RockyMounts TomaHawk bike rack review£149.00

One roof rack for all your two-wheel machines

BikeRadar score4.5/5

RockyMounts' TomaHawk is a roof rack mounted, upright bike carrier that lets you keep both wheels on your bike. It mounts to almost all crossbars (square, round, aero, factory) and what makes it unique is that it works nicely with all styles of bikes, including: road, mountain, cruiser, children's, and even fat bikes with up to 5-inch rubber.

The hook is mega wide and features a deep V to accommodate a huge range of tire widths
The hook is mega wide and features a deep V to accommodate a huge range of tire widths

RockyMounts Tomahawk features

  • No bike frame contact — simply ratchet the hook over the front wheel and secure the front/rear wheelstraps
  • Fat bike ready (up to 5" tyres) out of the box. Includes two wheel-strap extensions
  • Swingarm easily adjusts for driver and passenger side installation
  • Mounts to all styles of crossbar: round, square, factory, aero
  • Holds all styles of bikes, 20–29" wheels (except those with front fenders)
  • New Easy-Load wheel-straps make loading bikes easier than ever
  • Optional two-pack locks to lock rack to car and bike to rack (sold separately)
  • RockyMounts offers a lifetime warranty on all products

Mounted up

RockyMounts' TomaHawk makes the ease of use associated with hitch-mounted racks available to those with roof racks. The big key here is being able to leave the wheels on your bike.

The majority of roof-mounted bike racks are fork mounts, meaning you have to remove your bike's front wheel. While this isn't a huge deal, and creates a rock solid attachment, it does leave the hassle of stashing your front wheel in your vehicle, or even worse forgetting it or backing over it (not that that's ever happened to me).

RockyMounts' Tomahawk carries almost all bikes, from 20–29
RockyMounts' Tomahawk carries almost all bikes, from 20–29

Loading and unloading bikes is beautifully simple, especially since RockyMounts cleverly include a small nub to keep the wheel straps tucked out of the way. They should win a prize for this ingenuity. 

Whoever thought of this little nub that holds the strap should win a prize
Whoever thought of this little nub that holds the strap should win a prize

The arm lends a sense of confidence in the rack, being somewhat firm to pull into place. That confidence is bolstered by the loud ratcheting clicks as you snug the hook over the front tyre. Strapping the wheels is easy too, with plenty of strap length. For whatever reason, early roof racks had short wheel straps and were a pain to use on mountain bikes with even mildly big tyres. RockyMounts even includes two extra wheel straps for fat bikes. 

Once loaded, the gratuitous bike shake reveals very little movement and a solid feel. Much more solid than previous wheels-on, roof-mounted bike racks that hold the crankarm, or squeeze the bike's down tube.  

Pulling your bike off the rack is just about as easy. I did notice that squeezing the release button does take some effort, especially if you really squashed your front tyre down. I'll gladly take the extra release effort for the increased security any day though.

Another nitpick to note is that the rack rattles when not in use. It's really only noticeable with the windows down, and it's not an issue when the TomaHawk is positioned on the roof bars away from the driver's seat. The only other minor thing is it's not as streamlined as RockyMounts' BrassKnuckles rack, but that rack is more expensive and does not work with fat bikes.

RockyMounts TomaHawk pricing

  • US $159.99
  • Australia $183.94
  • UK pricing £149.99
Russell Eich

Tech Writer, US
Russell fell head over heels in love with bikes in the '90s, and has been involved in the bike industry ever since. Between wrenching in bike shops, guiding professionally, and writing about bikes, Russell has honed an appreciation for what works, gained knowledge of what doesn't, and can barely contain his enthusiasm for what comes next. His two-wheeled passion continues in the Rocky Mountains high above Boulder, Colorado.
  • Age: 39
  • Height: 6'3"/190cm
  • Weight: 175lb/79kg
  • Waist: 34in/86cm
  • Chest: 42in / 107cm
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: High altitudes, forgotten singletracks, bike parks, roads without cars
  • Current Bikes: Custom Meriwether steel hardtail, Specialized S-Works Enduro 29, Kona Jake the Snake, Trek 69er, and a bunch more
  • Dream Bike: Yeti SB5c, Intense Tracer 275C, Black Cat custom road
  • Beer of Choice: Gin + Tonic
  • Location: Rollinsville, CO, USA

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