We all love riding mountain bikes, but transporting them to the trailhead is a bit of a drag. In fact, if you haven’t attached your bike to your car correctly, you may find you’re literally dragging your bike along the highway. Bikes get sturdier every year, but, like household pets, dragging them behind a vehicle still isn’t recommended.
There are a number of companies around to help you attach your bike to your car. Just recently I got to check out the Saris Freedom Superclamp 2 rack. I thought it was pretty cool, but the Interbike show floor was a veritable smorgasbord of bike-to-car mating apparatuses, not least of which being Rockymounts.
First of all, I liked the Driveshaft thru axle adapter. As you may know I lost my thru axle a while back and I cried myself to sleep for a couple of months and then forked over $75 I didn’t have as a result.
The great thing about the Driveshaft is that it adapts your thru axle to old school skewer mounts, but it uses a clamp design that makes getting your fork into the adapter a little easier than the ones where you just hold it in place and push it through. If you tend to lift your bike onto the car before you put the axle back through the fork and adapter, the Driveshaft will reduce the likelihood of your bike cracking your head or blasting through your sunroof.
The Driveshaft will put a minimal clamp on your wallet at $69.95, and comes in truck bed mounting versions as well as screw-it-to-a-dang-board versions.
Now, let’s move on to Rockymounts newest of the new, the Brass Knuckles, coming to market this fall. Wheels-on bike mounts are my favorite because I’m lazy. I’d rather lift a slightly heavier bike onto the roof, because it still has the front wheel attached, than take the front wheel off all the time. That’s where the Brass Knuckles agree with me.
Putting your bike in the Brass Knuckles is easy. You lift your bike, fitting the front tire into the wire retainer thingy and situating the rear tire on the tray, then zip the front wheel grabber down onto the tire. Secure the rear tire with the ratchety loop and you’re ready to roll. As I read over that sequence, I realize it’s a little vague, so you’re going to have to trust me until you get to a dealer and try it out yourself.
But does it fit fat bikes? Yes. Yes it does, with a Rockymounts fat bike kit. We don’t currently have information on what the kit costs, but we do know that it consists of a bigger wire tire retainer and a ratchety strap extender. Swapping from traditional tire size to fat bike size is easy. In fact, it was so easy even I was able to do it after just watching a Rockymounts rep do it once.
Here are the normal size wire tire retainer (left) and the fat bike one (installed).
But perhaps the coolest feature of the Brass Knuckles is the super low profile when it’s in its stored position. It looks like this when down. As you can see, it looks so good that the gentleman in the background wandering through the Rockymounts booth’s face is a mask of surprise.
You can change which side of the rack the Brass Knuckles tire grabber is situated on by the use of the bolt indicated in this photo by a hairy journalist’s hand and knobby finger.
It’ll be lots more convenient to operate the Brass Knuckles if you set it up for either side. But that’s not the best part. The best part is that when you’re riding around town with dual Brass Knuckles your car will look like it has dual laser cannons mounted on the frickin roof.
Here’s a high quality artist’s rendering of what a dual Brass Knuckles setup might look like on top of my personal vehicle.
If that’s not enough to make you pre-order the Brass Knuckles, I don’t know what could be. They should hit the street this fall, according to Rockymounts, and the Brass Knuckles are going to retail for $199. They’re set up to attach to lots of popular crossbars, and even a lot of factory bars if that’s your thing.
Here’s the Rockymounts page on the Brass Knuckles. As you can see, it’s slated to come in red, white, and black, but I think you’re definitely going to want to go red. That’s more laserish.