Vertical Bike Racks are a great way to store bikes with limited space. This particular rack has a simple design, a welded rectangle “box” frame with two horizontal bars for each set of wheels to be stored. The spacing between each bike is pretty tight and should be measured but 36″ between each set should be enough to accommodate most bicycles.
I’m currently looking at trucks as an additional vehicle to haul stuff. Although I’m sure mine wont be quite as nice as this Toyota Tacoma v6 SRS the in bed bike rack is quite a nice option to accompany any truck. This owner took two load stabilizers, and attached two bike trays to them. If you get the crew cab and the short bed on a Tacoma two adult bikes may not quite fit on the bed without the liftgate and bed extender down. This option lifts them out of the bed, so you don’t have to worry quite so much about bed size. I imagine that the whole setup comes out by loosening the tension on the stabilizers and lifting it out as one unit, it’d have to be easy to make it appealing to me, who wants to mess around putting a rack in when the ride is about to start or it’s over and you have to get back to work?
I believe I took this picture on the way to the beach some time ago and forgot about it. I’ve always liked the idea of having a bike rack, with a little cargo area under it and once drew up some pictures but nothing came of it. After finding this picture it may have sparked my interest again.
What this genius bike rider did was take a bike rack and attach a fork mount like the “Kuat Dirtbagger” or Thule/Yakima alternative to it and he has a nice hitch mount tray, with as you can see from the picture an attachment for an after ride
beer water cooler. This is a pretty inexpensive way to carry a bike or two, and handy to carry extra cargo for road trips. Baskets can be picked up cheap off of craigslist, or brand new from harbor freight. Just watch out on the tongue limit of the hitch as it is easy to overload these things with gear. I think mine is rated to 200lbs, although I’d never consider putting close to that much weight on it as my rear suspension would sink considerably.
Here we have a Nissan Maxima, if you look closely you can see that it has a roof rack, what you can’t really make out is that there is a single bike tray on there. The low profile design of this rack (Fork Mount) shows that it can blend in pretty well with your car, which is useful if you don’t plan on taking your rack off very often.
Küat Racks is a fairly new company when it comes to bike racks. Based out of Springfield MO, Kuat designs bike racks and other products for bikers. What makes their products appeal to cyclists, is they are designed by cyclists, they also innovate with new ideas and support the biking community.
Their bike rack offerings looked a little unconventional, or different when I first saw them, but they are now starting to become more popular and other manufacturers are starting to copy their ideas. The racks are very well made, although a little on the expensive side. You do get what you pay for when it comes to quality though.
Kuat do not currently offer a trunk mount rack, but they do offer both roll on, and conventional top bar type hitch mounts in addition to roof mount trays. The Dirtbag is a $13 hunk of metal you can attach to anything with your imagination with bolts or screws and allows you to fork mount your bike.
If you’re in the market for a rack, want a high quality product loaded with as many features as you can make a bike rack have Kuat might be a good choice. Check them out from any quality bicycle shop or online store. Some of the advertisers on this site also carry the Kuat brand.
It’s not everyday you see a camper shell bike rack. This F150 complete with “Silly Boys, Trucks are for Girls” sticker has a nice Thule Roof Rack fitted to the camper shell. The advantage to having a camper shell on your truck to prevent theft of items is also a dis-advantage when you want to transport bikes. The truck bed and glass flap make it somewhat difficult. This owner fixed the issue by putting a roof rack on the camper to carry two bikes. If they decide they don’t want the camper shell on top, they can always carry bikes in the bed. It’s pretty genius if you ask me.
Now is a good time to think about buying a bike rack for a Christmas present for your beloved biker. This post will guide you in buying one that your biker will enjoy.
When looking at bike racks, it is important not to buy the cheapest one. The last thing you want is bikes falling off, or one that is hard to mount. You have to take into consideration a few things.
The Type of Bikes
If you plan on carrying full suspension bikes, a ride on type also known as a platform is a good choice. Roof racks are also good if you don’t mind lifting them on top of the vehicle. Some Women’s bikes are also hard to mount on racks with large supports, so take that into consideration too. For normal mountain, road or comfort bikes a normal “prong” type bike rack will work just fine.
The Number of Bikes
Just because you only have one or two bikes it doesn’t mean you’ll only want a two bike rack. Sometimes it’s nice to be able to transport more bikes for other riders that may tag along. I’d recommend at least a four bike rack. If however you have a convertable with two seats and that is the only car that would be carrying bikes, a two bike rack will be fine.
Type of Mount
Perhaps the most important part of buying a rack is the way it attaches to the vehicle. There are a few options.
First is trunk mount, these mount to the trunk by straps and pads. They are a good choice if you want to move between cars (the Saris Bones is good at this) but can be hard to put on and take off.
Hitch mount bike racks are great if you have a hitch on a vehicle. Good brands for hitch mount are Thule and Yakima although a little more expensive they’re guaranteed to last and both manufacturers stand by their products. They are the tried and true bike racks. There are two sizes for hitches, the 2″ is better than a 1-1/4″ as they give more support to the frame.
Roof Rack bike racks are possibly the most expensive unless you have a roof rack already. You can buy the trays for about $100-$150 each and they fit directly to the crossbars. I personally would only go with a roof rack system if that was my only choice.
Truck bed racks can be purchased if you own a truck, they come either as a bar that fits in the bed or as little mounts that can be bolted to the floor. Both are great choices for trucks, depending on how you want to mount them.
Complete with Stickers this Jeep Patriot has a roof rack for bikes. The Jeep Patriot Factory Roof Rack comes with side rails. The cross bars are round that will fit accessories from many manufacturers. The Crossroads Railing Rack from Thule or the “RailGrab” system from Yakima will increase the load capacity of the standard bars, however they are rather pricey. If you didn’t purchase crossbars when you got your Patriot you can save some money by finding them online or going to the dealer rather than buying an after market system. Just don’t let the dealer install them as they are not difficult, and will charge an arm and a leg to open a box and tighten 8 bolts.
The way the Thule system works is you buy feet which are compatible with a number of vehicles and then with some systems you buy landing pads that are vehicle specific. The last part of the base rack is the load bars, which come in two styles Aero and square, there are also various lengths. Once a base rack is obtained it is time to fit with accessories.
I consider fairing a must-have accessory it’s great if you plan to leave your rack on for any amount of time as it cuts down on wind noise and could increase your MPG’s. When the rack is taken off, it is also great to identify which is the front rack and what way around it goes.
While not a necessity locks are nice have, especially if you worry about some one walking off with your attachments. While they are not bomb proof, they certainly give an extra step for a would-be thief who would likely move onto the car without the lock cores. I’m not sure why they cost so much, however it is nice that they get keyed alike.
Although there are many other accessories available, since this website is dedicated to bike racks we’ll finish with these. As of this writing there are 8 current roof carriers available from Thule, the main concepts are pretty simple. There is either a bar that grabs the front wheel, frame, or you remove the front wheel and attach with the skewer. The benefits of the frame or wheel grabber are that you don’t have to remove the wheel, but they tend to be bulky. The same goes for the front wheel removal and slimmer profile of the regular trays. You do have to either buy a wheel attachment (make sure you buy the lock cores for expensive wheels) or store them in your car, which if you live in a hot climate can cause blowouts.
Roof Rack systems for bikes can get expensive. You’re looking at a couple of hundred dollars for a base rack and at least $80 for each bike you want to carry. Thule is a great company that stands behind their products, you can often find them at a discount used, just be sure to check the fit guide and know what you are buying upfront. Although many of their attachments fit other competitors racks but be sure to double check before you purchase.
These campus bike racks were taken on the UNC Charlotte campus. The campus is riddled with the things! Having spent a lot of time on campus, I would recommend a good lock, and never leaving your bike for too long. I’d also advise against leaving it on the same rack all of the time due to vandalism or theft of parts. Keep a pump with you, in case some one pranks you by letting your tires down and keep an eye on it. Campus’s can vary from safe to hostile but erroring on the side of caution never hurt anyone!
An unusual Ford Expedition trunk mount bike rack since the Expedition should come with a hitch. I say unusual but in reality it is probably a smart choice. By buying the Saris Bones bike rack this owner can choose which vehicle they want to mount it to since the Bones rack is so versatile.
Today we have a VW Beetle Trunk Mount Bike Rack picture, the first VW Beetle I’ve featured on this site. While a Saris Bones bike rack does fit on the beetle there are other options available like this owner chose. The unusual shape of the trunk can make mounting a bike rack difficult on the Beetle, however this one seems to fit. I’m not sure how the trunk release works on this one since the bottom support covers the hidden trunk handle. If you own a Beetle and are in the market for a bike rack, check the manufacturer fit guides if they’re available, if not choose a retailer who’s policy is to accept returns. Other options for the Beetle are the roof rack systems and hitch mount if you decide to take another route.
This is my long awaited post about the DIY apartment bike storage solution I made while obviously living in my apartment. After moving out of the condo with the DIY Bike Hoist setup and into this apartment I needed space to keep all my bikes. The pictures were taken with only two bikes, but I also had two other bikes that I stored in there but had to remove for pictures. The space was rather small, and I also had a few boxes of stuff that I needed to store outside. Since I wanted my deposit back I decided to make a standalone shelf with the bottom 2×4’s wide enough to stop the bikes from moving when placed in. The unit worked pretty well, although it was short lived because I moved out and into a house. The rack came down without a problem and I had plenty of 2×4’s to use in projects around the house. My garage is now where my bikes live on a homemade unit made from Ikea parts. One day I’ll get around to posting that too!
My dad owned an older Ford Explorer 4×4 with the Tow package. I never used it to carry bikes just to tow a boat and in snow, but if I had to I would certainly choose a hitch mount. If I needed to tow the boat and carry bikes I’d probably just throw the bikes in the boat. I’m always surprised at how little room you have in large vehicles when loaded with stuff. Having the roof box when you’re towing a boat isn’t a big deal, since you can secure everything in the boat but if you’re not you can add a lot of extra space like this owner did.
Every time I say Corolla I think of Weird Al and the “My Corolla” song for some reason, even if he didn’t write it. This Toyota Corolla has a non descriptive trunk mount bike rack that is capable of holding a couple of bikes. The issue with department store bike racks is sometimes they’re hard to mount, scratch paint or sag once you have bikes installed. Ensuring that everything is tight before mounting the bikes is key.
This Hyundai Santa Fe hitch mount bike rack picture was taken on a rainy trip to the beach. Following the beach trend for small SUV’s it also has the giant roof mount box on top allowing extra capacity for beach gear. This rack is an inexpensive two bike carrier. Having transported beach cruisers I know they can be tricky to mount, especially lady cruisers. The owner of this one seems to have done a pretty good job with it, and is how I would have done it. It does have the front wheel and back wheel bungee corded together however there is nothing supporting them to the rack. Having a 5 bike rack myself I can feel safe knowing they wont fall off because of the extra length but think I would have added one to this after a close call with a friends full suspension bike and hearing other peoples bike rack horror stories.
I test drove a Honda Element once, having owned a few Honda’s I decided to go against it, since for a large vehicle I thought it should have more seating capacity than four however it was pretty versatile and can see the appeal. This Honda Element has a great bike roof rack setup with the extended bars with capacity for at least four bikes and probably more if the front wheel mounts were removed, however it would be kind of pointless since there are only four seats. The owner of this rack seems to have the bars off center.
Staying on the Hilton Head topic, if you don’t load up your bikes when you visit, you can rent cruisers. There are a few places that vary in price depending on length and pickup options. I’ve rented a few times and had good luck with Hilton Head Outfitters, their bikes always in great condition although they will charge for helmet, basket, child seat and anything else they can. They also do canoe and kayak rentals right from their little shop. In this picture you see a method of transporting bikes that doesn’t require a bike rack. It requires a truck with a bed and a bit of carpet. All you do is throw the carpet over the edge and then put the front wheel over. This particular truck was one of the ones that pick up bikes from hotels on the island.
If you’re ever in Hilton Head SC, make sure you take your choice of bike rack and bikes down there! The little island is full of bike paths and friendly roads so that you can enjoy riding around. Most restaurants, shops, hotels and public places all have bike racks available. While it may not be needed remember to take your lock, it’s better to be safe than sorry! In the picture a typical Hilton Head Island bike rack is shown with a number of rental and family bikes locked up. I count 7 on one side and still space to spare. Generally these racks are designed to be two sided which doubles the capacity.
A family with a loaded trunk mount bike rack for the 1999 VW Jetta is heading up to the mountains for the day. I don’t know about you, but what do you think about that low hanging wheel? Watch out for speed humps and signs that say “bump!”
Taking a page out of neat bike rack setups, this is a Dodge Caravan (or Chrysler Voyager) I can’t tell that you can tell the family means business. Taken on the same trip as the best bike rack for ford escape you can tell people that visit Hilton Head Island, SC are out to have a good time. Rather than a cargo basket this family decided to go with a roof box and a big one at that. I think there are 4 bikes mounted on the Thule rack, when mounting that many it can get a little tight. From the picture,it’s hard to tell there is four on there or not If it were me, I’d have removed the child seat and put it on when I got to my destination, but whatever floats your boat. Perhaps there wasn’t enough room to remove it, hence the giant roof box!
This is the Volvo 240 wagon that the Volvo XC70 replaced. It has a hitch installed with a Yakima Double Down on it. While the double down is a good choice bike rack, I’d go with a larger capacity one if possible, for an extra $50 you can get a four bike rack which will let you carry more bikes which comes in handy from time to time.
This has to be the best setup I’ve seen in a while, it is an older ford escape with a hitch mount bike rack, but it also has a roof rack with a cargo basket on. In this picture the bike rack is in the forward tilt position and is demonstrating the versatility of the Ford Escapes rear glass open. With the car loaded with passengers and luggage there is a lot of room in the escape, adding the roof basket allows this family to carry additional gear for the beach (where this picture was taken) right on top. Roof baskets do adjust gas mileage a little bit but in comparison to driving another vehicle the savings will be huge. The basket can also be used to with other attachments like more bike racks, or even kayaks and canoes.
An alternative to the VW Golf Trunk mount bike rack is to mount your bikes on the roof. The roof rack option is more of a permanent solution as it is harder to install and remove, so you’ll be more likely to leave it on. Both the trunk mount and the roof rack types of bike racks have their advantages and disadvantages. The trunk mount being able to be removed and installed fairly quickly but doesn’t allow the trunk to be open where as the roof rack type does, on the flip side remember your bikes are on top of the car before you go in your garage, parking deck through a car wash or past low limbs etc. The golf is pretty low and will be easier than some giant SUV’s to put your bike on after that long ride.
Today we have something a little different from the usual bike racks featured on BikeRacked. It is a homemade bookshelf / bike rack combo. To create this type of bike rack is pretty simple. First step is to obtain the pallets. Good sources for these are craigslist, friends and home improvement stores, just ask around. Next you’ll want to clean them up a little bit, a quick blast of sanding with an automatic sander or some manual labor hand sanding will give them a smoother finish. You can paint them, or leave them natural wood depending on the look you’re going for. Use a stud finder to find a wall stud and screw it into the wall in one corner. Measure 16″ over, make sure the stud is there, level and screw the other side in. In my opinion, the rack shown in this picture was slightly too close to the adjacent wall and should be moved over to allow the front wheel to be inline with the bike, but use what space you have available. You can purchase the bike hooks from a home-improvement store pretty cheap, and you’ll need two per bike. Attach these to the pallet and you’re done. This type of rack works very well in the living room, but is also suitable for other spaces such as basements or garages. I found that lifting the bikes off the floor and mounting to the wall reclaims quite a surprising amount of space.