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  1. #1
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Bike rack (for car) recommendations?

    Hi.

    I'm considering buying a trunk-mounted bike rack for my wife's 2011 Subaru Impreza Hatchback. I've looked at the Yakima SuperJoe Pro 2/3. I don't plan on installing a hitch because, well, that's an extra $150 (or $300+ if installed by a professional). The only requirement that it carry 2 bikes. It would be great if detaching is easy and simple, too.

    Do you guys have any recommendations? I'm mainly looking at Yakima because that's what our LBS carries, but I'm open to suggestions.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    i have the yakima super joe 2 (not pro) which is the model right before the current "Pro" models. it's a good in-between rack. works well. easy to attach. i'm not super thrilled about the stretch plastic chainstraps that hold the bike on though. and the cradles on mine shimmy backwards after use making the space between bikes smaller so they can bump into each other sometimes. you can just move the cradles back to their positions, you just have to pay attention.
    i'm happy with it, but my next purchase will be a Saris because i like their strap down system better.

  3. #3
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
    i have the yakima super joe 2 (not pro) which is the model right before the current "Pro" models. it's a good in-between rack. works well. easy to attach. i'm not super thrilled about the stretch plastic chainstraps that hold the bike on though. and the cradles on mine shimmy backwards after use making the space between bikes smaller so they can bump into each other sometimes. you can just move the cradles back to their positions, you just have to pay attention.
    i'm happy with it, but my next purchase will be a Saris because i like their strap down system better.
    Thanks for the suggestion. I just looked at the installation video for the Saris Bones 2 system. Looks to me that the strap system used by Saris may get loose easier than the rubber binding type used by Yakima. Please note that I'm looking at the "Pro" version.

  4. #4
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    ...two month ago I picked up a Saris Bones 3, it works better for two bike than the Bones 2 because it allows more space between the bikes. Anyway, once you've got the straps on the Bones 3 tightened to your satisfaction they certainly don't loosen, not until you pinch the release lever. Mine stay tight at highway speeds with our two bikes mounted. I tighten the straps until they twang like a guitar string when you give them a tug. Keep in mind that most of the weight is carried by the top mounted straps, the side straps keep the rack centered and the bottom straps just keep the feet anchored to the bumper. The top straps are the ones you really want to concentrate on keeping tight.
    The Bones 3 has proven to be the absolute best bike rack I've ever had, it's very light, takes less than three minutes to mount on the trunk and a couple minutes to hang the bikes on and snug up the frame tie downs. I highly recommend it and don't think you'd be dissatisfied...

  5. #5
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trainchaser View Post
    ...two month ago I picked up a Saris Bones 3, it works better for two bike than the Bones 2 because it allows more space between the bikes. Anyway, once you've got the straps on the Bones 3 tightened to your satisfaction they certainly don't loosen, not until you pinch the release lever. Mine stay tight at highway speeds with our two bikes mounted. I tighten the straps until they twang like a guitar string when you give them a tug. Keep in mind that most of the weight is carried by the top mounted straps, the side straps keep the rack centered and the bottom straps just keep the feet anchored to the bumper. The top straps are the ones you really want to concentrate on keeping tight.
    The Bones 3 has proven to be the absolute best bike rack I've ever had, it's very light, takes less than three minutes to mount on the trunk and a couple minutes to hang the bikes on and snug up the frame tie downs. I highly recommend it and don't think you'd be dissatisfied...
    Thanks! One question, though. Does your car have a rear wiper? If so, does it hit the rack while activated? A review on the Bones 3 (on REI.com) says that the product interferes with the rear wiper of their SUV. Both our cars have one as well, and I don't want that to be an issue for us.

  6. #6
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Get a Saris Bones 3.
    My bikes: 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2015 Cannondale Supersix EVO carbon

    I thought of that while riding my bicycle -- Albert Einstein

  7. #7
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Saris Bones user here.

    I happen to have the Saris Bones 2. It was all the LBS had in stock and I needed right then. I have never had it come loose on the variety of cars I have used it on, currently it has traveled well over 50,000 miles. FWIW I exceed the "recommended" bicycle weight load when I haul my city bike, but it travels solo.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

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  8. #8
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daihard View Post
    Thanks! One question, though. Does your car have a rear wiper? If so, does it hit the rack while activated? A review on the Bones 3 (on REI.com) says that the product interferes with the rear wiper of their SUV. Both our cars have one as well, and I don't want that to be an issue for us.
    Don't use the wiper?

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  9. #9
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
    Don't use the wiper?
    LOL Yeah I just have to be careful. My car (2010 GTI) automatically activates the rear wiper if the front wipers are on and I put in reverse.

    So the rear wiper does hit the rack when it's on?

  10. #10
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    Don't know if it will hit, but you might be able to pull the fuse for the wiper, pull the arm, or disconnect it. Very likely it's designed to tolerate being stalled as it's not that uncommon for that to happen if the rear window gets iced up.

    On another note, if you're concerned about the car's paint getting scuffed, put some pieces of clear stick-on film where the rack's pads contact the finish. The pads may be soft, but dirt or grit that gets trapped under them can scuff the finish.

  11. #11
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I had an old hatch Back '68 SAAB 96, I had a full width bar on the front, rear of the roof,
    and a shorter bar on the bottom end with Bike trays for the sides of the square..

    the clamps were Rain gutter parts, since back then cars had rain-gutters..

    the lower one gripped the edge of the hatch back.

    The Yakima round bars and plastic fittings moved enough that I could lift the hatch back
    with a couple Ligher bikes on the racks.



    Obviously, you have a different car, so all the bits and pieces would differ..

    Just saying a hatch back offers possibilities to not be high on the roof , or hanging off the back bumper.

  12. #12
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Wow, thanks for all the replies guys.

    I am stopping by REI this afternoon to ask about the Saris Bones 2/3. I'm leaning heavily towards Saris (as opposed to Yakima/Thule). We'll see.

  13. #13
    Senior Member decosse's Avatar
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    Another vote for Saris. I'm a total noob to cycling and bikes, hadn't been on one in 30 years. My LBS recommended the Saris Solo in my case. Easy to install, easy to remove, easy to load the bike and secure it (even my Bianchi with a mixte style frame) . I'm in the 50+ group, never really even looked a bike rack before. One quick lesson at the LBS, and good to go!

  14. #14
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by decosse View Post
    Another vote for Saris. I'm a total noob to cycling and bikes, hadn't been on one in 30 years. My LBS recommended the Saris Solo in my case. Easy to install, easy to remove, easy to load the bike and secure it (even my Bianchi with a mixte style frame) . I'm in the 50+ group, never really even looked a bike rack before. One quick lesson at the LBS, and good to go!
    Thanks! Being a total novice myself, I find your reply very helpful. Do you have a Bones 2 or 3?

  15. #15
    Senior Member decosse's Avatar
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    Mine is called Solo, I think. Made for a single bike. That being said, they had a Bones 2 carrier there as well, and that installs much the same

  16. #16
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    The REI flyer I received in the mail today says 20% off on Yakima and Thule racks, 8/23 thru 9/2

  17. #17
    just pedal donalson's Avatar
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    I've got an older Yakima Superjoe 3 I got used from a friend about 4 years ago... it's still a great rack but the nylon straps are trash and most of the rubber frame loops need replaced... my only issue is that I can't get the adjustment arms to actually move... so it's stuck... but i've used it with 3 cars without issue

    I also have an older Yakima roof rack setup... my car has rain gutters/rails so I watched craigslist for a while and found a great deal on an older system with two old style copperhead mounts (won't work with discs) and a tandem mount... I ordered an old BOA type mount and all said I spent less than $100 and can mount 4 bikes if I really wanted to
    mtbr clyd moderator

  18. #18
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by daihard View Post
    Thanks! One question, though. Does your car have a rear wiper? If so, does it hit the rack while activated? A review on the Bones 3 (on REI.com) says that the product interferes with the rear wiper of their SUV. Both our cars have one as well, and I don't want that to be an issue for us.
    My car is a 2005 4 dr. Honda Accord, no rear wiper problem, but you can play a bit with the positioning of the arms to effect the most optimum setup. On mine I played around with the arm position until the bikes were making absolutely no contact with the rear of the car. Using the position illustrated in the instruction sheet had the pedals rubbing up against the tail lights, which was not acceptable. The way it is setup now is perfect and we're very happy campers, or is that bikers, or maybe cyclists...?

    cheers!

  19. #19
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    I finally got the rack I can use - a Thule Raceway 3.

    http://www.amazon.com/Thule-9002-Rac.../dp/B0036ODPAO

    I first got the two-bike version (Raceway 2). Unfortunately, I wasn't able to mount both my and my wife's bikes on it at the same time. Each bike's handlebar interfered with the other's rear tyre! I wonder how it's possible to mount two bikes on that rack unless one of them is a kid's bike or something.

    So I returned it and got the 3-bike version instead. Easy to operate and lightweight. We took our bikes to a local trail using the rack for the first time today. It worked perfectly.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  20. #20
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    glad it works for you and you like it. but i think you paid about an extra $100 because it says thule on it.

  21. #21
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
    glad it works for you and you like it. but i think you paid about an extra $100 because it says thule on it.
    We got it on sale (20% off), so it wasn't as bad as it could've been. Besides, this rack uses the ratcheting system to secure the cables, which makes it very easy to mount/unmount it on the car. I'm pretty happy with the rack.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

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