Thule Trailblazer 4 Bike Rack

DESCRIPTION

The Trailblazer is Thule's premium hitch mount carrier. It carries four bikes and provides full rear vehicles access, thanks to a swing away design that moves the rack away when you aren't using it.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-7 of 7  
[Mar 30, 2010]
joboo
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

this rack folds away from vehicle, and that's sold me on this rack, very nice. holds four bikes nicely, even odd ball frames. locks to rigid-hitch, stays put, with min. wobble.

Weakness:

not a one. performs flawlessly.

you get what you pay for

Similar Products Used:

saris bones, and many others

[Jan 24, 2004]
chris
Racer

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
Strength:

Sweet rack. My wife had to join the SUV crowd and got an expedition so instead of getting a forklift to put the bikes on the car this was the only option. Great rack. I thought I would be taking it on and off whenever we were to transport bikes but the thing is heavy ~50 lbs. The thing is sweet I can have the bikes on the rack swing it open and get into the back. Total versatility. Comes with integrated lock.

Weakness:

Lock is too short to lock wheels in to so plan to buy another 8-10 foot lock for your wheels...that is if you like your wheels. Don't buy the ski rack attachment for it. thing is a peice of garbage and it will not clear the tail gate when you swing it open.

Don't worry about the price. this thing is really nice and it's great not having to throw your muddy ass wheel in your car. (This is great if your prone to leaving your wheel at home ).

Similar Products Used:

roof racks.

[May 12, 2005]
Darren Beeson
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Built in lock, swing for full rear of vehicle access, secure points.

Weakness:

I have not found one yet.

This rack meets all of our family's needs. I would not change a thing.

Similar Products Used:

Same style, less extras

[Nov 06, 2004]
Eric
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

This rack is just plain tough. I have the 996 and it's sweet. Not much in the way of play and really holds the bikes well. Had a buddy with a Yakima and his bike came off in the middle of the highway. It was probably his fault but I wasn't taking any chances. Locks into the hitch and also has a cable lock.

Weakness:

It's a little costly but well worth it.

Awesome rack. Easy to install and maintain. I leave it on all of the time but might suck if you had to constantly remove. It's very tough but that toughness comes with a heavier weight.

Similar Products Used:

Other hitch based racks that didn't hold up. I drive a truck with the spare on the back so it's tough to find a good stable rack that can hold the bikes out there past the wheel.

[May 12, 2004]
Brian
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Easy to put bikes on and off. Swings out easily and simply. Locks tightly in place, very little movement during driving. Tie down straps with "zip stick" work "okay"

Weakness:

None I have found yet. Might not work as well with non traditional frame designs.

Before I got this rack I had the Yakima that tips down so you can open your trunk. This works well unless you have 4 heavy bikes on it, then you need two people to lift it up again. Also, the Yakima rack had the system where you clamp your top tube into the rack. I learned the hard way that if the rubber bumber gets folded into the clamp you can bend your top tube because in uses quite abit of pressure. That mistake cost me a frame. I wouldnt put my road bike in the rack because the length of the clamp is very short and I worried that the top tube would bend just from driving over a bump. Anyways the Thule works great. I got it because I need something that would swing far enough out that I could get into my Camper. Because of the pivot system, it swings WAY out if you need it. Also because it swings rather than tips, you can easily open and close it with 4 bike without any effort. The system that locks it in place is great and it bolts closed for when you are travelling. The only thing that is not perfect ( and Im really getting picky here) is that the pin that you pull to swing it away is abit hard to get at if there are 4 bikes. Also it should really be abit longer for 4 bikes, it holds three nicely but with 4 there is quite abit of contact. All in all a great product so far. Its expensive but in my mind worth it.

Similar Products Used:

Yakima four bike carrier that tips down. Cant remember name.

[Aug 26, 2004]
Craig
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Ease of use, integrated locks, sturdy build

Weakness:

Price, but you get what you pay for. Retail is $399 I think, which is way too much- look around and get it on sale.

Sweet rack. The hitch lock keeps the rack tight in the receiver. It started to move around on me after awhile but I found out it was just because the lock bolt wasn't torqued down enough. No problems after that. This rack couldn't be more user friendly. Swings clear of tailgate quickly and easily. This is a heavy (edit for profanity) though, so I wouldn't recommend it if you plan on taking it off and putting it back on frequently- it's a bear. Cable lock keeps the bikes on lockdown but could be cut easily enough- more for peace of mind than anything. Zip stick helps keep the bikes from moving around during transport. Rack doubles as a stand for trailhead maintenance. Excellent overall package.

Similar Products Used:

POS trunk racks

[Jun 11, 2004]
Ed Young
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Very well made, and many convenient features

Weakness:

The integrated locks are great, but don't be fooled into thinking the bikes are secure. (what is?)

Awesome rack as far as convenience and construction. The swing away design is great. I haven't seen a better design so far, but there is room for improvement. The screw in clamp works well but is slightly inconvenient, though I wouldn't consider it a problem. It means that if you want to swing it away you need to reach down and unscrew the clamp thing which takes about 5 seconds. To secure it again you need to reach down and tighten it again. No big deal and it works well.

The integrated locks are great and keep the bikes secure when going to the grocery store or a movie but I can think of several ways to defeat them. I wouldn't feel safe leaving them locked up overnight in the rack in a college town or in Moab, etc. I think Thule should add some loops where the base meets the swing away unit so the swing away mechanism can be secured with another lock. I may even weld them on myself.

All in all it's a fantastic rack and I have no problem opening up the rear door and accessing the ton of stuff back there. I can even use the rack as a bike stand to do maintenance and stuff.

The best part is I won't be a victim of the infamous drive-into-the-garage-with-bikes-on-top-of-the-car syndrome.

Similar Products Used:

none other than a pickup bed bike rack.

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