FS bike with racks and panniers- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2004

    New question here. FS bike with racks and panniers

    Good evening ---

    One of my pipe dreams is to do a weekend bikepacking trip. Where my destination will be I don't have that worked out yet. But I was wondering if anyone out there has rigged up racks and panniers to their full suspension bike. I have a Yeti 575 and the only type of rear rack I have seen for a FS bike is one that attaches to the seatpost only. And I haven't found anything for a front fork yet (I have a 130 Vanilla). I'd like to keep my total gear weight under 30 pounds at the most for 2-3 days. And believe me I've already thought of getting a B.O.B.

  2. #2
    Compulsive Bike Builder
    Reputation: DirtDad's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002

    A few options

    You can go with Headlands/Old Man Mountain racks that are designed for what you want to do. Delta makes a "disc rack" that may fit in the rear. All may require some straps/clamps around the frame in various places for mount spots. Arkel make some nice bags that are meant for mountain bikes - they are taller but not so long so you have more ankle clerance.
    Disclaimer: ComCycle USA

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    another option, is to get a seatpost rack with extensions along the side that prevent the panniers from swinging in/out.


    i had to opt for this option as well. the only draw back with seatpost racks, they usually only have a 20-25 max capacity.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Another option for panniers on full suspension biles: the Thule Pack & Pedal Tour Rack:

    Thule Pack n Pedal Tour Rack - Thule

    which attaches to the swing arm without any connection to the main frame.

    I was able to modify this one to also accept the Topeak Trunk Bags we use on our hardtail and road bikes:

    TopeakŪ Cycling Accessories ? Products - MTX TrunkBag EX

    by attaching the Topeak mounting rail to the top of the Thule Rack:

    FS bike with racks and panniers-jeklyy-700c-rack-close.jpg

    One of the nice things about the Thule rack is that allows the panniers to sit far enough back to provide generous heel clearance.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: PerthMTB's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Having been on a trip where two of us had panniers and two of us trailers, I'd say your instinct to get a BOB was spot on. Even if you solve the mounting issue with a seatpost or chainstay mount, the weight still affects the rear suspension characteristics. Also panniers give you a higher centre of gravity and concentrate most of the weight on the rear wheel, both of which can be disastrous in soft sand or mud! A trailer on the other hand gives you a much lower COG and spreads the weight over two wheels (your rear wheel and the trailer wheel).

    Trailers do have their downsides when negotiating tight corners or trying to get over logs, but on balance I definitely prefer trailers for offroad touring. Also, having tried both, I'd add that a suspension trailer like the Ibex isn't much of an advantage over a rigid one like the Yak or Topeak Journeyman.

    I hired a trailer for my first trip, so maybe check if you can do likewise where you are based.

    Not my photo, just one I borrowed of the web, but gives you the general idea...

    FS bike with racks and panniers-bob-trailer.jpg

  6. #6
    > /dev/null 2&>1
    Reputation: Procter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Zombie alert!

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: vikb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Procter View Post
    Zombie alert!
    ** sigh **
    Safe riding,


  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    I had a 26er Epic FSR , the topeak MTX seat post rack with even moderately low loads of 12lbs ish in the trunk bag messed up the bike balance and no amount of tweaking the brain really helped, it was really easy to wash out the front wheel. I tried out a borrowed Freeloader on the sus fork(now thule pack and pedal) this helped stabilise the front with the mtx rack on the rear and the bike handling was better. I still didn't like the feel or handling of that bike with racks at all, my Karate Monkey feels very similar handling wise loaded or not.
    Maybe visit a few local shops and see if you can get a weekend hire / loan of the pack and pedal or trailer. For 2 or 3 days and less than 30lb a bag arrangement and small backpack may work best. I think a trailer is overkill, they come into their own when you have a lot of kit to haul. Plus if you are planning on anything technical you may find it restrictive

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