Opinions on methods to carry 4 bikes on a 4Runner?

balexander87

Observer
Another pro of the 1up - it provides some decent protection in the event of minor accidents. Granted this may apply to most of these recommendations, but as of this afternoon, I can personally vouch for the 1up. See the damage to the vehicle that rear ended me. The rack got tweaked and pushed forward in the hitch until it just kissed the bumper cover. Overall, very impressed with the ruggedness.
 

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balexander87

Observer
The hitch did not move. The rack did get tweaked a little. Most of the movement was the rack sliding forward in the hitch. I usually set it up with about 1/4” of clearance when it’s folded up. It took that up plus a tiny bit more.

The rack is definitely tweaked, but all things considered, I’m happy if all I have to do is replace a rack and not have to deal with fixing the car. Honestly tho, the tweak is small enough I may just use it as is.
 

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DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
Cool, sounds like you can salvage the 1Up. They sell individual parts so you might be able to just buy the center section and move all the other parts over. I probably wouldn't trust that weld in the main part anymore for sure.
 

Trickman2

New member
My vote is for the Recon. Allows you to carry 4 bikes (or more) without having the bikes really far away from the back of your vehicle. I owned a 4 bike and a 6 bike NorthShore rack. While they were great, they were limited on the types of bikes you can carry. Bikes without front shocks cannot be carried on the northshore and some of the newer style bikes with tapered head tubes are a really tight to fit.

I now own a 6 bike Recon and it is great and it can carry any type of bike regardless of fork or tire size etc.

The Recon has a super slick tip down feature that will allow you to access the back of your truck even when it is fully loaded up with bikes. It has a spring loaded pin that you pull to tip the rack down and then all you have to do it push it up and it will auto engage in the vertical position. Very quick, very slick. Plus the way he designed it, it will stay tight for the life of the rack since.

You can actually see more photos on his instagram page. Very well thought out rack.
https://www.instagram.com/recon_racks/?hl=en
So do you still love the RECON Rack vs NSR Racks. What are the big game changers? Pro and cons for both?

Up in the air on the two.
 

ericvs

Active member
So do you still love the RECON Rack vs NSR Racks. What are the big game changers? Pro and cons for both?

Up in the air on the two.
I sure do. A friend has a NSR and I realize each time I use it I like the Recon better. Also, looking at the website and from instagram it looks like they currently have a very short lead time, so now is the time to buy haha.

Recon Pros:
Holds all types of bikes with minimal need to shuffle bikes around when loading
can hold bikes without suspension (kids bikes, road bikes etc)
only touches the wheels, so no paint scratching
The tip feature is great, one person operation (pls note, with 6 bikes, I don't recommend tipping it down yourself. it is heavy! but when the rack is empty it is super easy and you can put it back up with one hand)
Adjustable for vehicles. there are 3 vertical height positions so you can adjust it to suit. I ran it on the middle setting on my truck and it was still pretty high, but I was able to load it
everything is replaceable. if you crush a basket backing into something. he can sell you just the basket, same with the wheel tray

Recon Cons:
It is heavy! it is a struggle to get it off the vehicle. I recommend getting the stand he sell with it as well cause it is a bear to set it on the ground. I don't remove mine often, but when I do I don't look forward to it
Harder to store in your garage as the baskets are always the same size, it takes up a bit of room. but you should just be riding more and not take it off the vehicle haha
With heavy bikes and short people it is sometimes a struggle to load it as you have to lift the bikes above the basket height. you may have to load your shorter friends bikes for them. I found that I could load them directly from the back and roll the front wheel over the back of the basket to load it. YMMV and it was a bit sketch when it was wet, but that worked for me. Most of the time I could load it fine (I am one of the short ones)
it seems pretty spendy. Works out to about $195/bike for the 6 bike. for the quality, I feel like it is worth it considering what I spend on my bike, but it does have a bit of a sticker shock.


NSR Pros
very light - easier to load/unload
Easier to load bikes for shorties, you don't have to lift the bike any higher than the top of the upper rack 'forks' so you don't need to lift it way overhead
one single rope on the rear tire (recon has a bungee top and bottom). i ended up using a gear tie anyway for added security, so this is sort of a moot point
cheaper - NSR is about $135 per bike for the 6 bike
smaller profile - if you mount a receiver on your wall, you could tuck this rack out of the way on the side of your garage. One of my friends stores his (emtpy) NSR on the side of his trailer when the hitch is being used to tow his trailer. Couldn't do that with the recon

NSR Cons
Very specific order for bikes, you might spend a while loading and unloading to figure it out. recon is more forgiving in terms of location of bikes
Scratches head tubes and fork crowns. Just about every bike I have used on those racks gets scratched
Can't carry any bikes without suspension without doing some sketchy loading
can't carry some bikes with suspension (evil bikes are particularly hard to load on these racks - there are others. fat head tubes don't work well)
wheels can rub on your rear window/paint. this isn't good with muddy mtb tires
if you crunch the top of the wheel bar, I have heard that they don't really offer replacements (I could be wrong, but have heard that from two people)
tip feature is just a pin, so you have to sort of jiggle the rack around to get the pin back in and remember the cotter pin etc. when I had my NSR I would go out of my way to not tip it down cause it was hassely. Recon, I don't even think twice, just pull the knob and tip it down.
 

Trickman2

New member
I sure do. A friend has a NSR and I realize each time I use it I like the Recon better. Also, looking at the website and from instagram it looks like they currently have a very short lead time, so now is the time to buy haha.

Recon Pros:
Holds all types of bikes with minimal need to shuffle bikes around when loading
can hold bikes without suspension (kids bikes, road bikes etc)
only touches the wheels, so no paint scratching
The tip feature is great, one person operation (pls note, with 6 bikes, I don't recommend tipping it down yourself. it is heavy! but when the rack is empty it is super easy and you can put it back up with one hand)
Adjustable for vehicles. there are 3 vertical height positions so you can adjust it to suit. I ran it on the middle setting on my truck and it was still pretty high, but I was able to load it
everything is replaceable. if you crush a basket backing into something. he can sell you just the basket, same with the wheel tray

Recon Cons:
It is heavy! it is a struggle to get it off the vehicle. I recommend getting the stand he sell with it as well cause it is a bear to set it on the ground. I don't remove mine often, but when I do I don't look forward to it
Harder to store in your garage as the baskets are always the same size, it takes up a bit of room. but you should just be riding more and not take it off the vehicle haha
With heavy bikes and short people it is sometimes a struggle to load it as you have to lift the bikes above the basket height. you may have to load your shorter friends bikes for them. I found that I could load them directly from the back and roll the front wheel over the back of the basket to load it. YMMV and it was a bit sketch when it was wet, but that worked for me. Most of the time I could load it fine (I am one of the short ones)
it seems pretty spendy. Works out to about $195/bike for the 6 bike. for the quality, I feel like it is worth it considering what I spend on my bike, but it does have a bit of a sticker shock.


NSR Pros
very light - easier to load/unload
Easier to load bikes for shorties, you don't have to lift the bike any higher than the top of the upper rack 'forks' so you don't need to lift it way overhead
one single rope on the rear tire (recon has a bungee top and bottom). i ended up using a gear tie anyway for added security, so this is sort of a moot point
cheaper - NSR is about $135 per bike for the 6 bike
smaller profile - if you mount a receiver on your wall, you could tuck this rack out of the way on the side of your garage. One of my friends stores his (emtpy) NSR on the side of his trailer when the hitch is being used to tow his trailer. Couldn't do that with the recon

NSR Cons
Very specific order for bikes, you might spend a while loading and unloading to figure it out. recon is more forgiving in terms of location of bikes
Scratches head tubes and fork crowns. Just about every bike I have used on those racks gets scratched
Can't carry any bikes without suspension without doing some sketchy loading
can't carry some bikes with suspension (evil bikes are particularly hard to load on these racks - there are others. fat head tubes don't work well)
wheels can rub on your rear window/paint. this isn't good with muddy mtb tires
if you crunch the top of the wheel bar, I have heard that they don't really offer replacements (I could be wrong, but have heard that from two people)
tip feature is just a pin, so you have to sort of jiggle the rack around to get the pin back in and remember the cotter pin etc. when I had my NSR I would go out of my way to not tip it down cause it was hassely. Recon, I don't even think twice, just pull the knob and tip it down.
Thanks for the information, I am leaning towards the NSR due to storing it and cost. So you still feel the NSR is a good bike rack? You just enjoy the recon more.
 

zelseman

Observer
I’m not seeing anything that say you have to use the NV. You can use your Thule. Apparently Kubat bought that design from another company and it used to hold multiple brands.
We use the pivot on our van with a Yakima Hold Up 4 and its a lot. I’m not worried about the pivot long term more so the receiver arm on the Yak. Add the weight of the rack, pivot, and all of the bikes. Now check the tongue rating on your hitch. Id say two on the back and kids on top.
 

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ericvs

Active member
Thanks for the information, I am leaning towards the NSR due to storing it and cost. So you still feel the NSR is a good bike rack? You just enjoy the recon more.
Yep, the NSR will work just fine if you are only hauling MTBs.
 

phsycle

Adventurer
NSR and other upright racks are nice, but one problem that I had was, if you had even the slightest bit of air in your brake lines, sitting upright for so long, with all the shaking and such while driving, you have no brakes until you pump the lever several times. Maybe not an issue for all you that keep your bikes serviced well through the year. But if you're in my camp of "service when it breaks," it's a bit annoying. But I'll be moving from XT hydro's to BB7's (or Klampers if I can find a good deal) with 203mm rotors this year anyway, so it won't be an issue for me moving forward. Just a heads up for those considering those racks.
 
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