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Thule Vertex Swinging 4 Bike Rack Review

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Review of the Thule Vertex Swinging 4 Bike Rack


Today we're going to be reviewing the Thule Vertex Swing 4 Bike Rack for 2 inch hitches, Part Number TH90131XT. One of the most noticeable features of the Thule Swing Away Bike Rack is it's ability to be able to swing away from the vehicle. You can do that with the arms down, if you need to grab something real quick from your rear hatch, or you can do it with all 4 bikes loaded onto the bike rack. Very simple process, I just want to go ahead and show you that we can do it with our cradle arms out. All we have to do is unscrew the knob here at the back. Once we feel that disengage, you'll be able to feel it rotate around, lift up on this T-handle. Lift up on this T-handle, re-insert this one, to secure the 2 arms together.

That's going to keep the bike rack from being able to come back towards us, or banging into the vehicle. Then we rotate this to lock that in place as well. With that to the side, it's going to allow our rear hatch door to fully open, avoiding contact with the bike rack or any bikes. Then we have full access to get our gear out as needed. Another great feature is how easy this bike rack is to use.

Now to bring out the duel cradle arms, all you have to do is lift up on the lever here. It's going to allow you to swing these out. This bike rack features a unique arc design here in the cradle arms. That's going to allow the bikes to be able to be loaded on a little bit easier. It's going to allow the bikes to hang at different levels so you're not going to have as much interference with the handlebars and pedals. The upright mast is going to feature an arc that's going to improve ground and hatch clearance.

It's also going to allow better support with a fully loaded bike rack. Focusing here on the cradles, you can see that the straps are a nice rubberized material. They're really going to protect the finish on your bicycle making sure that no harm or damage is done to the finish on your bike. You're going to have 2 options as to bringing this over the frame and securing it through the holes. You've got multiple holes that are going to fit a wide variety of different size bike frames. The other thing is right here in the cradle, you've got multiple channels in here, this is to accommodate any wiring or cable you may have running underneath the frame of your bike.

This right here is going to be an anti sway cage. It's going to go in the upright portion right underneath the seat post of your bicycle. It's going to keep the bikes from swaying back and forth into each other. As you can see it's going to alternate because the way that you position your bikes on the bike rack is going to alternate from handlebar to seat post, handlebar to seat post. Another great feature is that here in the housing it has an integrated cable lock so when it's not in use. You can actually store it in this portion here. It's going to stay out of the way. When you have all your bikes loaded, you just bring the cable lock out, bring it to the end of the arms right here. Then it's going to go into this portion, again built in. It's going to lock in place using the provided key, accessing the keyhole and giving it a twist on this side. Another unique feature about the Vertex is that it has this nice little carrying handle right here. It's going to allow you to easily move around in your garage or storage area. It's going to allow you to easily lift it up and put it into your hitch. We're going to slide the shank, into the receiver tube of our hitch. This is designed for 2 inch by 2 inch trailer hitch receivers. We're going to look for our pin holes to line up with one and other. Then we can install our anti-rattle bolt. We're going to take the included bolt, start threading it through. The shank of the bike rack has threads that are on the inside. It's going to receive your bolt, once it's really tight. It's actually going to take the shank and bring it to one side of the hitch which is going to reduce any rattle or wobble that we've had. They're going to include a couple different tools, both of these tools would work. As well as a 3/4 inch socket with a wrench. Once we have that tight you can see that there's not any play here in the receiver tube of the hitch. Now before we load up our bike, I just want to go over a few measurements with you that's going to help you determine if this bike rack's going to be a fit for your vehicle. You want to make sure that you have enough clearance from the back of your vehicle to any of the upright portions of the bike rack. You just want to make sure nothing interferes with your bumper for the outermost portion of your vehicle. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the front or to this back knob, where it's a little bit more loosened up. That's going to be about 8 and 1/2 inches, that's going to be the clearance there. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the upright bar is going to measure at right around 14 inches. Now I'm going to show you how to load a bike onto your Vertex. Very simple process, lift up the lever here at the top, bring out the duel cradle arms. Next we'll go ahead and undo our cradle straps. I have to go ahead and fold these out of the way that way they don't interfere when it's time to load up our bike. All right with all those undone we can grab our bike, simply place it onto our bike rack. Now that we have the bike frame sitting nicely in the cradles, we'll simply just start bringing over the straps. Then we'll go ahead and attach the anti sway cradle. Now this bike rack is going to feature 3 points of contact per bike that you have loaded up. One, 2 and 3, now that we have all 4 bikes loaded up. We're going to go ahead and grab our cable lock bring it over the frames of our bike. Place it into the end of the arm then move it to a locked position. It's going to keep anybody from being able to grab any of the bikes off of our bike rack. Thule also improves this black strap with a nice little buckle on the other end. This is designed to go through the bicycles. It's going to keep the handlebars and the tires from being able to knock into each other as your going down the road. We're going to go ahead and install that real quick as well. This is designed for 2 inch by 2 inch trailer hitch receivers, it's going to have a weight capacity of 140 pounds. The Thule Vertex is made from a premium steel construction with a nice black finish and molded covers. We also offer a Snug Tite Hitch lock that can lock the bike rack to your vehicle. That's going to be sold separately with Part Number THSTL2. The distance between the bike rack arms outside to outside is going to measure about 12 and 3/8 of an inch. The length of the arms are going to measure about 25 inches. If you have a woman's bike, a child's bike or bike with an alternative frame. Thule's Bike Adapter Bar is going to help you load this onto your bike rack. That's available and sold separately with Part Number TH982XT. Now we're going to take this bike rack out on our test course and show you how it performs. We're going to take it through our slalom course which is going to simulate having to make sudden turns, sharp corners or evasive maneuvers. Next is going to be the alternating bump course, this is going to show you the twisting motion of the bike rack. It's going to simulate going over uneven pavement or hitting a pothole. Finally we're going to go over the solid bumps, this is going to show you the up and down movement of the bike rack. Which is going to simulate going in and out of your driveway or over a speed bump. That's going to do it for today's review of the Thule Vertex Swing 4 Bike Rack for 2 inch hitches, Part Number TH90131XT. .