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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 05-24-07, 04:40 PM   #1
jimisnowhere
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My bike vs the bus rack

I have yet to try the bus rack out but my schedule is changing and I'm being given a few accounts outside of boston and the reach of the subway. My bus out to Burlington (perhaps an hour on my work bike, 1/2 hr by bus) has that bike rack. But my bike is a heavy Raleigh 3 spd with the biggest Wald basket they make. From the directions the T site gave me, it seems there is a support are that may or may not sit right where the basket and fender meet over my front wheel. Has anyone experience with putting 3 tons of English steel and a big basket on the bus?


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Old 05-24-07, 06:17 PM   #2
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I have not experienced putting 3 tons of English steel on a bike rack but can you consistenly lift the bike up on the racks in less than two minutes? I have found if I pack my bike trunk too heavy I have difficulty lifting the bike onto the bus bike rack.

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Old 05-24-07, 10:30 PM   #3
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I can't speak to the bike racks in Boston, but I can speak to heavy bikes.

I ride a Giant Lite electric with a NuVinci hub. It weighs over 60 lbs with all my commuting stuff on it. I put it on the bus twice a day without too much trouble. As long as I "lift with the legs" all is well.

I say, go for it!
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Old 05-25-07, 10:00 AM   #4
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I ride a Giant Lite electric with a NuVinci hub.
Wow, you have all the latest technology.

Care to give us a review in the ebike forum?
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Old 05-25-07, 01:44 PM   #5
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The CAT buses in Little Rock seem to take my full-fendered bike. But the bar rides exactly at the front of the fender.
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Old 05-26-07, 12:02 AM   #6
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If you have a park and ride or transit center where you can find a bus parked for a while between runs, I'd suggest riding there and figuring out how your bike interacts with the racks. That way you don't have to worry about the stress of holding up the bus or needing to be somewhere if it doesn't work out.
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Old 05-26-07, 10:28 AM   #7
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The bus I'll be taking sits for about 20 minutes so I'll go early this week and play with it. I can lift the bike fine, I climb stairs with it all the time, I was more worried about it coming off the rack due to its weight, full fenders and oversized basket. Maybe I'll get some bunjees to act as a seat belt.


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Old 06-03-07, 07:48 AM   #8
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If its like the racks that my town (Fort Collins, CO) uses, I think you'll be fine. I ride a bike with steel fenders and while it doesn't have a front rack I don't think that matters. The rack uses a U-shaped (more like a J, really) bar that is spring loaded and fits over the wheel. The bar actually clips on just in front of the front fender, on the tire. I could put it over the fender if I wanted to, but I think its better to have it on the tire anyway (as it fits pretty tight and prevents the wheel from rolling at all). So anyway, I think you'll be fine. For me the hardest part is getting the bike on and off when the bus is stopped along the side of the street. First bike (often mine) goes against the front of the bus, the 3rd one goes out in front. Sometimes I'm first off and it can be a pain in the ass to get your bike out of the rear or middle spot if the rack is full.
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Old 06-06-07, 07:20 AM   #9
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I just tried putting it on an out of service bus and the fit seemed a bit rickedy. The arms of the basket make the J-bar fit a bit loose (too far forward on the wheel). I'll definetly get a big bunjee for atleast its maiden voyage.

Thanks,

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Old 06-06-07, 12:53 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jimisnowhere
I just tried putting it on an out of service bus and the fit seemed a bit rickedy. The arms of the basket make the J-bar fit a bit loose (too far forward on the wheel). I'll definetly get a big bunjee for atleast its maiden voyage.

Thanks,


jim
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Old 06-06-07, 01:13 PM   #11
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My Velcro ankle strap happens to be the perfect size to secure one wheel against a bus bike rack. I used to do it that way until I developed some confidence that the bike wouldn't fall off the rack.
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Old 06-06-07, 05:38 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by jimisnowhere
I just tried putting it on an out of service bus and the fit seemed a bit rickedy. The arms of the basket make the J-bar fit a bit loose (too far forward on the wheel). I'll definetly get a big bunjee for atleast its maiden voyage.

Thanks,

jim
If the J-bar has enough extension, you might be able to tuck it over the wheel behind the basket arms. I've been doing that with my mule-bike. It's got a makeshift light mount over the front fender, and our bus racks have just enough reach to get behind that. If you can pull it off, it's an incredibly secure way to hitch your bike to the front of the bus. There isn't ANY way that bar is going to slip off of the front tire like that!
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