We got a sneak peek of 1UP USA’s newest racks at Sea Otter last year, but now it’s official. After recently acquiring Recon Racks, 1UP has kept the functionality of the burly multi-bike racks the same. But thanks to some manufacturing updates, they should be better than ever—and ready for whatever adventures lie ahead.
We’re seeing more of the vertical-style hitch racks lately and for good reason. It’s really the only option to carry five or six bikes safely on a rear hitch.
Not only does the vertical position keep the rack from massively extending out from the back of the vehicle, but in this case, it also positions the bikes quite high in the air. That preserves the departure angle on off-road vehicles—important for shuttles way out of bounds. Considering that the Recon 5 or 6 are both off-road rated, your bikes will be able to go anywhere your vehicle can go.
Like other racks from 1UP, the Recon carries bikes without any frame contact. The front tires are held in wheel baskets, which are all angled to turn the handlebars and allow multiple bikes to stack without interference.
Standard baskets will fit bikes with 24-29″ wheels and tires up to 3″ wide. For larger tires, you’ll have to run the Fat Bike basket which will fit tires up to 27.5 x 5″. There’s also a Kid’s Bike Basket which will fit bikes with 20-24″ wheels and up to 3″ tires. 1UP tells us that the Fat Bike Baskets will fit most mountain bike wheels and tires, but they won’t work for road or gravel bikes.
When you purchase a complete rack, 1UP gives you a choice of how many of each different basket type to include at no additional cost. But replacement baskets are $149 each, so choose wisely.
Ratchet Strap Down
At the other end, 1UP uses an interesting cinch strap system that includes a loop for the drivside pedal. This should keep the bikes in place on rugged trails and keep the cranks from spinning and possibly hitting the pedals of the bike next door.
To keep the bikes safe, there is an additional cable lock accessory that 1UP will sell for $49.
The racks still feature the Smooth Pivot Operation, and the entire rack can tilt downward to access the rear of the vehicle.
There’s also an anti-wobble hitch bar insert to keep the rack stable, and the whole thing is made from steel with a black powder-coated finish.
Offered in five or six bike versions, the Recon 5 is priced at $1,200, and the Recon 6 is $1,400. That’s a lot for a rack, but similar in price to many tray-style hitch racks once you add on the additional trays, and those will still only carry up to four bikes. For example, the Kuat NV 2.0 is $849 for the base two-bike rack, and an additional $359 for the two bike add-on, for a total of $1,208 to carry four bikes.
The 1UP Recon racks are also completely made in the USA, include a lifetime warranty, and ship free.
- No frame or fork contact: Wheel basket design holds tires safely and securely with no bike frame contact.
- Recon 5 carrying capacity of 225 lb. (45 lb. per bike spot).
- Recon 6 carrying Capacity of 270 lb. (45 lb. per bike spot).
- Adjustable height for easy loading and tuneable ground clearance
- Smooth Pivot Operation allows easy access to rear of vehicle
- Fits 2” receiver
- Steel construction with black powder coat finish
- Standard wheel baskets hold 24”-29” wheels, up to 3” wide tires
- Fat wheel baskets hold 24” – 29” wheels, up to 5” wide tires
- Includes Anti-Wobble hitch bar insert with locking hitch pin
- Rated for off-road use
- Fat Bike Basket Kit: $149
- Standard Bike Basket Kit: $149
- Kids Bike Basket Kit: $149
- Cable Lock: $49
- Hitch Bar Stop: $13
- Bottle Holder: $22