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After agonizing a bit over which hitch to install to support a bike rack (1upUSA) I finally landed on the Draw Tite. The Curt had too low a tongue weight and seemed like it lacked a stable installation configuration, and the Ecohitch was just too rich for my blood at just shy of $300, despite our other car having a 2" hitch which would have made things easier. Ultimately the 1upUSA rack converts between sizes quite nicely so 5 minutes with an allen wrench and $180 in my pocket won out.

I ordered from etrailer.com and the hitch came in a massive box. I'd heard rumors of hitches shipped "naked" and getting banged up but this seemed fine.

There are a couple good videos on the 'tubes so I won't belabor the installation process, but a few tips from the field:

1) The hardest part of the install bar none was cutting the facia. The "tape, score, and cut" method worked well with a utility knife and I used a carpenters square to keep my cuts straight. Ultimately I wasn't 100% perfect but some painters tape helped guide the blade and I kept making light scores until I could really dig in with the utility knife.

2) The little plastic "pop rivets" holding the bumper on are tricky to remove. You need to insert a small flat-balde screw driver flush with the facia into the small indent in the side of the outer ring. The instructions said to "Push the indent" and that wasn't very clear. Basically go around the outer perimeter of the ring until you find the indent, and then push your screwdriver parallel to the surface of the car towards the center of the rivet and the two parts will separate allowing you to remove the rivet. It wasn't obvious why you'd need to remove these until you try to put on the tow bar.


3) Also not obvious was that the fishing tool they supplied was actually two tools wrapped together. I used the two on one bolt and it made it more challenging to fish the bolt through the hole in the frame. Unwind these until you have two. Also the instructions imply you drop the bolt and bracket through the top of the frame. If that's the case I couldn't figure out how to do this so just jammed the bolt and bracket through the hole with the fish tool installed. Play this through in your head a couple times with the fish tool and everything setup so you're sure how it would go at it would be a bear to get everything back out of the hole.


4) You'll want an assistant when you put the hitch on to pull the facia out as the tow bar goes under it. My 9 yo son was able to do this while his 3 year old brother provided color commentary.


Bike rack fits fine albeit a touch snug. I'll be taking it up to a duathlon about 120 miles away on Saturday and will report back on how the hitch performs with a relatively light single bike.
 
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