I love my 1up USA Heavy Duty Double hitch rack. It’s easy to use, insanely durable and weather-resistant, built well, and it looks bad-ass when it’s sitting on the back of my 4Runner. I really do love it.
This weekend I wanted to put the rack on my truck to hit the trail after FAR too long off the bike. You see, I have been working on my garage bar/lounge/bike shop* and it really has taken over my life. I am absolutely LOVING it, but it is all-consuming and I have left myself very little time to go out and be physical. The most exercise I get these days is carrying a few 2×6 timbers from the driveway to the garage. It’s sad, really.
There I was, proactively getting in front of the day and getting out of the house to ride the Bronson up St. Joe’s. Like a thousand times before, I pulled the rack out to the front yard and placed it in the hitch. I tightened the bolt to secure the rack, and it was still loose! I couldn’t see what the issue was, so I backed it off a bit, and re-tightened. Same issue; the expansion ball bearing that presses against the inside of my tow receiver spun freely inside its divot even though the bolt was tight.
Several calls to friends who own the same system yielded no results. Even whacking it against the pavement (to break loose any parts that may have seized or frozen in place) did nothing to fix the issue and get me out on my ride. WD-40 didn’t loosen it either.
I spent a few hours on this to no avail, and I had to be at my Parent’s place for a barbecue lunch at 11am. (Rough, I know!) I could have looked for a moving blanket and put the bike in the back of the truck, but I was running out of time so I opted instead to use the time to give my bike a small tune-up and clean up my bike shop area. Things look much nicer in the garage, but I still didn’t ride!
Maybe on Tuesday.
So, after a few days of research (and not riding), I heard back from 1up USA. Turns out the tightening rod, which presses against the ball bearing in the hitch mount, has a nasty habit of breaking. The rod is made of very hard steel, but it’s not as hard as the ball bearing, so it doesn’t stand a chance under these extreme conditions.
They sent me two of them for free and I was up and running in 48 hours.
It’s still the best rack I have ever owned.
*Expect more reports on the garage project – it’s a biggie, and it will receive a lot of attention in the coming months.