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Is there a special way to put bikes on a rack?

Discussion in 'Bicycle Mechanics and Repairs' started by summerdays, 6 May 2008.

  1. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Staff Member

    Location:
    Bristol
    Yesterday we had set aside the day to do a bike ride with the kids... chosen our destination - The Strawberry Line in Somerset, and all we had to do was put the bikes on and off we go.................. or not.

    It took 1 and half hours to get 4 bikes on the towbar rack ... we have done it before in a shorter time than that. Mr Summerdays also managed to brake the light fitting on the bike rack and the light casing on the car. Neighbours felt the need to come by and make comments about how long he had been trying so we were obviously providing the entertainment for the surrounding houses.

    Is there a special nack of putting the bikes on ... there were loads of other cars with bike racks in the car park but mostly the ones mounted on the back of the car, although I saw some removing the front wheel. I wondered if it would help to remove a pedal (not that I've ever done that to know if it was easy).

    And the Strawberry Line - well not over crowded despite being a Bank Holiday, good car park, but a couple of sections of road - one quite busy for the smallest on a 16" bike, and worst of all - its the first time I have come across a particular type of gate in which the handlebars don't fit, so a bit of a struggle to get the adult bikes through. We didn't do the whole line as it started to spot with rain just as we reached the tunnel (and guess who decided to leave all the waterproofs in the car). We turned back, loaded the rack up - quicker to come home, got in the car and the heavens opened ... so good timing by us at that point.
     
  2. Gary D

    Gary D Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Worcestershire
    What make and model is it?

    We have a Thule 9403 Ride On. It will take 3 bikes, but can be a bit of a jigsaw puzzle to fit them all on - particularly if they are adult bikes.

    The key is once you have a configuration that works - try and record it - either by memory or perhaps by creating a simple line drawing to show which way round each bike goes and the orientation of the pedals, where the retaining straps go around etc. Bit "anoraky" I know, but otherwise you will end up putting them on a different way every single time!!

    And yes, it probably would be easier to remove pedals if you can be bothered every time. That is most often the bit that interferes with the bike next to it.
    Hope this helps.
    Gary.
     
  3. fossyant

    fossyant Ride It Like You Stole It!

    Location:
    South Manchester
    I personally prefer roof racks, but that's not practical if you have a bus (people carrier).

    Tow bar ones, like you have, are the better of the rear mount ones - I assume it takes practice - should only be a 5-10 milute job to fit the bikes to the rack - assume you are fitting one facing left, next facing right. Heavier bikes near the car, small light bikes the last to go on !