Swagman Current 2 Bike Platform Rack Review

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Review of the Swagman Current 2 Bike Platform Rack


Hey, guys. It's Randy here at etrailer.com. Now we get questions all the time from our customers about what kind of bike racks can we use for e bikes What kind of bike racks can we use for fat tire bikes And basically what we're looking at today is the Swagman Current. And this is going to be ideal for just about any type of bike that you own. This allows us to carry up to a 5" fat bike. It allows us at 60 pounds per bike capacity to carry even some of the heaviest electric bikes that are out there.

Even the electric fat bikes, generally don't get up to that kind of weight. So it's a really nice, really handy rack that's very sturdy. And it also has a lot of nice features built in. Our arms are lockable. We can lock the bike rack to the vehicle.

We can also tilt it away from our vehicle when our bikes are loaded up.So it gives us a lot of accessibility and it's also going to make it to where, regardless of the type of bike you have or your friends have, your rack's going to be the one you choose. You're going to be using your rack over anybody else's because it's so adaptable and we'll work with so many bikes. Even down to the narrowest of road bike tires, we'll show you in a minute, there's a group designed for that, and there's a nice cushion on the strap to help protect all the tires. So all in all, it's an excellent solution for just about any type of bike out there. And it'll allow you to get to the trail head safely and with your bikes being locked to the rack and the rack lock to the vehicle, you'll know there'll be there when you get there.

In a lot of situations or most situations, the tilt away feature that Swagman offers allows us to get into the rear hatch.Now whether we can open that door fully or just get into it enough to get stuff in or out, it's really going to depend on the vehicle. But here at the front, we're going to have a nice big green lever. I like lever operated racks or button operated racks a lot more than pin style racks, just seems to be easier to use. We'll lift that lever. Just allow that to tilt out in a way.

We can see it's got a really good pitch. It gives us a good angle out in a way our bikes are still nice and secure. Then you can see even with this one that has a really long hatch style door, no problem with interference there.Now, we don't have to worry about the lever when lifting it back up. Simply grab our center mast, rotate it until we hear it click into place. It's really that easy. It'll save you a lot of time not having to pull pins or unload the rack completely to get into that rear cargo area. Then to give you a little bit more specifics about what types of bike we can put on here, remember, we've already talked up to 60 pounds. We can go anywhere from a 20" tire all the way up to the 29" tires all the way out to 5" wide. So that covers anywhere from our kids' bikes, all the way up to the largest mountain bike and the largest fat tire bikes. The wheel base, that's going to be from center of your axle to center of your axle, that can be as much as 50". So I guess save for some of the really long downhill mountain bikes and stuff like that should work out for most of the applications out there.The center hooks are also independently adjustable. As you see, when we load up our bikes. This one's going to work down as far as the ratchet mechanism would go, this one comes down on top of it. So frame type really doesn't matter with this style rack, there's really no need for a bike adapter bar. Even your hybrid style, mountain bikes or things like that. You shouldn't have any issues getting them secure. Now the rack's going to come with four keys, so we should be able to hide one of these just about anywhere to ensure that we never lose them. And then to lock our bike, just want to push that in. That causes that nom to be inoperable. That way we know everything's going to be nice and secure. When we're ready to use them, we just put the key in, rotate that the other way, and we'll be able to unlock it just by pressing on the button.Now we're also going to have a coated steel cable that's going to come with the right. This just gives us some additional security. This we're able to pass right through the frames of our bike. You can pass it through the wheels of the bike if you like. The metal end will pass through the looped end here. And then we'll put that right in behind their lock. Yeah, plenty of room there for that to slide the lock on. Just really doubles up that protection factor for us.Now that we've seen the different features our bike rack has to offer, let's head out to the test course so you can see how it's going to look and perform in the back of your vehicle. Here on our test course, we'll start with the slalom. This is going to show you the side to side movement of the rack. As you can see, even with our heavier bikes on here, the current does a really good job at that. Then with our alternating speed bump, it'll show the twisting action on the rack, so it does a pretty solid job here. This is going to be just like hitting a curb or a pothole or we're going over uneven pavement. Then we'll go into our solid speed bumps. That's going to tilt that back of that rack up and down pretty significantly. This is going to be a lot like going over speed bumps, maybe going in and out of parking garages or driveways.Now that test scores should give you a good idea of how it's going to handle behind your vehicle. Let's compare this to another bike rack that we have on offer that fits the same bill as this one. It's the Hollywood Racks Sportrider SE2 fat bike and electric bike compatible bike rack. Now, I like that bike rack almost as much as I like this bike rack. I would pick this one over it. But it does have a couple things going for it. With the Sportrider, we can go up to an 80 pound bike where this one's 60 pounds and that one will go up to 60" wheel basis where this one goes up to 50" wheel basis. I think this one's a little bit easier to use. There's not a pin that we have to remove to tilt the bike rack away. And I also prefer this one and the way it looks just slightly over that one.Now very similar to other platform style racks of this nature, our center mast is capable of tilting down and out of the way. So just do a simple lever there that gets it down and out of the way. Then we can use the tilt away lever to also tilt it up against the rear of our vehicle. It's also going to lock in there. That saves us quite a bit of space here on the backside. We're not going to be so worried about parking and tighter areas. And this may even give us the opportunity to leave this connected to the back of our vehicle and still parked in the garage.Now it's time to go through a couple of different measurements. These are designed to help you ensure that this rack is going to fit your vehicle. The first one we'll do, it's going to be from the center of the hitch pin hole to the outer edge of the rack. It's going to be about 18". So that'll help you ensure whether it's going to work with you in the garage or not. The next one we'll do is going to be from the center of our hitch pin hole to the closest edge of our vehicle. Looks like that's about 5-3/4". So you'll just want to ensure that the center of your hitch pin hole, isn't further under your vehicle than 5-3/4" from the outer edge of your bumper.And you won't have any interference here that coming up and making contact. And that's what we'll get is going to be the center of the hitch pin hole to the closest edge extended, that's going to be right in this area. That one's going to be about 12-3/4". Then it looks like the outer most edge is going to be here on the backside of our wheel cradle. And that one's going to be about 29=1/2", 29-1/4". 29-1/2".Now, as far as construction of the rack goes, I really liked Swagman. I always have. We'll start with where the hooks make contact with our bike. It's a nice dense material. It's not like that real thin foam that we see on other ones which we know is going to deteriorate very rapidly, but it's still soft enough so we're not going to have to worry about it rubbing on the finish on our bike or anything like that. And then the rest of the rack, save a couple of the handles here in our straps, are going to be sturdy steel construction, nice heavy duty black powder coat finish on it. Wheel cradles are the same, nice steel construction. They're excellent and durability. That powder coat finish makes sure they last a long time. This is also a good opportunity to look down and end. You can see we've got the area here for our road bikes, a little bit wider area here for our mountain bike, and then the full width here for our heavy fat tire bikes.To help accommodate that wide range of wheel bases that we talked about earlier, basically, we're just going to have a knob here on our cradle. We're going to loosen that up. That's going to allow us to slide this in or out wherever we need it. Once we get that position, it's just a matter of tightening this back down. And in most cases, unless you're used to riding with different bikes all the time, you'll just do that once. Get it set up for your application. There'll be where you need them each and every time. And to begin the installation process, it's really going to depend on whether you're going to be using a 2" by 2" receiver tube, like what we've got here or whether you need to use it in the 1-1/4".Remember that's class II of hitches only. Well, if we are going to use that, we'll use the provided tool, simply going to remove the bolt that's right here, that holds both pieces of our adapter on for use in our 2" by 2". There's really nothing you'll have to do with it the way it comes out of the box, it's going to be ready to go. But now we're going to get that aligned. You'll see our threaded hole right here. Just need to align that with our hitch pin hole, get our bolt, thread it in. Now, remember if you're going to be using the lock, you want to use the Chrome bolt. If you're just going to use the clip, you can use the one that's a little bit more in that center.We're going to thread that on. Then we use a 19 millimeter wrench or socket, and we're going to tighten it down. You can see how much play there is in it right now. By tightening this bolt down, we're going to eliminate all that. It's going to give us a much better ride for our bikes as you can see. At this point, you'll have two options. If you're going to be using the cable lock, you'll want to leave this removed. In my mind, the locking hooks the way they come down are sufficient. So I'll go ahead and put my lock on now. But if you're going to be using the cable, leave this off till you get your bikes loaded and your cable wrapped around them. Now that's just going to slide on nice and easy clicks into place. We'll pull our key out and then close the tab.Now, we'll reach down and grab that bottom green lever. That'll allow us to tilt our rack out. We're going to get our wheel straps undone, and then you'll have the option of either lifting the arm now or waiting till you have your bike in place and lifting it. Generally. I moved mine up though. Move my wheel hooks up as high as I can, and then we'll get our bikes inaudible 00:10:49.Now, when you first installed the bike, you want to ensure that your wheel cradles are in the appropriate position. I'm going to move that rear one forward just a little bit. My tire isn't quite touching here in the front edge, and I want those to sit all the way down in those craters. We need some adjustment now. Get that moved in where we want it. When we're happy, we'll just tighten it back there. We would come to our frame hook, bring that down, give it a nice push so that clicks in spot. And then we'll secure each of our straps. You see you get that little absorber there. It's going to sit right down on top of the Ram and help protect it. Ones that we've got this one in and secure, you want to load up your next bike. Just want to keep in mind, we genuinely want the heaviest bike, or we always want the heaviest bike closer to the vehicle and we'll go lighter as we come out..


Questions and Comments about this Video

Michael H.

Yet to see a picture of a Jeep Wrangler with the spare. However we have the same rack in the lighter version that fits fine. Hope this does the same great fit.

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Jon G.

Spare tires at the back of a vehicle do make some bike rack fits tricky - especially for a Jeep Wrangler. The way you can determine fitment with your specific application is to check out the specs on the the product page for any given bike rack. We state the distance from the center of the hitch pin hole to the closest edge of the bike rack so that you guys can compare that to your setup. Since the center of the hitch pin hole is a fixed location it will give you a solid place to measure from.

Tim

I have a fat tire and Pedego ebike. Is there any rubbing between the bike handles and rear seats when 2 bikes are placed on together? Also, what's warranty cover and for how long?

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Jon G.

Sometimes bike components like handlebars, seats, or pedals can get in the way of each other which is why the wheel cradles are adjustable along the platform. We don't test fit specific bikes with the racks so I can't speak to your specific situation - only that your bikes will have the same kind of fitment no matter what platform rack you're using. The warranty is a limited lifetime warranty so it would be any manufacturer defects.

Martin

We have two step through Treks. Mine is the Verve 2 and my wife's is the ebike version. Will the hooks work on a step through? Thanks

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Jon G.

It should work just fine. The hooks can be lowered to about 13" above the cradles for the tires/wheels so you can use this as a way to confirm fitment on your end.

Steve V.

Hi, is this rack a good fit for my 2007 Prius? I have a class I 1 1/4" hitch. It seems ideal for my 2 fat beach cruisers and my fat ebike.

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Jon G.

The Swagman Current # S64678 has to be used on at least a Class II hitch. Since you have a Class I you might be interested in the Hollywood Racks Sport Rider # HR1000Z-FB (45 lbs per bike) or the Thule EasyFold XT # TH903202 (65 lbs per bike) which you'll need the fat tire adapter kit # TH985101 for a tire over 3" wide but no more than 4-11/16" wide.

Roger K.

Hi. will the Swagman Current 2 Bike fit my vehicle unfolded if the center of the pin is 8 in from the bumper? Thanks.

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Chris R.

When it's folded down for use the Swagman Current will work just fine with your 8" bumper clearance. From the center of the hitch pin hole on the shank to the closest part of the rack when it's down for use there's a generous distance of 12-3/4", so there won't be any interference at all. Just keep in mind though that you won't be able to fold it up for storage.

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