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How To Choose A Bicycle Basket Rack Or Bag

Whether you're touring on a road bike, taking a cruiser into town, weaving a fixie through the city, or hard-riding a dirt trail, you've got to have a place to stow your stuff while you're riding. Choosing a basket, rack, or saddle bag  that suits your needs is a matter of personal taste, practicality,  and function.

If you're shopping, a bicycle basket you can lift off and carry over your arm makes sense, providing you keep your cargo to a weight that you can manage. While a bike can carry quite a bit, cargo that's too heavy can hinder performance. Understand your strength as a rider. Carrying a few library books is a lot different than hauling a laundry bag. 

BikemanforU's instructional videos guide you  through what to look in a front or side cargo carrier. You’ll see how each one looks on a variety of bicycles, and understand its uses regarding weight and dimensions.

What you choose revolves around one question. What do you want to carry?

Racks & Bags

If you want to carry a week’s worth of groceries we have to look at different avenues than just a front basket. Now we need a rack and saddle bags, also known as panniers.

The Pletscher style rack as been around since I started more than 30 years ago in the bike business. It’s a retro style now for retro bicycles like old or restored road bikes.

You have to have a specific style of bicycle in order to use a Pletcher rack. You need a twin-stay, which most of your pre-2000 bicycles have. The Pletscher style will not work on a mono stay without major bracket fabrication.

Monostay bikes, which make up today’s bicycles, use braze-ons or bolts that come out of the side of the frame. Our SunLite and Biria racks both fit the monostay. We sell these pretty regularly.

BikemanforU carries a full line of rack packs, which fold down, and saddle bags, including styles that clip on for business use or for shopping. If you’re commuting and your cargo is your laptop, we have an attaché case that will strap onto the side of your bike, pannier style.

You don’t need to have a carrier on each side, either. Your bike will not feel lopsided with a bag or rack on just one side.

Front Baskets

Our heavy duty metal Wald front baskets carry a lot of cargo. They require a liner for small items like bill folds, sea shells, keys, etc. The tight mesh of the frialator holds keeps these tiny items inside while carrying almost as much as the Wald.

Small lightweight cargos are safe inside a traditional wicker basket like the new dark laquer Hampton or traditional woven willow bushel basket 


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