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safe roof rack

Old 04-24-09, 12:34 PM
  #1  
vsopking
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safe roof rack

Ok, I just bought a Roubaix and also like to carry the bike on the roof of my car...
Should I go for a roof rack and carry the complete bike - or take off the front wheel and use a rack with the front fork/back wheel attached. Apart from stories like: I forgot the bike on top of the car while riding into my garage... I am curious if you like using them. Any info welcome - it was you who got me to buy a Roubaix after all.
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Old 04-24-09, 12:56 PM
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I think it's interesting that someone from Amsterdam wants a car rack of any kind. From what I've read, and seen on the Internet, I thought Netherlanders rode everywhere, therefore having no (or little) use for a car at all.

Yeah, I know, that's not what was asked, just sayin' . . .

For roof racks, I like the kind where the front wheel comes off, and you can "lock" the front fork to the rack. Slightly more aero-dynamic (ref: fuel milage), and less bike wobble while driving along the motorway.

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Old 04-24-09, 12:56 PM
  #3  
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I had a Yakima roof rack on my old car. Sold it when I sold the car.
I had two Steelhead trays for hauling two bikes (front wheels removed).

Never had any problems with the bikes or the rack, even at 75 mph on the highway. And I never crunched the bike. The bike cleared the carport roof by at least 6" so I could mount and unmount the bike while under the carport.
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Old 04-24-09, 01:09 PM
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I've only used the type that requires removing the front wheel and have never had any problems. I bought the cheapest ones I could find several years ago ($30 each) and clamped them to my existing roof rack. I bought these before getting back into cycling. I would have probably bought more expensive racks had I been planning on hauling our good road bikes but, after hauling a couple of our MTBs this way for hundreds of miles at a time, I'd put our good roadies up there without hesitation.

I still prefer hitch-mounted racks but when we're towing our camping trailer and hauling 4 bikes we need to put a couple up top.

Last edited by CACycling; 04-24-09 at 01:24 PM.
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Old 04-24-09, 01:22 PM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
I think it's interesting that someone from Amsterdam wants a car rack of any kind. From what I've read, and seen on the Internet, I thought Netherlanders rode everywhere, therefore having no (or little) use for a car at all.

Yeah, I know, that's not what was asked, just sayin' . . .

For roof racks, I like the kind where the front wheel comes off, and you can "lock" the front fork to the rack. Slightly more aero-dynamic (ref: fuel milage), and less bike wobble while driving along the motorway.

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---
... we indeed ride everywhere - however, sometimes it's nice to take the bike with you and explore a new route. Especially on holidays; going to Limburg's hills - I know not really mountains but enough to make your legs tremble...
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Old 04-24-09, 01:25 PM
  #6  
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Overhere, you see a lot of twinny load carriers that are attached to the hook at the rear of the car. I don't have such a hook - and they are sure expensive, so I'll go with the roof rack.
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Old 04-24-09, 07:41 PM
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I like the fork mount model roof racks. I think it keeps the bike more secure. I put the front wheel in the car, not on top.
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Old 04-24-09, 07:53 PM
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I also prefer the fork-mount style. But if I'm only carrying a single bike I just take off both wheels and put the bike plus wheels in the trunk. It's at least as quick as using a roof rack, hides the bike and makes it more secure, and avoids the potential garage door or other obstruction issue.
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Old 04-24-09, 11:18 PM
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I use the Yakama roof rack that clamps the fork (like RonH shows in Post #3). I prefer this for my carbon fiber (CF) bike because nothing touches the frame. Some in my club have ruined their CF bikes by using a rack involving a frame clamp, holder or hanger in some variation which can cause damage.
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Old 04-25-09, 07:58 AM
  #10  
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I used the fork mount rack for years... on my latest car, however, I got a deal on craigslist for a used Saris roof rack that kept the wheel on the bike. It has locking 'jaws' so I can lock the bike on the rack, and is stable. I have driven the car with 3 bikes on the rack at 70+ mph on the highway with no problems. I like the fact that I don't have to take the wheel off...but it wasn't the reason I bought the rack. It was a question of price... the Yakima and Thule racks similar to what I had before were around $450 new, or $150-200 on the craigslist in DC. The Saris was $100

I have never owned a rack that mounted to the trailer hitch.

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Old 04-25-09, 08:56 AM
  #11  
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Fork mounts don't make you lift the bike as high.
I've used Yakima since the 80s. I currently have a steelhead and it works really well.
I put the front wheel in the car. If you use the front wheel mount, add a bungie so it won't spin, and to hold it down a bit more. You can also leave teh bungie on when there is no wheel to stop the tuning fork effect.
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Old 04-26-09, 11:10 AM
  #12  
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Thank you for all input!
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Old 06-12-09, 11:56 AM
  #13  
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Roof Rack for touring bike

I have always been very satisfied with my Yakima fork-mount roof racks but they don't work for my touring bike with a low-rider front rack. Will the racks which allow the front wheel to remain on the bike work OK or will the front bike rack or water bottle cage interfere with the mounting system? Does anyone have experience with this?
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