I've been searching and reading as much as possible trying to figure a solution to this problem, and I've learned a lot, but I haven't made a complete plan yet, and I'm hoping you all can help.
As I said in a previous thread, I'm converting a 1992 Trek 970 for touring use. I'm trying to figure out a way to mount a front rack to it, and what rack to use.
The problem is that the fork has no fender eyelets at all, and that it is huge tubular (just over 1.25") steel with the dropouts tucked way inboard. I hope you can see from the picture I took with my phone.
Ideally I'd like a rack for lowriders that also has a top platform, and I'd like to not spend a huge pile of money on it.
One possibility is a rack from Old Man Mountain that mounts to a special QR skewer. OMM doesn't offer one with both lowriders and platform, but if this is the way to go I'll make do with it. My question about this option is this: will it work with this oversize fork? I don't see how a rack can be pulled tight to the dropout with all that metal right above it.
Another option is to use p clamps or hose clamps near the bottom and mid-fork. I worry about putting any real weight on a p clamp in the bottom position. Tubus makes a cool little adapter tubus rack adapter.jpg
but it only fits up to 1.125". The one they offer for tubes bigger than that is just a hose clamp with a fitting for a bolt. Using p clamps or something like them is the way I'd prefer to go, because it would give me more flexibility to choose the rack I want. However, I have some questions about this one, too: Will p clamps or some other clamps stand up under load if I use them at the bottom of the rack? Will they change the geometry of the rack/fork relationship enough to be a problem? Will a standard front rack tolerate being spread this wide? The big fork means that the rack will have to fit around something like 1.5" more than a normal fork.
A third solution suggested by an engineer friend of mine is to weld a nut onto the fork to substitute for an eyelet. I don't really want to do this, as the fork will have to be repainted, and it's inelegant, but it might be the way to go. Will welding weaken the fork?
I looked for a replacement fork with proper eyelets, but found nothing.
I really did try to find this information with google, but didn't get there. Your input is appreciated.