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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've searched but wasn't finding a clear answer to this...

I have two Thule Big Mouth roof mount bike racks that I want to install on the factory crossbars of my car. I don't want an adapter that lets me mount Thule crossbars to my existing crossbars, but so far that's all I can find. If I need aftermarket crossbars to mount a bike rack, then what is the point of even having factory crossbars. I know I'm missing something here.

Hitch racks are so much easier :p. But I need a roof rack to transport an additional 2 bikes that won't fit on my Thule T2.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Maybe I'm just overthinking it? I don't have the racks yet in my possession so I can't look at the mounting hardware.

Is this actually going to be a non issue?
 

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Premium Member
2013 OB 3.6R (former)
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2,810 Posts
It should be! I have two sets of roof bike racks and they both go on the factory crossbars without issue.

I never had issue with the crossbars and never understood why so many people on this forum dislike them.

I used them with a box, a basket, and bike racks and they always fit fine with everything.\

Now, brand name items can be awkward, so I don't know. I have a whole Thule system on my trailer and I despise it. I was forced into Thule because of the rails it came with; I much preferred my stock OB crossbars with my Sport Rack items. Never an issue, unlike the Thule trailer setup: feet, towers, crossbars, so many parts and corresponding amount of weaknesses plus a flimsy overall feel. Not to mention someone can take out the whole thing and load it in their vehicle in about 20 sec (and the Thule locks will stop nobody in that trade) so I rely on a Pewag high-security chain and equivalent padlock that connects bikes to trailer frame. I know, not the standard opinion of Thule but another Thule rack is the last thing I would want.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I’m just laughing at the irony of this. I’m a huge advocate of hitch racks and have posted in multiple threads about it. Now here I am wading in to the murky waters of compatibility between towers, crossbars, and racks.

I kind of fell in to this set of roof racks for free, but now I’m trying to make them work. If I can get them mounted to the car without any additional equipment I’ll be stoked! I will probably get the locking cylinders though to keep honest people honest.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Premium Member
2013 OB 3.6R (former)
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2,810 Posts
I will be very surprised if they don't work.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Just an update...

Thule Big Mouth tray is not compatible with the factory crossbars with the rack's original equipment. So I'm left with two solutions...
(1) get the subaru (yakima) Mighty Mount and use a carriage bolt to slide in to the track on the rack's tray

or (2) buy the small clamps for the Yakima Railgrab mounts to add round crossbar's to the factory crossbars in their folded configuration.
- I'm not even sure if (2) would work with the factory crossbars
- The Yakima Railgrab mounts and round crossbar were included when I got the bike racks, but they were from a guy who used them on a Xterra.
- Both solutions would cost roughly the same
- Using the round crossbars would be a much more stable setup than only having two bolts attaching the trays directly to the more flexible factory crossbars.
- (2) would be higher off the roof and possible have more wind noise/ aero drag.

I'm going to put in a call tomorrow to ask them about the compatibility of the Railgrab mounts with the smaller clamp attachment.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update #2

After doing more research and calling Yakima, I think I'm going to abandon the idea of mounting the Big Mouth rack to the factory cross bars. I originally liked the idea because it would keep everything lower and closer to the roof of the car which would make it easier to mount the bikes and maybe reduce the wind noise and MPG hit. But I'm finding there are too many negatives to going this route:

- I couldn't figure out a way to lock the racks to the car. Anyone with simple tools would be able to remove the racks from the factory bars.
- I wouldn't be able to easily remove the racks compared to the Yakima rail system when I don't need them. I'm only going to be using the roof racks for times that I need to take more than two bikes. Most of the time I'm only hauling my own bike.
- If I want to use my Yakima Boa trays, they mount to the round crossbars perfectly.

All I need to do is buy the small claws for the Yakima Railgrab mounts to be able to mount the 58" round crossbars and then all my racks will fit just the same as they did on my friends Xterra.
 

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2017 Subaru Outback 3.6 Limited
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18 Posts
Hello Members

I too am looking for a solution for a roof bike rack.
I also want to use the factory installed crossbars but, seem to struggle to find a rack system from Thule that is compatible with this option. Has anyone been successful with a Thule product that works with the factory crossbars?
I used the Buyer's Guide option on the Thule website but, the product they're showing seem to require a Thule crossbar.
Thoughts Members?
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (The Superoo), Graphite Gray Metallic, CVT, Yoko Geolandar G015 AT 225/65R-17
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236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The most ideal solution I found from Thule was their Crossroad footpack that secures to factory crossbars in their retracted position. What are you trying to mount to the factory crossbars? Certain bike racks seem like they'll mount just fine to the factory crossbars, while other racks are not compatible like the ones I have. The Thule ProRide looks like it could be mounted to the factory crossbars, but I don't have any firsthand knowledge that it does.
 

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2017 Subaru Outback 3.6 Limited
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Hello Teamsloan and Cyrull

Teamsloan, I appreciate the insight. I'll contact Thule directly to receive more specific information.

Cyrull, I receive a discount from Thule and have been successful/happy with their products in the past.
 
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