Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty

    I just ordered a Thule T2 to transport my Fatty. I know the spec say's it's only good for a 3' tire so I plan on buying some 4" or 5" pvc, (a long elbow and a short straight piece), to replace the wheel cups. Has any one done this? Am I nuts?

  2. #2
    nvphatty
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    nuts.... but atleast give the rack a try before the butcher gets ahold of it.

  3. #3
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    The wheel trays bolt on so I wont ruin any thing. The worst that can happen is I wast $10 on PVC and a couple of hours.

  4. #4
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    It definitely won't fit-tried! But if you are able to get it to work please post pics! I was thinking about this today-I think the tricky part will be the front tide-maybe widening the bar that hooks the front tire?

  5. #5
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    What size rims/tires are you using?


    I had an older T2 and I could get a Mukluk with GFS and Larry's to fit with no modifications, and a Marge/BFL combo required some major tire deflation.The tires didn't just drop into the trays, but if you started with the side knobs of one side and then gently pushed the other side into the tray they fit without issue. The biggest issue wasn't the trays, but getting the arm over the tires at around the 45 degree point. The newer T2's supposedly have a longer arm so that shouldn't be an issue.

  6. #6
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    No you are not nuts..... and you are on the right forum

    Here is my 'Gutter rack'.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/my-...ry-526122.html
    Life IS a Beach and then you Corrode :)

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by dehoff View Post
    What size rims/tires are you using?


    I had an older T2 and I could get a Mukluk with GFS and Larry's to fit with no modifications, and a Marge/BFL combo required some major tire deflation.The tires didn't just drop into the trays, but if you started with the side knobs of one side and then gently pushed the other side into the tray they fit without issue. The biggest issue wasn't the trays, but getting the arm over the tires at around the 45 degree point. The newer T2's supposedly have a longer arm so that shouldn't be an issue.
    I am running BFL's on Clownshoes:
    http://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/my-...ld-813801.html

  8. #8
    Hybrid Leftys aren't real Moderator
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    Assuming the T2 still has a metal "basket" for the front wheel?

    I simply spread mine about 1/2 inch on each side with a piece of 2x4. They slide in with a small amount of push. Wheel hoop is long enough to drop right over.

    The strap for the rear isn't long enough, but a toe strap solves that in a jiffy.
    Cannondale Lefty and HeadShock servicing, wheel building, etc...


    www.mendoncyclesmith.com

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Assuming the T2 still has a metal "basket" for the front wheel?

    I simply spread mine about 1/2 inch on each side with a piece of 2x4. They slide in with a small amount of push. Wheel hoop is long enough to drop right over.

    The strap for the rear isn't long enough, but a toe strap solves that in a jiffy.
    Craig I think the new ones are molded plastic. Have to wait and see Monday. I read that one guy here heated his with a torch and spread it. I may even try that if needed. The replacement trays are cheap so it would not be a big dollar problem to replace them if you ruin them.

    PS: I ordered the new Pugsley spindle and did some finish work on my front end. Cleaned things up a bit.
    Every one that gets on my bike just starts smiling and laughing.

  10. #10
    Hybrid Leftys aren't real Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    Every one that gets on my bike just starts smiling and laughing.
    Gotcha. You may be okay leaving it as is.

    With my Kuat, the basket doesn't "fit" the tire, but will stay there. However, drive for a while, and it walks it's way out, yikes!

    I just toss a toe strap on each wheel, the basket one gets biased towards the front, so as to really hold it down.

    Might just save a few pennies, who knows.

    Yep, every time someone hops on one of the fatties I have at the shop, same thing, giggle, guffaw, yee haw, all good!
    Cannondale Lefty and HeadShock servicing, wheel building, etc...


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  11. #11
    Harmonius Wrench
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    No mods. Used toe straps from an Enabler cage to secure the rear wheels. Did not release any pressure. (Only use less than 10psi ever anyway) This is a newer T2 with the longer arm. One bike has RD's with BFL

    No issues ever with wheels creeping out of the tray.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-fat-bike-fun-sept11-008.jpg  

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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitar Ted View Post
    No mods. Used toe straps from an Enabler cage to secure the rear wheels. Did not release any pressure. (Only use less than 10psi ever anyway) This is a newer T2 with the longer arm. One bike has RD's with BFL

    No issues ever with wheels creeping out of the tray.
    Looks like the arm has good engagement on the front tire. I am concerned because my test ride will be from northern NY to Huntersville NC.

  13. #13
    nvphatty
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    Looks like the arm has good engagement on the front tire. I am concerned because my test ride will be from northern NY to Huntersville NC.
    heck strap it on and buzz about town for 10min to test

  14. #14
    Single Speed Junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by nvphatty View Post
    heck strap it on and buzz about town for 10min to test
    Today my 29er fell off the T2. Finished the ride, went off roading and it was fine, interstate at 80mph and it was fine, then the neighborhood and it fell in towards the Jeep. For reasons unknown the rack dropped the bike. Could have been much worse. For testing a fat bike I'd secure it down then see if you can shake it loose by hand. Much better than having it drop off the rack.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by crux View Post
    Today my 29er fell off the T2. Finished the ride, went off roading and it was fine, interstate at 80mph and it was fine, then the neighborhood and it fell in towards the Jeep. For reasons unknown the rack dropped the bike. Could have been much worse. For testing a fat bike I'd secure it down then see if you can shake it loose by hand. Much better than having it drop off the rack.
    Was the wheel clamp still in place or did it slip? Were the wheels still in the wheel tray?

  16. #16
    @adelorenzo
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    I modded my T2 by chucking the POS underneath my deck and replacing it with a North Shore Rack. So far the mod is working fine, the Thule rack hasn't budged an inch in at least two years. I think there might be some grass growing in it though...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthony.delorenzo View Post
    I modded my T2 by chucking the POS underneath my deck and replacing it with a North Shore Rack. So far the mod is working fine, the Thule rack hasn't budged an inch in at least two years. I think there might be some grass growing in it though...
    In your experience, what about the T2 made it a POS?

  18. #18
    nvphatty
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthony.delorenzo View Post
    I modded my T2 by chucking the POS underneath my deck and replacing it with a North Shore Rack. So far the mod is working fine, the Thule rack hasn't budged an inch in at least two years. I think there might be some grass growing in it though...
    now thats funneeee i dun't care who ya are!!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cendres View Post
    In your experience, what about the T2 made it a POS?
    Here's the short list:

    • Can't be used offroad (important for me)
    • Bikes hang low and too far back, especially when you have the 4-bike extension. They get more crap on them and are harder to see. My rack was hit once in a parking lot by a guy pulling a trailer.
    • Did a poor job holding fat bikes. On mine the front clamp was barely usable and the rear wheel straps not usable at all
    • Too much plastic and fiddly little parts like wheel trays and straps. Things got lost or broken too easily.
    • Poor construction. I had to get mine fixed at a welding shop.
    • Way too expensive. For four bikes you are looking at $1K retail. North Shore is half the price.


    I should probably sell the damn thing but we do use it once or twice a year for our road bikes. So mostly I just ***** about it.

  20. #20
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    Am I correct that the north shore racks hold the bike by the front crown or fork? I just wont have any thing touching my frame on any of my bikes.

  21. #21
    Harmonius Wrench
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    Quote Originally Posted by crux View Post
    Today my 29er fell off the T2. Finished the ride, went off roading and it was fine, interstate at 80mph and it was fine, then the neighborhood and it fell in towards the Jeep. For reasons unknown the rack dropped the bike. Could have been much worse. For testing a fat bike I'd secure it down then see if you can shake it loose by hand. Much better than having it drop off the rack.
    I've got at least 6 round trips to El Paso Texas on my T2's, (I've had one that rusted out), and that's 3,000 miles each time, plus numerous trips to the Twin Cities and hither and yon, with not one single issue.

    Guess some folks have all the luck, eh?
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitar Ted View Post
    I've got at least 6 round trips to El Paso Texas on my T2's, (I've had one that rusted out), and that's 3,000 miles each time, plus numerous trips to the Twin Cities and hither and yon, with not one single issue.

    Guess some folks have all the luck, eh?
    Thanks Ted. That's what I wanted to hear.

  23. #23
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    T2 works just fine.
    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-imageuploadedbytapatalk1348580424.143608.jpg

    Even works with the stock 80mm rims. But I use extra straps at the wheels for mounting.

  24. #24
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    1up USA. One is on my short list to replace my T2. I've been perfectly satisfied with my T2 I'm simply looking for a more convenient option for my new Moonlander.

    http://www.1upusa.com/
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  25. #25
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    I got my Thule T2 the other day and I just got back from Lowes with an arm load of stuff. I do love a challenge and this one might turn out OK. I will let you know in a couple day's..

  26. #26
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    OK so here we go. These pic's are of the assembled new front and rear wheel trays for my mew Thule T2. Some 3/4x4" PVC board, 4" electrical PVC conduit, PVC adhesive, 2 1/2x4" carriage bolts and some deck screws is all it takes. I did a bunch of measuring and then began to cut, glue and screw. I also had to heat the conduit and reform it. My BFL's on Clownshoes are a good snug fit in the new trays. After the adhesives dries overnight I will perform final fit and painting. I will post the finished product.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod1.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod2.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod3.jpg  

    Last edited by gcappy; 10-01-2012 at 02:13 PM.

  27. #27
    I'm a Target Too.
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    ^ Those look great!

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Assuming the T2 still has a metal "basket" for the front wheel?

    I simply spread mine about 1/2 inch on each side with a piece of 2x4. They slide in with a small amount of push. Wheel hoop is long enough to drop right over.

    The strap for the rear isn't long enough, but a toe strap solves that in a jiffy.
    Craig on your T2 which way do you face your Lefty? Front wheel left or front wheel right? Does the wheel hoop contact the fork any where? I am testing mine with the front wheel right and the wheel hoop open end contacts the fork on the very end of the hoop. It does however seem to be very secure. Should I place the bike in the fron trays with front wheel left?

    thanks

  29. #29
    Hybrid Leftys aren't real Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    Craig on your T2 which way do you face your Lefty? Front wheel left or front wheel right? Does the wheel hoop contact the fork any where? I am testing mine with the front wheel right and the wheel hoop open end contacts the fork on the very end of the hoop. It does however seem to be very secure. Should I place the bike in the fron trays with front wheel left?

    thanks
    If I understand what you're asking, mine, the hoop end goes towards the fork. Yes, the end of it does contact the fork, pushes down on the breather boot a little bit. No harm, so I never give it a second thought.

    If I'm misinterpreting the question, say the word.

    Those look cool as hell too!
    Cannondale Lefty and HeadShock servicing, wheel building, etc...


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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    If I understand what you're asking, mine, the hoop end goes towards the fork. Yes, the end of it does contact the fork, pushes down on the breather boot a little bit. No harm, so I never give it a second thought.

    If I'm misinterpreting the question, say the word.

    Those look cool as hell too!
    Sorry for the confusion. Is the open end of the hoop touching the fork or is the leg of the hoop touching the fork?
    Picture please.

  31. #31
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    So the mod is finished and painted. Once dry I will install and test drive. I did have to make on e more piece. I had to build a longer tail stock for the base. The rear wheel tray I made is about three times as long as the stock one. My new one stuck out farther than the base and the base would not support the entire length of the new tray. I made a 10 " PVC stub and insert it 5" into the base. I also removed the 1/4x20 bolt that holds the rear tray from sliding off the base and with the stub piece and the new tray installed drilled a 5/16" hole all the way through to allow for a 1/4x20 bolt and nylock nut to hold everything together. I will have pic's of the finished product on the vehicle soon.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod5.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod8.jpg  


  32. #32
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    Cool mod! What are you using for wheel straps? It would be cool if Thule would offer long ratchet straps

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by SRALPH View Post
    Cool mod! What are you using for wheel straps? It would be cool if Thule would offer long ratchet straps
    Thanks:
    I intend to use some long velcro straps. Two per wheel.

  34. #34
    Puro Vida!
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    So there is the t2, Kuat Enve and the 1upUSA-I have the T2 and seems someone hit it and now it's bent. Still holds but wobbles a bunch-worries me a bit but I don't see the metal cracked anywhere. Anyways was told Tule doesnt do anything to help in a case like this. So was looking at the 1Up and the Enve-Both look nice-any recommendations?

  35. #35
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    Here is the finished product. My new Thule T2 has been modified to fit up to a five inch tire with no problems. The mod did not use or modify any of the original parts so the entire rack can go back to stock in five minutes if needed. I took two bikes out tonight for a test ride and all went well. I will be motoring to NC on Monday with three bikes. Dont tell any one but one of them is a road bike.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod17.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod16.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod15.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod13.jpg  

    Modifying a Thule T2 rack for Fatty-thule-rack-mod14.jpg  


  36. #36
    nvphatty
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    impressive results.

  37. #37
    rider
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    Nice work. I just purchased a Pugsley and am wondering if a standard top tube rack (ex. Thule Parkway) would work. It seems like it should but i have not seen any posts on this. Thanks for the help.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by WashParkCyclist View Post
    Nice work. I just purchased a Pugsley and am wondering if a standard top tube rack (ex. Thule Parkway) would work. It seems like it should but i have not seen any posts on this. Thanks for the help.
    For me I wont have any thing touch the paint on any of my bikes. I have to much invested to hold the bike by the painted surface and eventually damage it.

  39. #39
    All fat, all the time.
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    Good job!!

  40. #40
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    768 miles today with one 29er and one fatty on the rack. No incidents, no worries!

  41. #41
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    Here's another option. A bit expensive but well worth it.
    TufRack
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  42. #42
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    Finally took a picture. No need for mods. I drive 70MPH on the freeway and it's solid.


  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupremeDork View Post
    Finally took a picture. No need for mods. I drive 70MPH on the freeway and it's solid.

    Dude, that picture scares me. Especially the front end configuration.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    Dude, that picture scares me. Especially the front end configuration.
    lol scares you? what about the front end configuration scares you?

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupremeDork View Post
    lol scares you? what about the front end configuration scares you?
    The front wheel is just kinda sitin on the rail and the back wheel is sitin on top of the tray.
    And the bike is backwards on the rack. The ratchet arm wheel holder is designed to be on the front wheel to prevent it from turning while on the rack. What are the tie down straps you are using?

    Not sayin it doesnt work. Just that I am to scared to try something like that.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    The front wheel is just kinda sitin on the rail and the back wheel is sitin on top of the tray.
    And the bike is backwards on the rack. The ratchet arm wheel holder is designed to be on the front wheel to prevent it from turning while on the rack. What are the tie down straps you are using?

    Not sayin it doesnt work. Just that I am to scared to try something like that.
    My ideal setup is your invention. Very nice job on that! I actually had a similar idea using PVC pipe, but nowhere near as pro as yours.

    I had to flip the bike backwards for two primary reasons:
    1. The front rack is in the way of the arm.
    2. The drag on the front wheel caused by the car at high speeds would actually cause it to turn in the tray - despite the locking arm holding it down - which would allow the bike to fall over.

    I had quite a scare one day when it was fully loaded for a long all-mountain ride. One moment the bike was in my mirror. The next it was gone lol. Turns out it just fell over and was laying on the carrier out of my view.

    It was after that when it dawned on me to flip it backwards.

    I'm using adjustable bungee cords to hold the front wheel down. The rear wheel tray helps keep the wheel centered, which I strap to the wheel in order to keep it all locked down. These are the bungee cords I use:


    Like I said, 70MPH on the freeway. I have a 30 mile commute and have to cart the fat bike sometimes for after-work rides. I watch it in my rear-view mirror and it's solid. It won't bounce off either.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupremeDork View Post
    My ideal setup is your invention. Very nice job on that! I actually had a similar idea using PVC pipe, but nowhere near as pro as yours.

    I had to flip the bike backwards for two primary reasons:
    1. The front rack is in the way of the arm.
    2. The drag on the front wheel caused by the car at high speeds would actually cause it to turn in the tray - despite the locking arm holding it down - which would allow the bike to fall over.

    I had quite a scare one day when it was fully loaded for a long all-mountain ride. One moment the bike was in my mirror. The next it was gone lol. Turns out it just fell over and was laying on the carrier out of my view.

    It was after that when it dawned on me to flip it backwards.

    I'm using adjustable bungee cords to hold the front wheel down. The rear wheel tray helps keep the wheel centered, which I strap to the wheel in order to keep it all locked down. These are the bungee cords I use:


    Like I said, 70MPH on the freeway. I have a 30 mile commute and have to cart the fat bike sometimes for after-work rides. I watch it in my rear-view mirror and it's solid. It won't bounce off either.
    If it's working for you it's all good. My set up cost around $60. for material. I think I could make another on in one day now. The bike is rock solid in there. I use a bunch of extra wheel straps because I'm paranoid but I think I really don't need any.

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