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How to Secure Bikes on Yakima RidgeBack 4-Bike Rack # Y02458


Do you always have to remove the straps when loading/unloading the bikes or can just one end be adjusted? Can I carry four bikes on this carrier? All trek mountain bikes. 2 adults, 2 kids 24 inch.


Expert Reply:

On the Yakima RidgeBack 4-Bike Rack # Y02458 each of the four bikes it can transport is secured to the carrier's arms by three rubber straps, two near the seat/downtube and one at the front of the main tube near the handlebar stem. The linked photo has arrows to indicate the three straps. It is necessary to install/remove each of these for loading and unloading each of the bikes.

Generally it is best to load the heaviest (adult) bikes first which places their greater weight nearer to the hitch; this will help reduce stress on the rack and hitch and will also tend to help minimize random motion of the rack. With wide-handlebar bikes like mountain bikes and beach cruisers it is often helpful to alternate the direction of the bikes as they are loaded; in fact the RidgeBack 4 is built with alternating cradles to enable this.

We offer a specialized lock to secure your bikes to the carrier, part # Y02466 from Yakima, that comes complete with an extra lock core for the Speed Knob to let you operate both locks with one key.

Some bikes will benefit from an adapter bar like the Kuat # UB01. Some kid's and women's bikes without a horizontal top frame tube (as found on a typical man's bike) will be easier to load on the carrier if an adapter bar is used. This simple device attaches between the seat and handlebar posts to provide a level mounting surface to mate with the carrier's arms. This will keep such bikes level to maintain safe ground clearance. The linked video illustrates.

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