Bike racks on the roof vs on the rear

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  • Bike racks on the roof vs on the rear
  • Premier Icon footflaps

    This model:

    Return to England by brf, on Flickr

    Premier Icon DaveRambo

    I had a towbar fitted to our car and splashed out on an Atera Strada rack.

    Not cheap but very sturdy, can be fitted in less than a minute and once you’ve sorted which bikes go where they are on in hardly any time. It also slides away from the car when you need it – very handy.

    I wash my bikes when I get home usually so salt not a worry.

    Premier Icon molgrips

    Those fork clamping ones are meant to be very bad for your forks. Apparently not good for your bike rack either! I think mine are 591s, very very solid.


    Gribs – have your friends really had a bike fall off when on the roof?! Cripes!!

    Yeah. A Comencal Meta attached to an A6 with a Thule mount. He hadn’t fastened up the frame clamp properly as the shock linkage got in the way and it came off within 20 yards of setting off leaving a nice dent in the roof. Another mate has hit height restriction barriers twice. I’m not sure what this says about my choice of friends.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash

    We have Thule roof carriers. There is a modest hit on mpg with bikes on, you hardly notice it when it’s just the carriers. I leave them on as it is a faff to take them off for neglibible fuel savings.

    fwiw, I don’t believe the spray and grot on the roof is any more harmful than being lower down at the back of the car.

    Next car will have a towbar carrier, principally as MrsMCTD is 4’10” and needs to be able to put bikes on without me now kids are going further


    Towbar rack here.

    Easier to put bikes on than the roof, plus removable to avoid an MPG hit when not carrying bikes.

    Haven’t noticed the road spray being an issue at all, but then the bikes do tend to need a clean after most rides recently anyway.

    Premier Icon footflaps

    Those fork clamping ones are meant to be very bad for your forks.

    That just doesn’t seem plausible. When riding the bike, the fork gets much higher forces transferred through the axle mount e.g. my 80kg weight bouncing about. On the roof rack it just has under half the weight of the bike, say 5kg, moving about a bit.


    My tow bar rack is great. Takes four 26ers no bother. Halfords jobby, however does take some setting up but once sorted its great.


    Mctd – the rear of both my cars are far dirtier with salt and muck than the roof from grot , the roof gets mostly just wet.

    Fwiw all the crap gets sucked into the low air pressure left behind your car as it cuts through the air – some shapes are worse than others for this.

    I don’t think there is much risk of a bike coming out of a 591….

    The tow bar mounted ones look pretty sturdy too…

Viewing 11 posts - 41 through 51 (of 51 total)

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