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Hitch Adapter 1.25" to 2"

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Hitch Adapter 1.25" to 2"

Old 07-23-08, 07:02 PM
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Carbon Unit
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Hitch Adapter 1.25" to 2"

I am looking to buy a Thule T2 hitch mounted car rack. My car is a 1995 BMW 525 wagon and the largest hitch I think I can put on it is a 1.25". I would like to buy the T2 for a 2" hitch in case I want to buy the optional attachment to add two more bikes.

Is there any way of using a rack with a 2" hitch on a car with a 1.25" receiver? Is there any type of adapter?

By the way, I will probably only have my car for another year or two so which ever rack I buy, it will have to work on my next car too.

Thanks,
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Old 07-23-08, 07:13 PM
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Yep... they make hitch adapters, here's a couple of links.. Northern Tools, The Hitch Store, Just do a google search for 1.5 to 2 inch hitch adapter and you should find exactly what you're looking for. A bonus is that they will help move the rack out a bit from the back of the car.

Hope this helps...

M58
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Old 07-23-08, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Mentor58 View Post
Yep... they make hitch adapters, here's a couple of links.. Northern Tools, The Hitch Store, Just do a google search for 1.5 to 2 inch hitch adapter and you should find exactly what you're looking for. A bonus is that they will help move the rack out a bit from the back of the car.

Hope this helps...

M58

Wow, thanks! This helps a lot. As long as I can support the weight of 4 bikes on a 1.25" receiver I should be in great shape, but I am sure the hitch store would know.
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Old 07-23-08, 07:44 PM
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I've heard from some sources that you shouldn't do a 4 bike rack on a 1.25 hitch, but I've also seen them for sale, so I'm not sure who to believe.

From what I recall, it's not the weight of the bikes that cause the problem, since a 1.25 is usually rated around 200 pounds tongue weight. (Actual towing capacity is set by the car, not the hitch normally). What I read was that it's because the weight isn't being applied directly in line with the receiver like it would with a trailer, but the actual force on the hitch is magnified because of the leverage of the bike rack. Imagine putting your hand into the hitch and pushing down hard as you can, nothing is going to happen. Now imagine putting a 4 foot crowbar in there and levering on it. I think the fear is that you might over stress the receiver box. I would imagine that sticking a 12 inch adapter / extension might amplify the problem.

All that being said, I'd probably go for it. I know the Hollywood racks makes a 4 rack hitch mount in 1.25, so it may be that some makers are a bit cautious. I'd also probably want to actually BOLT the hitch in place rather than use a pin, just for some extra strength.

M58
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Old 07-24-08, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Mentor58 View Post
I've heard from some sources that you shouldn't do a 4 bike rack on a 1.25 hitch, but I've also seen them for sale, so I'm not sure who to believe.

From what I recall, it's not the weight of the bikes that cause the problem, since a 1.25 is usually rated around 200 pounds tongue weight. (Actual towing capacity is set by the car, not the hitch normally). What I read was that it's because the weight isn't being applied directly in line with the receiver like it would with a trailer, but the actual force on the hitch is magnified because of the leverage of the bike rack. Imagine putting your hand into the hitch and pushing down hard as you can, nothing is going to happen. Now imagine putting a 4 foot crowbar in there and levering on it. I think the fear is that you might over stress the receiver box. I would imagine that sticking a 12 inch adapter / extension might amplify the problem.

All that being said, I'd probably go for it. I know the Hollywood racks makes a 4 rack hitch mount in 1.25, so it may be that some makers are a bit cautious. I'd also probably want to actually BOLT the hitch in place rather than use a pin, just for some extra strength.

M58
Thanks for the feedback. I was wondering about the leverage effect that adding two more bikes would have on a 1.25" receiver. I agree it isn't the weight it is the leverage applied as the rack extends further away from the receiver. I may take a chance on it or I will see if a 2" receiver can be put on my car. I suspect that the answer is "No" but I will look into it anyway.
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