Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Front Rack

Notices
Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Front Rack

Old 02-08-14, 12:10 AM
  #1  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Aerohip's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Posts: 143

Bikes: Surly LHT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Liked 21 Times in 9 Posts
Front Rack

I'm having a tough time deciding what Front rack to go with. I really like the Tubus Tara, but its not available in Canada. There's the Axiom lowrider and the Surly Nice Rack. Surly looks like a heavy rack while the Axiom looks a little flimsy. Any suggestions? Especially from my fellow Canucks?
Aerohip is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 01:02 AM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Perth Australia
Posts: 1,008

Bikes: Surly Ogre, Extrawheel Trailer

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 122 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 30 Posts
I went with the Tubus Nova.
I like the idea of stainless due to no paint to scratch and resistant to rust.

With regards the Surly, tis too heavy for what it is and can carry.
A combo of Tubus front (any of them) and something like a Velo Orange Pass Hunter rack
https://store.velo-orange.com/index.p...nter-rack.html
will both (in combo) weigh less and carry a much higher kg load than the Surly.

As for Canada, not sure what your import duties etc. are like, but here in Aussie availability can be a challenge for bike parts, not to mention price rorting, so I tend to buy most of my stuff in Germany.
Buying from the EC (from a non EC country) means no VAT (tax) to pay and here in Aussie, no GST (tax) or duty for bicycles/parts less than a thousand dollars currently.

I use bike24.net and starbike.com

Good luck with the purchase decision and finding what you want.

Spotted a nice LHT here with the type of top rack I was waffling about and with my favorite Gilles Berthoud fenders which I have on my Ogre.
The photos dont show a low rider so you'll just have to imagine a Tubus Nova added in your photoshop imagination.
https://s18.photobucket.com/user/e_me...00165.jpg.html

Last edited by rifraf; 02-08-14 at 03:18 AM.
rifraf is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 01:50 AM
  #3  
Senior Member
 
Medic Zero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Vancouver,Washington
Posts: 2,280

Bikes: Old steel GT's, for touring and commuting

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
.

When I was looking for a front rack for my last build I was eyeing the Surly Nice Rack, but found some reviews mentioning failures of the rack. I've never seen Surly admit to this and say that they've resolved whatever the issue was so I steered clear of it. I ended up getting a Nitto Big Front Rack. Pricey, but I like having the area on top as well as the sides for my panniers. Besides, it's beautiful and should last forever. Still shiny as brand new after two years of constant use.

I swear by my Old Man Mountain front rack as well. They discontinued my model (Cold Springs), but all their offerings are solid. Bomb-proof really.

Last edited by Medic Zero; 02-08-14 at 02:33 AM.
Medic Zero is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 06:12 AM
  #4  
Its only pain
 
dannwilliams's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Hammond, WI
Posts: 930

Bikes: '18 Salsa Marrakesh, '14 Salsa Colossal, '89 GT Timberline

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 54 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 4 Posts
Salsa Down Under
I just installed this winter and have not yet used it. Appears to be a sturdy, durable setup. I believe it was designed for the Fargo, I have it on a LHT.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
2014-01-06 02.48.34.jpg (101.5 KB, 110 views)
dannwilliams is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 10:02 AM
  #5  
Touring Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 278

Bikes: 23" Schwinn High Plains, 20" Trek 830 Antelope

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I've not used one of these racks yet..... so maybe consider it simply as a possibility...

https://www.minoura.jp/english/rack/front/mt-4000sf.html

I've looked at all the big-name, "quality" rack manufacturers for a good front rack and there are some really nice looking ones available - for a large enough investment.

However, in my search for a good, steel front rack without breaking my "bike-toy bank", I came across this companies offering and was really intrigued. It looks similar to the Nitto Big Front Rack and the Surly Nice Front Rack which seem quite perfect for what I want. Then saw the asking/street price for the Minoura (~$60) and was completely *shocked*!

Minoura does state it is designed for bikes with front suspension and mounting to a rigid fork is outside the design intention. However, they also state that the rack can attach to V or Cantilever brake mounts. Bingo!!!! While my humble 1990 era Schwinn High Plains does not have a front suspension, it *does* have cantilever brakes so I believe it will attach nicely.

Here is a "review" of this rack attached to a rigid fork:

https://biketourings.com/3/post/2013/...by-rideon.html

A close look reveals this rack has in it's suspension/mounting design being attached through the hub skewer (which Minoura supplies!). To me, using the skewer keeps my fork eyelets freed up for my fender and greater load-bearing strength than the smaller eyelet bolts. Admittedly, these eyelet bolts would have a pretty high shear-strength - more than enough to accommodate whatever I'd want to carry on the front of my bike, but I like the idea of "bolting on" to the greatest strength point on the fork/wheel/hub sub-structure - the skewer.

Aside from this rack, I'm pretty close to designing/fabricating a custom rack myself. I'm very comfortable using a torch, welder and most every other tool necessary to making one myself (to include heat-treating) so I'm not too far from sourcing materials. Typically, it's just less expensive to buy an item already configured, but something simple like a rack is entirely different....

This one by Minoura looks like a nice alternative - especially for the price.

Last edited by PolarBear007; 02-08-14 at 10:11 AM.
PolarBear007 is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 10:50 AM
  #6  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NE IL
Posts: 675

Bikes: ICE Adventure 26FS, Surly Long Haul Trucker, Giant Cypress DX

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Aerohip
I'm having a tough time deciding what Front rack to go with. I really like the Tubus Tara, but its not available in Canada. There's the Axiom lowrider and the Surly Nice Rack. Surly looks like a heavy rack while the Axiom looks a little flimsy. Any suggestions? Especially from my fellow Canucks?
I'm surprised no one mentioned the Arkel AC Low Rider. https://www.arkel.ca/ca_e/all-categor...rom_store=ca_f

Curious that Arkel advertises the Tubus Tara on their US pages but not on Canadian pages
Recycle is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 11:00 AM
  #7  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,598

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,359 Times in 865 Posts
Why not just invest a little effort and get what you wanted ..

FWIW, Ortlieb/Tubus USA distributor is just across the border in Seattle area ..

Some US Retailer will ship it to you .. ask at the touring store (Colorado)

https://www.thetouringstore.com/TUBUS...OME%20PAGE.htm

or the Mother country, of Canada, [other than PQ] England via SJScycles..

https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/find.asp?...page=1&geoc=US

Or, you go to German Retailers that ship internationally ..

a quality steel tube rack like Tubus sells is going to lasta Lifetime.

I got some Bruce Gordon Made racks, they have been fine. since ~ 1983~ish..

Last edited by fietsbob; 02-08-14 at 11:07 AM.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 11:00 AM
  #8  
Senior Member
 
Chris Pringle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: The Pearl of the Pacific, Mexico
Posts: 1,310

Bikes: '12 Rodriguez UTB Custom, '83 Miyata 610, '83 Nishiki Century Mixte (Work of Art), '18 Engin hardtail MTB

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 18 Posts
Checking the Minoura website, they also carry a non-suspension lowrider rack. At USD $55 for a made-in-Japan rack, it seems like quite a bargain. It looks like the axle part won't interfere with disc brakes as shown on their MT-4000SF rack images. I like this rack!
Chris Pringle is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 11:09 AM
  #9  
Lentement mais sûrement
 
Erick L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Montréal
Posts: 2,253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 78 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
I have an OMM AC Lowrider, now sold by Arkel and a Surly Nice Rack in my closet. I wanted a platform and the Surly was too heavy and realized I never used the lowrider and bought an OMM Sherpa. It's rock solid, light and has a platform. It even extends the fender. I also broke a bolt into the Surly's light mount. This can't happen with the Sherpa since it's just a hole in the platform instead of a threaded hole.
Erick L is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 09:30 PM
  #10  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Perth Australia
Posts: 1,008

Bikes: Surly Ogre, Extrawheel Trailer

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 122 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 30 Posts
I'll just add to my first post an idea.
Buy once and buy right.
Get it right the first time and you'll never have to revisit the decision.
The best racks can be transferred to different bikes/frames as your cycling needs change.
Do your wallet a favor and do some research on what rack weighs what and then how much they can carry in weight.
Many racks either weigh to much in themselves or cant sustainable carry a decent touring weight regularly.
Many racks are sub par.
The info is out there if you look hard enough.
rifraf is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 10:09 PM
  #11  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5,206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 82 Times in 65 Posts
Originally Posted by Aerohip
I'm having a tough time deciding what Front rack to go with. I really like the Tubus Tara, but its not available in Canada. There's the Axiom lowrider and the Surly Nice Rack. Surly looks like a heavy rack while the Axiom looks a little flimsy. Any suggestions? Especially from my fellow Canucks?
To start what do you need to carry and what bike is it going on?
LeeG is offline  
Old 02-08-14, 10:21 PM
  #12  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Aerohip's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Posts: 143

Bikes: Surly LHT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Liked 21 Times in 9 Posts
Originally Posted by LeeG
To start what do you need to carry and what bike is it going on?
Surly LHT, and going on a Vancouver to Ushiaia Tour in 2015, I just ordered a Tubus Tara from Wayne at Thetouringstore.com. Great guy...and a great rack!
Aerohip is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 11:44 AM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 39,664
Mentioned: 211 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18596 Post(s)
Liked 16,088 Times in 7,551 Posts
Good choice assuming you really didn't want a front rack with a platform. The Surly Nice is insanely heavy. For anyone looking for a very strong and good looking front rack with a platform, check out the Nitto Big rack sold by Rivendell.
indyfabz is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 11:59 AM
  #14  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,598

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,359 Times in 865 Posts
I've used Bruce Gordon's low rider racks, on multiple tours.

I got a front rack fabricated .. it's fitted on canti-brake studs and the fork crown ..

It was narrow , and so, later, I added a piece of 1/4" plywood so things stay on better.. quasi Porteur..

Took a lot of pictures with my photo-gear bag on the ground near the bike , before adding a platform .

since unstrapping it = having the bag fall off , so I set it down .

Thus, you might consider a front rack with more width than the nitto-Riv thing.
they are only thinking of handlebar bag supports with those.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 02:11 PM
  #15  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5,206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 82 Times in 65 Posts
Originally Posted by Aerohip
Surly LHT, and going on a Vancouver to Ushiaia Tour in 2015, I just ordered a Tubus Tara from Wayne at Thetouringstore.com. Great guy...and a great rack!
The Tara low rider is a great rack. Something to consider is whether your bike has 700c or 26" wheels. Totally my own opinion but I find that with 26" wheels lowriders put the panniers too close to the ground for tight quarter riding near curbs and narrow trails. The 26"wheel LHT can carry front panniers on a top rack just fine but you have to move them far back enough that they'll overlap the brakes which may be a problem for some cantilevers but not for linear pull brakes.

this rack for 26" LHT



with the axle mounts removed the rack fits perfectly on the top dropout eyelet with a 1/4" spacers to clear the fork ends. I have it attached to the fork at the cantilever bosses and mid fork eyelet. It's a very solid and light set up.
LeeG is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 03:58 PM
  #16  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,598

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,359 Times in 865 Posts
Smarti , by Tubus moves the load up a ways , so does Mr Gordon's X model , for 26" wheels ..
it sits back a bit, so as to be easier to swing around the steering axis ..
fietsbob is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 04:08 PM
  #17  
Touring Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 278

Bikes: 23" Schwinn High Plains, 20" Trek 830 Antelope

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Aerohip
Surly LHT, and going on a Vancouver to Ushiaia Tour in 2015, I just ordered a Tubus Tara from Wayne at Thetouringstore.com. Great guy...and a great rack!
I'm glad you decided on a rack - particularly the one that was your preferred, 1st choice (otherwise, anytime something would've happened you'd have had buyers remorse...).

Originally Posted by fietsbob
I've used Bruce Gordon's low rider racks, on multiple tours.

I got a front rack fabricated .. it's fitted on canti-brake studs and the fork crown ..

It was narrow , and so, later, I added a piece of 1/4" plywood so things stay on better.. quasi Porteur..

Took a lot of pictures with my photo-gear bag on the ground near the bike , before adding a platform .

since unstrapping it = having the bag fall off , so I set it down .

Thus, you might consider a front rack with more width than the nitto-Riv thing.
they are only thinking of handlebar bag supports with those.
Sorry for my cranial density, but would you please elaborate on having a rack with greater width than the Nitto-Riv "Big Front Rack" in particular as regards your statement, "they are only thinking of handlebar bag supports with those"

Originally Posted by LeeG
The Tara low rider is a great rack. Something to consider is whether your bike has 700c or 26" wheels. Totally my own opinion but I find that with 26" wheels lowriders put the panniers too close to the ground for tight quarter riding near curbs and narrow trails.
Is there a general good distance to have from the front, low-rack attachment position of the panniers to the ground? A smarty-pants answer would be to simply measure the dimensions of the pannier, etc., but I'm looking for your own personal method/idea for this.
PolarBear007 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 07:48 PM
  #18  
Senior Member
 
Doug64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 31 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1188 Post(s)
Liked 855 Times in 442 Posts
This is a 700c LHT, Tubus Tara. The panniers seem be at a good height. I've never had a problem that was not my own fault.



I did scrape my right front pannier on an exceptionally high curb. I was going pretty fast, but it is only cosmetic damage. This was my fault. The bag is still waterproof.

Doug64 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 09:31 PM
  #19  
Touring Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 278

Bikes: 23" Schwinn High Plains, 20" Trek 830 Antelope

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Doug64
This is a 700c LHT, Tubus Tara. The panniers seem be at a good height. I've never had a problem that was not my own fault.


I did scrape my right front pannier on an exceptionally high curb. I was going pretty fast, but it is only cosmetic damage. This was my fault. The bag is still waterproof.

There is a product called SeamGrip by McNett that would likely repair the scuff and seal any potential leakage. I've used SeamGrip to (obviously) seal the seams in my mountaineering tents, fix holes torn in my g-tex gaitors and bibs and host of other seemingly irreparable damages.
PolarBear007 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 09:33 PM
  #20  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5,206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 82 Times in 65 Posts
Originally Posted by PolarBear007
Is there a general good distance to have from the front, low-rack attachment position of the panniers to the ground? A smarty-pants answer would be to simply measure the dimensions of the pannier, etc., but I'm looking for your own personal method/idea for this.
The "good distance" depends entirely on the terrain. You can't beat the stability a low rider provides for bikes that can't handle a rear load well or carrying mondo loads but once you're riding through places where you need to squeeze a few inches over I guess a similar height as the rear pannier would make sense.
LeeG is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 09:36 PM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
Doug64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 31 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1188 Post(s)
Liked 855 Times in 442 Posts
Originally Posted by PolarBear007
There is a product called SeamGrip by McNett that would likely repair the scuff and seal any potential leakage. I've used SeamGrip to (obviously) seal the seams in my mountaineering tents, fix holes torn in my g-tex gaitors and bibs and host of other seemingly irreparable damages.
Thanks, I'll give it a try.
Doug64 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 09:50 PM
  #22  
Touring Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 278

Bikes: 23" Schwinn High Plains, 20" Trek 830 Antelope

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by LeeG
The "good distance" depends entirely on the terrain. You can't beat the stability a low rider provides for bikes that can't handle a rear load well or carrying mondo loads but once you're riding through places where you need to squeeze a few inches over I guess a similar height as the rear pannier would make sense.
Thanks LeeG - I'm partial to 26" wheels so I suppose a front rack that can accommodate both low and "higher" attachment points may well be a better solution for me.
PolarBear007 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 09:54 PM
  #23  
Touring Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 278

Bikes: 23" Schwinn High Plains, 20" Trek 830 Antelope

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Doug64
Thanks, I'll give it a try.
No problem. I also coat the bottom of all my camera bags/packs with SeamGrip as it not only protects against moisture, but provides significant abrasion resistance to the host fabric.
PolarBear007 is offline  
Old 02-09-14, 10:14 PM
  #24  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5,206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 82 Times in 65 Posts
Originally Posted by PolarBear007
Thanks LeeG - I'm partial to 26" wheels so I suppose a front rack that can accommodate both low and "higher" attachment points may well be a better solution for me.
The OMM low rider racks with a high position look good for 26" wheels but I like the platform for "pile on" utility.
LeeG is offline  
Old 02-10-14, 10:59 AM
  #25  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,598

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,359 Times in 865 Posts
Brevets (ala Paris-Brest & back) are long day+ rides , (90 hour cut off time )

there the classic kit is a big HB bag sitting on a small front rack

big enough to keep the bag bottom off the tire.. & your fancy Alloy Honjo Mudguards.

re 14 ..
fietsbob is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.