Back in Stock and a New Rack
“I feel like Santa Claus,” said the truck driver when he saw our excitement as we unloaded the latest shipment. “You are! We’ve been waiting for these for a while!” was our reply. The shipment from Japan included some popular tires, like the 700C x 42 Hurricane Ridge and 700C x 48 Oracle Ridge dual-purpose knobbies. Most of all, we finally have all our racks in stock again.
Racks have seen a resurgence in recent years. As cyclists venture further off the beaten path, they need to carry a little more than what fits into an under-seat wedge pack. Larger bags work best when they are well-supported. Otherwise they swing around, rub on the tire, or push on brake and shifter cables/hoses. A small front rack can be used with a handlebar bag, or you put your stuff in a drybag and strap it on.
Our most popular racks are the UD-series – designed to fit on many bikes. All you need is a hole in the fork crown (essential for stability) and two eyelets somewhere for the struts. The UD-1 (above) is intended for bikes with disc brakes, but it also can be used on many bikes with cantis. The struts can be attached to mid-fork eyelets or even the dropouts.
In Bikepacking.com’s big front rack test, the UD-1 was the lightest rack, yet it has one of the highest load ratings: 10 kg / 22 lb when ridden fast across really rough terrain; more under less strenuous conditions.
The UD-2 rack uses the same platform, but it comes with struts that attach to cantilever brake posts. That way, you don’t need any eyelets on the fork at all. The struts are available separately, so you can move your rack from one bike to another, if you want.
If your bike’s clearances are optimized for 42 mm tires with fenders, our M-13 rack is a great choice. Based Rene Herse’s classic design, the M-13 a one-piece rack, which makes it even stiffer and lighter than the UD-series. This is where the new rack mentioned in the headline comes in: We now offer the M-13 with a light mount for a hanging headlight (not visible on the other side of the bike).
Our hanging light mount is the result of many hours of R&D and countless night-time mountain rides. Placing the light underneath the rack makes a lot of sense: The light is low enough that potholes and bumps are accentuated by their shadows, making them easier to see. The light is well-protected and won’t get bumped by the bag. And it keeps your bars clear, so you can tuck on downhills and gain a lot of extra speed.
Just mounting the light in a random location under the rack doesn’t work well, because the front tire casts a shadow. Unless you position the light just-so, the shadow will be exactly where you need to see as you round a curve at speed. Putting the light far enough forward means the shadow goes to the side, where you don’t need to see. We’ve also optimized the light’s location so it doesn’t get sprayed by the front tire if it rains – a dirty light doesn’t shine very brightly.
We’ve worked with SON in Germany to make a matching Edelux II LED headlight. (You can’t just turn a standard Edelux upside down, because the shaped beam will put more light in front of your bike instead of into the distance, giving you very poor illumination.) These are small details, but they make a real difference on spirited night-time rides.
If you want the option to use standing lights (or no lights at all), we offer our racks with small eyelets. You can use the separate Rene Herse light mounts with these – they use a clever locknut that allows you to adjust the angle of your beam without tools, yet the light won’t come loose.
Also in this shipment were more decaleurs. The decaleur mounts your bag securely to the stem, yet makes it easy to remove it when you want to take it along. (It’s also nice to pack your bag on your kitchen table and then put it on your bike as you leave, rather than having to pack your bike in your basement or garage.) The pin is a locking mechanism that we licensed from C. S. Hirose. It is 100% secure, even on the roughest terrain. Simply push it outward to release the bag.
Small details like this make a real difference when you want to focus on riding, and not mess with your bike and bags. The Rene Herse decaleur is available for stems with a horizontal bolt (above) and in a different version for our Rene Herse stems.
For our handlebar bags, we’ve developed a simple, light and strong bag stiffener, which keeps the bag from moving as you ride. It works for all Berthoud handlebar bags, and it’s pre-drilled to match our decaleurs (holes not shown on the photo). You can also use it if you simply strap your bag to the handlebars.
We also got more of Nitto’s excellent seatposts. There are many copies of these posts, but the originals are still the best: They are made with great precision, so they never slip. And they are forged for ultimate strength, so breakages are unheard of.
All these components are important for our spirited rides over long distances and rough terrain. We do a lot of R&D on small details of our bikes, so we don’t have to think about them when we’re out of the road. Click on the images to find out more about these parts.