993/994 Thule Hitch Mount 4 bike rack



David Hodes

New Member
Oct 13, 2003
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I used my Thule bike rack for the first time in very cold weather. The cradle that holds the bikes is made of hardened rubber or plastic and in warm weather grips the arm. In cold weather the cradle hardens and contracts and moves on the arm. The only guard against the cradle coming off the arm and dropping the bike is a plastic cap at the end of the arm held on by a screw. At 65 MPH in a heavy wind, the cradle slid against the cap, broke it, and came off of the arm. The locking cable prevented the bike from dropping to the highway. This is a definite safety hazard that Thule should correct. The dealer suggested using duct tape to prevent the cradle from sliding. Solar heat would make this a sticky mess, however, and considering the price of the rack, the user should not have to do this.
 

jdc2000

New Member
May 31, 2002
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A simple solution might be to use a stainless steel hose clamp to prevent the sliding. I'd also replace the plastic cap with a metal one (also stainless or aluminum). Might want to call Thule to see if they have a fix for this though.
 

David Hodes

New Member
Oct 13, 2003
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0
Originally posted by jdc2000
A simple solution might be to use a stainless steel hose clamp to prevent the sliding. I'd also replace the plastic cap with a metal one (also stainless or aluminum). Might want to call Thule to see if they have a fix for this though.

I appreciate your reply and did think of your solution. I decided to send in a description of the event to the NHTSA of the Federal Department of Transportation, Office of Defects Investigation. Complaints can be made on the web site. I believe that Thule should correct the design rather than a consumer coming up with a solution for the defect. I also felt an obligation to get the information out to other potential users of the bike rack.