Jeff Outdoors –
The man abuses outdoor gear, so you don’t have to

Yakima Double Down 4 Bike Rack

I’ve had my Double Down for almost two years and I’ve used it more times than Joan Rivers has had cosmetic surgery.

Yes, it will hold four bikes – if you aren’t afraid of scratching them up. I traveled across country with four bikes and a longboard bungeed to the back. It was tight, but I crammed them on.

Yes, it folds up nice and easy. With the unit tilted down, you can access your trunk or hatchback easily.

Yes, it attaches easily – depending on the type of hitch receiver you have. If you have a Subaru or many other makes, you will need a cordless drill with a socket attachment because the safety chain anchor points on the receiver will impede the use of a wrench on the single bolt.

And yes, it holds bikes securely – unless you have a Trek with the weird angular frame. My buddy loaded his $3000 Trek on my rack for a desert ride. On the highway, the front of the bike bounced off the rack cradle, so we thought he hadn’t attached it correctly. The front came off again, so we tried shifting the bike so that the tube would push on the strap at a slightly different angle. The third time, the front end blew off again, and the tire hit the pavement at 60mph, ripping the rest of the bike off into the highway. Not pretty.

Bottom line: After two years of heavy use, the rack’s swivel connections are starting to wear out. The holes in the metal have reamed out to the point where the rack is wobbly and seems about to fall apart. It has served me well, but I expected it to last longer. The smaller hitch size is also problematic. I’ve been told that the 2” hitch is less prone to loosening and getting wobbly. I have to tighten mine a few times per road trip if I’m on rough roads. There may be better racks out there, but this one works.