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  1. #1
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    Has Your Saris Bike Rack Damaged Your Bike?

    I've had a Saris Bones type rack for several years and the thing works great. However, I never put my "good" bikes on it because I'm concerned about paint damage where the frame contacts the arms or perhaps where the plastic straps wrap around the top or down tube. Particularly on a very long drive.

    Anyone actually ever have this problem or am I concerned about nothing?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I've never had that problem, but maybe I don't pay as much attention to minor paint scratches as some people do. I think if you attach the bike securely it doesn't move around, so the likelihood of scratching is very low. You could put a piece of soft cloth around the tube and alleviate all concern.

  3. #3
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    I sold my Yakima Swingdaddy for this reason. If any part of the rack or straps had dirt on it, it scratched the frame. Went with a 1UPUSA rack instead which doesn't touch the frame at all.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddimick View Post
    ... If any part of the rack or straps had dirt on it, it scratched the frame. ...
    That's pretty much it. Any pads that touch the bike's frame or car's paint will get road dirt/grit under them and can scratch the finish. The thing I do is get clear stick-on protective film and cut pieces to fit on the bike and car where the pads contact.

  5. #5
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    Put a sock in it.

    That's what I do anyway. I keep old socks, mainly for cleaning the chain, but also for use with the rack. I clean the rack's feet and the car before attaching it, then wrap a sock around the bike frame where the straps contact it.

  6. #6
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddimick View Post
    I sold my Yakima Swingdaddy for this reason. If any part of the rack or straps had dirt on it, it scratched the frame. Went with a 1UPUSA rack instead which doesn't touch the frame at all.
    I don't mean to sound negative and I'm not directing this at you personally, but why be worried about scratching the frame with a plastic buckle if you're just going to dangle your prized bike off the back of a car, exposing the bike to rocks, gravel and dust being flung at the bike at speeds upwards of 60 mph?

    If we're actually concerned about the buckles scratching the finish while ignoring all the other hazards a bike rack produces, I have some easy solutions...

    1. Put a cotton rag or microfiber cloth between the buckle and frame.
    2. Get a roof rack or a hitch rack that secures the bike by its wheels. Trunk racks are cheap and treat both your bike and your car accordingly.
    3. Or just take your front wheel off and put the bike inside the car. I struggled with various racks for years before I realized how much easier and safer this option is. A road bike without the front wheel with fit in nearly any car. This works with even the smallest subcompacts. Hatchback optional.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by superjesus View Post
    I don't mean to sound negative and I'm not directing this at you personally, but why be worried about scratching the frame with a plastic buckle if you're just going to dangle your prized bike off the back of a car, exposing the bike to rocks, gravel and dust being flung at the bike at speeds upwards of 60 mph?
    can't argue with that one!

    If we're actually concerned about the buckles scratching the finish while ignoring all the other hazards a bike rack produces, I have some easy solutions...

    1. Put a cotton rag or microfiber cloth between the buckle and frame.
    This

    2. Get a roof rack or a hitch rack that secures the bike by its wheels. Trunk racks are cheap and treat both your bike and your car accordingly.
    I use a hitch mount and by the time i was done putting a receiver on my car and buying a Yakima double down I was already $325 into a rack and the wheel mount variety would have been nearly a $150 more and 35 pounds heavier (hanging off the rack on an extremely light weight car)


    3. Or just take your front wheel off and put the bike inside the car. I struggled with various racks for years before I realized how much easier and safer this option is. A road bike without the front wheel with fit in nearly any car. This works with even the smallest subcompacts. Hatchback optional.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by superjesus View Post
    I don't mean to sound negative and I'm not directing this at you personally, but why be worried about scratching the frame with a plastic buckle if you're just going to dangle your prized bike off the back of a car, exposing the bike to rocks, gravel and dust being flung at the bike at speeds upwards of 60 mph?
    Who only drives 60

    Honestly, I dont put nice bike on the trunk rack anymore...
    But when I did the ONLY thing that ever got marked where the contact points. Your car kinda pushes everything out of the way and anything to he hit will be hit by it. The thing that rubs and vibrates softly against your bike is a much much more real danger to your bike... Barring some unusual catastrofic event.
    So that is why I would worry about the bike rack scratching the finish... Because it WILL happen... The other just "might".

    My steel campus bike has a shiny metal spot where the rack removed its paint.

  10. #10
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    Thanks guys your thougths are,most appreciated. I always carry my bike inside the car (Mazda3) but when my wife is with me then one bike has to ride in a rack.

    I do have a roof rack and even though I've only done it once...it still scares me. That is.....driving under a motel overhang with the bikes still on the rack. Ouch!

  11. #11
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    I have a Saris bones 3 rack for my car and fork mounts mounted in the truck bed. If we don't have to travel a long distance, I take the truck (which is what I prefer) its much easier to just take the front wheel off and secure them in the bed instead of messing mounting the bike rack and worrying about scratching the car and the bike.
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  12. #12
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    Yet another argument why Ti is the best material for a bike.
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