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pulled trigger for 2 items, cross bars & hitch

12462 Views 44 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  rumrunner
summer is coming and I can't resist accessorizing. spent a ton of money on my Forester which wound up disappointing me so I'm trying the best I can to resist all the same goodies like skid plates etc. with my Jeep. I still have my roof basket so I ordered some aftermarket cross bars which seem to have good reviews. I also scheduled a U-Haul hitch install which should go OK despite all the negatives I've read. someone I work with always has U-Haul do their hitch and they change their car lease every 2 years. I guess I'll come back to this thread as I get these 2 things hooked up
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part # HTHW Lifetime warranty 5.00
part # 36545 Sportframe 1 1/4 inch Rec (Powder Coat) 179.95
Hitch Labor 37.50
On-Line Labor Discount -10.00
Tax 11.25
Total $223.70
Total Paid -$223.70
Amount Due $0.00
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not getting the wiring
So no trailer towing then..?
no plans anyway. just have the 4 cyl. thought about using a small trailer for car-camping once or twice but we managed without one. this is will just be for a bike rack. and even that won't get much use
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I live near Chicago and bought my own Curt 13172 hitch. Having uhaul install tomorrow and they charge $60 without wiring.
great! let us know how it goes! my apt. isn't until 4/2/16
bars came in 1 or 2 days ago I forget. but wifey is sick w flu, then we had to get her car to tech for service and tonite we have to update kids college financial aid apps. ugh. hoping to test the bars soon. wonder if I should bring the roof basket out for testing as well. some time before the summer vaca would be good :/

I'll only use these for one week when I use the roof basket later at the end of June but they look OK as-is I guess. I wouldn't drive around with them just like this. Installing them wasn't too bad just don't rush it or do it hungry. I started but it was cold and drizzly so I brought them in to open them up with the allen wrench. I marked them and put the bottom inserts in. Better not lose the allen wrench (long handle) & keys, cuz w/o them I can't install the bars. It got dark so I didn't test the basket on top but I don't expect an issue. I might try again before game-time when it warms up.

let's see if I can post a slideshow link instead of a ton of pics

http://s1279.photobucket.com/user/s...eep Cherokee Limited/Cross Bars by Brighlines
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oh that's just for the CB. had one since I was in my late teens. can't seem to let 'm go. this one was a weather radio too. the base needs a little touchup paint. works great with the mag mount & center load antenna. was gonna hard mount an antenna as I have with past 3 vehicles but this temp solution is working great ...
Any updates with the U-Haul hitch?

I'm pretty interested in a more inexpensive alternative. I'd use it almost exclusively as a step to get on the Gobi ladder.
sparks123 was supposed to get his on 3/23 haven't heard back from him/her

mine is scheduled for 4/2
OP: noticed you mentioned the Subaru Forester disappointed you. Did you have the 2.5L or the 2.0L engine in yours? What disappointed you about it? I'm looking at buying a new 2016 Forester 2.0 XT Touring (my wife drives the TH), and have read very positive reviews on the Subaru.
I had a 2011 Subaru Forester 2.5 with 5 spd manual trans. I loved it but it had 3 engine block swaps for high oil consumption. 1 per year for 3 years and I was on my 4th engine including the original. I had enough when they did the last one and it sounded noisy and they said bring it back we'll check it out. I couldn't, I was done. It took a few months of hard core shopping but I took the loss and moved to the Jeep.
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I used to have a CB with NOAA in every vehicle. The Jeep does not have a good spot for one. I bought this one for my travels. One set of Energizer Lithium lasts over a year.
hey thanks for that link. just put it on my wish list!

btw - I velcro'd my CB to the right side of the console, the passenger seat can still slide forward and there's enough room so that the glove box doesn't hit it. it's powered with an accessory plug inside the console. I just keep the mic in the tray with the front power outlet and SD card slot. fits fine with change and is easy to move when necessary. if I remember I'll post a pic.

OK, grabbed a pic from the forester forum showing same location I had it there


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got the hitch installed.

tough getting up and to the location for a 7am appointment after getting in at 1:30 this morning. but worth it to be the 1st appointment of the day. total time from walking in the door and walking out was only 45 minutes.

I'm happy with it. it's higher than the muffler and a-arms so I haven't lost any ground clearance. but did change the departure angle. that's not a problem for me cuz my wheelin' is limited to regular dirt roads and some light beach driving. nothing steep

both my hitch racks fit great. (yeah, I have two) fitting them to this setup required some minor changes compared to my Subaru Forester. meaning the distance from the back of the hitch and the back of the bumper is different between the 2 vehicles. also the Subaru OEM hitch was open on both ends so I could slide the shafts in to different spots. if you're familiar with hitch racks, the shafts have more than one hole so you can install them on various vehicles.

my Subaru brand (2 bike) rack has an empty tube and the locking pin threads go into a spring loaded nut you slide in the tube. I moved the nut to the other hole for this vehicle. locks great, no wiggle

the Swagman (4 bike) rack has a solid tube. one hole is smooth and I used that on the Forester with a regular pin. it had some wiggle so I steadied it with ropes or straps. but for the Jeep I'm able to use the other hole which is threaded. I ordered the Swagman locking threaded pin. this way each rack has it's own pin. also, the threaded pin I have didn't thread into the Swagman. maybe it would have if I took a wrench to it cuz it started then stopped but I didn't want to risk ruining the threads so I ordered the brand specific pin. it's a snug fit and the locking pin will eliminate any wiggle

I've got a hatchback rack so now I have three racks for this car. I will have several options for carrying 4 bikes to get them to our house rental in June. the Forester only had a Class I hitch so it could only hold 2 bikes and I used the hatchback rack plus the hitch in order to carry all 4 bikes. the U-Haul hitch is Class II and in theory should be able to hold all 4 bikes. but I don't like the dynamics of that setup so I may opt for 2 racks again.

would I prefer an integral Jeep OEM hitch, of course. are there other "better" hitches, of course. is this the right choice for me, yup pretty much
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Swagman threaded locking pin came in. It too started and them stopped. I took a wrench to it and it went in just fine. I added a smidgen of lithium anti-seize to a couple threads after taking it out and then put it back in so I don't lose it. when the snow stops flying I'll test the bars with the basket and the racks w 4 bikes. don't want to do all that testing the day before we head out. nothing like being prepared :/
follow-up to the hitch & ground clearance. no problems at the beach. plenty of clearance.
gotta pickup daughter from school in VT Friday. put the crossbars and basket on and adjusted location and fit. put the basket in the car cuz there's no need to drive around with it all week. left the crossbars on. wonder if anyone will notice the Subaru branding
forgot about adding another accessory to this hitch and this thread. this is the Curt Hitch Haul Cargo Carrier
with vacation still 2 weeks away. had a free day to do the 4 bike trial. could not find a way to match up the new hatchback rack with either of my 2 hitch racks, so I'll have to put all 4 bikes on the 1 hitch rack, a Swagman Titan. got it all loaded up with stabilizer lines to the roof rails but I still had some lateral wiggles so went to a bike shop for a cpl stabilizer straps hooked to the hatch sides. seems rock solid, no bouncing or wiggling.

also ordered 3 of these just in case I can uses them cuz they look easier to tighten

Curt Trailer Hitch Support Strap - Bike Rack Strap with Cambuckle
Does that bike rack swing down to open the hatch?
it does!
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Does that bike rack swing down to open the hatch?
just another cpl words about the Swagman Titan and hitch type bike racks in general

for those ppl who are shopping or who just received their racks, it might be helpful to illustrate that there are 2 types of wiggle or rattle.

1 - at the hitch, which can be fixed with a wedge type devise or a threaded locking pin

2- at the lower elbow of folding racks, which is fixed by using support/stabilizing straps (not all folding racks have wiggle at the elbow, my 2 bike Subaru rack does not)

for me and my Swagman Titan, I had both 1 & 2 to deal with. I just got my new Curt support straps (18050) and had to figure out how to thread the 2 pieces in the pkg and found 2 videos I thought I would share. they are funny to me because both videos show the racks wiggling rattling, even the one with the support strap. mine doesn't wiggle/rattle anymore because I solved both types at the hitch and at the elbow

this 1st video (at the end road test) clearly shows my rack wiggling at the elbow. when I 1st got it, I contacted the manufacturer customer support and they were not helpful. it's OK though I got it figured out

this 2nd video is only helpful to show me how to thread the strap through the cambuckle. but if you watch at the end, the guy's face is funny cuz the thing is still wiggling
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got the Curt straps. glad I got 3. all loaded, leaving at daylight tomorrow for a week on the vineyard. renting Wifey's cousins' house in OB. daughter's girlfriend is coming for 3 nights, so we'll have 5 in the car tomorrow. still have room for everyone's little bag in the am. will try to take another pic with everyone in it to doc how it sits when overloaded. topped off the fluids yesterday, filled the gas tank on my way home from work. ferry reservation is in the glove compartment. added a tab of that new flexible crazy glue I got from the UK before they succeeded from the EU to the tiny sidewall nick I got earlier in the spring. tire pressures were 35 when I parked it at 70+ degrees. they'll settle down to 33 overnight and should rise to about 36 maybe 37 due to the loading. 10:45 ferry, so shouldn't be too warm by then.

heck we still have room for camping gear!
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