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  1. #1
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    Rear rack and pannier foot strike

    I currently have a Giant hybrid that I use for commuting and some touring. I'm 6'5" with size 12 feet and I have a 23" frame (I think it's a compact frame). It's not that bad of a bike, for the price, but I have a problem with my heels hitting my panniers. I bought a cheap Giant rack at the store and I'm wondering if I could reduce this problem with a different rack. My current rack sits pretty close to the rear tire and the hardware that mounts it to the seat tube is extended as far as it can go. From where the rack connects at the rear triangle (sorry, don't know all the bike part names) it comes up in three tubes, one goes straight up and is perpendicular to the rack. I was wondering if some racks sit higher and further back. I know there's an issue with the weight distribution and center of gravity, but just a few inches would help. I was thinking of something like this

    http://www.nashbar.com/nashbar_photo...um/YR-URRL.gif

    Will this work or would it just be a waste of money?

  2. #2
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    Chainstay length is a big factor in determining whether or not your heels hit the panniers, but the only way to change that is to get a new frame. Long chainstays have been out of fashion for a long time, though, which is a shame. Longer chainstays mean longer wheelbases/frames, and that means bigger shipping cartons and higher shipping costs to get the bike from the factory in Taiwan to your LBS. So expect mainstream bike makers to be singing the praises of short chainstays for a long time to come.

    Even if you could get a rack that sat higher up and further back, It would not do good things to the stbility and handling of your bike.

    Some options are:

    Good cycling shoes are cut with a minimum of material around the heel to minimize heel strike. Are you cycling in street shoes, running shoes, or cycling shoes?

    Seat bags come in a wide range of sizes, from barely big enough for a spare tube to big enough for a short camping tour. I've found having my legs bumping against a big seat bag to be infinitely preferable to having my heels catch on the panniers.

    Messenger bags are good for commuting, but they can be hard on your back if you carry a big load. No heel strike issues, though, obviously.

    For your next bike, look for something with long chainstays. Touring bikes and cyclocross bikes tend to have longer chainstays. Measure the chainstays on your current bike, and note how far back your heels reach on the chainstay as you pedal. Then compare these measurements to any new bikes that you are looking at.

    My guess is that if you set the nashbar rack far enough back to help, the whole rack is going to be tilted on the bike, instead of positioning the panniers further back.

  3. #3
    My itch crotches to go! treefire's Avatar
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    You could get a Jannd expedition, or a IRD expediton rack. There are probably more. They are about 3" longer than a regular rack. To keep the panniers at the back of one of these racks, use a piece of rubber fuel line and a hose clamp to make a "hook stop", to keep the bags from sliding forward on the rack.

    Clayton

  4. #4
    Senior Member BigBlueToe's Avatar
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    I have size 14 feet and a Blackburn rack that looks just like the one you pictured. I slid my rack well back (by sliding the adjustable connecting metal pieces forward) - to the point where it has a definite slope backwards. I always clip my REI panniers as far back as they'll go. My heels don't hit. The handling of my bike might not be as perfect as some would like, but you do what you gotta do. Like I said, my heels don't hit. I have an old Nashbar touring bike from the 90s. It's a big frame - 26.5" I think. I don't know how long the chainstays are compared to modern touring bikes. Maybe that has something to do with why my heels don't hit my panniers.

  5. #5
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    Do your panniers have a heel cutout shape or square profile?

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the comments. To respond to a few of the questions: I have size 12 feet and I wear trail running shoes and use PowerGrips, I have the nashbar panniers, and I plan on buying a real touring bike as soon as I can, although I kind of want to get good use and my money's worth out of my current bike.

  7. #7
    Junior Member tiger474's Avatar
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    you can also check out this tubus rack, which I like since you can put the panniers further back on the lower bar, and that frees the top of the rack wide open making it easier to use bungee cords without the
    pannier getting in the way

  8. #8
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooleric1234
    Thanks for the comments. To respond to a few of the questions: I have size 12 feet and I wear trail running shoes and use PowerGrips, I have the nashbar panniers, and I plan on buying a real touring bike as soon as I can, although I kind of want to get good use and my money's worth out of my current bike.
    Have you tried flipping the bags around in the reverse direction form the picture? Looks to me like they have more of an angle in the "back" of the bags.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker
    Have you tried flipping the bags around in the reverse direction form the picture? Looks to me like they have more of an angle in the "back" of the bags.
    I think the picture is deceiving, they are symmetric.

  10. #10
    Occasional poster countrydirt's Avatar
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    I have a similar rack and the Nashbar compact rear panniers, all on my MTB. Heel strike is not an issue, but my feet are only size 9s.

  11. #11
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    I should clarify, the heel strike is not very bad. Usually I don't fill the panniers all the way and I can stuff things in the back. I've also modified the way I place my foot on the pedal to reduce heel strike, which I think can be a problem in the long run.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiger474
    you can also check out this tubus rack, which I like since you can put the panniers further back on the lower bar, and that frees the top of the rack wide open making it easier to use bungee cords without the
    pannier getting in the way
    +1

    These are great racks, I have three of them.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas
    +1

    These are great racks, I have three of them.
    The Tubus site says that the Logo Expedition racks are also good for frames with disc brakes mounts, though the website doesn't depict how it would attach. Any thoughts on this would be helpful.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savas
    The Tubus site says that the Logo Expedition racks are also good for frames with disc brakes mounts, though the website doesn't depict how it would attach. Any thoughts on this would be helpful.
    Via a skewer and an adapter so the rack is mounted through the axle.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas
    Via a skewer and an adapter so the rack is mounted through the axle.
    Thank you! Are those parts that the LBS can provide, or does Tubus sell them?

  16. #16
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savas
    Thank you! Are those parts that the LBS can provide, or does Tubus sell them?
    If you are in the States the best place to get them is from Wayne at The Touring Store. I actually ordered from him (I'm in Latvia) because his prices were MUCH better than what I could find in Europe!


    The adapters are listed under fit solutions. Give Wayne a call and talk to him about what you need, he's very knowledgeable and a super nice guy!

    http://www.thetouringstore.com/TUBUS...OME%20PAGE.htm

  17. #17
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    Wayne wasn't sure if it would fit my Jamis Coda Elite. Depicted is the fixing of my existing Axiom rack, which I would like to replace with a Tubus, if possible.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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