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Hey guys, thanks for looking. I want to buy a baike carrier for my car, I already have a roof rack(load bars). I am looking for advice on what bike carrier to get. My load bars are Votex, made by Thule if it influences you choice.

My bike does have disc brakes, so I would need the carrier to be able to clear the caliper. I have no preference for the fork mount type or not. I don't know what is better.

Thanks in advance

Jeremy
 

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Riding free's the mind
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Yakima

Well not sure about your existing equip, but I really feel that Yakima makes the best racks. I bought a accessory rack for our Acura MDX (didn't have a choice) a couple years ago and it happened to be made by Tule...the level of fit, finish and quality was not there. in fact it was so lousy in operation and cheap in construction I took them off. Probably sell them.
 

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j-dub said:
Hey guys, thanks for looking. I want to buy a baike carrier for my car, I already have a roof rack(load bars). I am looking for advice on what bike carrier to get. My load bars are Votex, made by Thule if it influences you choice.

My bike does have disc brakes, so I would need the carrier to be able to clear the caliper. I have no preference for the fork mount type or not. I don't know what is better.

Thanks in advance

Jeremy
You want the Yakima Viper - works with disc and it will even work with the Thule bars (square). I just got a good deal for a new one on Ebay - it's rock solid:

http://search.ebay.com/yakima-viper_W0QQsokeywordredirectZ1QQfromZR8
 

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j-dub said:
Hey guys, thanks for looking. I want to buy a baike carrier for my car, I already have a roof rack(load bars). I am looking for advice on what bike carrier to get. My load bars are Votex, made by Thule if it influences you choice.

My bike does have disc brakes, so I would need the carrier to be able to clear the caliper. I have no preference for the fork mount type or not. I don't know what is better.

Thanks in advance

Jeremy
Sportworks Bob Racket
https://sportworks.com/stbob.asp
Works on any bike, both wheels stay in, can be used on the front or rear wheel, quick and easy on and off. I love mine.
 

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Really depends on what features you're looking for (great answer, huh?).

I made the switch from a hitch to a Yakima King Cobra, which I'm mostly satisfied with -- I'll give it a 'B+' grade.

My main criteria were (1) no front wheel removal, (2) ability to fit 29" wheels, (3) doesn't touch the frame or seatpost. Oh, and it's mounted to my (square) Thule cross bars.

Biggest downside is the infamous "Big Red Knob" which tends to vibrate loose with extended miles. You can read all about it on various web sites (indlucing here) by doing a Google search for "Yakima Red Knob". In spite of this, I trust the rack knowing that I must double check tightness during pit stops.

Yakima won't fess up to this problem. Their loss. I'm not the only one to mention it yet play it down as "just something to keep an eye on", but I see a lot of potential buyers look elsewhere once they learn about it.

Minor (mainly aesthetic) dings are that if positioned directly over your tower, the trays have to angle slightly to the inside or outside of the next tower (not perfectly parallel) and they look a little bulky when stowed.

Overall, though, I'm pleased and like it over the Sportworks Bob Ratchet, Thule Super G, and the various downtube clamping designs available.
 

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Well, we like to take the front wheel off when we mount the bikes on the roof, since we attended a class on quick releases ("All you wanted to know about righty-tighty, lefty loosey", presented by REI)...heh heh heh... and we've had both Yak and Thule roof racks. We prefer the Yak, and use the full trays (instead of the "Boa") because it makes for a rigid setup and we've owned them since before Boa... The bikes ride lower with the fork mount, and are easier to place up there for shrimpy little folks under six feet tall.

Even a full tray will accomodate disc brakes, if you trim the tray on one side up front, which is very easy. The Yak system is very durable, very modular and works intuitively. I suggest yak, and further suggest looking for used stuff on eBay...you can save a lot of money on something you'll leave out in the weather to get faded, anyway.
 

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Dark Horse: RockyMounts

Rocky Mounts has 2 new(er) disc compatable mounts, one of which has an extra wide tray which is nice for big tires. And, they're very price competitive.
 

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Debaser said:
Rocky Mounts has 2 new(er) disc compatable mounts, one of which has an extra wide tray which is nice for big tires. And, they're very price competitive.
Got the slightly older Rocky Mounts fork mounts design. VERY price competitve. I knew I'd have to hack into 'em for the disc mounts, but that hurts a LOT less when the tray only runs $40 instead of the $60 for the Yakima, or $125 for the disc mount ones.

Fit and finish on em are very good, and it even comes in colors besides black.

It's worth a look. The only downside I've found is a different key on the keyring.

JmZ
 

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Sportworks Bob Racket ?

That Sportworks tray looks interesting. Does the arm just fold down when not in use? Do you think it would be difficult to reach the ratchet arm on top of a Minivan, especially a tray in the middle? If the middle tray faces the back I would think it would be fairly easy to reach if I am standing on the bumper. I am getting tired of taking off the front wheels when loading 3 bikes for the family. I would miss the cool factor of fork mounts, but that has become less important to me. I want to simplify loading and unloading.

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shiggy??? said:
Sportworks Bob Racket
https://sportworks.com/stbob.asp
Works on any bike, both wheels stay in, can be used on the front or rear wheel, quick and easy on and off. I love mine.
 

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Brooks04 said:
That Sportworks tray looks interesting. Does the arm just fold down when not in use? Do you think it would be difficult to reach the ratchet arm on top of a Minivan, especially a tray in the middle? If the middle tray faces the back I would think it would be fairly easy to reach if I am standing on the bumper. I am getting tired of taking off the front wheels when loading 3 bikes for the family. I would miss the cool factor of fork mounts, but that has become less important to me. I want to simplify loading and unloading. .
I can vouch for the quality and ease of use of the Sportworks trays. It sounds perfect for your intentions with the tray in the middle, although you will need to be able to access the rear wheel to attach the hold-down strap (shouldn't be too hard standing on the side door of a mini van).

The one thing to watch out for with the Bob Ratchets -- the deal breaker for me but likely not a problem for you -- is that the wheel hold-down arm pivots on a 8" long sleeve which slides over your cross bar. In my case this left me with the compromises of (a) mounting the trays about 10" inward of my Thule towers, towards the center of the vehicle, to make room for the arm (would most likely have resulted in a one forward/one backward bike orientation, and eliminating the possibility of a 3rd bike on the room), or (b) mounting the pivot sleeves inboard so as to allow the trays to sit outboard on the rails, but obscuring the ratchet mechanism behind the front wheel making unloading a little more difficult.

But the Sportworks is absolutely THE fastest loading, easiest to use rack out there. I still use their MOD series tray as an occasional third bike attachment, and if I had a wider vehicle I'd have picked one of their roof mount racks in a heartbeat.
 

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Speedüb Nate said:
I can vouch for the quality and ease of use of the Sportworks trays. It sounds perfect for your intentions with the tray in the middle, although you will need to be able to access the rear wheel to attach the hold-down strap (shouldn't be too hard standing on the side door of a mini van).

The one thing to watch out for with the Bob Ratchets -- the deal breaker for me but likely not a problem for you -- is that the wheel hold-down arm pivots on a 8" long sleeve which slides over your cross bar. In my case this left me with the compromises of (a) mounting the trays about 10" inward of my Thule towers, towards the center of the vehicle, to make room for the arm (would most likely have resulted in a one forward/one backward bike orientation, and eliminating the possibility of a 3rd bike on the room), or (b) mounting the pivot sleeves inboard so as to allow the trays to sit outboard on the rails, but obscuring the ratchet mechanism behind the front wheel making unloading a little more difficult.

But the Sportworks is absolutely THE fastest loading, easiest to use rack out there. I still use their MOD series tray as an occasional third bike attachment, and if I had a wider vehicle I'd have picked one of their roof mount racks in a heartbeat.
Nate, you can use the arm on the front or rear wheel. I have mine mounted with the arms on the rear crossbar and usually face the bikes forward.

If you have a factory roof rack you can use the Factory Bob. It has the arm pivot on the mounting plate and uses less space on the crossbar.

All said and done, they are the best mounts I have ever used.
 

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I have this on my honda..using it with disc brakes no problem...was cheap $150 for the whole setup...2 trays...towers everything you see...best deal i could find.
 

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I recently purchased a Saris roof rack system for my Corrolla. I have the long tray, fork mount model. It works great, sturdy as hell, the fairing makes it damn near silent while driving even with 2 bikes on the roof, and it's easy to operate. I also purchased the snowboard/ski racks and it's super easy to slide out one of the bike trays and slide in the snowboard rack. Totally modular. It cost less than the comparable Thule and Yakima models. Though I wouldn't doubt the quality of Yakima and Thule, I've owned a spare tire mount Saris rack and I loved it, so I naturally trusted Saris's quality from the outset.

The only knock I have is that you can't drive with the tire straps attached to the trays without the bikes being on the roof. I've lost like 2 straps already. You can get replacements directly from Saris/Graber for $20/pair w/shipping. Now I just keep the straps in the trunk until throw the bike on the rack.
 

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shiggy©®™ said:
Nate, you can use the arm on the front or rear wheel. I have mine mounted with the arms on the rear crossbar and usually face the bikes forward.
It wasn't so much a clearance problem between the arms, but of dualing handlebars & bar ends with the rails so close together.

Face one bike front and one bike rear wasn't in and of itself un-doable, but made difficult the carrying of a third bike in the center (which I do from time to time using nylon straps, when I have four or five bikes to carry).

On the Factory Bob, does Sportworks make accomodations (shims, for instance) for curved cross bars? My factory Subaru bars have a slight arch to them, which is why I nixed them for the Thule cross bars.
 

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j-dub said:
Thanks for the replies, more the better.

Has anyone used the Barracuda style?
I have the barracuda and it works great and the bike is very stable when mounted.

Only downside is if you are running 2.2 or greater sized tyres that are large as they dont fit as snugly in the front of the rack.
 

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Debaser said:
Rocky Mounts has 2 new(er) disc compatable mounts, one of which has an extra wide tray which is nice for big tires. And, they're very price competitive.
another vote for rockymounts. small colorado company with excellent customer service. I have the older older fork mount racks. probably about 10 years old now. They sent replacement parts nearly free (shipping) when my wife messed up the rack in a bike-garage interaction. Works great and is very very simple. I replaced many of the bolts at the hardware store when they started to rust after 3 years, and we live at the beach.

That said, if we ever replace the car, my dream is a compact hitch mount rack that stays stored in the trunk when not in use, and then just pops on quickly when the bikes are being hauled. Does this exist?
 

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Fork mount rack is the way to go

Get a fork mount rack, it's so easy to raise and put on the bike, the center of gravity is lowered when you remove the front tire and make easier to balance your bike on the roof. Rocky Mtn or Yakima (which I am using) are solid good choices.
 
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