Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
  • Towbar rack for van with barn doors
  • Premier Icon stevomcd
    Full Member

    Looking at getting a towbar-mounted rack to go on our Renault Trafic van with vertical barn doors (not tailgate). Want a rack which will tilt down out of the way to let the doors open.

    Aware that most towbar racks will do this, but barn-door type van doors need (a lot) more clearance than a car tailgate.

    Safest bet so far looks like the Atera Strada DL2 which slides forwards as well as tilts: https://atera.de/en/dl-2.html

    Would probably prefer something meatier from Thule though if it’ll work with the doors.

    Anyone got any experience of this and can recommend a rack?

    Premier Icon jaylittle
    Free Member

    I’ve got a vivaro and run and older modle thule rack. I’m sure there’s something that fits the bill, it will need to be something that sits quite far out from the van to get it to tilt and clear the doors.

    Premier Icon dropoff
    Full Member

    We use the Atera on our Trafic although it’s the 3 bike version and we only use the outer 2 racks so that the vars clear the van doors. It’s great, 3 years old now and used most weekends with no problems.

    Premier Icon continuity
    Free Member

    Not the Thules, they won’t clear my t5

    Premier Icon DaveyBoyWonder
    Free Member

    I have an Atera and its a hateful POS. Its massive to store, weighs a load and isn’t as well made as the Thule stuff I also have and have run for 15+ years. The biggest pain in the arse though is the krypton factor-like process of fitting bikes.

    I hate it.

    Premier Icon zerocool
    Full Member

    My old Thule rack tilted down. No idea what model it was. Although I could never be arsed abs just used the side doors when the bikes were loaded on.

    Premier Icon Yak
    Full Member

    I have thule. It tilts, but not enough to clear the barn doors. The rack and bikes are the last thing on and the first thing off.

    Premier Icon BillOddie
    Full Member

    I was going to post a thread on this as my new T6 is 3 weeks away…(I’m very excited)

    The Atera seems like it’s the only one that tilts/moves enough.

    I guess it’s going to come down to tiltyness and lower cost vs quality.

    Another not-tilty-enough option seems to be the Buzzrack E-Hornet.  (The ebike racks seem to take longer bikes which seems like a very good idea.)

    Premier Icon Craggyjim
    Free Member

    I have a Trafic and Atera strada and I like the rack. I think it’s solid and I can open both barn doors with the rack fully loaded. I did have to lower the towball to the bottom 2 holes on my towbar strut.

    Premier Icon woody74
    Full Member

    Eagerly reading as I need to do the same. Has anyone though of using a 2 prong style rack. Do these not easily hold down.

    Premier Icon MrTricky
    Free Member

    I agonised for a year on this for my barn door t5. A trip to a trail centre, and the site of all the empty towbar racks jutting out into the car park from the backs of vans was enough to convince me that a Fiamma rack was better for my needs. 2 bike rack, fits 3″ tyres no problem as the rails are a new shape. Have to watch bike weight a little, but that’s it. No regrets.

    Premier Icon b230ftw
    Free Member

    I thought the whole point of a van was to put the bikes inside?

    Premier Icon doubleu
    Free Member

    We have the Atera rack too on our Trafic camper with barn doors. Being able to get into the back really does help lots with a small camper. Previously we had a Thule towbar bike rack and it was a massive pain having to unload the whole thing.

    My only gripe with the Atera Strada DL is loading it. There’s possibly a way round it but my Orange Alpine has to go on last as the holding arms for the other bikes simply can’t go through the frame as the shock gets in the way. It’s the heaviest bike as well, I’d much rather it be first on.

    Premier Icon Fat-boy-fat
    Full Member

    My Yakima rack pivots at the end of the rack to rotate the bikes almost 70 degrees. I had an Altera rack before and I reckon this gives more clearance to your vehicle than the Altera did.

    Premier Icon rickmeister
    Full Member

    Thule Velospace user here..
    It tilts just fine but just not enough out of the box to clear a caddy tailgate…

    The tilt is controlled by swaged cables.. Some 6cm long simple and free flat kitchen brackets from the IKEA bits section extended the cables enough to make the tilt completely horizontal.

    Job jobbed.

    Premier Icon stevomcd
    Full Member

    Thanks all, looks like enough positive experiences to go with the Altera, will have a look at some of the other ideas too.

    b230ftw, the whole point of a van is to sleep in it! Also to put your enduro bikes in it and your XC bikes on the back when on an extended busman’s holiday….. 😉

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