Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => Gear Talk => Topic started by: boobike on April 01, 2013, 07:18:43 pm

 
Title: Racks
Post by: boobike on April 01, 2013, 07:18:43 pm
Hi all,

I'm just getting into touring and am looking for a rack.  I love the aesthetics of the payload (http://www.ridepdw.com/goods/cargo/payload) but wonder how compatible it is with panniers.  It is rated for 77lbs so it seems plenty strong. I have a Surley Cross Check which should be compatible.

Is this a good choice for a rack or am I just blinded by its looks?

Thanks,
Taylor
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: DaveB on April 01, 2013, 09:03:53 pm
Link doesn't work
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: mdxix on April 01, 2013, 09:21:13 pm
Try this link: http://www.ridepdw.com/goods/cargo/payload™ (http://www.ridepdw.com/goods/cargo/payload™)
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: driftlessregion on April 01, 2013, 10:34:14 pm
It is gorgeous, but the sucker weighs 3#!  One of the best is the Tobus Cargo which weighs only 18 oz. Nitto's beautiful, and strong rear rack is about 22 oz. I applaud you if you don't worry about an extra pound or so but once you load it up the beauty is hidden, so save the weight.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: John Nelson on April 01, 2013, 10:59:14 pm
Not only is it 3 pounds (which itself would be a killer for me), but it seems to lack the structural elements necessary to give it rigidity and keep it from swaying. Most reviewers say that you need three struts for such stability under load.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: DaveB on April 02, 2013, 10:39:36 am
It impresses me as form overwhelming function.  Heavy and structurally suspect.  Blackburn racks are well regarded and both lighter and less expensive. 
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: JayH on April 02, 2013, 10:59:59 am
Certainly looks pretty but not sure if I would want anything close to 77lbs on it. One weld and the thing would fail. 

Having said that, depending on your needs, tubus, Old Man Mountain, certainly would make more/better functional racks I think.

Jay
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: dkoloko on April 02, 2013, 01:16:18 pm
It is a strange choice for touring. Although weight rating is adequate, it lacks triangulation usually associated with a strong bicycle frame. I would also be concerned with maintaining a wood top on tour.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: staehpj1 on April 02, 2013, 01:33:59 pm
I agree with the other comments.  It is a poor choice, heavy expensive, and judging by appearance poorly designed.  If on a budget or just frugal get a Blackburn EX-1, one of the Axiom touring models, or similar.

If you really want to spend more, buy a Tubus.  Personally I think Tubus is overkill though.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: RussSeaton on April 02, 2013, 04:59:29 pm
Blackburn racks.  EX-1 for the rear.  FL-1 lowrider for the front.  $80 for both racks.

https://shop.sunrisecyclery.com/item/270?gclid=CLSGqMXvrLYCFc9AMgodxl4AgA

http://www.westernbikeworks.com/product/blackburn-fl-1-standard-lo-rider-front-rack?v=0000000&utm_campaign=products&utm_source=google&utm_medium=base&adl=1&gclid=COewl-jvrLYCFfA-Mgod3BoApA
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: boobike on April 02, 2013, 07:35:02 pm
Fair enough and thanks for the advice. I had a feeling they weren't ideal but I liked them so much I had to check. If 77lbs is overkill, how much am I looking to support on the rear racks? Is is worth the price to pay for a nice rack or am I better off putting than money into the bike somewhere else? 

Speaking of, are these ( http://www.rei.com/product/833203/seattle-sports-titan-1500-panniers-pair-special-buy ) panniers suitable? I've been looking at the Ortlieb Classics and while they hold a little more they are also significantly pricier.

Thanks again for all the help!
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: RussSeaton on April 03, 2013, 12:45:05 am
how much am I looking to support on the rear racks? Is is worth the price to pay for a nice rack or am I better off putting than money into the bike somewhere else? 

Speaking of, are these ( http://www.rei.com/product/833203/seattle-sports-titan-1500-panniers-pair-special-buy ) panniers suitable? I've been looking at the Ortlieb Classics and while they hold a little more they are also significantly pricier.

Roughly, 20-30 pounds per rack.  Most fully loaded tourists with four panniers, handlebar bag, have about 40-60 pounds total.  Its best to have less if possible.  But most folks tend to carry more than less.  You may read about people carrying 100+ pounds of gear and/or trailers.  But don't emulate those people.  They would have more fun if they carried half as much.  Try to get by with as little as possible.  You won't suffer that much.

Most racks will work fine.  The Blackburn racks listed above have been used for decades and are high quality for not much money.  You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars for racks.  $80 of Blackburn racks will last for decades of touring.

Most panniers will work fine.  I use Nashbar mountain panniers.  About $80 for four panniers.  Used them for many years.  As long as the bags attach sort of securely to the racks, they will work fine.  You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars for functional panniers.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: DaveB on April 03, 2013, 09:08:07 am
Fair enough and thanks for the advice. I had a feeling they weren't ideal but I liked them so much I had to check. If 77lbs is overkill, how much am I looking to support on the rear racks? Is is worth the price to pay for a nice rack or am I better off putting than money into the bike somewhere else? 

Speaking of, are these ( http://www.rei.com/product/833203/seattle-sports-titan-1500-panniers-pair-special-buy ) panniers suitable? I've been looking at the Ortlieb Classics and while they hold a little more they are also significantly pricier.

Thanks again for all the help!
The objection to the rack you showed isn't that you need 77 pounds of capacity (you don't) but that we doubt it would stand up to that load anyway.

As RussSeaton confirmed, Blackburn racks have a long established reputation for durability at moderate cost and should meet your needs very well. 

Tubus racks are extremely well made and strong and Ortlieb panniers are very durable but both are very expensive overkill unless you plan to tour for months and months at a time and be in some pretty remote places.   

As to total gear weight, lighter is better.  The tourists who carry 60 pounds or more are just poor planners or are carrying things most don't need like work-related gear.  The first big hill you come to will make you curse every extra pound. 
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: dkoloko on April 03, 2013, 12:34:24 pm
Blackburn racks.  EX-1 for the rear.  FL-1 lowrider for the front.  $80 for both racks.

https://shop.sunrisecyclery.com/item/270?gclid=CLSGqMXvrLYCFc9AMgodxl4AgA

http://www.westernbikeworks.com/product/blackburn-fl-1-standard-lo-rider-front-rack?v=0000000&utm_campaign=products&utm_source=google&utm_medium=base&adl=1&gclid=COewl-jvrLYCFfA-Mgod3BoApA

Western Bike Works says low rider is out of stock. Is Blackburn still making front racks? I thought Blackburn discontinued them under new ownership.

As to load carrying capacity, I found Blackburn racks fine, particularly if used the Expedition rack , stoutest of the three rear racks they used to make, and used the hoop front rack or the hoopless to fork braze-ons. I have heard of Blackburn racks breaking, but that's more strain I ever put on them. I switched to Tubus racks when I bought Ortlieb bags; the Ortblieb bags fit better on the Tubus racks.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: willpower01 on January 20, 2014, 06:36:24 am
Tubus. I broke an aluminum rack in a recent crash. After that, I'll never use anything but steel. I use a tubus logo and my wife uses the tubus cargo. I prefer the logo since the panniers attach lower.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: DaveB on January 20, 2014, 09:22:11 am
. I broke an aluminum rack in a recent crash.
I's hardly say that's an argument against aluminum racks.  A crash can and will break any rack.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: staehpj1 on January 20, 2014, 10:25:47 am
. I broke an aluminum rack in a recent crash.
I's hardly say that's an argument against aluminum racks.  A crash can and will break any rack.
Not knocking what others buy, but that was my thought as well.

Besides, I think crashing and breaking a rack is a pretty rare occurrence and if it did occur I'd rather break a $30 rack than a $130 one.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: dkoloko on January 20, 2014, 11:26:06 am
I switched from Blackburn to Tubus racks because Ortlieb bags fit better. AFAIK Blackburn no longer offers front racks. 20lb per pannier is a reasonable limit. Four bags, 80 lb, plus bike; enough to get you most anywhere; less weight better. While any panniers may do, IMHE waterproof panniers are the way to go.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: westrid_dad on January 21, 2014, 05:01:09 pm
I'm getting back into bicycle touring after a 20-year absence.  For what it is worth, on my first cross-country tour back in the 80's I actually broke two Blackburn low-rider front racks.  Granted, I may have been packing more weight up front in order to try to better balance my load front to back, however, the overall weight wasn't anything extreme.  After I returned from that tour, I purchased a set of Bruce Gordon chrome-moly steel racks.  They were trouble-free on many tours after that, and I have since moved them from one bike to another to another for commuting.  Now, I'm looking at doing a tour this summer, and I'll be using those same racks again.

http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html
 (http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html)


If I were in the market for new racks, I'd definitely be looking at steel versus aluminum for its durability and stability.  Yes, it will cost more, and may be tougher to justify if you do not plan on using them very often, either for touring, commuting, shopping, etc.


Title: Re: Racks
Post by: BikingBrian on February 05, 2014, 02:00:54 am
For another bike, I received a Blackburn EX-1 rear rack via mail order yesterday. The design is the same as my old rack, but the construction is a little different. The old one was made in the USA and has solid 9mm aluminum tubing. The new one was made in China and has hollow (!) aluminum tubing. They quote 9mm for the tubing, though some of the struts measure about 11mm. I'm sure it will hold up fine to its 40 pound rated weight limit, but to say I am disappointed would be an understatement.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: staehpj1 on February 05, 2014, 08:17:12 am
For another bike, I received a Blackburn EX-1 rear rack via mail order yesterday. The design is the same as my old rack, but the construction is a little different. The old one was made in the USA and has solid 9mm aluminum tubing. The new one was made in China and has hollow (!) aluminum tubing. They quote 9mm for the tubing, though some of the struts measure about 11mm. I'm sure it will hold up fine to its 40 pound rated weight limit, but to say I am disappointed would be an understatement.

FWIW.  The fact that it has hollow tubing rather than solid rod is a good thing in my opinion.  Assuming the same alloy, tubing has most of the stiffness at a reduced weight  Solid rod is actually a sign of a lesser made rack.

Now if it has worse welds or a lesser alloy that is another matter.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: BikingBrian on February 05, 2014, 09:01:29 am
FWIW.  The fact that it has hollow tubing rather than solid rod is a good thing in my opinion.  Assuming the same alloy, tubing has most of the stiffness at a reduced weight  Solid rod is actually a sign of a lesser made rack.
I would agree only if the tubing is larger diameter to compensate. How much larger it would need to be, I don't know. Maybe that's why the struts are now 11mm, though the website says 9mm. Perhaps the 9mm on the website is dated.

Now if it has worse welds or a lesser alloy that is another matter.
The weld in the back doesn't go as far across on the new rack. Can't speak to the quality of the welds or the alloy.

In any event, last night I found an "old" style EX-1 on Ebay that was used only once at a really good price, so I scooped that up.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: dkoloko on February 05, 2014, 10:11:12 am
For what it is worth, on my first cross-country tour back in the 80's I actually broke two Blackburn low-rider front racks.  Granted, I may have been packing more weight up front in order to try to better balance my load front to back, however, the overall weight wasn't anything extreme.
http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html
 (http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html)

What was the weight on the low riders? Was mounting to braze-ons or clamps? Were the low riders hooped? I had no trouble with hoopless braze-on Blackburn low riders over years of use with loads up to 20 lb a side. Not doubting your experience; just wondering details.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: 2sailkayakbike on March 01, 2014, 05:34:46 pm
We're looking at the Old Man Mountain racks for ease of taking them on and off at airports/trains/boats when we take the bikes apart...they are about 2.3 pounds so a bit on the heavy side.  Any other recommendations appreciated.
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: jimbeard on March 02, 2014, 09:37:41 am

I have a 2013 Trek 520 with this stock rack rated for 50 lbs
http://americancycleandfitness.com/product/bontrager-backrack-deluxe-l-154669-1.htm?variations=34642&gclid=CO-vp6eE9LwCFQ_l7AodYmwAGg
Has any one used this rack for loaded touring?
Title: Re: Racks
Post by: westrid_dad on March 04, 2014, 02:02:10 pm
For what it is worth, on my first cross-country tour back in the 80's I actually broke two Blackburn low-rider front racks.  Granted, I may have been packing more weight up front in order to try to better balance my load front to back, however, the overall weight wasn't anything extreme.
http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html
 (http://www.bgcycles.com/racks.html)

What was the weight on the low riders? Was mounting to braze-ons or clamps? Were the low riders hooped? I had no trouble with hoopless braze-on Blackburn low riders over years of use with loads up to 20 lb a side. Not doubting your experience; just wondering details.

Sorry for the late reply.  I really can't remember what the weight was up front during those tours, but back then I was trying to shift at least half the total gear weight up to the front, so it could have been around 35-40 lbs or so between the two front panniers.  I was using the hoopless low riders, and they were attached to braze-ons on the fork.  One of the failures occurred when one of the rack frames snapped.  It wasn't at a joint, nor where it attached to the fork, it was in the middle of the frame.  I "patched" it by using cut-up spokes and hose clamps to splint the frame until I was able to get to a bike shop.  To their credit, Blackburn sent me a new rack no-charge and had it waiting for me at the bike shop.