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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 08-06-10, 03:14 AM   #1
KD5NRH
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Really heavy duty racks?

Still looking to outfit the Ironhorse as my "ugly, heavy hauler." Seems like most of the racks I'm running across are built for light weight, and as a result, relatively light capacity compared to the solid steel thing I used to have on it. Does anybody still make reasonably priced front and rear racks with good pannier frames that will take serious weight? I've been known to go curbpicking and and I like to hit garage sales when the opportunity strikes, (and good stuff tends to disappear if I take the time to go home for the car) so I'd like to be able to strap on heavy and/or awkwardly shaped objects without the rack itself wobbling like it's going to break. The bike is never going to be light or fast, so I don't mind a couple extra pounds in the racks themselves as long as they're rock solid.
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Old 08-06-10, 10:49 AM   #2
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I suggest you get some made to fit your bike.

That's what I did. Cost me $100, including the paint job.

Well worth it. Local bike builder did a great job.
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Old 08-06-10, 10:49 AM   #3
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Chrome Moly tube ones I got from Bruce Gordon have been on many long Bike camping tours,
carrying too much, on pretty rough roads and are still fine 25 years later.

Though a Bike trailer will really add to your Gleaning capacity.
http://www.bikesatwork.com/
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Old 08-06-10, 02:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KD5NRH View Post
Still looking to outfit the Ironhorse as my "ugly, heavy hauler." Seems like most of the racks I'm running across are built for light weight, and as a result, relatively light capacity compared to the solid steel thing I used to have on it. Does anybody still make reasonably priced front and rear racks with good pannier frames that will take serious weight? I've been known to go curbpicking and and I like to hit garage sales when the opportunity strikes, (and good stuff tends to disappear if I take the time to go home for the car) so I'd like to be able to strap on heavy and/or awkwardly shaped objects without the rack itself wobbling like it's going to break. The bike is never going to be light or fast, so I don't mind a couple extra pounds in the racks themselves as long as they're rock solid.
When it comes to "serious hauling ,i.e. weight" rack makers shy away from selling such a rack due to product liability and the attending lawsuits when they fail 'cause some delbert dumbutt overloaded it. Light racks are easier to defend since it's clear when they get overloaded and fail why it happened.

Found this DIY heavy rack you can make...........
http://www.bicyclinglife.com/HowTo/HeavyDutyRacks.htm
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I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

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Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

Last edited by Nightshade; 08-06-10 at 04:08 PM.
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Old 08-06-10, 04:17 PM   #5
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The Surly Chrome Moly front and rear racks are quite large and heavy duty by current standards.
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Old 08-06-10, 07:12 PM   #6
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Isn't the carrying capacity of a rack limited by the two little screws that attach it to the frame down by the wheel?
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Old 08-06-10, 07:28 PM   #7
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You might think about the Thorn Expedition Rack. It allows the use of M6 screws to attach it, which makes the attachment much less of a weak point.
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Old 08-06-10, 08:53 PM   #8
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I seem to remember real heavy duty racks used as a newspaper boy. I had a Schwinn beach cruiser with a big rack on the back.
But, the newspaper boy has pretty much gone the way of the dodo.
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Old 08-06-10, 09:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightshade View Post
When it comes to "serious hauling ,i.e. weight" rack makers shy away from selling such a rack due to product liability and the attending lawsuits when they fail 'cause some delbert dumbutt overloaded it. Light racks are easier to defend since it's clear when they get overloaded and fail why it happened.

Found this DIY heavy rack you can make...........
http://www.bicyclinglife.com/HowTo/HeavyDutyRacks.htm
That looks doable. Should be a fairly simple matter to add a curved tube on each side as a pannier frame (to keep overhanging stuff out of the wheel) too. Guess I'll have to scrounge some steel bar. (Buying new is ridiculously expensive for stuff that some people will pay you to haul off.)
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Old 08-07-10, 04:22 PM   #10
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I buil myself these 2 racks for my touring tandem.


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Old 08-08-10, 04:06 AM   #11
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I feel like a regular ol' Tubus would carry anything big and heavy enough to not cause serious bike-handling problems unrelated to rack wobble.

I've seen pictures of people riding on Cetma front racks as well.

Really, handling and actually getting your bike somewhere are going to become big problems much quicker than you're going to overload your rack.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:04 AM   #12
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Isn't the carrying capacity of a rack limited by the two little screws that attach it to the frame down by the wheel?
More likely the attachment of the eylet to the frame than the screws. The screws are 8.8 M5 screws, which gives them a proof load of 600 MPa, which works out to about 4700 newtons, or the force of 480 kg, 1,000 lbs. That needs to be derated, quite a lot, for safety, but you do have two of them. Ability to handle the bike with a load well above the axle line is going to be a problem before the screws are the limiting factor. I'd expect -- but haven't done any work to back this up -- that twisting the eylet or dropout will be a problem before the screw is a problem.
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Old 08-10-10, 05:59 AM   #13
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I've thought about contacting these folks for a custom built rack. http://www.acmebicyclecompany.com/racks.htm

I haven't done so because of the shipping charges to Japan. The racks look nice in the pictures, and it seems they can build to specs. That said, I came across this outfit by searching "custom racks"; I haven't ever seen them mentioned here on these forums. No affiliation, etc.
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Old 08-11-10, 04:27 AM   #14
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Unfortunately Acme just went under. There are quite a lot of other custom builders out there that will fabricate a rack for you though.
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Old 08-14-10, 02:58 AM   #15
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Unfortunately Acme just went under. There are quite a lot of other custom builders out there that will fabricate a rack for you though.
I may just take Lucian's pics down to the local muffler/odd-jobs-with-welding guy and see what he can do. I'm already thinking about taking him a pic of some of the BOB-like homebuilt trailers to see what he'd charge to weld one up.
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Old 08-22-10, 11:47 AM   #16
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A few front racks to check out are:

http://www.amazon.com/Gamoh-Carrier-.../dp/B003ODBWKM

http://cetmacargo.com/10%20CETMA%20c...ks%20index.htm

http://www.practicalcycles.com/userimages/procart17.htm Scroll down to "Front Cargo Carrier (with side rails)

http://www.hembrow.eu/frontrack.html
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Old 09-01-10, 08:19 PM   #17
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I hope I don't come across as someone plugging some business, but I had an experience with a small custom bike frame shop in Ft. Collins, Colorado. I have a GT Xizang titanium mtn. bike, and wanted a really durable and heavy-duty rear rack. Black Sheep Bicycles ( http://www.blacksheepbikes.com/ ) in Ft. Collins makes custom titanium bicycle frames, and they agreed to make me a rear rack that could hold at least 200 lbs. I gladly paid $350 for the custom-made titanium rack, and I feel that they got screwed. The rack is total perfection! Not a single blemish in machine work, welding or finishing.

Does it hold up? I don't know, but a friend of mine who weighs 308 lbs. got on the rack yesterday and the rack was rock-solid. The front wheel of my bike rose up, but the rear rack was like granite!

I'm now a huge fan of http://www.blacksheepbikes.com/

(No, I'm not associated with them. I manage large marinas for a living, and I'm just a very pleased customer)
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Old 10-04-10, 06:23 PM   #18
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Xizangstan, we need pics! I'd love to see this thing--sounds great!
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Old 10-05-10, 11:15 AM   #19
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Define heavy. The Axiom rear rack I bought for my commuter bike (sorry don't remember the specific model) was about $40 Cdn and was rated for 110 lbs - which should be sufficient for almost any object you'd want to strap onto the rack (minus an adult passenger).
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Old 10-05-10, 11:43 AM   #20
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I like my Jannd Expedition racks. http://www.jandd.com/search_results....el=2&subcat=13

Rated at 40lbs front, 75 rear. The tops of these racks are are bigger than most, providing better support for your loads.




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Old 10-05-10, 11:55 AM   #21
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Quote:
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I buil myself these 2 racks for my touring tandem.


Nice work! Can we see a picture of the whole rig?

I'm inspired by your use of otherwise extraneous fork brake mounts. I recently bought a MTB with disc brakes and unused rim brake mounts on the suspension fork... Can I put a small rack on a suspension fork? Three point attachment?

Last edited by qmsdc15; 10-05-10 at 11:59 AM.
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Old 10-06-10, 12:05 AM   #22
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We could build you custom racks but since you are in Texas you should find a local fabricator to do this as they would have your bike at hand to make sure the fitting was exact.
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Old 10-12-10, 11:36 PM   #23
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Nice work! Can we see a picture of the whole rig?
This is The Rig ! I can't find a picture whithout bags, if you want I'll make a fresh one.


OK, I find another one. Is't foggy but we were on the top of a mountain.

Last edited by LucianTheOne; 10-12-10 at 11:40 PM.
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Old 10-13-10, 04:56 PM   #24
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That's a baddass bike! Thanks for showing it. I have a mountain tandem but it's a Motiv (department store brand) and I have no stoker (except when my niece is visiting), so I rarely get to ride it.
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Old 12-14-10, 09:14 PM   #25
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"We could build you custom racks..."

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I wish I knew that when I lived there... UGH!
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