Protecting bike on roof rack-
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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    May 2014

    Protecting bike on roof rack

    I just bought a new bike and do not want to thrash it being on the roof when we go on road trips. I was told this was something to avoid at the bike shop. Any thoughts? I've seen the front protectors on some bikes but it seems to generally be on road bikes. Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    I Tried Them ALL... SuperModerator
    Reputation: Cayenne_Pepa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    A trail will "trash" your MTB more than any road grime can. Just saying....
    "This is a male-dominated forum... there will be lots of Testosterone sword-shaming here" ~ Kenfucius

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Sunyata's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Most bike shops would actually recommend a roof rack system versus a rear rack. This is mostly because roof racks (well, most of them) do not actually touch the frame of the bike, where trunk mount and many hitch racks touch the frame of the bike.

    While roof mounted bikes do often get a little gross from hitting bugs while going down the road, I have never see one get "thrashed" by road grime or rocks. I have seen a few get trashed by getting hit by a low overhand from a garage or drive-thru window though... But that was more operator error than the rack's fault.

    If you do not want a roof rack, the best suggestion I have is to get a hitch mounted rack that does not touch the frame of the bike. Here is an example by Yakima:
    You have to earn your downs...

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004

    Take some new bike joy and pride while it's shiny but then realize a mountain bike is really a consumable. If you're riding it right you consume it and destroy in a few or maybe 10 years.

    I prefer the hitch racks myself but the bias is for 1Up and Saris models.

    Just keep your chain lubricated and dry the parts that can rust.


  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Aside from the occasional swarm of bugs, I've never had any issue with my bike on the roof rack. If you're driving on roads that get salted during the winter, your bike isn't safe anywhere on your car. IN the car is the best bet in this case.

  6. #6
    Your Best Friend
    Reputation: Silentfoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Keeping your bike cleaner is actually one of the advantages a roof rack has over a hitch rack. Dont' worry about the bugs, they come off.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Thanks for the info. Mud and bugs are fine. Glad to know the rack I have will work just fine.

  8. #8
    Reputation: stremf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    I have both hitch and roof racks. The only cons of a roof racks are difficulty loading/unloading for vertically challenged, and low-overhanging obstacles (garages, underground parking, drive-thur signs, etc.).

    If worried about rocks and such, you can get something like this:

    Universal Cycles -- Auto Racks & Parts > Roof Rack Bike Bras

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