Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    i like rocks
    Reputation: euroford's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    So.... what is the current "state of the art" in rooftop bike racks?

    Typically, I toss the bikes on the tailgate of my truck and go, but I've been driving my BMW 540i more often and just installed a yakima roof rack with the slick bolt-on landing pads so I plan to use it about half the time.

    At one time I had 8 yakima king cobras, but over the years these have gradually succumbed to rust and abuse. I have one on there now, but don't expect it to last that much longer and its just not worth risking an expensive bike with a rack more than 10 years old.

    Durability, strength and reliability are paramount concerns, this will get driven over top of Berthoud pass to Trestle bike park on a regular basis in very aggressive fashion. Its a fun road and I intend to use the car at the limits of its abilities, at least in terms of cornering and acceleration.

    I've never had a rack that required removal of the front wheel, but i'm not opposed to this for an increase in security. Bike runs a pike with 15mm through axle.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails So.... what is the current "state of the art" in rooftop bike racks?-540rack.jpg  

    Tim M Hovey

    Nukeproof Mega 290
    1950 CJ3a
    1999 BMW 540i
    1999 F350 PSD

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    25 year roof rack user here. I recently outfitted my BMW 330i and 530xit with whisbar crossbars and Rocky Mounts brass knuckles and the front wheel remove tray. The whispbars are really quiet. I chose the RM mounts because they mount onto the whispbars and are very low profile when not in use. So far so good with a few thousand miles of high speed driving in all conditions.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    The Whispbar quick dock WB200 fork mounts are slick if you have T-track load bars that are compatible but I have seen more than a few critical reviews of the actual fork mount setup when used with 15mm thru axle bikes. At retail pricing they are very expensive relative to other offerings.

    The Kuat Trio is a versatile and nice quality roof mount for bikes if you are willing to remove the front wheel. It can accommodate a variety of front axle standards (9mm QR, 15 &20 mm thru axle boost etc.). The fork mount set up is secure on my 15 mm thru axle as it relies on the fork thru axle for retention (no lock). It does not lock to the cross bars but relies on security nuts as a deterrent. They use the same security nuts on all of them so everyone who has bought one has the wrench to remove one. I use the locking cable to lock the tray to one load bar when parked.

    If you intend to remove the rack from the car frequently, the mounting method out of the box requires removal of the 4 screws and two thumb nuts for each tray. It would be nice if they offered a T track mounting setup that had a lock to secure the tray to the bars. I had to design and fabricate a quick mount adapter system to allow me to use the T-tracks in my load bars to mount the trays. This is where the Whipsbar quickdock leads in usability.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Seasucker is getting some rave reviews! No need for roof bars and fits pretty much any car. They're supposed to be unreal (check YouTube for some video reviews). I'm saving for one.

  5. #5
    Professional Crastinator
    Reputation: Fleas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    If you carry fatbikes, despite my less than raving review, the Swagman Race Ready is pretty secure.

    That said, my fatbike does sway on corners and at rail crossings - perhaps due to the length of my crossbars and the spacing of the supports. It does not come loose, though.

    If you don't carry any fatbikes I would say the Race Ready is unnecessarily wide for narrower bikes. Brass knuckles is similar design, but narrower.

    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    I'd look at the RockyMounts Brass Knuckles or the 1UpUSA trays. If you have a hex bit for your drill, these things go on super fast.

    That all said, I'm a big BMW guy and I've had them for years. I add an Invisihitch to my cars and then use a hitch rack. The Invisihitch mounts up under the car and is invisible. You have a receiver that mates with that when you need it. Then I use a 1UpUSA rack after that. This whole thing is way easier than a roof rack, keeps the bikes out of the airflow (bugs and rocks), avoids the (inevitable) smash into an overhand with the bikes, and mounts in <1minute.

    Execuhitch - Manufacturer and Retailer of Hidden Tow Hitches for BMW, Mercedes, Subaru


    If you want to, you can actually get a roof rack version of the 1UpUSA and move it between the roof and the hitch if you get the right parts. Call them to figure it out. That's pretty cool and gives you a lot more options. The 1UpUSA rack is sleeker and more aero than the Rockymounts.

    FWIW, I have all of this stuff (I know, it's ridiculous).


  7. #7
    since 4/10/2009
    Reputation: Harold's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    I am a fan of the 1upUSA roof trays. I drove from Indiana to Arizona and back with bikes on the roof of my camper. There were some pretty gnarly winds along the way, and the 1up trays were great.

    20170302_075720 by Nate, on Flickr

    I usually use a Kuat hitch rack, and for my fatbike, I do prefer the 1up arms vs. the Kuat arms for clearing the fork legs. The Kuat is mm away from not working and beating up my fork. But for sorta obvious reasons, the hitch rack isn't the best choice for the camper arrangement, so I had to work out another solution.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Chad_M's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    To me the most up to date fork mount roof rack is the kuat trio. It at least takes into account different axles sizing.
    Ridley CX, Stumpjumper Carbon HT, Surly Wednesday

Similar Threads

  1. Are all current xt brakes "icetech"
    By jdaigneault in forum Brake Time
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 12-12-2016, 08:10 PM
  2. "Hike & Bike" campsite @ Half Moon Bay State Beach
    By karld in forum California - Norcal
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 08-02-2015, 06:21 PM
  3. State Senator : "Find a F'g Bike Lane"
    By mtbxplorer in forum Commuting
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 09-27-2014, 08:06 PM
  4. Need a little "current" advice on lights and batteries
    By WesternMD in forum Lights DIY - Do It Yourself
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 05-29-2013, 10:01 AM
  5. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-13-2011, 07:34 AM

Members who have read this thread: 33

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts