– Can it fit more than 1 bike?
Absolutely, you can fit 2-5 if you ‘head to tail’ them. How many depends on the width of your roof bars, width of your handlebars and if the roof bars extend out beyond the mounting brackets. So with road bikes (narrow handlebars) on a wide rack you could fit 6 (if using three cross rails). On a small car with mountain bikes (wide handlebars) you may be limited to two.
– Does it lock?
It does now…. we have worked really hard to create a solution we can be proud of. We now have a model with an electronic lock, more details can be found on the Product Page
We will continue to offer a model without a lock. We found that in 99% of uses a lock is not required. If you travel directly to the ride and home, it isn’t an issue. If you are stopping for an after-ride meal, you could use a cable lock, or just get the model with a lock for piece of mind.
– My roof rails can be adjusted, what is the best distance apart to set them?
The Upside Rack is designed, tested and accredited to work with the outside edges of the cross rails 550 to 930 mm apart (22-36″). The system is at it strongest however when the bike seat is installed directly over a cross rail. This is the ideal position, if possible. If it is not possible to adjust to this spacing, or if you like your racks further apart for other items like surfboards, the rack is still tested for use with bikes up to 17kg.
– Does it work with ALL roof rails?
Unfortunately not, although we have covered almost all the commercially available roof rails on the market. We had to draw the line somewhere, the two critical dimensions to test are;
1/ the height of the actual roof rail (the rail itself, not the distance from the roof of vehicle), which needs to be less than 35mm (1 3/8″); and
2/ the span or distance between the two outer edges of the roof rails, which need to be between 550 to 930mm (22-36″).
for more info on roof rail types and compatibility see our Compatibility Page
Effects on your bike
– Is it a problem to have my suspension forks upside down?
Having your suspension forks upside down is actually a good thing. It keeps the internal components like the foam rings and wiper seals lubricated. This helps to cut down on static friction (stiction) in use. When oil seals and foam wipers dry out they drastically increase friction inside the fork. Depending on the lower leg bath oil levels and service intervals, just riding and compressing the fork may not provide the optimal lubrication for the seals.
For this reason, some suspension manufacturers and professional riders recommend storing your bike upside down.
You’ll have no problem with leaks unless you have a seal failure already. Compressing the fork on uneven trail surfaces as you ride produces far more pressure on the seals than turning the bike upside down.
Many forks have no air inside the damping system. They use a closed system with a bladder to compensate for temperature and variations like some hydraulic brake systems. In this case the position of the system makes no difference to its function
– Will turning my bike upside down get air in my hydraulic brakes?
Correctly bled and operational hydraulic brakes have NO air inside the system. Air is present only in the bladder behind a rubber membrane in the lever. It is designed so that air cannot escape the bladder and enter the system even if upside down.
Its function is to compensate for variations in temperature since fluid slightly expands when its temperature increases. It also allows for the change in volume of the fluid system as brake pads wear.
Before riding, brakes should always be tested whether the bike has been upside down or not. If your brakes are not fully operational, there is an issue in the system and the brakes should be serviced.
Check out the following link for a great explanation of how a hydraulic brake system works:
– Won’t spinning wheels wear out my bearings?
Wheel bearing wear is generally a result of both cycles and load combined. The wear rate increases dramatically with load. There is a detailed equation in the link below calculating the life of the wheel bearing based on these inputs. But more simply put, the key things to know about spinning wheels in transport are as follows:
– Doubling the load on the wheel bearing reduces the life to one tenth. Reducing the load by half increases the life by ten.
– Doubling spin speed reduces wheel bearing life by one half. Reducing speed by one half doubles the life.
– When the load reduces to zero, wheel bearing life extends to infinity.
Ok, we know a wheel doesn’t weigh zero. But compared to a bike and rider, the load and therefore wear on a wheel bearing while spinning in transport is negligible. We have carried out some initial test runs at over 100km/hr and the wheel spin is negligible compared to wind force whilst the vehicle is stationary, there is some science saying the windforce on top an bottom of the wheel would prevent any crazy spin speeds.
For those who just don’t want the wheels to spin, we have included a simple strap to secure it.
If you’re interested in the math, here is an excellent site for further details:
– Will it put too much stress on my seat-post / seat rails / handlebars / headstem?
We deliberately take advantage of bicycle design (including carbon and alloy material characteristics) to provide a strong, secure and gentle grip of your bike.
The design of the rack ensures the load on the seat is up/down, which is the same as when ridden. There is no twisting load on the seat post as the handlebars take that load which is also the same as when riding. Clearly the weight of the bike is considerably less than the lightest rider, so if it is ok for the ride it will definitely be ok for the Upside Rack.
When it comes to testing for stresses and any vibration impacts, we are relentless. We had a grueling test plan to test for durability of the rack and protection of your bike.
– Will it effect my dropper post?
The design of the rack ensures the load on the seat post is up/down, which is the same as when ridden. There is no twisting load on the seat post from the installed position, so any loads would be exactly what seat posts are designed to take in use.
Regarding dropper posts, the load of the actual bike on the post will obviously be significantly less than a rider. We drop our posts before installation as well, but it’s not necessary. We have tested on our dropper posts without any issues, but continue to test with future models as they are available and test them further.
Testing & Durability
– Has it been tested?
We tested our prototypes beyond any real world use to measure when it could fail.
The Upside Rack is City Crash and Belgium Blocks compliant to ISO 11154-H. Both are incredibly vigorous testing regimes that only the highest quality bike carriers can achieve.
– Environmental testing, what is it, and why do it?
The environment we live and ride in is harsh. Salts, ultraviolet light and other weathering impacts damage materials during their life. These impacts can be rapidly accelerated in laboratory conditions to understand lifelong impacts in normal use.
The Upside Rack has been carefully designed using long-lasting and weather resistant materials such as anodized aluminium, which provide years of reliable use while maintaining the appearance you expect from a top-quality brand.
– What about vibration and rough road exposure testing?
We come from the land of long, rough, harsh corrugated roads that seem to disappear over the horizon. So we know more than a little about durability and brutal, rugged roads in both professional and recreational capacities.
So, when it came to producing the Upside Rack we combined our experience with the benefit of real world testing. The end result is an extensive test plan in place for the prototypes and first production units. This means that by the time you get your own Upside Rack, we will have tested it for more miles on rougher roads than you ever will.
– What is static testing, and why do it?
Testing went well beyond seeing what it takes to ‘rattle’ the Upside Rack. We have analysed every joint, component and operation for any sharp edges, pinch points, squeaks and rattles to make sure you have nothing but an enjoyable experience getting to, and from your ride. That’s our goal. A rack that’s intuitive, unobtrusive and always reliable.
– So what are the City Crash Test and other load tests?
Put simply, they ensure safety in the event you have to brake or swerve suddenly, to ensure the bike doesn’t simply ‘fly off the roof’. Our prototype passed testing exceeding these conditions, testing was then replicated on the production unit with successful passes.
City Crash Test
This is an international standard as part of ISO 11154 for roof load carriers on vehicles. It involves simulating a low-speed crash in which the rack with a bike installed is exposed to eight times its weight (commonly known as 8g).
The rack passes this test if the bike remains fixed to the rack and car, and no part weighing more than 10 grams comes loose off the rack. This same standard applies to roof bars to ensure they don’t move under crash conditions so we recommend use of only ISO approved roof bars.
Other load tests
Additional parts of ISO 11154 include pushing, pulling and lifting the bike as it is fixed to the rack and measuring any movement to ensure a secure fit. Forces of over 60kg are applied to simulate hard braking, braking while cornering, side wind load and aerodynamic lifting affects.