Jump to content

Bike rack advice required


Recommended Posts

Hi guys, 

 

I am in the process of getting into the sport. Good to meet you all. 

 

After deciding on a bike (thread here) I will have to get the towbar and rack sorted so we can be a bit more mobile. 

 

So, a platform type will be great but the price at this point might not be possible. I will be fitting a towbar though.

 

So the next best thing will be something like a Thule Xpress 2 or any of the other rack-style carriers. 

 

thule_xpress_9701.jpg

 

However, looking at the design, what is the possibility of the bikes swinging and potentially damaging the car with these types of racks? (sorry if it's a silly question)

 

Other suggestions also welcome!

 

Thanks a lot!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi guys, 

 

I am in the process of getting into the sport. Good to meet you all. 

 

After deciding on a bike (thread here) I will have to get the towbar and rack sorted so we can be a bit more mobile. 

 

So, a platform type will be great but the price at this point might not be possible. I will be fitting a towbar though.

 

So the next best thing will be something like a Thule Xpress 2 or any of the other rack-style carriers. 

 

thule_xpress_9701.jpg

 

However, looking at the design, what is the possibility of the bikes swinging and potentially damaging the car with these types of racks? (sorry if it's a silly question)

 

Other suggestions also welcome!

 

Thanks a lot!

My boet uses one of these racks on his Fortuner. He's never had issues. I've had it on my double cab before as well and it brought the bikes home safely without any swinging. one thing to be careful of with bike racks is hanging the bike in such a way that one of the wheels hangs before the exhaust.

 

My boet managed to deflate a tyre that way once and I saw another guy who melted a tyre on his carbon rim on a drive from Cape Town to Uniondale. He left the Saturday morning before Karoo to Coast and arrive mid afternoon with a dead wheel hanging on his bike. ( he was driving a Focus ST and I am guessing he was caning it all the way...)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi guys,

 

I am in the process of getting into the sport. Good to meet you all.

 

After deciding on a bike (thread here) I will have to get the towbar and rack sorted so we can be a bit more mobile.

 

So, a platform type will be great but the price at this point might not be possible. I will be fitting a towbar though.

 

So the next best thing will be something like a Thule Xpress 2 or any of the other rack-style carriers.

 

thule_xpress_9701.jpg

 

However, looking at the design, what is the possibility of the bikes swinging and potentially damaging the car with these types of racks? (sorry if it's a silly question)

 

Other suggestions also welcome!

 

Thanks a lot!

Nah they won't damage the car, but the bikes are another story - just make sure contact points are always padded, moat I've seen use a pool noodle to prevent damage between bike and rack, and bike and bike...

 

If you travel on dirt roads often, then dirt can also get between the contact points and the bike and do some damage. Some people mind, some dont... It's your call.

 

Also get yourself a good lock that can lock the bikes onto the rack, and even better, lock rack and bikes to the car. The standard locks are never meant for theft prevention, but for securing the bikes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

also look at the Saris Bones bike rack. It does not require a tow bar and has a strap to secure the bikes seat tube as well. However as with many bike racks that hang your bike, not many MTB's fit very well. They're great for road bikes though

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Hi i have been using one of these probably now for 7 years mainly on a Suzuki GV. Mostly only for one bike but have put two on occasionally. Furthest I rode was with two bikes from Pretoria to Scottburgh and back for sani.

 

So far no issues. The bottom strap preventing the bike from swinging forward and back (relative to car) has broken but i replaced that with a makro cargo strap. I also disassembled it and placed hollow pool noodles over the pipes to protect my bikes. Not that i get contact between the pipes and the bike. I normally turn the cranks that that rather pushes against the bike rack pipe.

 

After all the years and often riding gravel, the rack still clamps securely onto the towball. Never had a issue where it moves on the ball even when sometimes riding a bit fast on rough gravel roads or just normally on tar roads. Sometimes latter is worse.

 

Would not recommend using this rack if you are always transporting two bikes. It works perfectly for one, but when using two it is always required to place a pool noodle or something between the bikes. The bikes still move around a bit and that can cause some paint damage which i dont prefer.

 

Good luck

Edited by Gerhard765
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My dad has had one for more than 10 years now, longer even. It's been our de facto carrier all this time.

 

Issues we've had with it:

 

* If the bike closest to car is put on so the front wheel is near the exhaust, you are going to have a melted tire. Switching around is fine usually, but just check.
* This might be an age issue (like I said, thing is OLD), and isolated to the type of car dad has (oldish merc a class), but when I got my new bike (long wheelbase, 29er enduro bike), and it was the only bike on the rack the front wheel was sticking out on one side a bit, and the drag this created on highway caused the rack to swing out. Wasn't unsafe, but super nervous.
* Depending on what bikes you have, it's a bit of a faff to get them on nicely, especially the dual suspensions with their angles and different sizes. They all go on, but it's a hassle sometimes.

Definitely get:

* a pool noodle if you have more than one bike on.
* A bungee strap to keep all the moving bits not moving (pedals move, can scratch car)
* A good lock to keep bikes on the car if you are going to stop somewhere. We usually park super close to a wall or tree.

On the whole:

Never had any major issues. I have the saris bones one, and I never use it. I've never been able to trust the straps and how it sits. Not saying it's bad, it's probably great, but I can't feel comfortable with it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Save your money and get a platform rack. Cycle lab have some specials, I recently bought one and it is very solid. Problem with these types of racks is they cannot carry full capacity, take longer to put bikes on and off, also more likely to damage bikes. Also they do not have the tail lights and number plate holders, which sooner or later will land up in a traffic fine.

 

Have patience, watch the specials and second hand sales. Sooner or later someone will sell you something reasonable.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you towing 2 bikes with this type best to get the 3 bike rack

This

 

OP Most of these racks arent made for mtb. More for road bikes considering the spacing. Also bear in mind the weight limits. Not sure what type of bikes you will be transporting. There is another thule similar to that that carries the load better and is not as reliant on those nuts on the side at the top.

 

Thule-9708-HangOn-4-Bike-Towball-Carrier

I see its alot more than your pic

Platform rack for the win though, if you can find one for you budget. The holdfast ones are decent as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thule is damn expensive. I have no idea about pricing, but you will probably get a Holdfast platform rack for a similar price to this Thule.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi guys, 

 

I am in the process of getting into the sport. Good to meet you all. 

 

After deciding on a bike (thread here) I will have to get the towbar and rack sorted so we can be a bit more mobile. 

 

So, a platform type will be great but the price at this point might not be possible. I will be fitting a towbar though.

 

So the next best thing will be something like a Thule Xpress 2 or any of the other rack-style carriers. 

 

thule_xpress_9701.jpg

 

However, looking at the design, what is the possibility of the bikes swinging and potentially damaging the car with these types of racks? (sorry if it's a silly question)

 

Other suggestions also welcome!

 

Thanks a lot!

 

Bought one of these two weeks ago; to carry two bikes. Zero issues with it and a great price. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Super happy with  mine. had it for years now.  Carries one bike great, and two is not a problem, just a little faff to get them positioned right sometimes. If I carry two, I have a couple short sections of the hollow type pool noodle slit open that clips over the contact points.

 

If they get loose with age, they can be adjusted to fit tighter on the ball, though I've never had to do so on mine in 6+ years.

 

Just get one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive just been down this street. Initially I cursed as I should have bought a 4 bike rack for 2 bikes. But, with a bit of testing and sorting out, I made it work just perfectly for 2 bikes. 

 

I run a Fortuner and need to hang 2 MTB hard tails (a M and a L frame):

- first thing I did was move the right hand horizontal bar to be inside the upright, not on the outside of the upright (shown as black dots. Red x is the original positon). This makes the two horizontals fit better between the size of bike frames (for me)

post-176046-0-31967600-1620027416_thumb.jpg

- I remove BOTH seats from each bike

- the M goes on first, with the front wheel on the passenger side of the car. The left horizontal is UNDER the down tube, and the right horizontal is under the top tube (not both under the top tube as suggested by the manufacturer).

post-176046-0-08407000-1620027723_thumb.jpg

This also clears the rear wheel from the exhaust pipe gases

- I then use the frames strap to fix the front wheel to the left hand upright tube. This turns the wheel enough to have the handle bars clear my rear window. 

- the L frame goes on last with the front wheel on the drivers side. The left horizontal goes under the top tube, the right horizontal goes UNDER the down tube. Again, this clears the front wheel from the exhaust gases

- I use 3 bungy cords. One per bike to stop the wheels rotating, and one to secure the L frame to the hanger to stop it swinging. 

- I use a pool noodle between the two frames to prevent rubbing. 

- make sure each pedal set is clear of wheels and stanchions

- takes longer to secure the bungies than hanging the bikes. 

 

If i hang one bike, I leave the seat post in and put the front wheel on the passenger side, same hanger positions for the M frame as shown above

 

Drawings not to scale for the smart ass types  :whistling:

 

Hope it helps, here endeth the long read

 

117, out

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This

 

OP Most of these racks arent made for mtb. More for road bikes considering the spacing. Also bear in mind the weight limits. Not sure what type of bikes you will be transporting. There is another thule similar to that that carries the load better and is not as reliant on those nuts on the side at the top.

 

Thule-9708-HangOn-4-Bike-Towball-Carrier

I see its alot more than your pic

Platform rack for the win though, if you can find one for you budget. The holdfast ones are decent as well.

 

Use one of these and it is great. Just use those padded bike straps or pool noodles in between  the bikes. The fastener straps wore out on the same spot as I tended to always load the same place but  easy to get replacements from  Thule. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive just been down this street. Initially I cursed as I should have bought a 4 bike rack for 2 bikes. But, with a bit of testing and sorting out, I made it work just perfectly for 2 bikes. 

 

I run a Fortuner and need to hang 2 MTB hard tails (a M and a L frame):

- first thing I did was move the right hand horizontal bar to be inside the upright, not on the outside of the upright (shown as black dots. Red x is the original positon). This makes the two horizontals fit better between the size of bike frames (for me)

attachicon.gifhanger.jpg

- I remove BOTH seats from each bike

- the M goes on first, with the front wheel on the passenger side of the car. The left horizontal is UNDER the down tube, and the right horizontal is under the top tube (not both under the top tube as suggested by the manufacturer).

attachicon.gifM frame.jpg

This also clears the rear wheel from the exhaust pipe gases

- I then use the frames strap to fix the front wheel to the left hand upright tube. This turns the wheel enough to have the handle bars clear my rear window. 

- the L frame goes on last with the front wheel on the drivers side. The left horizontal goes under the top tube, the right horizontal goes UNDER the down tube. Again, this clears the front wheel from the exhaust gases

- I use 3 bungy cords. One per bike to stop the wheels rotating, and one to secure the L frame to the hanger to stop it swinging. 

- I use a pool noodle between the two frames to prevent rubbing. 

- make sure each pedal set is clear of wheels and stanchions

- takes longer to secure the bungies than hanging the bikes. 

 

If i hang one bike, I leave the seat post in and put the front wheel on the passenger side, same hanger positions for the M frame as shown above

 

Drawings not to scale for the smart ass types  :whistling:

 

Hope it helps, here endeth the long read

 

117, out

Every bike combo is different, some bike go on together with no hassles or interference, others seats must come off etc 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

My Profile My Forum Content My Followed Content Forum Settings Ad Messages My Ads My Favourites My Saved Alerts My Pay Deals Settings Help Logout