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Car bike racks without a viewable reg plate?

N0bodyOfTheGoatN0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 4,253
edited May 2016 in Commuting chat
Is it a "dead cert" that I would be pulled over by the police, if I was to use a bike rack that obscured the rear reg plate? We do not have one of those portable reg plated to secure to the rearmost bike...

What sort of consequences are likely? Fine and confiscation of bikes?

We were going to lay down the back car seats and put two bikes in the back (fits fine, did it last night). But now we have discovered that family coming on same weekend break need us to take some extra food bags, spoiling the original plan... :?

I sense that the Pylon8 and my better half's Zena2 will not be coming to Longleat and we will instead now be spending 50 quids on bike hire... GUTTED :cry:
2020 Voodoo Marasa
2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
2016 Voodoo Wazoo


  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    I think there is a low risk of being pulled over, but just because there are not that many traffic police cars on the road. I don't think it is worth the risk though, and for me the issue is more to do with what is right rather than "would I get caught". In addition you will probably obscure the rear lights which is a safety issue - I would not do that. Instead of spending £50 on hire bikes, spend it on a light board and number plate (you should get some change).

    You can get one for £22, or less on eBay, and a number plate for about £10. It will do you for many more trips so is good value.

    Don't risk your licence or people's lives.
  • biondinobiondino Posts: 5,990
    When I borrowed CJ's bike rack I (honestly) forgot about the licence plate issue, but even when I had a cop car on my tail I didn't get pulled over - I guess either the plate was just about visible through two bikes or they just didn't notice/care.

    Am I right in thinking you have to go through some kind of palaver to get a number plate made up (so that crooks can't just forge them willy-nilly)?
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    edited March 2009
    biondino wrote:
    Am I right in thinking you have to go through some kind of palaver to get a number plate made up (so that crooks can't just forge them willy-nilly)?
    You just have to take your vehicle registration document along. I actually persuaded a shop to do one without because I forgot it :oops:

    I got it for one of these:
    which for about £95 solves the whole problem (lightboard included) and is a far better way to carry bikes on a car - if you have a tow hook of course.
  • alfablue wrote:
    Don't risk your licence or people's lives.

    +1 to that.

    Having seen a motorway pile up first hand, you don't want to decrease the likelihood of the car behind seeing your brake lights if brake suddenly.

    Regarding the law on getting a number plate made up, see the link below:
  • fossyantfossyant Posts: 2,549
    Don't do'll be in deep do do if it went wrong..... take wheels of bikes, shove much room do you need for just two bikes......

    I'd never have bikes out back - only because I'd wrap said mashed bike round offending drivers head if I got rear ended - proper racks in my case.....on roof !
  • I would think that they would be unlikely to confiscate the bikes, but might stop you driving off while the lights/plate were covered. That would give you the option of getting someone to go to you and collect the bikes or leave them at the side of the road.
  • andy83andy83 Posts: 1,557
    you say longleat and having to hire otherwise? take it your going to centreparcs?

    Word of advice, save the hassle, leave bikes at home and then you know you will have them when you get back, there are that many bikes at the centreparcs places that anyhting apart from their stock stick out like a sore thumb and the last thing you want is pide and joy nicked when your on holiday

    just my two pence worth
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    To be honest the cycling in Centreparcs is useless, all I wanted to do was get out of the place!
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    I wouldnt bother with taking good bikes to CP - just for pootling round on. They do sell food there though - so not too much point in taking your own if you dont have to ?
  • beegeebeegee Posts: 160
    With that Thule cycle rack, how do you plug the thing into your car's electrics ? Do you need to have a towbar and socket already fitted ?
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    Yes you need a tow hook, the electrics can be wired without a socket (the appropriate wires will be in the boot) though if you have a tow hook then it will invariably have an electrics socket. In my view it is worth getting a tow hook just to use this type of carrier - by far the safest (as I leant after encountering a car park roof with my saddle while the bike was on roof bars).
  • Just got back from Centreparcs and despite spending just short 50 squids on bike hire for the weekend, I'm sort of glad we did not take the new steeds... Anything with disc brakes stand out like a sore thumb, amongst the hire bikes (Mongoose Rockadile).

    Despite needing a bit of TLC (chain lube; rear mech barrel to smooth out gear changes), the hire bikes are fine for the Longleat environment. Glad we did hire them out, as the villa was in the "Fir" section, furthest away from anything resembling civilization in the enclosure! :lol:

    Thanks for the ideas on transport; lightboards; reg plates etc for future use. It will take my better half some time to build up her stamina, but the weekend seems to have inspired her and convinced me that her new Saracen Zena2 (left at home this time) may actually get some regular use on my days off from work :P
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • With regard to cycle racks and whether you can see that reg plate, it really doesn't matter whether you can see it or not, there is something much much more important that the reg plate and the majority of weekend cyclists never think of and that is the visibility of the rear lights. If you obscure your rear lights on your car there is a very good chance that someone will hit you from behind and potentially wipe you and your family out if you brake hard, lets just hope it isn't a 44 tonne truck like i drive !!
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