to keep my Yamaha generator and propane tanks secure in the bed. He also cut through a rubber hose that led from the propane tank to the generator, that was tangled up with the bike. When he got to the Quadra Chain, he attempted to cut it. The plastic wrap was cut and there was a scratch on the chain. It was locked to the generator and the chain was secured through both wheels and the frame. He gave up and left, just before sunrise. I would strongly suggest using hardened multi-sided chains with quality armored locks. It's the olny way to be sure. If you look closely at the pictures, you'll see the On Guard chain wrapped around and through the tray the generator is sitting on. I also had thick steel eyelets welded onto the base of the tray where the chain gets run through. You can see the lock hanging below the tray. The tray is also locked into a receiver. Yes, it does mean I carry a lot of keys when I travel. When I camp, I boondock, often away from others, so there is less group security, so I lock the bikes together inside the camper, rather than trust the local thieves don't have a quality grinder with them. " width="549"> " width="549"> " width="549"> " width="549"> " width="549"> " width="549"> 71. Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son [...] Once they got my friends bike that was locked next to mine with a cable lock ( we were sleeping inside a pop-up camper not more than 24 inches from where the bikes were leaning ). [...] Wow that is bold. I can't tell from the pictures... do the chains connect to the car somewhere or just around the rack? I've thought about having a loop welded to the main beam of my T2, but it's just two bolts to take the whole thing off the car. The best is probably to run a long chain and go through the loops on the hitch near the receiver. What are your thoughts? 72. Originally Posted by Guesswho117 Again, there is no need to drill any holes. Used the existing holes and place a bolt and nut and you're good to go. The holes does not go through. How can you put a bolt and nut? Thanks. 73. Originally Posted by xls Wow that is bold. I can't tell from the pictures... do the chains connect to the car somewhere or just around the rack? I've thought about having a loop welded to the main beam of my T2, but it's just two bolts to take the whole thing off the car. The best is probably to run a long chain and go through the loops on the hitch near the receiver. What are your thoughts? A four bike T2 rack must weigh close to 90 pounds, all by itself. I have to lug it from my shed to either my truck or camper, and it's a chore. I try to loop the six foot long chains around the main beam of the rack and through the bike frames and if possible, through the front and back wheels. Also, I run one chain through the other, so they can't go after just the rear bike. Any attempt to remove the T2 from the receiver would mean the thief, or thieves, would have to lift over 200 very awkward pounds of bikes and locks and T2 rack. I think experienced thieves know when to walk away and seek out an easier score. It's a philosophy that is similar to riding in bear country. You don't need the best defense. You need a defense that is better than most others. If I can ride or run faster than my riding partners, I will survive the bear attack. If my bike security is among the top 1%, the thieves will move on down the road. To answer your question; The loops some receivers have are too far to reach and still get the chain wrapped around the bike securely and in enough places to prevent an individual wheel from getting removed. I do like the idea of having loops welded to the T2 beam to allow you to run a chain through it. After what I've seen and heard, I'd avoid any type of security cable. They don't seem to slow the thieves down. If I had a cable, I might just use it to add another layer of protection, while using the chains to insure the bikes stayed locked together. 74. Originally Posted by batangueno The holes does not go through. How can you put a bolt and nut? Thanks. It doesn't go through the whole member but it goes through one side. That's all you need. 75. Interesting read but I think this should be moved to the car and rack area so every one can see it. 76. Interesting read but I think this should be moved to the car and rack area so every one can see it. Where do you think you are reading it from? 77. Anyone know what kind of car/truck it was on? This does make a difference. 78. One thing I will mention, people here have mentioned fire roads, waterbars, etc. This rack is intended for smooth pavement only. I've used mine offroad, but with the full knowledge that I am not supposed to at all. Between someone hitting it in a parking lot, and using it on rough roads a few times, I had cracked some of the bushings and there was a ton of slop back there. I had to have it repaired at a local welding shop. This was in the first few months that I owned it. I didn't even talk to Thule because it was due to damage, not failure, but IMHO, the quality of this rack is poor. I am a long-time Thule user and I freakin' HATE my T2. We have kept it only to transport our road bikes, and replaced it with a 4-bike North Shore Rack for our mountain bikes and Pugsleys. In addition to being very secure, the NSR is intended for off-road and holds the bikes much more out of harms way. I recently saw a six-bike model that had been used by a commercial operation doing offroad mountain bike shuttles for over two years and was still going strong. 79. I must really be careful with my stuff because I have a T2 and it is solid as a rock...maybe problems are from older models. Like many have said......going off road or travelling 100mph or leaving it out in the elements takes its toll. I love mine but mine is indoors other than on the hioghway drive to the mountain. I asked dozens of people and shops about hitch racks before getting one and 99.9999% of people had nothing but praise for the T2. Only negative comments have been on MTBR to be honest. 80. I just got this rack also and i really like it. I did go check the allen head screws for tightness and sure enough they were a little loose. I had used a ratchet and an allen head socket to install them. I didnt like the bolts that came with it because a few had stripped out and i could not tighten them anymore.So i went to lowes and got 8-8x1.25mm bolts. These have the deep socket head on them for a 6mm allen wrench. I used some blue locktite and re-did them. I also replaced the little phillips head screw on the bottom to keep anything from sliding off. I used the same size thread but a much bigger head on the screw. With the new bolts this rack is solid as can be. I would not worry one bit about traveling down the freeway at speed. 81. My biggest challenge w/ the T2 is storing this sucker...It doesn't really fold nicely. I also bought new bolts to replace the allen heads that I nearly stripped off installing at first. I'm still debating between keeping this one, buying a Raxter, or a Swagman...decisions decisions... 82. Originally Posted by phantomdilbert My biggest challenge w/ the T2 is storing this sucker...It doesn't really fold nicely. I also bought new bolts to replace the allen heads that I nearly stripped off installing at first. I'm still debating between keeping this one, buying a Raxter, or a Swagman...decisions decisions... I got 2 heavy duty hooks and mounted them in the 2x4's in my garage. I hang mine up and it works great. I only have the 2 bike version though. 83. I wanted to add a new story to this... my rack failed similarly to Acadian above. Coming back from a night ride (around midnight) on the freeway: As far as I can tell, the bike was run over, but there were no signs of the car that did it by the time was able to find the bike. Highway patrol had no reports of any incidents regarding the bike either. I have owned the rack for about 8 months - for most of that I was carrying only one bike, and the rack was removed in between rides. Oddly enough, last week I added an extra bolt to the rear tray for extra safety (had a weekend of lift-served riding planned for this weekend!) to avoid the main problem on this thread. I did not see any signs of wear or damage on the rack prior. There is almost nothing salvageable on the bike. It looks like renter's insurance will be covering the bike - I still have to see what Thule says about the rack itself. -Charlie 84. Bummer! Sorry to read about your misfortune. Not ready to give up my blue 2009 quite yet, but when I do I'll look you up. MM 85. That sucks!!! Sorry to see that. After reading all these posts I might look into a diffeent rack. Grant it I don't have one yet but the T2 was top on my list. I just bought a new RIP and i really don't want to see it bounce down the highway. Maybe I will check into the Kuat NV. 86. Contact Thule and see what they say. On a side note I have an OLD Sportworks/Thule T2 and it has a billion miles on it with NO problems. 87. Originally Posted by kntr Contact Thule and see what they say. I am in process with Thule right now. I will update the thread once I have a resolution. Until this happened, I was very happy with the rack. I'm not going to do any bashing yet. -Charlie 88. Originally Posted by MI-29er That sucks!!! Sorry to see that. After reading all these posts I might look into a diffeent rack. Grant it I don't have one yet but the T2 was top on my list. I just bought a new RIP and i really don't want to see it bounce down the highway. Maybe I will check into the Kuat NV. Pick up a Saris Cycle On Pro. I bought one and love it. Same loading concept as the T2 but everything is welded. I wouldn't trade this rack for any others. 89. Originally Posted by redmr2_man this is way old news. IF you're really concerned, drill a hole and insert a bolt down into the side or the top of the end piece, causing a STOP for the end tray. Voila. And I'm an econ major, not a mech engineer. +1 Right on. 90. Originally Posted by redmr2_man this is way old news. IF you're really concerned, drill a hole and insert a bolt down into the side or the top of the end piece, causing a STOP for the end tray. Voila. And I'm an econ major, not a mech engineer. I kind of thought the same thing then I read on to PhattyDuck's post and pictures on page 2. I'm a little concerned now. 91. I was looking at your rack and was wondering if you mounted the trays correctly. All the pics I have seen to the T2, the ratcheting arm is usually on the other side of the bike then how yours are. Maybe it doesn't matter, just curious. Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son " width="549"> 92. All of you guys with Thule T2's, Would you have chosen the Saris Thelma 2 or 3 bike rack instead of your T2 knowing there's been a good amt of failures just among forum users as of this past year? The Saris Thelma fits 1 1/4 receivers and can hold 3 bikes for$315...

93. Originally Posted by skyliner1004
All of you guys with Thule T2's, Would you have chosen the Saris Thelma 2 or 3 bike rack instead of your T2 knowing there's been a good amt of failures just among forum users as of this past year?

The Saris Thelma fits 1 1/4 receivers and can hold 3 bikes for \$315...
The Saris Thelma only holds bikes up to 35lbs. It would be more fair to compare the T2 to the Cycle-On, which is similar in price.

I personally didn't know about the Saris offerings before I bought my T2.

-Charlie

94. Ive only seen 2-3 T2s fail and you never know the actual circumstances behind them. There are a ton of T2s. I love mine. All my buddys love theirs. Id buy one again.

95. Originally Posted by kntr
Ive only seen 2-3 T2s fail and you never know the actual circumstances behind them. There are a ton of T2s. I love mine. All my buddys love theirs. Id buy one again.
The failed bracket is on its way to Thule right now for their analysis, we'll see what they say.

I know my rack is/was under a bit of extra stress compared to many others out there. The bike is shaped like a big sail with the flat side profile, and I carry it most often behind a sedan (old Camry). I rashly assumed that since the rack was designed to carry 60lb bikes that it would still be ok with my 31lb bike. While behind my WRX wagon, I could feel there was much less wind loading of the bike/rack. Otherwise, everything drove the same (actually, the rack seemed to move LESS on my Camry).

-Charlie

96. What is everyone's "free" way of fixing this problem on their own? some pics would be great. I'm a new T2 owner.

97. Originally Posted by Frog51

-Paul the FGN (farging new guy)
Bingo.

First and foremost, "Tim" in the video is to blame as he had not tightened the bolts properly. What remotely reasonable person would let the rack wobble like that??? And those multi-tools are absolute garbage - they can't begin to approach the tightening torque of an 8-mm button head bolt.

Second, there have been a few posts regarding damaged racks (being backed into, striking the ground, etc.) and their failure. Well, that's not on Thule either. When metal stretches its strength becomes greatly compromised. I bet that Thule's investigation shows that racks with cracked brackets were first damaged in this way (i.e., slightly bent in a prior incident).

Here's how I think this stacks up: there is nothing inherently wrong with the design of the T2 itself but that there may need to be some practical usage consideration redesigns. To me this isn't Thule's fault per se - some people don't know how to tighten bolts and some people don't know that when damaged slightly metal's strength can be greatly compromised.

(Sorry to "Tim" should he see my post. It ain't personal, mind you.)

98. I disagree.

That is not a multitool, it is a common form of allen wrench set successfully used in many, many applications and would be a reasonable choice by a reasonable person who could be expected to buy such a product. Either way, as tight as he had it, it still should not have come loose (regardless of the tool quality - the bolt was tight). That's indicative of a better means of clamping being required - a design flaw.

Most manufacturers of this kind of thing (consumer product with assembly required) need to make their stuff idiot proof. I think that did not happen in this case and that is (in large) part Thule's fault. The design is also bad if this can happen - there should be something more failsafe IMO. Thule should have put a stop bolt in the end but didn't - another design flaw. The risks are just too high in loss of property and potentially life to not do so. I'm sure that had someone been seriously injured, Thule's product liability insurance carrier would be writing some very big checks.

It's a design oversight pure and simple and I'm betting most juries would agree - which, like it or not, is where the ultimate decision on this is finally taken.

J.

99. Originally Posted by JohnJ80
I disagree.

That is not a multitool, it is a common form of allen wrench set successfully used in many, many applications and would be a reasonable choice by a reasonable person who could be expected to buy such a product. Either way, as tight as he had it, it still should not have come loose (regardless of the tool quality - the bolt was tight). That's indicative of a better means of clamping being required - a design flaw.

Most manufacturers of this kind of thing (consumer product with assembly required) need to make their stuff idiot proof. I think that did not happen in this case and that is (in large) part Thule's fault. The design is also bad if this can happen - there should be something more failsafe IMO. Thule should have put a stop bolt in the end but didn't - another design flaw. The risks are just too high in loss of property and potentially life to not do so. I'm sure that had someone been seriously injured, Thule's product liability insurance carrier would be writing some very big checks.

It's a design oversight pure and simple and I'm betting most juries would agree - which, like it or not, is where the ultimate decision on this is finally taken.

J.
What bike rack do you use?

100. 1upUSA and I have a Thule hitch mount swing away one I no longer use.

J.

101. Originally Posted by JohnJ80
I disagree.

That is not a multitool, it is a common form of allen wrench set successfully used in many, many applications and would be a reasonable choice by a reasonable person who could be expected to buy such a product. Either way, as tight as he had it, it still should not have come loose (regardless of the tool quality - the bolt was tight). That's indicative of a better means of clamping being required - a design flaw.
You're correct that was not a multi-tool but that doesn't make it not a POS tool - it is, but more on this below.

Some people may feel that an appropriate tool to use but no reasonable person, even one who is mechanically disinclined, could look at the loose brackets whatever the cause and feel comfortable with that situation. Thule 1, Tim 0.

Most manufacturers of this kind of thing (consumer product with assembly required) need to make their stuff idiot proof. I think that did not happen in this case and that is (in large) part Thule's fault. The design is also bad if this can happen - there should be something more failsafe IMO. Thule should have put a stop bolt in the end but didn't - another design flaw. The risks are just too high in loss of property and potentially life to not do so. I'm sure that had someone been seriously injured, Thule's product liability insurance carrier would be writing some very big checks.

It's a design oversight pure and simple and I'm betting most juries would agree - which, like it or not, is where the ultimate decision on this is finally taken.

J.
Thule provides a proper 5 mm hex wrench (I have this rack and know this to be true). Thule 2, Tim 0.

Thule in their instructions explicitly state the bolts must be tightened such that there is no movement in the carrier. Thule 3, Tim 0.

Perhaps some additional safety measures can be incorporated into the product per my post but in this situation "Tim" committed three explicit errors, with the most blatant not second guessing the loose brackets.

IMO, "Tim" is deflecting responsibility for something IMO he full well knows is his fault, and doesn't look very smart doing it. This will not see a jury and the only insurance company involved is "Tim's" in paying for the accident he caused.

102. Originally Posted by phattyduck
The failed bracket is on its way to Thule right now for their analysis, we'll see what they say.

-Charlie
I just wanted to updated the thread to say that Thule has totally stepped up to fix the situation for me (broken clamp, not the sliding tray). I'm happy with the resolution, though it was tough to lose my bike. New Foes FXR, here I come...

-Charlie

PS. Make sure you also have good renters/homeowners insurance! I never thought I would have to use it, but it came in handy...

103. Originally Posted by SAL9000
You're correct that was not a multi-tool but that doesn't make it not a POS tool - it is, but more on this below.

Some people may feel that an appropriate tool to use but no reasonable person, even one who is mechanically disinclined, could look at the loose brackets whatever the cause and feel comfortable with that situation. Thule 1, Tim 0.

Thule provides a proper 5 mm hex wrench (I have this rack and know this to be true). Thule 2, Tim 0.

Thule in their instructions explicitly state the bolts must be tightened such that there is no movement in the carrier. Thule 3, Tim 0.

Perhaps some additional safety measures can be incorporated into the product per my post but in this situation "Tim" committed three explicit errors, with the most blatant not second guessing the loose brackets.

IMO, "Tim" is deflecting responsibility for something IMO he full well knows is his fault, and doesn't look very smart doing it. This will not see a jury and the only insurance company involved is "Tim's" in paying for the accident he caused.
Boy I sure disagree. I don't think I'd have any problem proving that this was a less than adequate design especially if Thule is assuming minimal mechanical aptitude on the part of a consumer. You assigning of total blame to the guy with the rack in this case is not going to fly. At best for Thule is a shared blame - best case.

J.

104. Originally Posted by JohnJ80
Boy I sure disagree. I don't think I'd have any problem proving that this was a less than adequate design especially if Thule is assuming minimal mechanical aptitude on the part of a consumer. You assigning of total blame to the guy with the rack in this case is not going to fly. At best for Thule is a shared blame - best case.

J.
'Tim' admits acknowledging that the bolts were loose. 'Tim' then blames the wrong tool for not being able to tighten the bolts. 'Tim' then chooses to use the rack anyway.

Even if it can be shown a crappy design leads to the bolts coming loose 'Tim' intentionally committed three acts that caused the situation.

I have a feeling 'Tim' didn't have insurance and is desperate to blame someone, ergo the goofy attempt at blaming the tool.

105. If it is that easy to screw it up, it's not a good design. It's also clearly not a failsafe design, which it also should be but isn't.

J.

106. Originally Posted by JohnJ80
If it is that easy to screw it up, it's not a good design. It's also clearly not a failsafe design, which it also should be but isn't.

J.
May not be a good design but 'Tim' admits he saw the problem, admits he didn't do anything about it, and admits he chose to use the rack anyway. At worst Thule owes him new bolts or a bracket. The broken bikes and accident are 100% on Tim.

107. Ok. Tim is an idiot and it's a bad design.

J.

108. did you guys know the new 917Xt has a little screw at the end that "should" prevent the aluminum trays from sliding off the main rail?

did they have this in last years model?

109. Lets be fair to Thule. I think there is a design enhancement to be made but I don't think this company is cutting any corners when it comes to quality assurance.

How many company goes through these types of test with all of their equipment?
(However, this test didn't include the 2 bike add-on)

110. Designs can almost always be improved. That's why mfg spend so much time on warranty returns.

J.

111. Originally Posted by Dirthugger
Lets be fair to Thule. I think there is a design enhancement to be made but I don't think this company is cutting any corners when it comes to quality assurance.

How many company goes through these types of test with all of their equipment?
(However, this test didn't include the 2 bike add-on)
i'm 100% sure every company goes through tests with bikes on the rack with the rack on a car. Their product needs to be tested to work you know. Thule only posts them on youtube for marketing and publicity.

the fix they made was to have a tiny screw at the end of the main bar, the screw supposedly will block the rear tray from sliding off.

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