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Bike Rack recommendations

Old 11-10-18, 02:49 PM
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tandembrowns
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Bike Rack recommendations

I have 4 kids, all of whom are starting to bike with us quite a bit. I'm looking for a good trailer-hitch based bike rack for traveling with bikes. Right now, the oldest kids are still riding 24" bikes. I'd like to find a rack that can handle as many bikes as possible. It should also be capable of carrying a tandem bike. I need something that will carry 5 bikes.

Does anyone have any recommendations?

Last edited by tandembrowns; 11-10-18 at 02:50 PM. Reason: clarification
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Old 11-10-18, 03:12 PM
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Look on craigslist. Those are things that people end up hardly using then they sell them when their kids get too big. I got a real nice one for dirt cheap last winter.
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Old 11-10-18, 03:30 PM
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Old 11-12-18, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by tandembrowns View Post
I need something that will carry 5 bikes.
I believe the limit for a hitch rack is 4 bikes.
"hold by the wheel" style racks only go up to 4 bikes.
Some "hang by the frame" style racks claim 5 bikes but if you have experience with those racks it's nearly impossible to actually get 5 bikes onto them. To get 3 bikes onto a rack of that style I had to remove the pedals and front wheel from one of the bikes.


There's 2 options I know of:
- Get 1 person a folding bike and put their bike in the trunk
- Get both a hitch rack and a roof rack
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Old 11-12-18, 10:22 AM
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2" receiver on the motor vehicle?
for 5 adult bikes Consider a small trailer ,
and rig it up for carrying the bikes, inside?
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Old 11-12-18, 12:34 PM
  #6  
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Tandem sideways on the back of a car? I gotta imagine most tandems are approaching or surpassing 96" long, which would be the legal vehicle width limit on US roads. Even if you're not over that limit, you'd have an unwieldy load.

I agree with @fietsbob, four bikes and a tandem, I'd be looking for a small utility trailer if at all possible.
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Old 11-12-18, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
I believe the limit for a hitch rack is 4 bikes.
"hold by the wheel" style racks only go up to 4 bikes.
Six bike hitch racks:

https://www.altaracks.com/product/alta-six-gpr/

North Shore Racks

Gen2 R6 Six Bike Shuttle Rack ? Recon Rack Co

Not a tandem solution obviously.
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Old 11-12-18, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Even if you're not over that limit, you'd have an unwieldy load.

I agree with @fietsbob, four bikes and a tandem, I'd be looking for a small utility trailer if at all possible.
Oy! Either a trailer or at least a roof rack for the tandem and a hitch for the kids' bikes:

https://www.yakima.com/sidewinder
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Old 11-12-18, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
That's very interesting I hadn't seen those before...however their design looks like it would have problems if you tried of put bikes of different sizes and styles on it. 5-6 appears to be possible because the handlebars are carefully aimed sideways to minimize the space they take up. Seems like it probably wouldn't work if you had bikes other than straightbar-style bikes.
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Old 11-12-18, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
5-6 appears to be possible because the handlebars are carefully aimed sideways to minimize the space they take up. Seems like it probably wouldn't work if you had bikes other than straightbar-style bikes.
Flat bars are wider than drop bars. It's not an issue.
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Old 11-13-18, 12:06 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Flat bars are wider than drop bars. It's not an issue.
Sounds like you haven't actually tried to do stuff like this. I have, it does not work well to mix bar styles and try to get them to line up so they symmetrically fit together.
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Old 11-13-18, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
Sounds like you haven't actually tried to do stuff like this. I have, it does not work well to mix bar styles and try to get them to line up so they symmetrically fit together.

Your confusion continues, unabated.


It does work well to mix bar styles with the racks that I linked above. MTB bars are much wider (up to 800mm) than drop bars (~500mm for wide flared).


Before you continue digging that hole, you might want to spend some time studying this picture.


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Old 11-13-18, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Your confusion continues, unabated.

It does work well to mix bar styles with the racks that I linked above. MTB bars are much wider (up to 800mm) than drop bars (~500mm for wide flared).

Before you continue digging that hole, you might want to spend some time studying this picture.

That's definitely an interesting picture. That looks like they might not have been able fit the 6th bike on there with road bars because there wouldn't be room on the left between two of the road bar bikes though doesn't it?

I admit, 5 bikes was more than I thought would fit on if they included both straight bars and road bars. The name of the rack is "ALTA SIX Bike Rack (Six carrier)" and the picture is from their website I would think if they could have fit 6 bikes on it they would have, they have to go with 5 bikes that's all they could fit.

Last edited by PaulRivers; 11-13-18 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 11-13-18, 11:06 AM
  #14  
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I also recommend 1UP USA. The last bike rack I will ever need.
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Old 11-13-18, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
The name of the rack is "ALTA SIX Bike Rack (Six carrier)" and the picture is from their website I would think if they could have fit 6 bikes on it they would have, they have to go with 5 bikes that's all they could fit.
It's a customer (Tom Kline) submitted picture. My guess is that Tom didn't need to carry 6 bikes that day.

Regardless, the photo shows that it does work well to mix bar styles and to get them to line up so they symmetrically fit together on the racks that I linked.
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Old 11-13-18, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
It's a customer (Tom Kline) submitted picture. My guess is that Tom didn't need to carry 6 bikes that day.
Looking at the picture it looks like a 6th road bike would need to be in the space currently taken up by the road bars of 2 of the bikes. Eyeballing it it look like the rack would fit 6 mountain bikes but probably only 4 road bikes because road bars don't stack as cleanly.

It is just a picture so it's hard to tell...but that's my experience trying to fit similar things. Only way to know for sure is to try it in person.

Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Regardless, the photo shows that it does work well to mix bar styles and to get them to line up so they symmetrically fit together on the racks that I linked.
It shows that in a best case scenario it's possible to do.

At the same time I can find pictures of my current hang-by-the-frame that appear to fit 5 bikes on it...I can say from experience that in average usage it is next to impossible to actually fit those bikes on it without spending a time of time on it and removing some parts.

I've just gotten burned in the past looking at a best case scenario, then trying to fit bikes onto the rack in person where the bars/racks conflict with each other. I can fit 4 road bikes on my road easily. But trying to fit a road bike, a mountain bike, and a "comfort" bike...uggggh.

Last edited by PaulRivers; 11-13-18 at 12:11 PM.
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Old 11-14-18, 07:44 AM
  #17  
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Do the people saying “1UP” even bother reading what the OP needs, or is typing “1UP” just an involuntary reaction any time you see the words “bike rack”?

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Old 11-14-18, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
At the same time I can find pictures of my current hang-by-the-frame that appear to fit 5 bikes on it...I can say from experience that in average usage it is next to impossible to actually fit those bikes on it without spending a time of time on it and removing some parts.
Apples and oranges. The racks that I linked to are specifically designed to avoid the kinds of problems faced by hanging, or even tray, type racks.

The front wheel holders are slanted to the left (or right depending on manufacturer) so that the handlebars don't touch.
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Old 11-14-18, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Apples and oranges. The racks that I linked to are specifically designed to avoid the kinds of problems faced by hanging, or even tray, type racks.

The front wheel holders are slanted to the left (or right depending on manufacturer) so that the handlebars don't touch.
You're throwing out a lot of buzzwords and running over the details. It sounds like you're a salesman who works for the company selling the rack, right?

Last edited by PaulRivers; 11-14-18 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 11-14-18, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
You're throwing out a lot of buzzwords and running over the details. It sounds like you're a salesman who works for the company selling the rack, right?
Buzzwords? Huh?

I'm just a rider who, over the last few decades, has owned a few hanging-style racks (Thule, Yakima), tray-type racks (T2 - the original before Thule bought the design - , and now a Kuat), and a bunch of fork mount roof rails. I have friend with a Recon rack.

Yeah, I work for the company selling the rack because I have pointed out how repeatedly wrong you are, while linking to three different racks that can carry 6 bikes... Rational folks don't come up with those kinds of conspiracy theories.
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Old 11-14-18, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Wow. A 4x8 trailer is about 1/2 the cost and you can carry lumber, couches, appliances, mulch, with it to. Tons of uses. Harbor Freight has a folding version if space is an issue. Various registration and inspection required depending on the locality. Mine is $10 for a permanent plate and nothing else required if under 2000 GVWR. I'd guess overall it would be quicker to hook up a trailer and put five bikes in it than to put those racks on and secure 5 bikes to it. I have a few various sized utility trailers but never used them for bikes. If I had to carry more than 3 I would.

Last edited by u235; 11-14-18 at 11:55 AM.
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Old 11-14-18, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by u235 View Post
Wow. A 4x8 trailer is about 1/2 the cost and you can carry lumber, couches, appliances, mulch, with it to. Harbor Freight has a folding version if space is an issue. I'd guess overall it would be quicker to hook up a trailer and put five bikes in it than to put those racks on and secure 5 bikes to it. I have a few various sized utility trailers but never used them for bikes. If I had to carry more than 3 I would.
Yeah, you're not the target market. Many folks are using them as shuttle racks, especially on routes that include a fair bit of dirt that would make a trailer a bit challenging.
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Old 11-14-18, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by ogmtb View Post
Yeah, I work for the company selling the rack because I have pointed out how repeatedly wrong you are, while linking to three different racks that can carry 6 bikes... Rational folks don't come up with those kinds of conspiracy theories.
"If you contemplate on a forum that there might be issues with a product I'm promoting and selling you're obviously part of a conspiracy against me"
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Old 11-14-18, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
"If you contemplate on a forum that there might be issues with a product I'm promoting and selling you're obviously part of a conspiracy against me"
Nah, the conspiracy theory that you're working under is that I'm a salesman that works for a rack company and that I'm promoting and selling any of those racks. That's simply not true.

Last edited by unterhausen; 11-14-18 at 02:39 PM.
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Old 11-14-18, 02:41 PM
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No insults please. The forum rules prohibit promotion of a product that you have an interest in. You may have missed that when you agreed to the terms and conditions for an account.
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