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  1. #1
    Senior Member VaultGuru's Avatar
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    Tandem Roof Rack Question

    We have a Yakima post and bar roof rack with a TandemTopper for our Volvo V70 wagon. The spread between the front and rear crossbars is 31.5" and it works perfect. Now, I'm looking for a post and bar roof rack for our 2005 Volvo S60 sedan that can accommodate our tandem. Unfortunately, Yakima doesn't make a roof rack for the S60. Both Thule and Volvo make a roof rack, but it looks like the spread between the front and rear crossbars is fairly limited, so I am concerned about rack movement and bike stability in crosswinds while traveling on the highway.
    Does anyone have experience with with either Thule or Volvo OEM racks to transport your tandem on your Volvo, specifically the S60? Opinions and/or recommendations?
    Thanks
    Last edited by VaultGuru; 11-28-09 at 05:05 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Stray8's Avatar
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    Well, it appears that no one here has experience with Thule or OEM racks on a Volvo S60.

    The aerodynamic cross section profile of a mounted tandem on your Topper won't be any different (i.e. it isn't going to get longer) therefore if the Topper is securely attached to the proper crossbars (specifically designed for your S60 roof) and the crossbars are securely anchored then you shouldn't have a problem with crosswinds even if the spread between the crossbars is shorter than what you were used to on the wagon.

    I checked the Thule site for the S60 rack but it doesn't appear to mention the actual spread between the front and rear crossbars. How much shorter than 31.5" is it?

  3. #3
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    We don't have a Volvo, but are using the Thule bars on a 2008 Chevy Impala. The spread is rather short for my tastes. We are using the ATOC mount on it. With the tandem, I feel very comfortable, and have done some long transportation in the rain and wind with no problems. We do also transport the triplet on it as well. It is at the rated minimum spread for use with our ATOC mount, around 31" if I recall, and we have transported around locally with no issues. I didn't feel comfortable taking it all the way to PA for this years ETR, so we took the truck. I am sure it would have been fine with the triplet, but it just seems a bit bouncy. Keep in mind that the ATOC for the triplet is seamed in the middle, so there is some flex that yours might not have. The Thule to car has never been an issue. Our rack also comes with a nice stabilizer bar that attaches to the load bar and the seat post. That makes a huge difference. Love that feature. Hope this helps a little.

  4. #4
    Senior Member JTGraphics's Avatar
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    I have a little honda that has a Thule bars and Yakama Sidewinder that is fine.
    http://www.jtgraphics.net/images/tre...kt900_rack.jpg
    It may not be fancy but it gets me were I need to go.
    http://www.jtgraphics.net/cyclist_bicycles.htm

  5. #5
    Senior Member VaultGuru's Avatar
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    Thanks to all of your posts. I ran into the same problem as you did...getting a straight answer. I finally got in contact with a Thule Technical person. I found out that there are four mounting points for a rack built into the car. (I have had the car for 4 years and never knew they were there, even though I have waxed it three times and washed it multiple times.) The Thule tech person also told me that the optimal distance between crossbars for mounting on the S60 is 31.5", exactly the same as the V70. Amazing that the recommended distance is exactly the same as the mounting points. So now I get a rack that is easily transferred from one car to the other one.

    Thule makes a clip that specifically fits the S60. I got a set and built the towers and crossbars tonight. It was somewhat difficult figuring out how the clips mounted to the car and then to the rack, but I got it dome. The result is a very stable and strong mounting structure (from an engineering standpoint) for my tandem that will never move around or blow off. Thule and Volvo really thought this one through. I will, however, purchase Yakima Copperhead bike trays to fit the Thule crossbars. They are a much better design than the Thule. The tandem rack that is branded as Thule is actually the TandemTopper, a rack that was designed by a couple of Boeing engineers several years ago. Since I already have a TandemTopper, I should be good to go. Will post how it all works out. All I can tell you is that Yakima really missed the boat by not developing and producing a clip that would fit the S60. Maybe there is not enough demand, but they lost a good customer when they couldn't deliver. I just sold my Yakima rack and all the parts that go with it.
    Last edited by VaultGuru; 11-30-09 at 10:28 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by VaultGuru View Post
    ..... All I can tell you is that Yakima really missed the boat by not developing and producing a clip that would fit the S60. Maybe there is not enough demand, but they lost a good customer when they couldn't deliver. I just sold my Yakima rack and all the parts that go with it.
    But they might have gained one in the person you sold to.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Stray8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by masiman View Post
    But they might have gained one in the person you sold to.

    That gain is only temporary...at least until that person gets an S60....



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