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  1. #1
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    kuat sherpa 2.0 issue

    I just got this rack and it is super nice. The paint, one could argue, is even too nice for a bike rack that will live in the real world. Assembly was easy enough with the hand tools provided. I snugged up the bolts that hold the 2 tracks to the frame with the hitch pin wrench.

    Before first use I decided to torque the bolts down to to value specified in the manual, 15-20 lb-ft. No problem, I pull out my smaller (3/8" drive) torque wrench, set it for ~17 and have at it. Alternating between the 2 bolts it took a good few turns before the torque started to take and increase to the click. More turns than I thought it should take but good, I thought, job done. Later I noticed that the "nut" had been pulled into the rear track and deformed the track, not terrible but a noticeable bulge. Also, the paint had crazed from bending.

    I am no stranger to torque wrenches having used them for 35 years on cars, motorcycles, and bikes. It was set correctly and stored properly (backed off). The next day I made a test jig and ran a bolt up with it and my larger 1/2" drive torque wrench set to 20 lb-ft and they both clicked off within 1/8 of a turn. So it is certainly accurate enough.

    I am wondering if I got a part that had bad heat treatment or whatever. No way it should be damaged with so little torque applied.

    In any case, I would recommend anyone buying one of these to proceed with great caution. Probably best to keep assembly to a small tool, like the included hitch pin and/or start with maybe 10 lb-ft using a torque wrench.

    I will be contacting Kuat shortly and see if they offer a resolution. Anyone else had this issue?
    Last edited by raylo; 08-07-2017 at 12:35 PM.

  2. #2
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    looking at the directions, nowhere does it say, 20FT.lbs... over tightening them by 5FT.lbs may have caused the damage you observed. You may have read the 20Nm and subconsciously thought 20ft.lbs(?). that's my best guess


    "Tighten to 15ft-lbs(20Nm), alternating bolts between
    each turn. Excessive tighening will damage the rack."

    http://kuatracks.com/workspace/media...user-guide.pdf


    '11 Jedi
    '01 Rocket 88 Stage3
    2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser

  3. #3
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    Maybe I did misread, but it was set for 16 or 17, not 20 lb-ft. I tested at 20 for comparison because that was the bottom end of the 1/2" drive's scale. I'll have another look when I get home at my manual. I might have to buy myself a track, but hard to believe it would be that fragile.

  4. #4
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    I find it hard to believe the manufacture would have put the torque spec at it's breaking point with no margin of error. What's just my thoughts. good luck


    '11 Jedi
    '01 Rocket 88 Stage3
    2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser

  5. #5
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    You were correct, Schwinn, I did misread the directions. I guess I am getting dyslexic in my old age. ;-) Funny though, I purposely set it at the low end of the range I thought I'd read, since that is good practice, but that was still enough to damage the track. OK figure it was 17... and *maybe* worst case the torque wrench was 10% out to the high end, that still is only a couple lb-ft over the spec. I agree it is hard to believe they would make something with so little tolerance. But they did. I love the rack otherwise, but my review is going to make sure other buyers understand this issue.

    Oh well, live and learn. The track isn't broken, just has a bulge in it so it is still totally usable. There are no cracks and it isn't misaligned. We did a run this weekend with 2 bikes up and it worked great. And since the track is Al it won't rust where the paint is crazed. 90% of people would not even notice it. Unfortunately I am not 90% of people.

    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8 View Post
    I find it hard to believe the manufacture would have put the torque spec at it's breaking point with no margin of error. What's just my thoughts. good luck

  6. #6
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    it happens to the best of us. those pesky torque wrenches. I work in-conjuntion with a calibration lab. not too many torque wrenches are calibrated 100%. for the most part they all have a 3-4% deficiency in their accuracy. when I was in the Usaf if tech data called out a torque most of the time there was a +/- range. usually 5points in either direction. very rarely was there a spot on torque specification.


    '11 Jedi
    '01 Rocket 88 Stage3
    2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser

  7. #7
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    Yeah, and I am an engineer and hobby mechanic else I would have been happy with the hand assembly that was fine. But also, as an engineer, I can't imagine designing anything with less than a 1.5 or 2x margin, especially with aluminum.

  8. #8
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    aluminum is some fun stuff. even though it's aluminum strength to weight ratios based off what kind of aluminum is used still come into play. I'm an off roader. I've only found one rack that i think can hold up to the off roading abuse. it's an ISO and manufactured Australia.. iSi Advanced 4x4 Bicycle Carrier and Bike Rack Systems


    '11 Jedi
    '01 Rocket 88 Stage3
    2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser

  9. #9
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    Yes, and aluminum yields and is not elastic like steel and the real strong stuff can get brittle. But there many many types.

    The Isi looks nice! Real off roading would be brutal on a bike rack. I save that part for the bike ride... but if I lived out west I could see going this route.

    Maybe one day someone will make a 6/4 titanium rack for those with too much $$. ;-)

  10. #10
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    I love mine. Zero issues in 6 months.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by raylo View Post
    Before first use I decided to torque the bolts down to to value specified in the manual, 15-20 lb-ft. No problem, I pull out my smaller (3/8" drive) torque wrench, set it for ~17 and have at it. Alternating between the 2 bolts it took a good few turns before the torque started to take and increase to the click. More turns than I thought it should take but good, I thought, job done. Later I noticed that the "nut" had been pulled into the rear track and deformed the track, not terrible but a noticeable bulge. Also, the paint had crazed from bending.
    I just had the same problem assembling a Sherpa 2.0, except I set my wrench to the specified 15 ft. lbs. I worked the bolts back and forth and eventually, before the wrench clicked off, the end cap that the head of the bolts go through split in half. I bought a replacement end cap myself since I assumed that I'd somehow done something wrong but it seems that there might be something wrong with the parts.
    The outer cap shows some deformation, as does the outer track which has some hazing in the paint, so I will also be contacting Kuat to see what they say.
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  12. #12
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    Wow, even at 15 lb-ft.... I have the paint crazing and some bowing in the rear track, but my end cap stayed intact. Post up what they say... I am debating whether to try to get or buy a replacement track, even though it works OK as is.

    As close as this seems to be designed to fail at or near the specified torque they should mod the directions to specify hand assembly with the provided short lever arm wrench to preclude damage.

  13. #13
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    Just an update: Kuat has excellent customer service and got me all sorted out with replacement parts. Their guess was that something was defective, and they said that the Sherpa 2.0 does have tight tolerances. In any case, it's all back together and working great. I'd highly recommend them to anyone who's shopping for a rack.

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