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Old 04-16-08, 09:56 AM   #1
nPn
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Hitch adapter or trunk mount?

Last year I purchased a Thule parkway 4 bike hitch for a 2" hitch. I use this on a mini-van that has a 2" hitch to carry up to 4 bikes. Sometimes I would like to leave the mini-van at home and use my Mazda 3 for short trips with only 2 bikes max. Unfortunately I can't get a 2" hitch for a Mazda 3, so I either need to get a 1-1/4" hitch and use and adapter or maybe get a trunk mount rack.

Does anyone have any experience with using hitch adapters? I read on one site that sells these adapters that if you use the adapter the tung weight should be reduced to 50% of the rated tung weight of the hitch.
So in my case the tung weight would be reduced to 100 lbs (from 200), which seems OK for a 32 lbs rack and 2 30 (ish) lbs mountain bikes.

The other option is a trunk mount for the Mazda 3.

Any options on these options?
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Old 04-16-08, 02:09 PM   #2
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I've had trunk mount, and just hated it. I'm not sure if I like adaptors or not. If the cost is negligible, give it a chance, I guess. If it doesn't work out, and the money's there, get a receiver hitch dedicated to the 1 1/4 receiver. It is a nice setup. I'm using a Hollywood rack, by the way. I love it.
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Old 06-30-08, 03:37 PM   #3
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Hitch mount no good?

Why do you not like your hitch mount rack? I'm trying to decide if I should get a hitch mount rack (since I already have a hitch) or invest in a complete roof rack which will be twice as much. Got any advice??
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Old 06-30-08, 04:06 PM   #4
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I could have sworn I've seen 1 1/4" hitch racks by Thule or Yakima at a LBS.

Only downside to a hitch rack, unless the rack can swing out of the way, its hard to access the trunk or back door of the vehicle.
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Old 06-30-08, 05:53 PM   #5
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I have had a 2" hitch mount on my Jeep Grand Cherokee for the last ten years and use a Performance Export 3 bike hitch rack, which works great. I have used trunk mount racks in the past, and would never go back. The commuter car we bought several years ago for my wife, a Ford Taurus, came with a 1 1/4" hitch. It was an easy matter to get an adapter for the 2" hitch rack and it functions well, just like on the Jeep. The only concern is less ground clearance than with the SUV, and that is a function of the hitch on the Taurus rather than the adapter or rack. It does drag going in and out of some steep drives. It does no damage to the rack or adapter.

The ease of mounting, stability, protection and locking security of the hitch mount is wonderful. I have used roof racks for many years with boats and canoes. I cannot imagine they would beat the hitch rack for bikes. And then there was the time my wife tried to drive a van with two canoes on the roof under a carport..... it was not pretty.
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Old 06-30-08, 08:50 PM   #6
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Both Yakima and Thule make 1 1/4" hitch racks. The only problem with these racks (aside from the fact that you may also have to pay to have a hitch receiver installed) is that they tend to be limited to two bikes.
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Old 06-30-08, 09:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nPn View Post
Last year I purchased a Thule parkway 4 bike hitch for a 2" hitch. I use this on a mini-van that has a 2" hitch to carry up to 4 bikes. Sometimes I would like to leave the mini-van at home and use my Mazda 3 for short trips with only 2 bikes max. Unfortunately I can't get a 2" hitch for a Mazda 3, so I either need to get a 1-1/4" hitch and use and adapter or maybe get a trunk mount rack.

Any options on these options?
Thule makes a rack that includes the adapter, (a slide on piece converting 1-14" to 2" right from the box, the Roadway 914, http://www.thuleracks.com/product.asp?dept_id=8&sku=914.

this is the model I purchased this spring and paid the extra for this single feature. Actually received good deal via Amazon and caught free S/H so whole package was < $199. (IIRC)

PS: the ratings on these is 40#s / per, 160# max. The extra length of conventional adapter puts serious stress on the 1-1/4" receiver and car's suspension, the Thule's design eliminates the length, yet would give 2nd thoughts adding bikes 3 and 4 on a car type setup.
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