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Old 01-21-11, 12:41 AM   #1
busted knuckles
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custom front rack

Has anyone seen a front rack that will hold a tent? I am considering making one, I went on a short trip last summer and had everything on the back of the bike. I dont really want a platform front rack. I am thinking of a rack with ribs that I can tie or bungie a tent onto. Maybe have a pannier on the other side, not sure yet. The tent was kind of in the way of the pannier openings on the back rack. Can anyone direct me to such a rack?
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Old 01-21-11, 01:50 AM   #2
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What is wrong with carrying the tent in front panniers? Maybe tent on one side and fly on the other to balance the weight.
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Old 01-21-11, 05:43 AM   #3
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Yes there are a number of racks with a top platform. I know that that Surly Nice Rack does (weighs a ton though). I think Axiom makes one too, but I may be wrong. I also think Old Man Mountain does.

The little nashbar rack that mounts to the brake bosses might work if you strap the tent on across it.
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Old 01-21-11, 06:52 AM   #4
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You might want to check out the Velo Orange Constructeur Front Rack. It might be what you are looking for.

http://store.velo-orange.com/index.p...ront-rack.html
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Old 01-21-11, 08:26 AM   #5
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Rivendell has a very good one made by Nitto in Japan, called the Mark's Rack:

http://www.rivbike.com/products/show...k-nitto/20-108

You can use it together with a low rider such as the Tubus Nova. I have this combination on my Rocky Mountain Sherpa at the moment. While the Mark's Rack is not made for heavy weight, I'm sure it could handle a lightweight backpacking tent of the sort most people would use bicycle touring with no problem. You need the front hole at the bottom of the head tube to mount this one.

Neil
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Old 01-21-11, 08:28 AM   #6
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Axiom makes a "low rider add-on" rack that would work with a set of p-clips on the front fork if you're not using low-riders.

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Old 01-21-11, 09:35 AM   #7
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Thanks for the help, I dont want a rack with a platform. The tent is almost 2 feet long and about 7" diameter when in the carry bag. I am not sure it would fit in a pannier. I am thinking of a rack that the tent could be strapped into, along side the fork or straight up and down. Hell, I guess it could even be parallel to the ground.
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Old 01-21-11, 09:40 AM   #8
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I have a 5 x 7 tent stuffed in my right front pannier, along with the ground cloth and rain fly.
Tent poles on the rear rack.



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Old 01-21-11, 09:48 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busted knuckles View Post
Thanks for the help, I dont want a rack with a platform. The tent is almost 2 feet long and about 7" diameter when in the carry bag. I am not sure it would fit in a pannier. I am thinking of a rack that the tent could be strapped into, along side the fork or straight up and down. Hell, I guess it could even be parallel to the ground.
Not sure why that would be a problem with any front rack.

FWIW: I typically just carry mine across the top of the rear rack. It might fit in a pannier, but it doesn't make sense to me to put something that is often wet in a pannier. I roll the tent with the floor on the outside and even in an all day rain it seems to be as dry (or wet) as it was when I put it away.
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Old 01-21-11, 10:52 AM   #10
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A friend in that situation carries the tent, fly, groundsheet and stakes in a small, short stuff bag in a pannier and just carries the poles separately on his rear rack - or under his top tube when he's bikepacking without a rack.
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Old 01-21-11, 12:49 PM   #11
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I got a custom front rack made in the middle of a tour, as I passed thru Newcastle upon Tyne, UK,.
generically a brake boss mount like #3, but adapted to my particular front brake ,
a Scott-Peterson SE.
.. 91, .. put my Film camera gear in a padded fanny pack on the front.

Custom means made for you, ask a framebuilder to make one just for you.

surely Van/Vic has some frame builders there , certainly are in Seattle.

Last edited by fietsbob; 01-21-11 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 01-21-11, 03:50 PM   #12
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Hi Knuckles,

Here is my Hubba-Hubba tent/fly/ground tarp on my Nitto front rack from Rivendell:



I use two straps from REI to hold it in place. The poles are with my air mattress in the pole tube on the Arkel rear pannier. The rack isn't light, or cheap, but it is made and works well. My sleeping bag is strapped to the top of the rear rack.

Tom

Last edited by tomn; 01-21-11 at 04:04 PM. Reason: lightened picture
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Old 01-21-11, 05:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busted knuckles View Post
Thanks for the help, I dont want a rack with a platform. The tent is almost 2 feet long and about 7" diameter when in the carry bag. I am not sure it would fit in a pannier. I am thinking of a rack that the tent could be strapped into, along side the fork or straight up and down. Hell, I guess it could even be parallel to the ground.
front loads should be balanced left/right. Why not break the tent into two parts? I'm assuming that there's a seperate fly and ground sheet.
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Old 01-21-11, 06:36 PM   #14
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At that size, I'm wondering if the tent is really suitable for touring. My two person tent isn't much over 5 inches in diameter, and a touch under 18 inches long, and it was made in the 1970's. Unless you're carrying the tent for a larger crowd, that sounds like overkill.

You're money might be better spent on a better tent that will fit on a conventional rack, rather than building a rack to fit your tent.
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Old 01-21-11, 09:28 PM   #15
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At that size, I'm wondering if the tent is really suitable for touring. My two person tent isn't much over 5 inches in diameter, and a touch under 18 inches long, and it was made in the 1970's. Unless you're carrying the tent for a larger crowd, that sounds like overkill.

You're money might be better spent on a better tent that will fit on a conventional rack, rather than building a rack to fit your tent.
Good thinking. My Peak 1 Cobra tent (nominally a two-man tent, but perfect for one) fits easily on one of those $13 front racks from MEC.
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Old 01-21-11, 09:34 PM   #16
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I could put a tent on my Jandd Extreme front rack. It's a great rack.
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Old 01-21-11, 09:39 PM   #17
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thanks for all the replies, the tent is a tarn 2 http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_d...34374302702837 The tent, ground sheet and fly could be compressed and carry the poles separately. Its not the lightest tent on the market, but its not too big. I will have to think about it, I might try a custom rack, or stuff it in a pannier.
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Old 01-22-11, 12:18 AM   #18
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When I am touring alone, I really appreciate a two man tent to hold me and all my gear. Freestanding is also important. Weight is a consideration, but not an overriding concern.
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Old 01-22-11, 10:01 AM   #19
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Hi Knuckles,

Sorry about my earlier platform response; I didn't read your original post carefully enough. Is it the pole system that makes your tent so long when bundled? If so maybe there is a way to make hay by packing them separately. It might be possible to have them "customized" to be a shorter bundle. Check with TentPole Technologies in PortlandOR.

You could also rework an existing rack, like a Nitto, Surly or Tubus, by having someone braze or tig on guides for straps and/or a shelf to allow you to mount your tent to one side. Then have it powder coated.

Tom
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Old 01-22-11, 04:53 PM   #20
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When I am touring alone, I really appreciate a two man tent to hold me and all my gear. Freestanding is also important. Weight is a consideration, but not an overriding concern.
For most terrain, I've never really found free standing to be much of an issue. Most tents aren't truly free standing anyway, almost all require pegs to prevent them from blowing away, let alone attaching the fly. I have come upon a few places where I just couldn't get a peg in, but those places almost always have an abundance of rocks to use as stakeout points. I've been able to use my non free standing tents just about everywhere. They tend to be lighter and easier to set up than comparable 'free standing' tents.
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