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  1. #1
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    Bike Rack for Commuting

    Hello all, I'm looking to get into commuting to work (will be starting out about half by car half by bike). For my situation I'm trying to avoid getting a rack for my car since my bike will fit inside the car (both wheels off), however I'm not sure if it will fit with a permanent rack attached to the frame. I see various types of racks that attach to the seat post and remove fairly easily with a quick release mechanism, but I wanted to see what kind of experience people have with these. I've seen reviews on some that say that they will shift to either side fairly easily, and my commute is likely to be fairly bumpy (roads in San Diego not so well maintained...).

    Are there any of these seat post mounted racks that are more rigid than others, or am I fairly screwed and need to figure out how to fit my frame in my car with a permanent rack?

  2. #2
    Senior Member sirtirithon's Avatar
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    You could try a frame pack. I love mine. Check out Revelate Designs.

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    The only real drawback to the seatpost rack as opposed to the traditional rack is the lack of carrying capacity. If you only need to carry ~15 pounds or less then I can't see you running into any problems.

    And shame on you for your disparaging remarks about America's Finest City. Where are you commuting to/from?

  4. #4
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    I'm possibly unique but I had to get rid of my post-mounted rear rack and I replaced it with an Axiom rack that was inexpensive, fit perfectly (I have discs) and appears to be more robust than I need.

    My issue with the post-mounted rack: My inner thighs rubbed on the quick-release mounting gear. 35 minute ride home left a good-sized raw spot that unbelieveably I didn't notice until after the ride.

  5. #5
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    My quick release rack holds 25 lbs would it be a lot easier to spend $30the in a rack for your car rather than disassembly your bike 4 times a day?

  6. #6
    Probably Injured beebe's Avatar
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    You may wish to consider Carradice style bags. You may also wish to consider whether getting a car rack is going to be worth it in the long run. I personally hate putting bikes into cars and risking damage/mess on the upholstery if possible.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Don't know what you're budget for this is, but as far as seat post mounted racks go, the most secure design I'm aware of is from Arkel.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member alan s's Avatar
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    I'm a car/bike commuter. The route from home to work is 26 miles each way with lots of hills and narrow, busy, winding roads at the beginning/end. As it is, I can easily manage 12-15 miles each way on a daily basis. Not sure how far you are riding, but you may want to consider riding the entire route. You could also try driving to work with your bike, leaving car at work overnight, riding home, riding in, driving home with bike. Works for some.

  9. #9
    Dirty Schwinn-Lover deeth82's Avatar
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    A few questions; some of them echoes of previous posts:

    1. What is your budget?
    2. What object(s)/amount of weight are you planning to carry?
    3. Do you already have a bag/pack that you want to affix to said rack?
    Ride what you like, how you like.

  10. #10
    Dirty Schwinn-Lover deeth82's Avatar
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    Let me add on to this by saying that I have a Topeak Quick-Release seatpost rack, and as Bearhawker said, the QR latch rubs my inner thigh a little. It's not the worst gripe in the world, but a frame-mounted rack can be less space-consuming than you think. For price-conscious consumers, the Wald 215. It doesn't take up a lot of space, and you can unstrap your bag when it's time to throw the bike in the car. Its fit is solid, and it's been nice on my Cruiser. I currently use the 215 on my cruiser, and the Topeak Explorer on my hybrid and SS.
    Ride what you like, how you like.

  11. #11
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    There are also bags that are quick release, a small bracket, remains,
    the bag itself Is Suspended with in a hoop, that has the release mechanism
    that clips to the seat post .. Carradice saddle bags and Rixen and Kaul KlickFix,
    are sources for this feature ..
    some overlap as Carridice buys mounting parts from R&K.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by deeth82 View Post
    A few questions; some of them echoes of previous posts:

    1. What is your budget?
    2. What object(s)/amount of weight are you planning to carry?
    3. Do you already have a bag/pack that you want to affix to said rack?
    1. Budget isn't really an issue, over time I'm going to use the money I save on gas to pay down the bike and all of the associated expenditures.
    2. All I'm planning to carry is a change of clothes, shoes, small lunch, and my lock.
    3. I do not currently have a bag to attach other than the small one I have under the seat for tools/spare tube.

    For those questioning my decision against the car rack, I drive an RX-8, and from what I've heard roof mounts destroy the car's handling and fuel efficiency, and I'm not sure how well I would be able to do a trunk rack with the spoiler there (stock spoiler of course). I personally don't mind the idea of having to take the bike apart twice a day (not 4 times as someone mentioned), and I think I'm a little ways away from ready for the idea of driving to work, biking back, biking to work, driving back (though it was a thought I had for the future).

    My total distance to/from home is just shy of 23 miles each way, and I'm planning to start out around 10 miles each way.

    I should probably also mention that I ride a Fuji Roubaix 1.0, and it does not have traditional mounts for a rear rack.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsherman View Post
    The only real drawback to the seatpost rack as opposed to the traditional rack is the lack of carrying capacity. If you only need to carry ~15 pounds or less then I can't see you running into any problems.

    And shame on you for your disparaging remarks about America's Finest City. Where are you commuting to/from?
    Don't get me wrong, I love this city, I moved from Cincinnati back in 2004 and I'm never going back!

    I'll be commuting from Mira Mesa to Point Loma.

  14. #14
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    1. Budget isn't really an issue, over time I'm going to use the money I save on gas to pay down the bike and all of the associated expenditures.
    2. All I'm planning to carry is a change of clothes, shoes, small lunch, and my lock.
    3. I do not currently have a bag to attach other than the small one I have under the seat for tools/spare tube.

    For those questioning my decision against the car rack, I drive an RX-8, and from what I've heard roof mounts destroy the car's handling and fuel efficiency, and I'm not sure how well I would be able to do a trunk rack with the spoiler there (stock spoiler of course). I personally don't mind the idea of having to take the bike apart twice a day (not 4 times as someone mentioned), and I think I'm a little ways away from ready for the idea of driving to work, biking back, biking to work, driving back (though it was a thought I had for the future).

    My total distance to/from home is just shy of 23 miles each way, and I'm planning to start out around 10 miles each way.

    I should probably also mention that I ride a Fuji Roubaix 1.0, and it does not have traditional mounts for a rear rack.
    Have you thought about going to U-haul and having a hitch put on? Then you can get a hitch rack that will allow you to both regain the storage area in your car and still be able to access said area, unlike a trunk mount..
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  15. #15
    Dirty Schwinn-Lover deeth82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    1. Budget isn't really an issue, over time I'm going to use the money I save on gas to pay down the bike and all of the associated expenditures.
    2. All I'm planning to carry is a change of clothes, shoes, small lunch, and my lock.
    3. I do not currently have a bag to attach other than the small one I have under the seat for tools/spare tube.

    For those questioning my decision against the car rack, I drive an RX-8, and from what I've heard roof mounts destroy the car's handling and fuel efficiency, and I'm not sure how well I would be able to do a trunk rack with the spoiler there (stock spoiler of course). I personally don't mind the idea of having to take the bike apart twice a day (not 4 times as someone mentioned), and I think I'm a little ways away from ready for the idea of driving to work, biking back, biking to work, driving back (though it was a thought I had for the future).

    My total distance to/from home is just shy of 23 miles each way, and I'm planning to start out around 10 miles each way.

    I should probably also mention that I ride a Fuji Roubaix 1.0, and it does not have traditional mounts for a rear rack.


    Thanks for the info! Here's one combination I put together for my Schwinn Racer (does not have seat stay mounts; does have fender mount at base of seat stays):

    Topeak Explorer Rack
    Topeak MTX Trunk Bag
    Sunlite Bicycle Monostay Adapter (actually fits around the base of the seatpost)

    It may look a little wonky after bending the metal arms on the Explorer rack (they're meant to bend if necessary), it holds quite solid.

    I'll look up your bike model and see if I can recommend anything else.
    Ride what you like, how you like.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    Have you thought about going to U-haul and having a hitch put on? Then you can get a hitch rack that will allow you to both regain the storage area in your car and still be able to access said area, unlike a trunk mount..
    That's another thing I looked at, but from what I've gathered it is a bit more pricey than I'm looking to go and if not done properly will rip out the bottom of the trunk.

  17. #17
    Senior Member alan s's Avatar
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    Leave the shoes and lock at work. I hate anything on my back, but you could use a backpack or messenger bag. Carradice is a good option. Seatpost rack/trunk bag would be the last resort.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    Hello all, I'm looking to get into commuting to work (will be starting out about half by car half by bike). For my situation I'm trying to avoid getting a rack for my car since my bike will fit inside the car (both wheels off), however I'm not sure if it will fit with a permanent rack attached to the frame. I see various types of racks that attach to the seat post and remove fairly easily with a quick release mechanism, but I wanted to see what kind of experience people have with these.
    They're complete crap.

    I tried the Delta Post Porter, Axiom Odyssey, Transit Pannier, and Topeak MTX E-Type.

    Only the the Topeak didn't rub on my thighs and it was still useless since the frames weren't stiff enough to keep panniers out of my spokes. The rubbing is less of an issue for people who don't pedal duck-footed and/or aren't riding traditional sized frames with a fist of seat post showing that puts the rack point where clearance is more limited.

    Pannier support is essential since fifteen pounds of laptop, work clothes, rain resistant clothes, wind resistant clothes, warmer clothes, spare lights, and snack food do not fit in any other bike bag, and wearing a back pack up to two hours a day while sweating is not pleasant.

    Are there any of these seat post mounted racks that are more rigid than others, or am I fairly screwed and need to figure out how to fit my frame in my car with a permanent rack?
    That would be a better idea.
    Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 06-26-12 at 02:17 PM.

  19. #19
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    That's another thing I looked at, but from what I've gathered it is a bit more pricey than I'm looking to go and if not done properly will rip out the bottom of the trunk.
    It was worth a shot. Any way you could avoid lugging your shoes around everyday? That will simply things a bit.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    It was worth a shot. Any way you could avoid lugging your shoes around everyday? That will simply things a bit.
    I'd ideally like to keep my shoes with me as they are my only other pair of shoes. =\

  21. #21
    Senior Member alan s's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    I'd ideally like to keep my shoes with me as they are my only other pair of shoes. =\
    Seriously? You have one pair of non-cycling shoes?

  22. #22
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    seatpost racks are OK if you want to carry a butterfly. they are not suitable for loading up a commuter.
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    For those questioning my decision against the car rack, I drive an RX-8, and from what I've heard roof mounts destroy the car's handling
    It's not noticeable with normal sporting loads (a bike and/or a few snowboards/pairs of skiis).

    and fuel efficiency
    1-2 MPG is hardly "destroying" fuel efficiency.

    I drive an Audi A4 and often used my Yakima roof rack for bikes and skis/snowboards when I lived in Colorado. The only real problem was that I needed to adjust one of the window frames to get a good air-tight seal. Next time I'll probably get a sport wagon for better cargo hauling ability and factory roof rails so rackable loads don't lead to that problem.
    Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 06-26-12 at 02:19 PM.

  24. #24
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaymzkerten View Post
    I'd ideally like to keep my shoes with me as they are my only other pair of shoes. =\
    Sounds like you need to invest in another pair of shoes for either work or home. The alternative would be to either do what you're currently doing or give up the clipless* in favor of some sensible, grippy platforms so that you don't have to change shoes.

    *I'm going out on a limb about the clipless, but since it sounds like the OP is a roadie...
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  25. #25
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    the Arkel rack really is the best seatpost rack. If you keep your load light enough, you'll be fine, but I'd still recommend the Arkel, simply because it won't sway due to the design. They offer a backpack that slides onto the rack super-quickly and works well. If you're looking for a new pack as well, I'd consider the combo, but even if you are just looking for a rack, the Arkel will serve you well for light loads.

    I agree with the others about the shoes. You can certainly carry them, but I think you'll find that they are the heaviest/most inconvenient/ bulkiest item for the bike commuter. If you can get a second pair to leave at the office, you'll make commuting by bike much easier. Same thing with the lock, if you can leave it attahced to the rack at work, that's onel ess thing you have to lug around/ potentially forget.

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