Swagman XC 2 Bike Rack

26 02 2009
Swagman Rack and 2 SC Nomads on our van.

Swagman Rack and 2 SC Nomads on our van.

When Bob let me borrow his awesome Road Trek travel van we realized we needed a way to haul our bikes and didn’t own a rack that would work.  My first call to a rack speciality shop was a bit of a shock as 2 bike receiver racks were in the $400-$1000CDN range – more than I wanted to spend on a 1 month trip.

I ended up surfing the MEC website and saw that they sold a Swagman 2 bike reciver rack for $143CDN.  Great price, but I was worried it was a piece of junk and hanging nearly $10K of bikes off it would be too risky.

Bikes are securley held by an upper "arm" that adjusts to fit any frame.

Bikes are securely held by an upper "arm" that adjusts to fit any frame.

Given the reasonable price I figured it was worth a shot so I grabbed one and we assembled it.  Our first impression was that it would work, but we were worried the bikes & rack might bounce/rock quite a bit.  We had some ideas how to mitigate that, but decided it was going to work for us.  One issue we had was the van’s spare tire extended quite far from the rear of the vehicle and we needed the rack to extend far enough out for the bikes to clear the tire.  Kurt got a hold of Swagman Racks and they sent us a extended receiver mount designed to hold 4 bikes.  We simply mounted out two bikes at the rear of the mount and got loads of clearance.  The extension was $50 so our total investment was $200 so far.

with the extension in place the bikes clear the tire easily.

with the extension in place the bikes clear the tire easily.

On the road we were pleasantly surprised how stable the rack was.  It didn’t move much at all and after several thousand KMs were are quite happy with our economy rack.

One nice feature with this rack is that it can adjust to fit just about any size of bike and any frame design.  The tires sit in two mounts that can slide side to side depending on the bike’s wheelbase and the upper mount slides vertically to adjust to the height of the bikes top tube.


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7 responses

26 02 2009
Zyzzyx

So… would the wheel trays slide out far enough to accomodate a SWB ‘bent? Such as a lowracer? :)

26 02 2009
thelazyrando

A SWB should have the same wheelbase as a normal DF so it should work.

9 06 2009
Pete

Have you tried the Pug. on this rack? If not, think it would work? I am looking for a good inexpensive option for hauling my beloved Surly around.

9 06 2009
thelazyrando

I haven’t tried the Pug on this rack, but no reason it wouldn’t work. I strap the wheel/rim to the rack front & back for security in any case.

31 07 2009
Brandon

After using this rack for a while, would you still recommend it?

4 08 2009
thelazyrando

For the $$$ it has been out standing. No complaints. I noticed they’ve revamped the design a bit. It looks quite nice, but I haven’t used the new version yet.

3 03 2010
Swagman XC Bike Rack – 1yr Review « The Lazy Randonneur

[…] I posted a review of the Swagman XC bike rack about this time last year.  Having been through quite a lot of abuse throughout the last 12 months I thought I would report back on how it’s doing. […]

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