Touring - front racks hellpppp
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08-18-03, 09:45 AM
i am looking for a rack system for the front of my trek 520. i went to the LBS and they "you want low riders or a front rack?"
what is the difference? what is best? and that will fit on my 520
L J Horton
08-18-03, 09:54 AM
Low riders hang your panniers on the side of the friont wheel down "low". A front rack is just like the rear rack only smaller. It is not big enough to hang panniers on. I use both on my touring bike to more evenly distribute the weight, but you don't really need one.
either lowrider or standard front racks will fit your 520. <shameless promotion> If youre still seeking one check out my ad in the marketplace here for the jandd mini mtn panniers, if you buy them Ill throw in a blackburn front rack that I dont use.</shameless promotion>:D
Low riders are nice for a lower center of gravity.
08-18-03, 10:35 PM
The main advantage of a lowrider rack is not that it lowers the panniers, but that it places them inline with the rotational axis of the headset. In other words, with a high rack, the load is in front of the steering axis and you need to fight it to steer the bike. With a lowrider, the load is more neutral.
How neutral? It depends on the steering geometry of the bike, i.e. fork rake and headset angle. Don't ask me why, but the Trek 520 is neutral on the issue (i.e. it doesn't steer too differently with or without a front load on lowriders) while my old Vélo Sport Alpin handles not as well with front panniers.
08-19-03, 09:35 AM
I use blackburn front racks and have never used low riders. The thing I hate about low riders is you lose some of your most valuable space: the flat top of the rack. In my case, I used to put my campstove on the top of the front rack, double lashed with two small bungie cords. It was instantly available, even in the middle of the day if i wanted to cook up a quickie lunch.
I am aware of the concern about weight distribution, esp on the front wheel. But my response has always been: if you are that worried about weight on the front wheel, you are carrying too much stuff!.
In any case, buy a rack and hop out on the road!
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