To carry my bikes, I had to search for one or two ways. Eventually, I found bike racks. They gave me a permanent solution when it came to towing my bikes. For those who don’t know, these are available in a number of types.
Clearly, there are pros and cons to every type of design – at least, that is what my research tells me. However, I found myself checking out the platform style simply because of its ease of use.
It is very important to me that I exercise regularly, but I would like for it to begin as soon as I start my bike, not as soon as I start mounting it on my car.
Therefore, I would like to draw your attention to two of the most popular bike racks being used at the moment, including the YAKIMA HoldUp Hitch Mount Tray Bike Rack as well as the Thule T2 Classic Hitch Mount Bike Carrier.
Despite the fact that both of these luggage carriers do a fantastic job, they have slight differences that cater to the needs of different users. That is why, after much research and testing, I decided to write an article comparing the Yakima Holdup with the Thule T2.
As a biker, I will certainly be able to answer those little question marks that other bikers may have.
The Bike Rack Experience
We would like to take a moment to review both the racks and their general characteristics before getting into which rack will be deemed the winner of the competition. An overview of both the racks and their general functions might be helpful in making the final decision.
YAKIMA HoldUp Hitch Mount Tray Bike Rack
It would be fair to say that before using the Yakima HoldUp, I had been looking into hanging racks because they are comparatively cheaper than Yakima HoldUps. However, after seeing and experiencing how they functioned, I decided to opt out of them. Hanging racks might be cheaper, but they are no less difficult to use.
It is important to me that my kayak is easy to use and accessible, especially when I am traveling. Here is the review for the kayak I ended up choosing – the Yakima HoldUp.
As you can see, this is a pretty straightforward rack that comes in three pieces with eight screws to assemble them and has a very simple to follow instruction manual. I’m not the most patient person, but the instructions were clear and easy enough for me to avoid having to hire a person to assemble it.
In order to be able to tow your car, it is very important that the car comes with a hitch. Mine came with one, but if yours does not, you can easily fix it at any repair shop.
Having assembled the rack, I locked it into place and the lock is pretty solid. The only issue I encountered here was that I had to shake the rack a little to hear if it was securely locked.
The lock does not automatically lock after you have set it, and I had to pay a little attention to it here, as if it was left unlocked, I would have risked it falling over.
In terms of the main function, the bikes, this model has the capacity to hold two bikes, weighing a maximum of 60 pounds each (Total 120 pounds) and being able to accommodate wheels that range from 26 to 29 inches in diameter.
There is no doubt that this bike covers most bikes in the world, however, the maximum tire thickness is 3 inches wide, which is a bit of a disadvantage for me since some mountain bikes come with thicker tires.
I was also able to mount a bike onto this rack – just place the tires on their designated holders. For the front tire, there is a stabilizing locking arm that allows the tire to be held down well, while the back tire comes with a lock that secures it to the rack.
It’s time to get to the bit that really got me very excited – I only use one bike when I’m traveling alone. But sometimes I like to travel in groups, and the two racks pose a problem in those cases.
Rather than investing in a new rack altogether, this one comes with the option of adding an extension for a small fee which allows me to store two more bikes – so yes, I am storing a total of four bikes in this rack.
What I liked:
- Mourning this on takes about a few seconds, great for solo travelers.
- The bike is secured down using the tires without scratching or damaging the bike frame.
- Adding on the extension is easy and affordable
- It comes with a security lock, which is surely a bonus!
What I didn’t like:
- Have to cross-check to see if the rack is locked securely
- Bikes with thick tires (above 3 inches in width) won’t fit.
Thule T2 Classic Hitch Mount Bike Carrier
The Thule T2 and the YAKIMA HoldUp are both good bags, but I noticed a few differences after using the Thule T2 and the YAKIMA HoldUp side by side.
It was a bit of brute force I had to use when mounting the Thule T2 rack on my car’s hitch when I was fixing it with the car. As soon as it was mounted, I pushed the hitch into the hole, tightened it by using the wrench included with the rack, and put the lock on the other end of the rack to secure it tightly.
In my opinion, this created a very strong bond that I will find hard to loosen up on my own because this created such a strong connection.
Then, there was the ‘anti-wobble’ feature of this rack. According to the manufacturer, a bolt threads into the weld nut on the inside of the stringer, making the rack very secure and tight.
If you remove the technical jargon, this simply means that the rack will not wobble. Furthermore, the rack comes with a bolt with a key that helps secure the rack from movement and theft as well.
After the bike had been placed on the rack, the front wheel was secured with the front hook, which took a few clicks, and it sat quite nicely. The rear tire was secured with the rubber strap, which I could adjust in length for the tire, all of which was very straight forward and enjoyable.
It is true that the front arm contains a slot for a bike lock, but the lock does not come with the rack. I could buy it separately for increased security, but spending another 50-70 bucks on a lock is just not worth it.
Among the unique features of this rack is its ability to allow for an access position. Because of this, I was able to store both of my bikes in the trunk of my car without having to unload them from the rack. All I had to do was to reposition the rack whenever I needed to open the trunk of my car.
As a result of pulling out the tethered safety bar and using a handle to bring it down, I was able to access this part of the bike easily, allowing for the bike to be placed away from the trunk without friction or collision on either side. To put it back, I simply pulled it back up and it locked into place again. I placed the tether back in and voila!
Certainly one of the best features of this rack is the ability to adjust it over most of the other models in the market. It can hold tires between 20 and 29 inches, and tire thicknesses up to 5 inches (a solid number! ), and bikes weighing up to 60 pounds each (a total of 120 pounds).
What I Liked
- Includes access position to access the trunk of the car
- ‘Anti-Wobble’ feature for a secured rack
- Accommodates various sized tires
- Locks automatically when placed in the carrying position
What I Didnt Like
- Does not include a bike lock
- Cannot accommodate bikes with front fenders due to ratchet
Similarities Between the Two Racks
As a result of comparing Yakima Holdup vs. Thule T2 from the perspective of use, design, and security, there are many similarities between the two products.
I would like to point out that there is a significant difference between the two bike racks. They are both platform-style bike racks, which makes the mounting process easy for the user. Mounting a bike on a car is not an easy task, nor is hanging it off a hanging rack, which requires much strength.
The platform design makes it easy for anyone to place their bikes on it without requiring a helping hand, which comes in handy when going out on your own.
The racks come with some anti-theft measures, but in reality, they are not the best. In fact, they might work as a good deterrent, but if there was someone determined to steal the bikes from the rack, they could succeed.
The last similarity between the two racks, and this is something I love a lot about both, is that they initially come with two racks for two bikes, but if I need to add more bikes in the future, I can buy an extension instead of buying a new rack, which will save me a lot of money.
Yakima Holdup vs Thule T2
It is true that both racks come with a wide range of features that make them good choices, but there are some that make them stand apart from each other. Let us take a closer look at a few of them.
Adjustability is One of the Differentiator
Due to the fact that not all bicycles are created equal, the Thule T2 has the upper hand when it comes to adjustability. First of all, not all bikes are designed the same, so the more room for adjustment, the better.
In order to increase the versatility of this rack, I was able to adjust the trays in a forwarding, backwards, right and left motion with the Thule T2.
While I did not need to use this feature right away, if and when I mount a bike that has a larger frame, I will be able to adjust the distance to ensure they don’t collide with each other, which is a pretty solid selling point for me given the size of my bike.
Tire Size for Each of the Rack is Different as Well
Although this is not a bad feature, it does limit the usage of the YAKIMA to bikes with tires that are only 3 inches in width. This is especially true for mountain bikes with fat tires, which are more difficult to install.
As opposed to another product, the Thule T2 has a very ergonomic design that allows it to hold even the thinnest tires that sit in the trough. The extended design gradually accommodates larger tires, too, all the way up to five inches thick.
There is no doubt that Thule T2 offers one of the largest tire thickness capacities on the market, which means that anyone with a fat tire will have to opt for this rack if they want to be able to mount it on their bike.
Locking Mechanism Differs for Each of the Racks
The YAKIMA bike rack comes with a lock for a higher level of security, while the Thule T2 only comes with the lock slot – the lock itself must be purchased separately. Both of these bike racks really prioritize security features. There are some people who may be put off by the cost of a lock on this model, especially people who are on a tight budget because it isn’t exactly cheap.
The Final Decision
In the end, much of it boils down to what the user is looking for. As someone who values adjustability, I think that played an important part in my decision, which is why I prefer the Thule T2. There’s still a chance that someone may prefer the extra locking mechanism included with the YAKIMA HoldUp that isn’t available in the Thule T2, but it is available with the Yakima Holdup. When comparing the Yakima Holdup vs. Thule T2, the comparison provides a side-by-side comparison of how they look, highlighting the key differences between the two bags. As a result, I have been able to decide on the rack I wish to use in the future, and hopefully, it will be just as useful to you as well!
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