Hitch mounted bike racks can be a pain. They’re heavy, awkward to move, and usually require tools to install and remove the rack from your vehicle. But they’re also one of the easiest and most secure ways to transport your bike without having to risk damaging your vehicle with a bunch of hooks and straps. That’s where Dovetail comes in. Their new rack is super light, and incredibly simple to install.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

Named after the dovetail joint, the Dovetail rack consists of two pieces – the receiver which can be permanently mounted in your trailer hitch, and the rack itself. The two pieces are connected with a Dovetail joint which is tapered so that the pieces actually ‘lock’ together when installed. That taper fit means that the rack shouldn’t come apart when driving on bumpy roads.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

But it also means that a pry bar is needed to get the rack apart to remove it. Each rack includes a pry bar with a handle, which quickly pops the two pieces apart. Then you can easily carry the rack into your garage, shed, apartment, or anywhere else since it’s so light. The receiver can stay in your trailer hitch as long as you don’t need it for towing, and makes re-installing the rack a snap.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

As an added bonus and increased security, the hole for prying the two pieces apart doubles as a potential locking point.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

To be available in single and double bike racks, there are two tray versions – one for up to 2.6″ MTB tires, and the other for up to 2″ MTB tires.

And what about the weight? A single bike rack is as light as 7 lbs!! Step up to the double bike rack for road to 2″ tires and it’s 12lbs, and 14lbs for the 2.6″ tire version. That means the racks are lighter than most bikes.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

The front tire is held in place by a simple velcro strap that wraps around the tray and the tire.

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

Ultra light Dovetail bike rack mounts to hitch without tools, removes in seconds

While the rear is suspended thanks to the crank being captured in the support stand. Up top there is a plastic bumper to protect the crank/BB/frame, and the pedal channel is also lined to prevent scratching your crank or pedal. A clamp threads in from the back securing the crank inside the support for additional security.

Dovetail racks are made in Morgan Hill, CA, and will sell for $265 for a single or $325 for a double. Note that the website listed below isn’t active yet, but it may be soon. In the mean time, you could try emailing mario@dovetailferst.com.

dovetailferst.com

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Tom in MN
Tom in MN
2 years ago

I would not leave the receiver in your hitch for a long time, certainly not over the winter, because you might find it rusted in place. I had that happen with a regular trailer receiver.

Gillis
Gillis
2 years ago
Reply to  Tom in MN

You’re supposed to grease your hitch receiver and pin periodically for that reason.

Andrew
Andrew
2 years ago

Wow- I admit I’m intrigued…. I’d have to think this through though…Im sure there have gotta be some drawbacks that I’m not thinking of…. I guess the forced directionality of the bike on the rack would be one.

Scott
Scott
2 years ago

That Gary Fisher tho! That’s one way to ensure your bike isn’t stolen!

OriginalCim
OriginalCim
2 years ago

Interesting idea. Still thinking about how practical this is compared to other options. Some thoughts/questions:
– No forward/backward adjustability of the bikes, so I can imagine there might be handlebar-clearance issues with multiple bikes.
– You’ll have to lift a bike up higher to slide the crank into the slot than on other tray-style racks. Probably a minor issue.
– Will the crank clamp damage crank-mounted power meters (Stages or 4iiii)?
– I never used the Yakima Anklebiter rack, but any drawbacks there might apply to this.

Eggs Benedict
Eggs Benedict
2 years ago

Nice looking rack, interesting minimalist idea. But it would’ve been nice if there was a picture of the rack installed on a vehicle.

EV
EV
2 years ago

Still doesn’t look as good as a 1UpUSA rack. Can’t hold as many bikes, crank holder looks awkward and could damage the crank once that rubber wears off, Velcro for the front wheel?