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New rack stores 5 bikes, Cost $25

Old 12-11-08, 08:59 AM
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HandsomeRyan
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New rack stores 5 bikes, Cost $25

I was frustrated with my growing collection of bikes taking up too much space in my basement and every time I'd go to grab the bike I wanted I had to move 3 other bikes out of the way. I looked at buying a rack but everything I found was way overpriced and many of the racks had questionable reviews. I decided that there must be a cheap and easy way to store my bikes so I could access any of them without taking up too much space or costing an arm and a leg. Below are some pictures of what I came up with.

The frame is 2x4's with 2x2 cross bracing. Everything was "glued and screwed" together with the exception of the 2 "platforms" that hold the upper bikes; these were nailed on using galvanized steel framing braces. This unit was sort of a prototype to see if this would work and if I'd be happy with the design. I may modify the rack in the future to include a shelf in the upper portion of the A's to store bike pump, chain lube, and other bike accessories. Although the upper bikes stay on the rack just fine, I added bungee cords to secure them just in case we have an earthquake or something. Safety first!

It's not beautiful but for $25 it gets the job done. Your comments and questions are welcome.




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Old 12-11-08, 09:39 AM
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Boy, you got ticked off. Ticked enough to actually do something about it. Nice job. bk
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Old 12-11-08, 10:20 AM
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Old 12-11-08, 11:15 AM
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Looks very functional, I like it. May I ask why you went with the bikes on a shelf as opposed to hanging like most racks?
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Old 12-11-08, 11:18 AM
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looks great! I'd probably add some thin vertical strips on the 2x4's near the wheels so the wheel doesnt just slip out to the side. Given the slant you have there, you may only need it on the outer edge.

--edit- I think the shelf makes it more versatile. Each bike could be slightly different with a sloping or straight top-tube. The one common dimension of all bikes is that the wheels are on flat ground
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Old 12-11-08, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by SweetLou View Post
May I ask why you went with the bikes on a shelf as opposed to hanging like most racks?
A few reasons-

Hanging is great for bikes with horizontal top tubes. Unfortunately, 3 of the 5 bikes I needed to store have sloping top tubes that would make hanging the bikes awkward. Either they would hang at some weird angle and possibly interfere with each other; or the hooks would need to be set for each specific bike and you'd have to re-do the hooks every time you wanted to change where each bike goes on the rack. For example, a cyclocross bike may be stored up top and a road bike on the bottom in the summer but this could be reversed for convenience during 'cross season. Since all bikes need a horizontal surface to rest on, it was much easier to use a shelf system which allows for more versatility since any bike can go in any spot.

Cost was also a factor in the decision to use "shelves". Padded hooks cost from $1 to $12+ [each] for nicer ones. The 2x4x10 piece of lumber used to make both shelves was less than $4.

Finally, The shelves create part of the structure of the rack. If I had used hooks I still would have needed cross pieces connecting the two A frames so I only would have saved a very small amount of lumber if I'd used hooks.

Assuming the rack is full of bikes, the shelves don't take up anymore space than the bikes themselves would have since even my shortest wheelbased bike (my fixed gear) is longer than the 5' shelves from the front of the front tire to the back of the rear tire. If the rack is empty the shelves appear to stick out into the room but if the shelf is empty that means I'm out riding so it doesn't bother me.

This type rack could probably be built to use hooks but I feel that the shelves are more versatile.
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Old 12-11-08, 11:46 AM
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very nice
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Old 12-11-08, 02:52 PM
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Thanks for answering, sounds like good reasons to me. One option though, we have a rack at work that hangs the bikes from the wheels, so a sloping top tube would not matter.
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Old 12-12-08, 08:22 AM
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Very nice. That might be a project for our apartment. What's the angle on those uprights?
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Old 12-12-08, 12:00 PM
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Good work. I like the idea. I built a 5 bike rack out of 2x4's I had sitting here, so the total outlay was about $4.00 for screws, but I wish I had seen your design prior. Your takes a lot less floor space.

-Roger
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Old 12-14-08, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by harleyfrog View Post
What's the angle on those uprights?
They were mitered to about 7 degrees on each side for a total angle of about 14 degrees.
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Old 12-14-08, 02:32 PM
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That is a fantastic cheap design that works. Unfortunately I am not a carpenetr and cannot work on wood. The Welding gun keeps melting the wood. But it does give me a few ideas for the Angle Iron I have sitting around at work.

Well done on curing a problem simply and effectively.
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Old 12-14-08, 02:50 PM
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Great job. That's a nice looking bike rack.
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Old 12-14-08, 03:35 PM
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cool rack - good ideas/reasoning on the shelves.

Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
That is a fantastic cheap design that works. Unfortunately I am not a carpenetr and cannot work on wood. The Welding gun keeps melting the wood. But it does give me a few ideas for the Angle Iron I have sitting around at work.

Well done on curing a problem simply and effectively.
one of the guys i work with insists on cutting wood with a 4" grinder and cut-off wheel.
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Old 12-14-08, 05:02 PM
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Thanks for all the nice comments.

I put a lot of time into doodling rack designs on the whiteboard in my garage before settling on this design and so far I'm really happy with it.

If anyone else builds a rack similar to this (or using a different design) I'd love to see pictures. Feel free to post them here or PM me.

Happy Pedaling!
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