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What is the lightest rear rack?

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What is the lightest rear rack?

Old 09-27-15, 01:11 PM
  #1  
12strings
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What is the lightest rear rack?

That's all! I want a rack for my bike, but a lightweight one...I won't be carrying more than 5-10 lbs on it...basically one bag with one change of clothes.
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Old 09-27-15, 03:38 PM
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I don't know if it is truly the lightest on the market, but Tubus makes a minimalist rear rack...I think it is called the Fly.
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Old 09-27-15, 04:59 PM
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I had this installed by the LBS when purchasing my new bike. It's very light, also the least expensive in the shop. The con is (obvious from the picture) it's completely hollow in the center and you'd need to put something on it either to serve as a fender blocking mud/dusts, or to prevent the load from touching the tire. Also magnets will not suck onto this alloy rack.

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Old 09-27-15, 05:12 PM
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Function is key over light weightness in my opinion. But that's with commuter bikes.
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Old 09-27-15, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Hub Spanner View Post
I don't know if it is truly the lightest on the market, but Tubus makes a minimalist rear rack...I think it is called the Fly.
Actually, their lightest model is the Airy. Weighs 8.7 oz, 66 lb capacity. Tubus Airy Rear Titanium Bicycle Bike Rack

Bucks deluxe, but as with everything cycling, lighter = more costly.
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Old 09-27-15, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Actually, their lightest model is the Airy. Weighs 8.7 oz, 66 lb capacity. Tubus Airy Rear Titanium Bicycle Bike Rack

Bucks deluxe, but as with everything cycling, lighter = more costly.
Note that the drawback with that design (and the Fly) is that you cannot easily put a small trunk bag on top of it. It's shape makes it difficult / impossible. It's meant to carry a pannier - and that means more weight from the bag.
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Old 09-27-15, 07:26 PM
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tsl, I thought that I had gotten used to prices for the fancier bike components. Still, that Airy bike rack price made my jaw drop a little!
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Old 09-27-15, 07:29 PM
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It really doesn't matter all that much unless it is made out of lead. Any decent aluminum rack will do just fine. It matters more what you put on it.
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Old 09-27-15, 07:32 PM
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Bontrager Backrack Lightweight is very very lightweight and will go on bikes with rack mounts, and bikes without rack mount (like full carbon bikes):
BackRack Lightweight - | Bontrager

If you have rack mounts and want something that's also kind of a fender for the rear wheel, they make both a Small and Large version of the Backrack, here's the Large:
BackRack L - | Bontrager

Thing is, most racks are pretty lightweight. You're not gaining much by spending a ton more money. Most of my bikes just have the standard Topeak rack on them:
Amazon.com: Topeak Explorer Bike Rack

Because the less materials they use the less expensive it is to make, most aluminum racks are already pretty light and it may not be worth it to spend more money on something lighter just to save a few grams. You also have the weight of the trunk bag to add on, plus your clothes. The rack is just a very small amount of difference between a cheaper aluminum rack and a "lightweight" expensive one.

The bigger question is - can you leave any clothes at a desk or something at work? I always leave shoes at my desk so I don't have to carry them back and forth. Pants and shirt are debatable and depend on the environment where I work - if they're bike friendly I leave them at my desk, if they seem uptight I'll carry them with me, then change in the bathroom before I get near my desk. I leave shoes at my desk either way as it's easy to change shoes at my desk.
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Old 09-27-15, 08:15 PM
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The old standby, Pletscher CS, 520g, $24.94
Pletscher made in Switzerland
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Old 09-27-15, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Actually, their lightest model is the Airy. Weighs 8.7 oz, 66 lb capacity. Tubus Airy Rear Titanium Bicycle Bike Rack

Bucks deluxe, but as with everything cycling, lighter = more costly.
Whew, $260 for a rack... I think I'll have to skip that one.

My old Blackburn rack has served me well for many years, with both light and moderate loads.

You might consider a seatpost rack if you have a CF frame and no rack mounts.

If I was replacing my rack, I'd choose one with a solid center strip, to act as both a cheap fender, and to keep the load from rubbing the rear tire.
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Old 09-28-15, 09:24 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
Note that the drawback with that design (and the Fly) is that you cannot easily put a small trunk bag on top of it. It's shape makes it difficult / impossible. It's meant to carry a pannier - and that means more weight from the bag.
I do it with some sail battens mounted on the rack with longer o-rings and then the bag strapped down with velcro straps. Don't notice any difference from being on a larger rack and I really like the trim light Tubus Fly and Airy (have them both).

J.
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Old 09-28-15, 10:11 AM
  #13  
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Looked at frame bags?
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Old 09-28-15, 10:21 AM
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Skip the rack and get a saddle bag like the jandd mountain wedge III if you're not carrying much and want to save weight. If 7.5 liters capacity isn't enough, take a look carradice saddlebags. The lightest rack is no rack.
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Old 09-28-15, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
I do it with some sail battens mounted on the rack with longer o-rings and then the bag strapped down with velcro straps. Don't notice any difference from being on a larger rack and I really like the trim light Tubus Fly and Airy (have them both).

J.
Sure, that's why I said "cannot easily" - you can work around it, but it's not as straightforward as a rectangular-topped rack, it requires some sort of workaround.
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Old 09-28-15, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
Sure, that's why I said "cannot easily" - you can work around it, but it's not as straightforward as a rectangular-topped rack, it requires some sort of workaround.
Actually, it's very easy. You could do it with popsicle sticks and rubber bands. I just used sail battens because I had some old ones laying around.

J.

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Old 09-28-15, 12:54 PM
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Nothing weighs less than a Part not installed.
If Lowest weight is your Highest priority forget putting Any Rack on at all .

Then Again, You could buy Carbon fiber tubing and Make one of your own in the Garage.

but putting anything on it may weigh too much.
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Old 09-28-15, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
I do it with some sail battens mounted on the rack with longer o-rings and then the bag strapped down with velcro straps. Don't notice any difference from being on a larger rack and I really like the trim light Tubus Fly and Airy (have them both).

J.
can you post a photo of the Airy? I've never seen one 'in the wild'. Just the same catalog pix over and over.
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Old 09-28-15, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
Actually, it's very easy. You could do it with popsicle sticks and rubber bands. I just used sail battens because I had some old ones laying around.

J.

I feel like this could go on forever, it's not a competition over who can be the most clever - it's just about that someone ordering the rack should know it's not going to work well with a trunk bag out of the box.

That's a good pic.

I've considered doing something similar because I've felt like it's the best looking rack with no bag on it, and with a bag on it the bag would cover up any odd attachments.

But I'd be really annoyed if I ordered that rack because of a recommendation, and only after I got it and installed it found out that it required additional work to put a bag on it, wouldn't you?
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Old 09-28-15, 01:00 PM
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From the Bike Packing sector you can get a Bag to go behind your saddle to stuff Your Clothes Into
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Old 09-28-15, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Nothing weighs less than a Part not installed.
If Lowest weight is your Highest priority forget putting Any Rack on at all .

Then Again, You could buy Carbon fiber tubing and Make one of your own in the Garage.

but putting anything on it may weigh too much.
But weight makes a very very small difference in actual performance. (The kind of weight a rack would add at least). Weight only tends to affect speed when you're going uphill (slower), downhill (faster), or accelerating (slower). While that sounds like a lot, when just riding on the flat after you're up to speed weight doesn't affect your speed (either at all or almost at all).

You're also on average a 200lb rider, with about a 20lb bike. Adding or removing a pound or two is a tiny percentage of your overall weight.
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Old 09-28-15, 01:13 PM
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One 1st has to obsess over It.. I got over that , Long ago .. Things that work weigh what they do in order to do their Job.

Get on that Fabricating Job maybe you have a Market amongst Other Weight weenies. to sell them to .

one of the posters in the Folding Bike forum had a carbon tube aluminum joined rack that they Got in Singapore. They live there.

Googling bike packing seat bags gets a lot of pictured ones
https://www.google.com/search?q=bike...w=1808&bih=959

this past June a number of the TransAmerica ACA racers used that kind of bags . No rack required.

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Old 09-28-15, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Nothing weighs less than a Part not installed.
If Lowest weight is your Highest priority forget putting Any Rack on at all .

Then Again, You could buy Carbon fiber tubing and Make one of your own in the Garage.

but putting anything on it may weigh too much.
I'd do it, but when I sit down to design one it's not as simple as it would seem at first glance. To make it rigid enough with all straight pieces, and strong enough for typical loads. Have you seen any designs which have been tested in practical use? Appearance is also a factor because why go with carbon fiber if it winds up looking like something I slapped together out of my junk parts pile?
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Old 09-28-15, 01:29 PM
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Here's my trunk bag (Arkel Tailrider) mounted on the rack using this system. I used this to carry a DSLR and a 70-200mm lens mounted on it that day. Rack is the Tubus Fly which works very well since it's wider back deeper on the rack and then narrows to the front. Any flex side to side depends on the bands you use to attach the battens to the rack. If you use wire and twist it tight, that would be the most secure (very secure)



Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
can you post a photo of the Airy? I've never seen one 'in the wild'. Just the same catalog pix over and over.
Actually, I can't in the next week or so (traveling). I took it off the bike and only put it on when I need it. It's narrow at the front like the fly is but it doesn't get wider like the fly does. It's a great rack and I've carried a lot of weight on it.

Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
I feel like this could go on forever, it's not a competition over who can be the most clever - it's just about that someone ordering the rack should know it's not going to work well with a trunk bag out of the box.

That's a good pic.

I've considered doing something similar because I've felt like it's the best looking rack with no bag on it, and with a bag on it the bag would cover up any odd attachments.
Yep. That's how it works. As you cinch down the bag on top, it just tightens it up further. You could go even more firm by using wire or something too but I don't think that would be necessary. The things to watch for are how the attachment system works and how much velcro they give you to work with. It varies bag to bag and it can lead to incompatibilities to any number of racks.

But I'd be really annoyed if I ordered that rack because of a recommendation, and only after I got it and installed it found out that it required additional work to put a bag on it, wouldn't you?
Actually, I wound't. I've done enough of this to realize that there are all sorts of incompatibilities between bags and racks and loads. You have to check each combination no matter what.

You don't have to put it on the bike to test it. You can do it off the bike and see how it fits first. No different than any other rack and bag combo. I guess I've always tried them out on the racks in the store or when I've gotten them all home and found that important to do. And, FWIW, I think you pretty much need to go through this with any rack and trunk bag if they are not from the same mfg and designed specifically to work together as well as how it's going to be loaded (and sometimes even then).

That all said, I've gone away from rack trunks. I agree with the sentiment that the lightest rack is no rack and now use seat/saddle bags like this:

https://bolderbikepacking.wordpress.com/saddlebags/

So I hardly ever use a trunk bag by itself anymore. A rack weighs more than a pound and close to two. A rack trunk without anything in it is one or two pounds. So that's three to four pounds of added weight before you even put anything in it.

if I'm using panniers or pannier style bags, then I hardly ever need the trunk bag anymore either. For touring, I'd put the sleeping bag on top of the rack or my tent and not the a rack trunk.

I find that the bike handles better with the weight close in and you get ride of the weight of the rack and the extra weight that is usually found in all the trunk bags (which tend to be heavy compared to the saddlebags). Since I tend to favor tighter geometries in my bikes, this matters to me.

But if you want to use a trunk bag on a Tubus Fly or Airy, this is how you can do it. I think those are two of the best looking racks out there. And I really like how they tuck the side loads in closer to the bike by not having all that width up top. Worth the try if one is looking at these racks. And it would be prudent to make sure it's all returnable in the event that it doesn't work out (which is the same advice I'd give on any bag/rack combo).

J.
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Old 09-28-15, 01:52 PM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Actually, their lightest model is the Airy. Weighs 8.7 oz, 66 lb capacity. Tubus Airy Rear Titanium Bicycle Bike Rack

Bucks deluxe, but as with everything cycling, lighter = more costly.
This is going to really make you sick but I was able to pick one one from Fleabay for $100 + $30 shipping. And that wasn't an auction. It was brand new shipped from Germany. For some reason, the Airy was dirt cheap this summer. Dirt cheap enough that I got another one for just a little bit more and didn't have to pay shipping. There are still some around if you look and know how to search for them. I'm not sure I'll tell you (and the world) the exact search terms...I might still want to buy some...but use German for rear rack and titanium. You'll find them.

Originally Posted by PaulRivers View Post
Note that the drawback with that design (and the Fly) is that you cannot easily put a small trunk bag on top of it. It's shape makes it difficult / impossible. It's meant to carry a pannier - and that means more weight from the bag.
The Fly and Vega are similar in shape and width but the Airy and the Logo are super narrow. Yes, putting a trunk bag on them is more of a hassle but I haven't found trunk bags to work all that well even on wider racks. They tend to go floppy in my experience.

I solved the problem by using a Racktime Trunkit bag but I ditched the Racktime mount and got a Ortlieb rack adapter and an Ortlieb basket adapter. With a little bit of McGuyvering on the bag, I have a system that snaps into place without having to hassle with velcro. The mount is solid enough that I can pick up the bike by the bag if I want and I've not had to worry about the bag coming loose nor flopping about...even on the narrow Airy base.

You can see the adapter in the first picture and the bag/adapter in the second. The rack in the first picture is a Vega, by the way, with similar dimensions to the Fly.



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