I just wanted to share how pleased I am with the rack I got for carrying my bicycles on my car (called a bike rack by car people, and a car rack by bike people, to paraphrase something I read once somewhere). This is an essential bit of kit for me, since my vehicle accommodates even child-size bikes in its rear cargo area poorly, and I don't live in a central location. I don't only want to ride my bicycle in my neighborhood; I want more! I needed a convenient way to get my bikes to EBC or my favorite LBS (today's destination), or to a friend's for taking rides together, or with us on camping trips. Here's what I got:
It's the Saris Bones, 3-bike model (so we can carpool and carry friends' bikes in town, or fit the whole families' rides on there for a trip). I chose it because it didn't require a trailer hitch and adjusts to practically any vehicle's shape. It took me an hour to assemble it and set it up following the directions in the package (if you're more mechanically minded than me you could probably do it in half that time). Now that it's set up, less than 5 minutes are required to strap it onto the car. As you can see, Chester the wonderdog is very impressed with my mad skillz.
Well that's fine for mens' bikes, but how am I going to get my lovely loop-frame on there? Easy. I also got Saris' Bike Beam. Canadian Tire sell a version of this by another manufacturer, so it's a widely available widget, and I bet it could be used for a lot of other weird bike-rack situations too. It attaches to your pretty step-through to make a pretend top-tube, so your rack can carry your bike like this:
Done and dusted! As you can see, I still wasn't able to use the lower front clamp on the rack to keep it from swinging, so I substituted a bungee cord in that spot. Otherwise it worked perfectly, and kept everything solidly in place as I drove Mary Poppins to the LBS for her checkup. (She needs a fender fix, a new tube, a cotter replacement, and a seatpost extraction - probably all things I could learn to do at EBC except that I want to ride her right away! The guys at RedBike were super nice too. Mary's turn for attention comes on the 11th - cross your fingers that all goes well so I can ride her in Critical Lass!)