Saris Bones RS 3 Bike Boot Rack - Grey
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- Versatile trunk-mounted, strapless 3-bicycle trunk rack
- Ratcheting System eliminates straps and fits a wide range of vehicles, from sedans to minivans
- Pivoting anti-sways and hold-downs easily adjust to secure your vehicle
- Integrated locking system adds security
- Easily carries road and mountain bikes and child- and adult-sized bicycles
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While the engineering and materials that make up every bones rs are important we like to think the real genius lies in the design. One of the annoyances with trunk mounted racks has always been the straps. So we eliminated them. In their place we put a ratcheting system with rubber coated clips and steel belted bands for a quick, secure fit on a wide variety of vehicles. The pivoting, ANT sway frame grips can be tilted for great bike stability and the support arms can be moved closer together or further apart to fit just about any bike from road to mountain, adult to child. In addition to eliminating clumsy, unreliable straps it also eliminated the hassle of wrestling bikes onto a roof rack. The bones rs is at the most convenient place possible right in front of you on the rear of your vehicle.
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If you're unfamiliar with the Saris range of bike racks then a quick search through the internet will reveal them to be an American company with some high praise given to their products. They have a product for most budgets but such was the unique nature of our requirement that we ended up considering either the Bones or the Bones RS.
Our requirement was primarily a bike rack that could transport 2 mountain bikes, but crucially one that could be fitted to one of three very different vehicles. We have a Mini Cooper and a Subaru Impreza at present but shortly the Scooby will be replaced by a Ford Mondeo. For now though the Impreza is the car that will be doing the most driving with the bikes and the large rear wing caused all kinds of issues in finding a suitable rack. The Saris website has an initially good fitting guide for many different cars, however it is clearly aimed at the US market as all models are listed by their US names. A bit of cross referencing found that some of the information on the site was a bit misleading and it was with a bit of guesswork that we decided the RS was the rack to go for.
Amazon had the best price at the time of ordering by some distance, and the sizeable box was delivered in excellent condition the following day. At first the contents are a little daunting even to a gadget geek like me, however once you've laid it out and matched what does what with the supplied fitting guide it's pretty straight forward. You'll need to find from the website what the correct adjustable leg notch is for your vehicle, which sadly the site didn't give me. It wasn't difficult to work out where it should be though simply by offering it up to the rear of the car and adjusting to suit. Once you done this you'll not need to do it again if you're keeping it on the same car.
The lower feet don't sit on the bumper like many boot mounted racks, instead coated metal hooks secure under the boot lid and then rubber feet press against the boot. Four adjustable rubber feet then press against the car at a higher point, and it's from these that the two coated metal straps extend. You hook those over the top of the boot and then ratchet them to remove the slack. And that's it. After the initial set-up I can attach the rack to the car in under 30 seconds, and it's truly rock solid. No play or sway at all, and all done with no faffing about with multiple straps.
Mounting the bikes is perhaps more time consuming, merely as there is more to fasten. If it's a single bike then you lift the bike up and allow the adjustable arms to come through and under the top tube, around which two straps will secure the bike. There is an additional strap that fastens around the saddle down tube which prevents any lateral movement. If a second and third bike are added then they are placed each facing the opposite direction to the last. In all cases I would highly recommend a couple of bungee cords to prevent the wheels from spinning/moving about and possibly damaging the car. Two bungees are enough to do this, even with two bikes. From approaching the car with the rack in my hands to having two bikes firmly attached takes me perhaps 3, maybe 4 minutes.
A further highly desirable function is that the ratchet system has a lock which prevents anyone from removing the bike rack while you're off cycling around somewhere. Very useful considering how expensive the rack is.
That being said, while the rack is at the upper end of the price scale I find that the build quality is superb and designed to last, the ease of fitting so brief and the overall experience satisfying enough to consider the outlay justified.
I've had the Bones RS for a few weeks now and felt that I ought to leave this feedback for it as at the time of writing the only other review for it was based on a poor experience of delivery and perhaps not entirely objective on the product. I didn't want people to be put off of what I feel is a very good product. The Saris website's fitting guide is a big let down I feel, and few British dealers will be able to offer any better advice, but for what it's designed to be as a top quality bike rack I feel it has exceeded my expectations.
subsequently discovered the bike rack rachet on left hand side is faulty but since my wife discarded the packaging i have tried to make do. Knowing that it would end up costing me a fortune to correct the problem what with the usual pass the buck mentality of buying from the internet. the ratchet cog does not engage every time unless you squeeze the surrounding metal. For £200 ish pounds am not a happy bunny. But since i am ENGLISH i expect this sort of service. Why complain when it ends up costing me more?
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