SWITCHbck Mounts Old Roof Racks on the Hitch

Switchbck Rear Mount Roofrack

Most of our friends did away with roof racks because they made for bad gas mileage. With all those spare parts in the garage, there came a solution.

SWITCHbck is a tool for mounting roof rack trays on the trailer hitch. It fits 1 1/4″ hitch receivers and grabs any fork-loaded roof tray you have sitting around. Either one or two trays can be snapped on. That’s good for people that don’t often need multiple mounts. Weighing 17lbs including tray, SWITCHbck is lighter than many hitch competitors if you’re shaving grams off the Camry.

An arm costs $165 and they’re available on Kickstarter. Click more for pics and a video…

Switchbck Roofrack Hitch Mount Close Switchbck Roofrack Hitch Mount Double

Comments

Tom - 06/04/12 - 8:03pm

Cool idea if you have some roof top trays kicking around.
Although,no tilt mechanism for hatchbacks and the spacing seems kind of close close? I could imagine some clearance issues with multiple bikes and handlebars intersecting. Is the spacing between trays adjustable?

Jonny - 06/04/12 - 9:45pm

Yo! I can answer some of those good questions… True you can’t open a hatch back while bikes are on the Swithbck but when there are no bikes on it there is no need for a tilt because its so low. I don’t know of any hitch rack systems where you can get into a hatch with bikes on board. As far as spacing goes, you can adjust the distance of the trays between one another and the car. So clearance is adjustable. You can also run two bikes in the same direction or opposite directions to get the best interaction with the handlebars. In the pics you can see two bikes facing the same direction, while in the video theyre facing opposite directions. It’s pretty customizable!

WV Cycling - 06/04/12 - 11:39pm

I think the single and double are two separate entities, with the main photo being for singles.

Teo2408 - 06/05/12 - 6:38am

@WV Cycling

…I think there are not 2 separate entities, but ( see bottom right on pic 2 ), you have to slip on the main bar another appendage which holds the rack.

uglyyeti - 06/05/12 - 10:29am

@Jonny – How stable is it while driving? I use a Yakima hitch rack in my 1-1/4 hitch and it bounces all over the place when I hit bumps.

I still use my roof rack as my primary, but add the hitch rack when I need to take my kids’ bikes along (I don’t really have room to add two more trays to the roof without going outboard of the towers and dealing with the wind noise of running two trays reversed.)

Topmounter - 06/05/12 - 11:13am

I’m able to open the top half of my hatch w/ bike on it after tilting my Thule T2.

This is probably a decent solution for car driving roadies w/ 15# bikes who take the rack off when they aren’t using it, but the 1.25″ receiver, low ground clearance and no way to tilt it up and out of the way when not in use or down so I can access the hatch when not in use are all non-starters for me.

jonny - 06/05/12 - 11:53am

@uglyyeti- there is always going to be some movement when using a hitch system, but because you can use the fork mount trays with the SWITCHbck the bikes are far more stable. You can also buy a ‘anti-slop’ element, which you can get at a standard hardware store, that tightens up the interaction of the rack with the hitch.

@topmounter- the ground clearance of the SWITCHbck is better than most systems on the road because it bends up and away from the ground after leaving the hitch-receiver. Most racks go straight out of the hitch horizontal to the ground. Also, and I should share more photos to show this, but when there are no bikes on the rack it’s so low profile and small that you don’t need to fold it out of the way. It has a smaller footprint than most hitch-mount racks as is and you have all the clearance you need to open your hatch when bikes aren’t on board. Todd, from the video, drives a Mazda 3 and he’s in and out of his hatch all day, with not problem.

Thanks for bringing up some great points.

JPHCross - 06/05/12 - 1:09pm

Nice simple and lightweight design but unloaded with 2 bike set-up I would worry about someone driving into it during bumper to bumper traffic since it does not fold up like other hitch racks.

Mr. P - 06/05/12 - 1:12pm

I hate my roof rack. I love this solution.

Light. Tucked in tight. Very small bike exposure to aerodynamics.

P

RUSTYDOGG - 06/05/12 - 1:45pm

Duh. Why didn’t someone think of this sooner? Clean, simple, light, backwards compatible.

Naytan - 06/05/12 - 2:38pm

Is there an option for a threaded hitch bolt to minimize sway? Looks like a standard towing style pin in the video

jonny - 06/05/12 - 4:17pm

@naytan Yeah this is compatible with a number of threaded hitch bolts. They work really well too. In the end I’ve decided to run my SWITCHbck rack without a threaded hitch bolt, as I’ve grown to be comfortable with the small amount of movement there is with a simple hitch pin. And I love that I can quickly take the rack off by pulling the pin and setting it in the corner of the garage (this thing weighs around 17lbs.. it’s so easy to put on and take off).

yesplease - 06/06/12 - 12:30pm

I lost all respect for this when I saw the LOTOJA sticker on the back of that car.

yesplease - 06/06/12 - 12:48pm

Kidding Kidding, looks like a nice design. Is there a weight limit on the bikes that can be carried? Can you safely run two 30 lb AM bikes?

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