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I have the hitch mounted bike rack like shown in the picture. Pretty old (thinking 15-20 years) but hardly used.

I've read carbon bikes should not be carted on a top tube type rack.

Is this true and should I be looking for an alternative for my new carbon trail bike?

Thanks!


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That rack is a donation or garage sale item. Dump that POS. That's a great rack for kids bikes from (like you said) 15-20 years ago.

Buy a bike carrier, something that supports both wheels. Hanging bikes by their frames is long gone. Protect your investment.
 

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I have the hitch mounted bike rack like shown in the picture. Pretty old (thinking 15-20 years) but hardly used.

I've read carbon bikes should not be carted on a top tube type rack.

Is this true and should I be looking for an alternative for my new carbon trail bike?

Thanks!


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Friends only let friends get 1Up racks, and the modestly priced Saris racks when they can't afford a 1Up.

You got a plastic bike. I don't think they make plastic racks, but 1Up aluminum and stainless steel with their design and parts schema are in a league beyond others. After working so well, it just occurred to me how great my 1Up is after 9 years of year-round frequent use. Big bikes, kids bikes, fat bikes, road bikes, one of them or 4 of them. Having and having had 4 different brands fo rack and biking year round I know well how my other purchases were stupid by comparison.

The point of Saris is they have really good customer service for racks that work well and can cost less.
 

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I am shockingly lax by most peoples' standards about what racks are OK to use with what bikes, but even I would give a big "HELL NO!" to clamping a CF frame into that rack. For that matter, I would not use that with any bike that did not have a round, straight, top tube made of metal, and even then you need to be careful not to be clamping on a cable stop/guide.

Heck, even a cheap hanging cradle rack is way better than that. And for occasional use, there are many racks cheaper than 1UP that work just fine.

Don't get me wrong, I love my 1UP, and over the past couple years almost all of my riding partners (Road and MTB) have come around to buying them and loving them. But there are many suitable options between that POS in the OP and a 1UP.
 

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If you buy a expensive bike and thrash the he'll out of it, in a couple years you will replace it. Your new bike will still fit on your 7 year old 1up rack. And if you do something stupid like back it into your garage, a quick call and they will supply you with whatever replacement parts you need.. It is one of the few things that I have actually only had to buy once.
 

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Forget the 1up shrills. Yes, they are good racks. I'm still rocking a T2 from something like 2006 or 7, forget, but it still works...mostly. I got my money's worth. There are cheaper racks than the 1up that will work well. Yes, if you can justify them, they will be a good investment. I'm not getting a new rack until mine dies completey.

In general, the old J-style or "T" hanging bike racks where the bikes bash into each other are left-overs from the early 90s, they require a bunch of bungees or straps and the distance of the arms creates a moment that causes significant sway and movement with swinging. Almost any tray style rack is a huge upgrade. Unfortunately, car dealerships and other businesses will still sell the terrible hanging racks to unsuspecting customers. Car companies are especially bad for this, you can either buy an erector-set roof rack for a huge premium or a receiver and a 1990s hanging-rack...in the 2020s...
 
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I have an old Thule T2 as well -- still functional despite all its plastic parts and bing an overweight monstrosity.

One of the things I like best about the 1Up rack is that whenever there's handlebar/saddle conflict between two bikes -- which happens frequently when carpooling -- the situation is easily remedied by rolling one bike forward &/or the other backward. The 1Up's wheel-holding struts make this easier to do than any other rack I've ever used. With the Thule, I (or my friends -- several of us owned these racks BITD) had to get out a wrench and loosen 4 bolts for each tray in order to slide the tray, then tighten all 4 bolts. A relative PITA.

If one never carpools with others, not a big deal. But for anyone who does, especially if they do so frequently, the 1Up's convenience, in addition to its superior design & construction, make it far superior to every other rack on the market that I'm familiar with.
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The answer to your question is a bike rack that only the tyres contact. Vertical racks are good also.
Want to haul many carbon bikes. Get a vertical rack. 1 or 2 bikes then horizontal racks are ok. when buying make sure that handle bars and cranks don't hit.

A big selling point for the vertical rack is that is fast load and unload with multiple bikes. The horizontal racks typically take longer and involve more strops to lasoo the bikes to the rack.

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I have the hitch mounted bike rack like shown in the picture. Pretty old (thinking 15-20 years) but hardly used.

I've read carbon bikes should not be carted on a top tube type rack.

Is this true and should I be looking for an alternative for my new carbon trail bike?

Thanks!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I know this is a necro post. But just for the sake of information. They make hangers that attach to your seat and bars and act as a crossbar to get clamped, usually they are padded/rubber coated where they contact your stem/bars/seat so they won't't do any damage to your frame and then they take the place of your top tube being clamped in this style of rack.

NOTE, you still have to use bungees and straps, etc. and balance it in the center to keep your bike from flailing around on the back of your vehicle. So it's not a perfect fix. AND NOTE, NOTE, NOTE!!! you have to have enough ground clearance to use them because instead of hanging from the top tube your bike is now hanging from the stem or bars and seat height. and so it hangs a LOT lower!!! And anyone who's ever loaded up a rack like this in the driveway and then backed out and saw how close your bike tires get to the ground when you hit that angle from driveway to street; it's a life lesson... (and lets be honest, more then a few tray racks have scraped in similar situations, but at least in that case it was the hitch mount/rack and not the bikes/tires that took the hit)

Anyway, I don't disagree with the better rack suggestions anyone is making. A good rack is a good investment! BUT... I still have a HUGE Yakima hanging rack that is the same as this in principal but at least has double hanging bars. (and no "clamps") And I still use it now and then because for "family bikes", kids bikes and old hardtails that you don't care so much if they get scratched up I can slam like 6 bikes on it and take everyone down to the greenway for family rides...

But for sure the reason i replaced the hanger rack was getting a carbon framed bike at the time!! :)
 

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I recently go a carbon trail bike and never thought about not hanging it from the top tube. I usually use a tail gate pad on my truck to hull the bike, but I will be taking a 7hr trip south this spring to do some riding and can not take my truck. Would it be better to use my roof rack for the bike instead of the Yakima hitch rack (pictured below)?
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I recently go a carbon trail bike and never thought about not hanging it from the top tube. I usually use a tail gate pad on my truck to hull the bike, but I will be taking a 7hr trip south this spring to do some riding and can not take my truck. Would it be better to use my roof rack for the bike instead of the Yakima hitch rack (pictured below)?
View attachment 1972123
I traveled at least 25K miles with a CF road bike on the back of my car using a rack with the same type of cradles (Which are entirely different from the ones that the OP was asking about) This included several coast-to-coast trips. Never so much as a scratch. I logged well over 40K with aluminum MTBs…. Same thing.

You do need to take care to strap it so that it does not sway in the cradle (one bungie took care of that) and make sure you wipe off dirt from the frame where it sits in the cradle.

If this is just for a rare trip, I would just use whichever you already have, or whichever you find more convenient.

I would personally be more worried about clipping the bike on a roof rack of a truck than scratch damage from a rack, but that assessment is up to you.

to reiterate, I am talking about YOUR rack, not the OP’s. THAT one should not get anywhere near a bike.
 

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I recently go a carbon trail bike and never thought about not hanging it from the top tube. I usually use a tail gate pad on my truck to hull the bike, but I will be taking a 7hr trip south this spring to do some riding and can not take my truck. Would it be better to use my roof rack for the bike instead of the Yakima hitch rack (pictured below)?
View attachment 1972123
You risk marring the finish with any rack that contacts the frame ( including the one in your photo). You can try to cinch it down and wrap the contact points but you’re still going to have tiny little movements that will rub your bike for the entire drive.

Marred finish is 1000x better than accidentally driving under a low clearance ceiling when you’ve forgotten that your bike is on top of the vehicle though.

Do you have room to remove the wheels and stash the bike inside the cabin?

If you use the cheap rack in the photo maybe wrap the contact points with packing tape or something like that to protect it from rubbing.
 

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I like the idea of a tray rack for my hitch, but I hate to spend that much money for something I'll only use when traveling on trips 1-2 times per year.
And you are wise to think that way.

I am assuming from your post that you already own either the hanging rack or a roof rack? If so, it is a no-brainer to use one of those.
 
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