Bicycle Rear Rack - Tubus bicycle rear rack
Bicycle Rear Rack - Delta Mega bicycle rear rack

Find a bicycle rear rack on

No matter what type of riding you are going to be doing with your new bicycle, it is important to decide if you will need a bicycle rear rack. Bicycle racks are an important piece of bicycle equipment that is designed to offer your bicycle more functionality. My Santa Cruz Superlight mountain bike fitted with a bicycle rear rack. This may seem awkward for a mountain bike as most people only think the only thing to be added on one is a GPS unit, with racks being attached to touring and city bikes, but I find it quite useful.

Let’s Define a Bicycle Rear Mounted Rack

Bicycle rear racks are simple steel frames designed to be mounted on the rear part of the bicycle. Their main purpose is to hold cycling equipment or any other loads the rider might have when cycling. To load items on the bicycle rack all that is needed is to place them inside a bag or strap them on directly using a bungee cord or fastening mesh.

How to determine whether you need a Rear Rack

Different people can find different uses for bicycle rear racks with the main ones being:

  • If you are going on a bicycle tour as I did on my Rhine river tour you will need as much storage space as you can find. You will need to carry a lot of supplies and most importantly bicycle equipment to ensure you do not find yourself stranded.
  • During bicycle tours you need more than just a rear rack in most cases. A front mounted rack also offers more storage space for personal item.
  • Some rear and front racks can hold a large amount of heavy cargo, and loading them up well will help you properly balance the bike for unencumbered riding. Our page on bicycle touring preparation offers useful insight on this subject.
  • If you use your bicycle for daily bicycle commuting, then you will be able to appreciate the need for bicycle rear racks. Whether it’s carrying groceries or shopping to carrying work related luggage, you will find that the rack is vital in easing your commuting life.
  • Most people who don’t have bicycle rear racks usually opt to attach their luggage to the handlebars where it might hang and come into contact with the front wheel or have an effect on the bicycle’s handling.

As you can clearly see, a bicycle rear rack is the perfect solution to make your bicycle serve your load bearing needs comfortably and conveniently.

Different Types of Rear Mounted Bike Racks

Bicycle rear racks come in a wide variety depending on their design and how they are attached to the bike. Let’s take a brief look at them.

The Common Type

The first, strongest and most common bicycle rear rack type is those designed to attach to the seat stay and the rear wheel hub. These racks are designed to bear heavy loads as they have a sound support system based on their design and installation.

Seat Post Racks

Beam racks which are attached to the seat post alone. These are specifically designed for use for mountain bikes that come with rear mountain bike shocks. Since they only derive their support from the seat post they tend to have a low limit on the weight they can support.


There are some distinctly designed bicycles which come with already installed bicycle rear racks. The fact that the rack is pre-fitted means that they are suited to the bicycle style in terms of build, strength and design; they are a perfect match.

Useful Tips on Using a Bicycle Rear Rack

Loading up the Rear Rack

When you load up your bike with significantly heavy loads you will experience a change in the handling and control. Although the effect of a full capacity load on the rear rack is far lower than that of a front mounted rack, be sure to keep within the manufacturer’s limits for the best and safest experience.

Bicycle Rear Rack for your Special Bicycle

These include folding bicycles. So as not to compromise your bicycles ability to fold into a compact shape, it is best to seek bicycle rear racks that are specially designed for the same. You can take it to the shop and get is custom fitted or search for suitable designs online.

Frame Design

When you decide to go out and buy bicycle rear racks to fit on your bicycle, you will have to consider the suitable design to be fitted on the bike’s frame design.

For instance as we have seen above, seat stay mounted rear racks are mainly suited to bicycles fitted with rear suspension, as for hard tail bikes then have the freedom to choose any design. Those attached to the seat stay and the rear axle can bear heavier loads and can therefore be fitted with bicycle panniers.

Factors to Consider when buying Rear Rack


Different bicycle rear racks are sold at different prices. The main influencing factors for pricing include the load bearing capacity and the material used. Aluminum and titanium rear racks are usually very strong and also very expensive. Cheap aluminum racks tend to be flimsy, but the higher the price the stronger and more durable the rack.

Load Capacity

Not everyone looking to fit their bicycle with rear racks is intending on loading it up with heavy loads. Before choosing a specific design, it is first important to begin by considering the average load you intend on ferrying. Seat stay mounted racks tend to be suited to lighter loads while those attached to the bicycle wheel hub and set stay offer support for heavier loads.


Rear mounted bicycle racks tend to be attributed with other bicycle accessories such as panniers and bags. Cargo can be carried on the racks while placed in panniers, strapped directly on the rack using bungee cords or placed in a bag to be carried on the rack. Choose a rack designed to accommodate whichever option you prefer.


Last but not least, the quality of the rear rack is vital to its application. Quality is usually determined by the materials used to build the rack. Steel, titanium and high quality aluminum racks are light and strong while cromoly racks are known to balance weigh, price and durability.

Summary Table

Material Weight Strength Price Comments
Titanium Light Average High
Stainless steel Heavy High Strength Relatively low
Chromoly Very light High Strength High Maker: Tubus
Aluminum Average Average Average

Where to Buy a Bicycle Rear Rack?

If you are interested in buying a bicycle rear rack you are invited to visit these trusted online stores:

Bicycle Rear Rack
Bicycle Rear Rack

Sample Bicycle Rear Racks

Blackburn MTN Bike Rack

Bicycle Rear Rack

This rack is specially designed to fit a mountain bike. Since mountain bikes come in a variety of frame designs, this rack is designed to fit just about any one of the hard tail mountain bikes available. It’s strong and sturdy so as to absorb knocks and bumps along trails and still keep the load intact.

Aluminum 3 leg Rear Bike Rack

Bicycle Rear Rack

First of all, this comes in a grid shaped design which makes fastening cargo on it easy and convenient. It is made of aluminum for a light but strong frame. It also comes with a bike reflector to ensure that with it you ride safer.

Topeak Explorer Bike Rack

Bicycle Rear Rack

This is easily one of the best bicycle rear racks available today. It is designed to offer strong support for loads of up to 55 pounds while still being slim and light enough to avoid adding too much weight to the bike. It features a quick release mechanism for easy attachment and detachment as required.

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