Hitch Mounted Bike Rack - WARNING - Mazda CX3 Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 05-11-2017, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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Angry Hitch Mounted Bike Rack - WARNING

Well.....I hate to say it, but claims of a class 1, 1/14 hitch being able to carry bikes on the CX-3 seem to be exaggerated from my very recent experience.

I've been a mountain biker for a long.....LONG time, so carrying bikes on a hitch rack is far from a new experience for me.

The story goes as such.

Do my research and decide on the Curt Branded Class 1, 1 1/4" hitch.

Get said hitch installed, and mount a brand spanking new Thule T2 XT Pro, rated by Thule as being class 1 compliant.

1 bike wasn't so bad, but 2 carbon mountain bikes made the system flex to a point that made me nauseous. I honestly wouldn't have made the 10km/60 kmph trip again if you paid me.

A healthy mix of bike geeks that span everything from guys who used to work at hitch stores, to a mechanical engineer all agreed the setup was far from optimal.

Long Story Short - Buyer Beware as far as I'm concerned when it comes to tray style bike racks on the CX-3. 2 30lb bikes, plus 42lb tray style rack, plus the distance from the end of the receiver to the end of the rack all add up to potential bad times.

I'm having the hitch removed and refunded on the weekend and new roof racks are being delivered tomorrow afternoon hopefully.

Video of Flex - https://youtu.be/vyqIb4nbFMQ

Cheers,

~TG
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post #2 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:04 AM
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Yeah, I would not be too pleased with that amount of flexing either. Does not look too sturdy at all.

I'm using the Yakima king joe 2 hatch-mounted rack I had when I owned an MDX.

So far, so good.

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post #3 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by MrTGun View Post
Well.....I hate to say it, but claims of a class 1, 1/14 hitch being able to carry bikes on the CX-3 seem to be exaggerated from my very recent experience.

I've been a mountain biker for a long.....LONG time, so carrying bikes on a hitch rack is far from a new experience for me.

The story goes as such.

Do my research and decide on the Curt Branded Class 1, 1 1/4" hitch.

Get said hitch installed, and mount a brand spanking new Thule T2 XT Pro, rated by Thule as being class 1 compliant.

1 bike wasn't so bad, but 2 carbon mountain bikes made the system flex to a point that made me nauseous. I honestly wouldn't have made the 10km/60 kmph trip again if you paid me.

A healthy mix of bike geeks that span everything from guys who used to work at hitch stores, to a mechanical engineer all agreed the setup was far from optimal.

Long Story Short - Buyer Beware as far as I'm concerned when it comes to tray style bike racks on the CX-3. 2 30lb bikes, plus 42lb tray style rack, plus the distance from the end of the receiver to the end of the rack all add up to potential bad times.

I'm having the hitch removed and refunded on the weekend and new roof racks are being delivered tomorrow afternoon hopefully.

Video of Flex - https://youtu.be/vyqIb4nbFMQ

Cheers,

~TG
Kurt hitches recommend you have a strap from the bike rack to the vehicle to eliminate some flex.
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post #4 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:08 AM
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I might add I don't have a curt but I do not get anything close to the flex you are getting with two bikes on my rack.
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post #5 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Playthru1 View Post
I might add I don't have a curt but I do not get anything close to the flex you are getting with two bikes on my rack.

Indeed they do, and for some reason Drawtite does not. That being said, I don't honestly believe by looking at the schematics of the drawtite model 24933 that it honestly would be any better. I think the issue here is where Mazda's mounting points are on the CX-3. The Curt (11418) and the Drawtite attach at the same spots. Long story short, after the terrifying drive to the trailhead last night, I'll be happy to throw my toys on the roof. Added bonus is I now have a functioning back up camera

~TG
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post #6 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:25 AM
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I was surprised that the bike rack nor my bikes interfered with the back up camera which came as a surprise to me.
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post #7 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 12:12 PM
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I literally took a new CX-3 out for a test drive yesterday after checking to see if my mtb fit in the back with the front wheel off. I also have a Thule T2 XT Pro which I intended to use to transport my carbon mtb's. I also have a heavier fatbike which now concerns me. Anyone try the Hidden Hitch or Drawtite? I'd hate to pass on a CX-3 based on this but it's a HUGE deciding factor. I just purchased the Thule for a number of reasons and don't want to use anything else.
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post #8 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by slads229 View Post
I literally took a new CX-3 out for a test drive yesterday after checking to see if my mtb fit in the back with the front wheel off. I also have a Thule T2 XT Pro which I intended to use to transport my carbon mtb's. I also have a heavier fatbike which now concerns me. Anyone try the Hidden Hitch or Drawtite? I'd hate to pass on a CX-3 based on this but it's a HUGE deciding factor. I just purchased the Thule for a number of reasons and don't want to use anything else.
I can only speak for whats on my cx3 and I have the hidden hitch with a kuat rack and I do not have a problem.I can't guarantee you won't have a problem but I just put pressure on my rack with no flex at all with the bikes on there is just a slight flex and on my last vehicle there was the same amount of flex.
E trailer installed my hitch so I know it was done right.
If you have any doubts I would get a different vehicle if I were you because the doubt is there on whether it's true or not but for peace of mind where you don't have to think about it.
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post #9 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 04:20 PM
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I'm a mechanical engineer and I agree with the other's assessments. That amount of flexing is bad juju. It would definitely give you some problems, up to and including damage to your car and/or bikes, in a short of amount of time. That is a pretty long lever arm cantilevered out there with up to 100+ pounds hanging on it which is generating a lot of torque. Class I hitches aren't meant to take the load hanging that far back from the receiver like you had with that bulky rack/tray thing.

Cantilevering the load out that far is going to effectively reduce the tongue weight rating. The Curt part has a tongue weight rating of 200 lbs normally, but extending your applied load that far back is going to cut that weight rating to 100 lbs or less. It's like putting a receiver extension on there which is not recommended by most hitch manufacturers for a Class I hitch.

Only way I could see that working reliably would be through some reinforcement to the hitch and likely the mounting points on the car. That would almost certainly involve welding and making the hitch a permanent fixture, which I assume is out of the question.

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post #10 of 19 Old 05-12-2017, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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I'm a mechanical engineer and I agree with the other's assessments. That amount of flexing is bad juju. It would definitely give you some problems, up to and including damage to your car and/or bikes, in a short of amount of time. That is a pretty long lever arm cantilevered out there with up to 100+ pounds hanging on it which is generating a lot of torque. Class I hitches aren't meant to take the load hanging that far back from the receiver like you had with that bulky rack/tray thing.

Cantilevering the load out that far is going to effectively reduce the tongue weight rating. The Curt part has a tongue weight rating of 200 lbs normally, but extending your applied load that far back is going to cut that weight rating to 100 lbs or less. It's like putting a receiver extension on there which is not recommended by most hitch manufacturers for a Class I hitch.

Only way I could see that working reliably would be through some reinforcement to the hitch and likely the mounting points on the car. That would almost certainly involve welding and making the hitch a permanent fixture, which I assume is out of the question.
Yup - I agree 100%. The Thule T2 Pro sits pretty far off the back of the vehicle. I foresee future issues as the "Latest/Greatest' trend in hitch racks is wider bike spacing to accommodate the fact we are riding bars up to 800mm's wide these days. I contemplated the Yakima Dr. Tray, and while a few pounds lighter, it sits just as far off the back of the vehicle.

New Roof Racks arrived today. Problem solved essentially.

~TG
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