Roof mounted cycle carrier

Hacienda71

Mancunian in self imposed exile in leafy Cheshire
It depends what type of bikes you are going to carry. I need to get an additional one for my latest aero framed bike. My others are designed to clamp onto round downtubes and won't work with the aero downtube. Also the ones where you take the front wheel off the bike to use won't work with disc braked bikes.
 
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nickg

nickg

Über Member
We dont have disc brake. One bike does not have quick release wheel. So fixing to wheel and frame. The hybrid has 29" wheels could this be a problem to consider?
 

John the Monkey

Frivolous Cyclist
Location
Crewe
Thule Freerides?

We've used Cruz "Bici" carriers for about 7 years - they're cheap, but quite agricultural, don't lock to the roof bars, and can be a faff to get bikes in and out of. If cost is a big factor, get these, and replace with more convenient ones as you feel the need. (But do be organised when mounting/removing the bikes (so as not to lose the locking units or wheel straps), and invest in a cable to go through the racks if you're leaving the bikes unattended in the racks).

In contrast, the Freeride locks to the roofbars, has nice QR type fixings. I also like the "A" frame design of the part that holds the downtube clamp, personally. The locks and wheel straps are integral (as for the rest of the listed racks) so it's hard to lose them!

The Proride is slightly easier to manage if you're struggling to reach the bike & fastenings, thanks to a clever fastening system that works from the level of the bars, more or less. My Dad has one of these - I don't like the way the clamp works top to bottom on the tube, but he's used it a lot and it's been fine.

We've also used the Atera Giro AF (on hire) and they were ok - I prefer the Thule Freeride personally though.

Both the Bici Carrier and Freeride clamp the sides of the downtube - the Proride and Atera Giro clamp them top to bottom (I used to put a strip of electrical tape behind the cables to stop them damaging the paint while clamped against the tube).

You can see all those carriers at roofbox.co.uk (it's where I bought mine from) - http://www.roofbox.co.uk/bike-carriers/bike-carriers-racks-range.php?flt3=99&#filterform
 
Thule 591. I've got both the 591 and the original freeride type. Had the latter about 18 years. The 591 is really easy to load and will accommodate most down tube shapes and wheel size doesn't matter. The Freerides is just as effective but slightly more awkward to load.
 

mcshroom

Bionic Subsonic
I have a couple Thule Freeride 532s on mine. They have worked with everything I've tried from road bikes to a 29er, though I've not tried a TT bike in them.

Simple enough design, lock onto the bars and either side of the downtube in an A frame style. Switching from a steel down tube to a wider aluminium one takes a couple minutes of unscrewing and reattaching the bracing bar as there's two different holes it uses for different diameter ranges. Once set up they are quick enough to load & unload.

Remember to put a reminder in your windscreen that you have bikes on the roof though. Clouting a low barrier/ car park could be very expensive!
 

evo456

Über Member
Thule 591. I've got both the 591 and the original freeride type. Had the latter about 18 years. The 591 is really easy to load and will accommodate most down tube shapes and wheel size doesn't matter. The Freerides is just as effective but slightly more awkward to load.
Same here, 591 really good. Have loaded all shapes of bikes on it, never had an issue at motorway speeds either. As long as you tight the clamp and set it as close to the bottom bracket as possible it would be fine. Simple to use as has locks for both the roof bars and the bike clamp. My 29er with wide 2.2 tyres fit fine, just need to adjust the length of the rim strap if you are regularly carrying different sized bikes - doesn't take more than a few seconds for each wheel.
 
I used to use Freerides and was perfectly happy with them, but a change of car meant that the clamp lever was now too high to reach comfortably whilst supporting the bike, so I ended up was looking at either the Thule ProRide or Atera AF Giro.

In short (and in my opinion) the Thule is an overlay complicated design, and the Atera wins on simplicity plus it has a few little design touches that just make it better thought out. I feel it's safer than the Thule too.

Thule used to offer free spares for life in exchange for a suitable (optional) donation to a charity of their choosing, but now they started charging and they certainly ain't cheap. Atera spares are reasonably priced. I think I paid a bit more for the Atera carriers though, as the suppliers in the UK are limited to RoofBox.

However I do have Thule Wingbar Edge roof bars on my car, and I wouldn't change those for anything on the market at the moment.

If Thule ends up being your choice, take a look on Ebay as some car dealerships clear overstock 'own branded' carriers, that just happen to be re-branded Thule gear. Last year I could have picked up BNIB ProRides for less than £40 each!
 
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