Likes/dislikes about bike carriers

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by LibertyJWilson, Dec 11, 2016.

  1. LibertyJWilson

    LibertyJWilson New Member

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    For those who have bike carriers (especially the trunk mount type), what do you like or dislike about your carrier? Do you have any worries about security? Thanks!
     


  2. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Dislike: Marks the vehicle's paint, often blocks trunk/liftgate access, can ruin a bike's finish if precautions aren't taken.
    Like: Inexpensive, easy to load, easy to remove from vehicle and store.

    I prefer vehicle specific roof racks or hitch mount racks. Best rack is no rack at all. Put the bike inside the vehicle.
     
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  3. Motosonic

    Motosonic Member

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    I have a Saris Bones 2. Love it. Easy to take on/off.. Sturdy. Holds the bike well. The Flip-side of that is.. Anyone could loosen the straps and steal the thing if I leave it on the vehicle. And there's no bike security.. so, if I leave my bike on there unattended... that could get stolen, too. On those days where that's a concern.. i pop the front wheel off and put it in the trunk.
     
  4. LibertyJWilson

    LibertyJWilson New Member

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    Thanks, CampyBob. Do you have one you've been happy with?
     
  5. LibertyJWilson

    LibertyJWilson New Member

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    Thanks for that, Motosonic. That looks much nicer than the aluminum tubular frames I was looking at. Have you had any issues with paint around the hooks on the trunk? And is there any good way to lock the bike on there?
     
  6. Motosonic

    Motosonic Member

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    I haven't had any issues with the paint around the hooks.. but every car is different in how it mounts. Unfortunately, I don't think there's a good way to 'lock' the bike to the mount.. because it'd be very easy to simply steal any mount and the bike on it.. even the ones that lock because all they do is strap onto the trunk.. So, you could take a lock cable and wrap it around the bike/mount.. but if someone takes the mount, the bike is coming with it. I was going to go with a Thule model with a bike 'lock' and then I thought.. what's the point when there's no way to lock the mount to your car? All they need is to loosen straps. I think if you want something you can 'lock' the bike to and feel safe leaving it on the car while you're shopping or something, your best bet might be a hitch mounted rack or like CampyBob said, roof. Both are pricier options. And lets face it, the frame is the most expensive part of most bikes.. a good bike thief can take what they need from your bike regardless if it's locked up or not.
     
  7. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    If you get a high end trunk mount bike rack which will be made for your specific car year and model it won't scratch your paint either on the car or the bikes; but if you buy a cheap one then yes you can damage your paint on the car and on the bikes. Of course trunk mounted bike racks can prevent access to the trunk forcing you to remove the bikes and the rack to get the trunk open. Tailgate mounted racks can have the same issues.

    I like hitch mounted racks the best, especially the better ones. I have Bone Locker, which I think they changed the name to SCS, but it's very well made right here in the US. Obviously it does require a hitch installed on a car which can be done relatively cheaply or by yourself with little difficulty and some time, but they work better than trunk racks in my opinion.

    If I'm using my pickup with the trailer attached I switch to using a fork rack mounted to the railing of the bed of the pickup. I alternated mine so I could more bikes on in a shorter area of the bed of the pickup, I then store the front wheels in the trailer.
     
  8. MikeWMass

    MikeWMass New Member

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    I have a variety of racks. I have Thule roof racks with fork mounts that require the front wheel to be removed. I like these the best. The rails lock to the car, the racks lock to the rails, and the latch for the fork locks. None if this will stop a determined thief with a hacksaw.
    I have Thule roof racks which grip the down tube and allow the front wheel to be left on. These actually lock the grip on the frame. I don't use these on my good bike. Same caveats as above. Also have to be careful about overhead clearance with roof racks.
    I have an Outback (cheap) trunk rack which I use when I have my sailboat on the roof. It is OK. I tie the bikes to it with thin rope so they don't rattle and the wheels don't spin. If I'm concerned about locking, I use a cable through the tow loop under the bumper. I have seen people use a cable with a large padlock, and place the padlock in the trunk (as long as the lid will close). I have yet to see a trunk mount rack that holds the bikes as securely and apart from each other as roof racks, or some hitch racks (see next line).
    I have never had a hitch rack. One of those that holds the bike by the wheels/forks is probably safest and least likely to damage bike or car. Locking remains an issue.

    The bottom line is no car rack is secure. I don't leave my bikes on my car out of view for any time if I can help it.
    I had a friend who had a window smashed to steal a bike from inside his car.
    I work in a building next to a hotel, and see people leave their bikes on their cars outside overnight. Good luck to them!
     
  9. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    I found that almost all types of racks locking mechanisms are poor at best.

    The Bonelocker (SCS) actually has a really sturdy locking mechanism that is boltcutter proof, and sawing would take a very long time, but an angle grinder could probably make some headway in roughly 5 minutes. You can read about the theft protection here: http://www.prweb.com/releases/SCSMagnum/IGG/prweb12404053.htm

    The fork rack system that I use on the pickup when I'm hauling the trailer are subject to the quality of the lock being used, I use a couple of Diskus locks for the better bikes and just cheaper combo locks made by Master Lock that cost around $15 for the kids bikes. I think trying to cut the fork rack would be very difficult to do, but one could take a crowbar and pry under the plate if they worked at it hard enough, then just pry the rack right out of the bed of the truck.

    Either way I don't leave the bikes out of eyeshot for very long; and if I go to a motel the bikes come inside.
     
  10. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Roll the damn thing into the room!


    That's what we do!


    The worst part of having a bike ripped off is knowing the moron thief pawned it for like $50.
     
  11. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Thule and Yakima roof racks are both solid...and expensive. La PreAlpina if you prefer Eyetalian. I have LP and an older Yakima.

    One drawback to the high-end roof rack 'systems' is the base mounts may only fit one specific vehicle and it gets kind of pricey buying new bases if you swap vehicles often.

    Saris Bones is the 'go to' trunk/bumper mount rack in my area. Craig's list for $50 or less.
     
  12. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    The problem with pawning a stolen item today is that the pawn shop is required to check all items through the police department, in addition they must take the person's driver's license information, phone number and address. Most pawn shops these days are ethical because the punishment for taking stolen merchandise purposely, meaning they didn't check with the police department, is that they'll lose their license to do business. Of course surly some stuff gets by, that would be impossible to prevent, but most owners know how to check for suspicious acting characters, or look like they use and need drugs. A red flag does pop up if someone brings an item in that is from out of the area too. Pawn shops aren't what they use to be in the 60's and 70's, now with computers the pawn shop has access to police information and are required to check all items, and they have to cooperate with police agencies, almost everyday the police contact the pawn shops first thing in the morning to give them a list of newly stolen items to watch for.

    A pawn shop today is sort of like a payday loan operation, they take items in exchange for cash that most of the time is on a short 30 day loan which of course the owner of the goods comes back in and pays off the loan to get the item back or loses the item if they fail to do so. Of course like a payday loan the interest on held items is sort of high at 20%; but with payday loans I think they should be put out of business because those can run 400%!! I think a person could do better with the mob!!! Some people do sell for cash and not take any loan which oftentimes is faster than selling something on Craigslist even though they might make less money on it.
     
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