I was wondering how other people position greater weight relative to the front wheel, relative to the axle. Or whether to position a pannier clip behind fork.
The hardware: Tubus Ergo rack on a 62cm LHT. Ortilieb sport packer front panniers. Heavy load. 700c x 37 Continental Contact tires if anyone cares. I am 6'4", size 14 feet and weigh around 225. Over 100lbs of additional gear load on the bike.
The situation: I have toured a fair amount, usually rear panniers only. I recently took 3 of my kids on their first week-long tour. The oldest (11) carried a full load, another a lighter load, and the youngest (8) took almost no load. This left me with 2.5 loads and a weeks worth of food. Relatively flat route wasn't too bad.
I had a lot of shimmy problems that I have never experienced before. I naturally set up the front racks/panniers to position the weight as close to the center of the wheel (axle) as possible. Both clips in front of fork. As a result of the shimmying, I started experimenting a bit with forward and back positions. No major difference. Increasing the tire pressure made more difference.
What is the best/correct/optimal position for front panniers? I notice in pictures that many people seem to angle their front racks forward and down, which would seem to push the weight even farther forward. I assumed this was because of mounting limitations. But is there another reason?