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carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch #4703519
03/22/18 05:48 PM
03/22/18 05:48 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
The Thule bike-rack literature says to not carry four bikes when the carrier is used with a Class I receiver. My work-around was to reduce the sway and tongue weight by using ratcheting straps. The Mazda 5 doesn't have a roof rack, so I installed a couple of nylon straps w/ eyes to attach the ratcheting tie-down strap to. The other end of each eye strap is bolted to the top attachment point for each rear hatch strut. Foam pipe insulation protects the paint on the hatch from the straps.


Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703525
03/22/18 05:51 PM
03/22/18 05:51 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 4,866
The Midwest
skyactiv Online content
skyactiv  Online Content
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 4,866
The Midwest
Can a vehicle behind you see your tail and brake lights?


Wife: 15' Audi A4 quattro 6 speed manual
Me: 13' VW GTI 3 door 6 speed manual
Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: skyactiv] #4703536
03/22/18 06:05 PM
03/22/18 06:05 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Originally Posted By: skyactiv
Can a vehicle behind you see your tail and brake lights?

It's not perfect, they're somewhat obscured, but that's an issue with any hitch-mounted bike rack. I use the red LED lights on the bikes as running lights when traveling when it's dark. The turn-signals are amber and show up well.

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703564
03/22/18 06:35 PM
03/22/18 06:35 PM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,722
USA
oldhp Offline
oldhp  Offline
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,722
USA
Man, I don't know. That looks illegal to me, and not very secure safe either.


2018 RAM 1500 3.6/8 speed.
2017 Jeep Sahara Unlimited 3.6
"U kan't fixe it......if'n it ain't broke."
Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: oldhp] #4703583
03/22/18 06:50 PM
03/22/18 06:50 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
It's very solid with the strap on. No negative feedback from the authorities so far, and we've been using hitch-mounted bike racks for years and years. This particular round trip in 2013 was about 4000 km with no problems. I could install a roof rack and move two bikes up to the roof, but that really kills the highway mileage, and one has to remember not to drive into the garage with the bikes on!

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703611
03/22/18 07:12 PM
03/22/18 07:12 PM
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 2,464
Nowthen, MN
KD0AXS Offline
KD0AXS  Offline
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 2,464
Nowthen, MN
Not sure what the law is there, but you should probably have a red (or other bright color) flag on the end. Most places require a flag for a load that extends a certain distance past the end of the vehicle.

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: KD0AXS] #4703615
03/22/18 07:18 PM
03/22/18 07:18 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
I don't think it's the law here (as no-one does) but it's a great idea. I'll do this in future. Thanks for the idea!

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703621
03/22/18 07:22 PM
03/22/18 07:22 PM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 6,466
Waco, TX
Linctex Offline
Linctex  Offline
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 6,466
Waco, TX
Originally Posted By: Number_35
My work-around was to reduce the sway and tongue weight by using ratcheting straps.


That is a fantastic idea


"The evidence demands a verdict".
(Re:VOA)"it's nearly impossible to actually know the particular additives that are in there at what concentrations."
Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Linctex] #4703628
03/22/18 07:27 PM
03/22/18 07:27 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Originally Posted By: Linctex
Originally Posted By: Number_35
My work-around was to reduce the sway and tongue weight by using ratcheting straps.


That is a fantastic idea
Thanks! I use it with the Kia too, even though it has a Class III hitch - it still takes the stress off the rack.

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703656
03/22/18 08:04 PM
03/22/18 08:04 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,268
ME
eljefino Offline
eljefino  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,268
ME
I ran that rack on a class I hitch on my wife's old HHR. Worked fine. Worst issue was the compromised approach angles. I used bungee cords to tangle all the bikes together. The ensemble swayed around a bit but I never lost a thing. approved

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: eljefino] #4703669
03/22/18 08:31 PM
03/22/18 08:31 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Number_35 Offline OP
Number_35  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 968
Winnipeg MB CA
Originally Posted By: eljefino
I ran that rack on a class I hitch on my wife's old HHR. Worked fine. Worst issue was the compromised approach angles. I used bungee cords to tangle all the bikes together. The ensemble swayed around a bit but I never lost a thing. approved


Amen to the compromised approach angle! As well, I tend to try to park so I can drive out forward. That sometimes means backing into the spot, and I try to keep in mind how long that load is. I use lots of bungees as well.

The Thule manual said not to run four bikes (on their 4-bike carrier) with a Class I hitch, so figured a mod was in order, and that stressing the hitch, not the rack, was their concern.

As well, a friend had a Class I hitch fail on a Ford Fusion, so I was not willing to chance it.

These were not particularly heavy bikes though - two cyclocross bikes, one mountain bike, and a hybrid. I tried to load the bikes by weight, with the heaviest farthest inboard, and the lightest at the back.

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: KD0AXS] #4703674
03/22/18 08:38 PM
03/22/18 08:38 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 17,491
Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Chris142 Offline
Chris142  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 17,491
Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Originally Posted By: KD0AXS
Not sure what the law is there, but you should probably have a red (or other bright color) flag on the end. Most places require a flag for a load that extends a certain distance past the end of the vehicle.
4 ft past the rear of the car here.


02 Wrangler durablend 10w40
87 F250 traveler 15w40
04 Tahoe super-s 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor 15w40
Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703692
03/22/18 08:58 PM
03/22/18 08:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 12,913
Onondaga County
Miller88 Offline
Miller88  Offline
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 12,913
Onondaga County
I have a harbor freight bike rack that I put some nicer cradles on. I've had 4 bikes on it. It's just 1-1/4 and rated for 2 bikes. I ran a ratchet strap through the trunk of the car and tightened it against the spare tire which was bolted to the floor. Worked awesome!


18 Forester 2.5I 6M
00 Jeep Cherokee
01 Ford F-350 XL 4x4 5M
Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703870
03/23/18 03:57 AM
03/23/18 03:57 AM
Joined: Sep 2013
Posts: 10,534
Indiana
dlundblad Offline
dlundblad  Offline
Joined: Sep 2013
Posts: 10,534
Indiana
I have the swagman dispatch2, but I believe they make four bike versions too.

The frame bolts into the hitch and thereís no play whatsoever. The only downside is the weight.


03 Jeep WJ 4.0 200k Castrol Edge 10w40 HM Fram XG16
02 Volvo S60 2.4T 177k M1 0w40 Mahle OX149D
97 Chevy Blazer 4.3 149k Rotella T5 10w30 Supertech ST3980

Re: carrying four bikes w/ a Class 1 hitch [Re: Number_35] #4703922
03/23/18 07:14 AM
03/23/18 07:14 AM
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 389
Michigan
khittner Offline
khittner  Offline
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 389
Michigan
Iíd be budgeting for new rear struts. Years ago, I overtaxed the rear suspension on our 1st-gen Odyssey hauling 4 bikes like that. Just because you can Rube Goldberg various bits together to make something work for awhile, doesnít mean itís a solution that wonít roach more critical hardware prematurely.

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