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Tyre width limit on Thule bike rack?

steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
edited October 2018 in MTB buying advice
I will be moving to a tow-bar mounted bike rack. I had chosen the Thule VeloCompact 925

https://www.roofbox.co.uk/scripts/rbveh ... qoQAvD_BwE

I was all ready to press the buy button when my eye caught sight of "Max tyre width 2.4". Retire in confusion while I look for another bike rack. But the next best one I can find is another £180! So went back to the website to find that they had now sold out! :(

I have since looked on a range of websites for the Thule 925 (including Thule) and I can find no reference to a max tyre width of 2.4".

I'm starting to think I imagined it. Why is it so important? Well the bike I'm considering next has tyres in the range 2.6" to 2.8"

Does anyone have the Thule 2-bike tilting rack and is the tyre width constraint a real one?
Or do I just need longer straps? :)

Posts

  • figbatfigbat Posts: 680
    Just measured the tyre racks on my 3-bike version. Max width is about 2.6”. The straps are very long and won’t be the problem. The straps ratchet down so you might be able to squeeze a wider tyre in if soft enough.
    Cube Reaction GTC Pro 29 for the lumpy stuff
    Cannondale Synapse alloy with 'guards for the winter roads
    Fuji Altamira 2.7 for the summer roads
    Trek 830 Mountain Track frame turned into a gravel bike - for anywhere & everywhere
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    If the channels are Vee shaped, it shouldn't be a problem, but if they are U shaped then it could be. I can't really tell from the pictures available. Unless I imagined it, there must be a reason they said max 2.4".
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 9,707
    Had a quick look on thule website and it doesn't give a max width. looking at the pics i cant see a problem as long as not stupidly wide. Saying that i have seen fatbikes mounted on rear racks. as long as the tyres aren't rock hard and the straps go around the rack will hold them. My roof mounted thule rack will take 3" tyres no problem.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • figbatfigbat Posts: 680
    If the channels are Vee shaped, it shouldn't be a problem, but if they are U shaped then it could be. I can't really tell from the pictures available. Unless I imagined it, there must be a reason they said max 2.4".

    They are more a shallow U than a V. Once the straps are ratcheted down and the frame clamp is in place I can’t see a bike going anywhere, even if the tyres aren’t fully in the channels.
    Cube Reaction GTC Pro 29 for the lumpy stuff
    Cannondale Synapse alloy with 'guards for the winter roads
    Fuji Altamira 2.7 for the summer roads
    Trek 830 Mountain Track frame turned into a gravel bike - for anywhere & everywhere
  • JBAJBA Posts: 2,790
    I wouldn't worry about the tyre width, Steve.
    I'd be more concerned about the arms that clamp the bike 'crossbar'. Due to the rigid nature of the arms and the shape of modern mountain bikes it can be awkward, if not impossible to hold 2 mountain bikes on the rack. Is there any chance you can try before you buy?
    A mate of mine bought a very expensive 4-bike carrier (£500+) only to find he can't fit more than 2 mountain bikes on it. He scratched it first time he tried using it so couldn't return it!
    “Life has been unfaithful
    And it all promised so so much”

    Giant Trance 2 27.5 2016 ¦ Sonder Broken Road 2021¦ Giant Revolt Advanced 2 2019 ¦ Giant Anthem 3 2015 ¦ Specialized Myka Comp FSR 2009
  • 898kor898kor Posts: 81
    JBA wrote:
    I'd be more concerned about the arms that clamp the bike 'crossbar'. Due to the rigid nature of the arms and the shape of modern mountain bikes it can be awkward, if not impossible to hold 2 mountain bikes on the rack.!

    For that very reason I have just bought the https://www.roofbox.co.uk/scripts/rbvehsel4_tab.php/car-specific-accessories/thule_easyfold_xt_folding_3_bike_carrier_no_934/Qx%40w%2C6M42VAwp3%40Rb%7B~cC4urewQYI7

    Yes its a lot of money but it is very clever and well designed - it has a wider spacing to allow for boost hubs, longer tray to allow for longer wheelbases, takes 30Kg bikes (e-bike proof) and the clamp bars are designed so that you thread them through the bike frames once the bikes are strapped on - it works well.

    I managed to get mine on special offer at £500.

    Whilst my previous one was ok and served us well for over 5 years, in comparison it is awkward and clumsy. This has been money very well spent.

    If you want some pictures of the tyre channels I can do that later Steve.
    Bossnut V2
    Levo FSR Comp
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Many thanks to all that replied, especially those that went out to measure the tyre channels. (or are about to).

    @898kor: No need to take a pic of the tyre channels. Your verdict on whether a 2.8" tyre would fit is acceptable.

    Thanks again to all, most helpful. :):)
  • sniper68sniper68 Posts: 2,910
    I have this one Steve:-
    https://www.witter-towbars.co.uk/bike-r ... ke-carrier

    It would easily take a fatbike tyre as the wheel channels are wide and the straps are long.It comes in a 2 bike version.The straps are Nylon/Webbing so I use a cut up innertube to stop them rubbing the wheels.
    As said though the frame clamps are pretty useless even on HTs/Road bikes!
  • 898kor898kor Posts: 81

    @898kor: No need to take a pic of the tyre channels. Your verdict on whether a 2.8" tyre would fit is acceptable.

    Without doubt it will Steve
    Bossnut V2
    Levo FSR Comp
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Thanks, I will order the XT folding one (2-bike) now.

    :)
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Actions yesterday:
    I ordered a PF Jones Westfalia detachable towbar with 13-pin electrics. It comes with a lifetime guarantee on towbar and electrics. Audi dedicated kit, coded to the Audi systems so it does not interfere with any warning lights or sounds, turns off the reversing sensors and rear fog lights, allows the rack reversing, fog, and brake lights all to work as designed. Five hours work, free courtesy car. £485 from A1 Towing Ltd (also known as the Tow Bar Depot) in Sheffield. Early start for me on Monday as I have to drop off the car at 08:00. These guys were far and away the cheapest, came with recommendations from people I had met in various car parks and also by friends. Audi wanted £1390, and no free courtesy car!

    Tomorrow I will be collecting a Thule VeloSpace XT983 2-bike rack from Halfords. It has 13-pin electrics, is folding and has a foot operated tilt. Total load up to 60kg, max individual bike weight 30kg, max tyre width 4.7" Lockable with one key: rack to to towbar, bike to rack. It was advertised at £425 (cheapest I could find) and I would have paid that. Once I was on the Halfords site, I opted for click and collect and I got a 10% discount, so £382.50. This discount was not advertised and there was no reason given, but I'm happy to take it! The rack is extendable to a 3-bike by buying an extra bit. The Thule price is £475.

    I will be putting the tow bar in the boot on Sunday night so I can test it out when I collect the car, post towbar fitting. Sheffield is an hour and 15m away for me, so I don't want to have to go back just because one of the lights doesn't work properly!

    Many thanks to all on this thread and on another of mine on towbars for your assistance. You were really helpful. :)
  • Thanks, I will order the XT folding one (2-bike) now.

    :)
    898kor wrote:
    JBA wrote:
    I'd be more concerned about the arms that clamp the bike 'crossbar'. Due to the rigid nature of the arms and the shape of modern mountain bikes it can be awkward, if not impossible to hold 2 mountain bikes on the rack.!

    For that very reason I have just bought the [url]<span class="skimlinks-unlinked">https://www.roofbox.co.uk/scripts/rbvehsel4_tab.php/car-specific-accessories/thule_easyfold_xt_folding_3_bike_carrier_no_934/[email protected],[email protected]{~cC4urewQYI7&lt;/span&gt;[/url]

    Yes its a lot of money but it is very clever and well designed - it has a wider spacing to allow for boost hubs, longer tray to allow for longer wheelbases, takes 30Kg bikes (e-bike proof) and the clamp bars are designed so that you thread them through the bike frames once the bikes are strapped on - it works well.

    Gents, sorry to hijack but I'm about to get a towball carrier and I've narrowed it down to the easyfold or velospace. This is one of the few threads concerning the easyfold/velospace (given up on the search beta on STW). Thanks for the info so far!

    Despite the higher price, I'm leaning towards the easyfold for the ability to throw in the boot, not take up half the garage when not in use etc... but I've been trawling for some info without much success about real world issues with the easyfold after reading the bikeradar review https://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/accessories/car-racks/product/thule-easyfold-9032-rack-51281/ It says that moderate wheelbase bikes won't fit - is this something that you have found? I don't want to make an expensive mistake!!

    Not fussed about passing the clamping arms between frames - you are going to have to this with the shape of bikes today, but worried my 119cm wheelbase stumpy ST with 2.4" tyres won't be that secure? If it is a problem I'll pluck for the velospace which looks like it'll take the slackest sled up to 130cm. I'll only be using it for 2 bikes, a hardtail and the stumpy.

    Let me know any issues. Thanks in advance,

    Betty
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    I opted away from the VeloSpace because I came across a reference to it having max tyre width 2.4" whereas my bike will have 2.6" or 2.8" tyres. But then I could not find that reference again, so it made me look elsewhere. Your bike has 2.4" tyres, so you should be OK with the VeloSpace. For me the deciding factor was that I will be buying an eBike which are all heavier than clockwork bikes. The rack I opted for, the XT is designed for heavier bikes. I didn't look at wheelbase! :shock:

    Anyway, the die is cast, I'm picking it up tomorrow!
  • 898kor898kor Posts: 81
    Thanks, I will order the XT folding one (2-bike) now.

    :)
    898kor wrote:
    JBA wrote:
    I'd be more concerned about the arms that clamp the bike 'crossbar'. Due to the rigid nature of the arms and the shape of modern mountain bikes it can be awkward, if not impossible to hold 2 mountain bikes on the rack.!

    For that very reason I have just bought the [url]<span class="skimlinks-unlinked">https://www.roofbox.co.uk/scripts/rbvehsel4_tab.php/car-specific-accessories/thule_easyfold_xt_folding_3_bike_carrier_no_934/[email protected],[email protected]{~cC4urewQYI7&lt;/span&gt;[/url]

    Yes its a lot of money but it is very clever and well designed - it has a wider spacing to allow for boost hubs, longer tray to allow for longer wheelbases, takes 30Kg bikes (e-bike proof) and the clamp bars are designed so that you thread them through the bike frames once the bikes are strapped on - it works well.

    Gents, sorry to hijack but I'm about to get a towball carrier and I've narrowed it down to the easyfold or velospace. This is one of the few threads concerning the easyfold/velospace (given up on the search beta on STW). Thanks for the info so far!

    Despite the higher price, I'm leaning towards the easyfold for the ability to throw in the boot, not take up half the garage when not in use etc... but I've been trawling for some info without much success about real world issues with the easyfold after reading the bikeradar review https://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/accessories/car-racks/product/thule-easyfold-9032-rack-51281/ It says that moderate wheelbase bikes won't fit - is this something that you have found? I don't want to make an expensive mistake!!

    Not fussed about passing the clamping arms between frames - you are going to have to this with the shape of bikes today, but worried my 119cm wheelbase stumpy ST with 2.4" tyres won't be that secure? If it is a problem I'll pluck for the velospace which looks like it'll take the slackest sled up to 130cm. I'll only be using it for 2 bikes, a hardtail and the stumpy.

    Let me know any issues. Thanks in advance,

    Betty

    Betty,

    I have the XT version which is bigger than that in the review you linked us to, at the time of purchasing I was advised the wheelbase would suit upto 1,300mm wheelbase, this rings true, my son has a Mondraker Dune R in XL (wheelbase = 1,263mm) and it fits fine with some wriggle room. If your wheelbase is 1,190mm like you say, you should have plenty of room left.

    Its the ease at which you can thread and clamp the arms through the frames that is clever, the rack end of the clamp is sprung loaded which tightens up when you close the jaw end on the bike frame.

    I fit a Bossnut V2 in XL, Boardman FSR in L and Mondraker Dune R in XL with no problems
    Bossnut V2
    Levo FSR Comp
  • 898kor wrote:
    Betty,

    I have the XT version which is bigger than that in the review you linked us to, at the time of purchasing I was advised the wheelbase would suit upto 1,300mm wheelbase, this rings true, my son has a Mondraker Dune R in XL (wheelbase = 1,263mm) and it fits fine with some wriggle room. If your wheelbase is 1,190mm like you say, you should have plenty of room left.

    Its the ease at which you can thread and clamp the arms through the frames that is clever, the rack end of the clamp is sprung loaded which tightens up when you close the jaw end on the bike frame.

    I fit a Bossnut V2 in XL, Boardman FSR in L and Mondraker Dune R in XL with no problems

    Thanks very much for the info, I've watched quite a few vids on youtube but a lot have touring bikes and the like but I hadn't realised the XT was an upgraded version, a cursory check of google may have given me the answer! Sounds like it won't be a drama. Cheers again for the info!

    Betty
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    I unpacked the Thule VeloSpace XT 938 yesterday. Quality bit of kit, everything went together easily. It's a big ugly lump that has no straight edges, so it is best either laid flat on the floor or hung on the wall. Maybe I should mount an old towbar on the wall to hang it from? :lol:

    I need to clear some wallspace in the garage now! :shock:
  • figbatfigbat Posts: 680
    I was considering doing the towbar on the wall thing too! And then using the rack, mounted on this ‘bar, to store less-used bikes.
    Cube Reaction GTC Pro 29 for the lumpy stuff
    Cannondale Synapse alloy with 'guards for the winter roads
    Fuji Altamira 2.7 for the summer roads
    Trek 830 Mountain Track frame turned into a gravel bike - for anywhere & everywhere
  • sniper68sniper68 Posts: 2,910
    Mine just hangs on hooks on the back wall of the shed.Takes up very little room in what would be dead space.Absolutely no wall space in my garage!
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Sniper68 wrote:
    Mine just hangs on hooks on the back wall of the shed.Takes up very little room in what would be dead space.Absolutely no wall space in my garage!

    Apart from where I need to walk to access my bikes, and my wife the lawnmower, there is no floor space free in the 18'x18' garage. The walls are all full too! But to be fair the wall space could do with some rationalisation as stuff has been hung up randomly over the past 30 years.

    I REALLY need to have a clear out.
    There is a set of car ramps that have not been used for over 30 years. There is a Sea Panther sailboard and all its kit hung on the wall that hasn't been used for 20 years, a used-once leaf blower that my wife hasn't used for 15 years, a full 4mm neoprene wetsuit (long john, jacket, socks, hood) in a bag that also hasn't been used for 20 years, plus the Rucanor boots that go with them. Two tents from when the girls were in the Guides (more than 20 years ago).................. And so much more.
    I REALLY need to have a clear out!

    Less lethargy, that's the answer!! :lol:
  • sniper68sniper68 Posts: 2,910
    18'x18' garage!!!!!
    I'd love one that big!Mine's 16'x6' and I have a channel down the middle wide enough to walk/get the wheelie bins through hence the shed:|
    My Brothers garage takes up most of his rear garden.It is HUGE.It's got 2 double roller doors and is deep enough to fit two cars end to end...my dream garage 8)
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Yep 18x18, two up and over doors, both bolted down for security reasons (the bikes). I used to be able to get two cars in there when we first moved in. But 31 years of stuff has silted it up, so now the cars sleep outside and all the useless censored sleeps inside. Down the middle is a 14' length of telegraph pole that I "won" when the overground electricity was switched to underground about 30 years ago. I did have three of them but the other two were sawn up for the fire. The one that is left has the bit that was underground so I left it to dry out (I think its dry by now!) There is a 6' section of bathroom worktop leaning against one side and a double alloy ladder leaning against the other side. Like I said, clutter. :oops:

    I REALLY must have a clear out! :)
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    Sniper68 wrote:
    18'x18' garage!!!!!
    I'd love one that big!Mine's 16'x6' and I have a channel down the middle wide enough to walk/get the wheelie bins through hence the shed:|
    My Brothers garage takes up most of his rear garden.It is HUGE.It's got 2 double roller doors and is deep enough to fit two cars end to end...my dream garage 8)

    One of my old neighbours has a VERY long back garden on a slope downwards away from the house. He was a hyperactive sort of guy, always buying old cars and bikes and doing them up for sale. He said he needed a bigger garage, as he was servicing bikes in the lounge! ("I've taken the carpet up, of course I have, what sort of guy do you think I am?") :D

    So he built a 20' x 50' shed, complete with loads of lighting, power points and water supply, he even put a heater in there. Yes, 1000 square feet of man cave! Because of the slope, he had to spend a lot of money on foundations so that the whole thing wouldn't slide down the garden. It was made from corrugated steel panels with insulation bonded to it. He never stopped to think ahead, just solved each problem as he came across it and problem solved himself into spending £10,000 on a shed and that was 18-20 years ago. Shortly after it was completed, he got a job abroad and sold the house. I don't believe that he got his money back. I have no idea what it is used for now, probably full of censored ! :lol:
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,311
    I just get "Google Error 404" on both those links.

    I'm guessing what was on the pics, and yes it probably would have helped me. :)
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