The Chainlink

Would like to know our insights on what's better to buy. Currently looking for truck accessories I should install to help in transporting the bike. Is it good to choose a bike rack over bike hitch? I'm hesitating to buy the topline bike carrier because I have a tonneau cover installed on the truck bed. If I'll be choosing the bike hitch, what hitch products should I buy with it?

All your suggestions will be appreciated.

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You'll get many correct opinions on this. My preference is the hitch rack. Less worry about clearance and a roof rack can impact your gas mileage. A roof rack also costs more if you are on a budget. I purchased a Curt hitch on Amazon and had my mechanic install it. I then went with the Saris Bones hitch rack. I'm happy with my decision.

Hitch. We use a Yakima Ridgeback for four bikes. Very versatile with 2" and 1.25" hitches. Goes on the Jeep Compass, BMW X1, and our teardrop camper. Even if a friend has a hitch and chooses to drive, he/she's got a bike rack that can be used from car to car. 

Ditto for going with a hitch rack.  Keeps your options for bed storage open.  Next you have to choose between a hanging style hitch rack and a platform style.  I prefer and use a platform rack (Kuat Transfer) since I mainly transport carbon frame road bikes.  Don't like to hang them. 

If this is a 1.25" hitch, I think I have an adapter he can use. 

Hitch rack here.

We have a 4-bike hanging Yakima from a looooooong time ago. Always a workhorse until this summer. Was in Arkansas and a weld broke. Dumped bikes on the road, luckily, when we weren't going fast and traffic was minimal. Too much excitement for me and the couple of cars that went by but only one bike was damaged, used parts and pieces to get my commuter fixed up when we got home. Found a guy who was listed on google as "Welding and RV Park". He welded it back together and charged... "Well, how much is it worth to ya?" and the rack was back to holding bikes for the trip home.

If cargo can find a place on a car outside of the storage/passenger area that's what I've found most useful.

Oh, and we tried a platform hitch rack... our Honda Element didn't have enough ground clearance where the hitch is at so on steeper angles of approach the thing dragged on the ground. If you want a platform hitch rack, I'll sell it to you cheap! It's set up to hold 4 bikes. Your truck probably has enough clearance that our problems with it wouldn't be an issue.

I've had two kinds of hitch racks. The hanging rack was light and fine for regular bikes, but my wife insisted on riding a 30-lb. step-through. It was a serious pain wrestling all that ironmongery on and off the rack and making sure it was secure hanging at a 45-degree angle. I was always concerned  it would fall off and take my bike with it, and about the bikes  swinging to and fro and banging into each other when I hit a stretch of rough pavement or in stop-and-go traffic.

So I bought a Thule two-bike platform rack. It's much easier to get the bikes on and off and it feels a lot more secure -- but the rack is a heck of a lot heavier (50 lbs). It was also expensive ($400)

Of course, soon after I bought the Thule, she saw the light and got a normal bike. But I'm not switching back for now because I like the ease of loading and unloading, and the way it clamps down on the bikes and locks them solidly in position so they can't move and scratch or damage each other.

Going with the truck-bed bike rack.


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