Saris Super Bones Rack - QBP Frostbike 2015

Feb 25, 2015
by Chris Johannes  
Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
The Saris Super Bones can hold up to three 35 pound bikes, has security features, and folds away nicely.

Saris has been manufacturing bike racks in the USA since the release of their first unique hatch back design almost forty years ago. That was back in 1976 and the tubular steel model wasn’t too pretty, but it worked, and only cost a whopping $26 USD. Over the years they reworked their designs to include new features such as rotating arms, security locks, and in the '90s they teamed up with Italian designer Fabio Pedrini to release the first injection molded ‘Bones’ bike rack on the market. Saris was recently awarded a patent for that design which has sold over a one million units worldwide.

In search of ways to improve their product, Saris reached out to consumers for feedback and discovered a few tweaks that were still needed. At Frostbike 2015 they announced they're ready to release a limited run of the ‘’Super Bones” three bike rear hatch style rack that has a few new cool features. Some of the issues they hoped to address included bike to rack and rack to car security, new car compatibility, strap retention, and how to deal with excess straps.

Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
Circa '76, The Ramones are cool, but I'm not sure I would put my downhill bike on this.

Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
The outer bike position has a key and cable locking system.
Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
Once removed from the car, all the legs and arms can be aligned for easy storage.

The new Super Bones uses a process known as gas-assisted injection molding, which allows the designers to manipulate the various wall thickness for strength and make the the plastic arms hollow. The rack is rated to carry three bikes up to 35 pounds each, while the rack itself only weighs about 20 pounds. It has a simple but clever strap retention system similar to a tape measure that allows the strap to pull out under tension or roll up the excess out of sight. A recessed plastic latch releases and ratchets up the tension to fix it securely on the car.

Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
The strap retention mechanism is a bit like a tape measure that allows the strap to pull out under tension or roll up the excess out of sight.
Saris 2015 Super Bones Car Rack
Push the latch down to release the strap, or flip it up and use it like a ratchet to increase tension. Certain latches can lock to deter theft.

The system also uses a stiffer nylon webbing that has thin stainless steel cables integrated lengthwise in the strap. Saris says the cable is less susceptible to stretch and noticeably more difficult to cut, adding extra security against possible theft. Lower arms are fixed to the splined aluminum main shaft while the bike arms and upper arms can rotate freely or be locked in place with another latch. Bike frames are held with a typical plastic ratchet strap and an adjustable strap underneath keeps bikes from making contact with one another. To ensure a secure, scratch free contact with the vehicle, soft pivoting feet have been redesigned with an extra large surface area to reduce stress. Final pricing hasn't been confirmed, but Saris did say that it would be under $500 USD.

Saris-2015 Super Bones Car Rack and Cycle Ops
Saris is also know for a variety of other products including rear hitch racks. This model works with super wide fat bike tires.


Author Info:
ChrisJohannes avatar

Member since Nov 20, 2014
17 articles

53 Comments
  • 58 0
 Had a bad experience with one of these Saris racks where the plastic connecting the tie down straps to the frame broke, sending my DH bike flying across the highway. Saris refused to accept any responsibility or even replace the rack itself despite obviously being a warranty issue. I hate to bash products, but I would personally never purchase a Saris rack again. Tuhle and Yakima have a much better track record in my opinion.
  • 16 0
 Had the same thing happen to me two weeks on a saris rack where one of the connecting straps failed and sent bikes into the roadway. This was a very well worn bike shop loaner, so I'm sure Saris isn't 100% at fault here, but it still sucked.
  • 4 0
 Which Saris racks were these? I'm thinking of buying the freedom superclamp (The one pictured with the fat bike). I don't see a broken strap being a major immediate problem with this style rack, but that is still a concern...
  • 4 0
 I had a Saris trunk rack that scratched the paint right off of my (leased) car. What a headache that was. Even if you use a cloth in between the rack and the car, you still have to change it out often so that the dirt that gets beneath the cloth doesn't scratch the paint. Here's to roof racks.
  • 7 3
 Yeah let me hang my $5,000.00+ bike from the back of my car, and hope the idiot in the car behind me is putting attention to the road...
  • 5 0
 You can put hitches on a lot of cars nowadays. They make one for my Geo prism after all.
  • 6 0
 @tjet That happend to me a couple years back on my way to Hafjell (10hour drive from where i live) 2-3 hours in to the ride some B#tch was on her phone whilst we were puling into a gas station, she didn't see us probably to busy looking up driving lessons (at least i hope so) slammed into the 3 bikes we had on the back of the car (this was with a thule rack, amazing rack btw! bought an identical one back) .....next thing bikes were spread over the road, and our 4 day trip was over and our whole summer...
  • 3 0
 I would never by racks that hold from anything other than the dropout or tire.
  • 1 2
 Thule raceway platform 2. Best bike rack I've owned. Thing is solid. Doesn't move on the car. No paint scratching. Only downside is its heavy and makes opening the trunk with it on really heavy
  • 5 4
 North shore racks. Get that shit or get a truck.
Wtf is a geo prism? Sounds like a Rubik's cube's retarded cousin.
  • 4 0
 Taletotell, good on you for copping to driving a Geo Prism. I too, drive a shitty car.
  • 3 0
 that is the way I transport my bike ONLY inside my car. car's interior cleaning costs 100$. new bike costs 7000$. the choice is obvious
  • 1 0
 @prae my experience was with the actual plastic not the strap so I think it would affect all makes and models of Saris racks.
  • 4 0
 Maybe a Geo, but it was designed and manufactured by Toyota. Good mileage. 5 speed. Ugly and old, but also $800, with tires.
Yeah we'd love a truck, but mileage, costs, and everything else makes it just smarter to drive a Geo.
  • 3 0
 Just having a laugh mate. Whatever gets you around.
  • 3 0
 Also, my wife says it is a good size, so there! Wink
  • 1 0
 I bed they hoped they had replaced your rack and took responsebility now. As this will cost them more in sales then it would to help costumers that have had problems with their products. I use a old twinny load bikerack wich i adjusted to safely transport my bike. My next car will be a little van that can jsut fit 2 bikes in the back. I do not trust anny of those bike racks with my backs worth 10x the rack price.
  • 1 0
 If it isn't trailer-hitch mounted, my bike isn't going on it...ever
  • 2 0
 I really feel bike racks are severely overpriced for what they are, a bunch of fucking plastic, a little metal, and some hardware. Seems kinda bullshit to me.
  • 1 0
 Had trouble with my saris too now got a way cheaper rack but not afraid to looose my bike
  • 18 1
 No no no. If you love your bikes, roof mount, towbar mount or get an estate or van. These ride on things are sketchy
  • 3 2
 They are from sketchy.. They will scratch the hell out of your frame over time from the straps, but they are rock solid. I have the older model of this rack that I've used on three different vehicles for the last 4 or 5 years. The straps are steel belted and the rack doesn't move at all even on some of the burlier shuttle roads. I've had mine fully loaded many times over the years with no issues. It's also a fraction of the cost of a hitch mounted rack if you don't already have a hitch. I have two Yakima highroller roof rack trays on my Subaru and have had more problems with those than the cheapy saris. I also have underground parking so the roof rack is inconvenient unless I'm already out of the house.

The only downfall of these racks is that your frame will get scratched if the bike or rack is muddy, and eventually (on the older version) the plastic on the lower mounts leave residue on your trunk. Otherwise, they are really good value and a good alternative if you can't afford roof rack/hitch mounted options.
  • 5 0
 My bike is worth more than my car. No way I'd load it onto some sketchy piece of junk, especially if I'm driving highway speeds with other cars around. Roof rack or hitch-mount only... these things are meant for people that haul their commuters and junk bikes around.
  • 3 0
 Ive had one of these racks for a few years now and although its marketed as a three bike rack good luck getting even two bikes on one of these racks.
  • 4 0
 I have the Bones, I never use it. It's fine for something like the fatbike in the pic, or a hardtail, but getting a bike with a rear shock on or off it, over the straps, is impossible. The sideways mounted plastic bits on the bottom are supposed to help support the frame, but they just get in the way - I had to take a hacksaw to mine and saw them off before it was remotely usable. And if your bike has a curved top tube, forget it, you'll never get it to balance on there. Thank dog the new car came with a hitch mounted rack.
  • 4 0
 I own a Saris rack. the thing sucks for loading my Stumpjumper. The way the frame is set the seat triangle wont get a good latch so when you move the arm it wont latch around the float. Very wonky set up. I need a new rack.
  • 3 0
 The safety of trunk/hatch mounted racks can be debated, and there's probably extremely little evidence to support either side.
What is clear is that Saris racks are attractive and their cool plastic-y design draws in a lot of folks. What is unclear to most people until they're actually using one of these racks is that;
1. They're only useful for Hard Tail bikes.
2. Even amongst the Hard Tail frames, they only really work well for large bikes with spacious front triangles. Any rack of this style will be trickier the smaller the front triangle gets, but with the fixed plastic straps, getting a bike past the straps is a major pain in the ass. Smaller bikes require a lot of wiggling, pushing and pulling to get on. And any cables routed along the top tube will be a constant headache, especially if non-continuous cable housing is involved.
3. Hard as you try, if you use one long enough it will mark up your car. The window and trunk/hatch will get worn down by the padded feet, the edge of the trunk/hatch will get worn down by the metal strap ends and your pedals will bump the car more often than you want to believe. The best way to avoid your pedals hitting the car is to position the crank so that it rubs up against the rack.
For some, this is a wonderful design. For those of us using a good, solid, all metal, hitch mount rack (cough, cough, 1upUSA), it's hard to imagine every using something like this.
  • 3 0
 Hitch racks are boss. Swagman Jackknife 4 FTW. Solid, no frame touch system, easy fold up. Trustworthy up to $20k's worth of DH bikes (4 x $5k). Would surely hold more worth but my team doesn't have that kind of bike bucks. Plus, Swagman customer service is second to none.
www.pinkbike.com/photo/11808225
  • 3 0
 Thanks for reading about the SUPERBones. At Saris we are dedicated to making high quality, well-designed bike racks (all manufactured here in Madison, WI). We appreciate all customer feedback, it is the only way we can improve and innovate. Don’t hesitate to contact us directly with any product thoughts at media@saris.com. With regards to racks that will fit your needs we agree that a tray style hitch rack is much preferred. Our Freedom Superclamp (pictured in this article) is capable of holding 2 bikes up to 60lbs and does not touch the frame of your bike.
  • 3 0
 Won't ever buy another Saris rack. On 3 separate occasions I had bikes fall off. Not completely off but was dragging handlebars on the ground. Eventually the rack was stollen off my Pathfinder which was more of a blessing.
  • 5 0
 I'm scared to buy any rack of that style
  • 3 0
 As some other people commented, you should be. For my bikes, it's hitch mounted tray or GTFO. I've had a few different ones, but my current 1-up USA rack is my favorite.
  • 1 0
 Yep.. I have the saris bike rack... needless to say, not a product I would use again. Ended up having bike sex between my downhill rig and road bike... I the pedals on the bicycles ending up scratching the hell out of each other.. so sad.. Road bike was $4500.00... and now it is scratched not hell. First mistake was buying a bike that cost so much, second, was using Saris... I would stay away from this product, gave me grief.
  • 1 0
 I had a saris bones trunk mount rack for a couple years. Great rack, what wasn't so great was the worn out trunk hinges from using it regularly on my mazda 6. Eventually had to go to a hitch mount or replace my hinges as the trunk lid was close to coming off with two bikes in the rack.
  • 1 0
 I once had a Bones RS trunk rack. Used it once and sold it...Bikes were really hard to fit, at the end i had to use a pole as a "toptube" so that it would fit, but still wasn't perfect. And it scratched my car.
Bought a roof mounted rack and it's perfect, no need to dismount it, and fitting the bike is super easy
  • 4 0
 If you love your bike you will NOT strap it to a trunk rack.
  • 3 0
 looks a bit like a Thule Raceway...
  • 1 0
 It IS a raceway.
  • 2 2
 Yawn.



Unless it picks my bike up and tightens the straps itself, I'm not interested, I'll keep using my normal system (take wheels off and put in car, or use current rack). Nothing to see here, just a marketing piece.
  • 1 0
 Only trunk mount rack I'll use is thule raceway platform. Even with that one I'm constantly checking my mirror for loose arms/straps.
  • 1 0
 Some of the straps on these style racks tighten down through a cheap piece of plastic. I found one that uses steal, but even so I feel a lot better about my hitch rack.
  • 1 0
 $500.. That's what my Kuat NV 2 cost. I have no fear of hanging bikes on it. Had a Yakima tray rack drop a bike once when the center holding arm bounced up.
  • 1 0
 Close to 500 dollars for a strap on rack? Why wouldn't I get a good quality hitch mount + hitch receiver installed for the same price?
  • 1 0
 Exactly, You can get a 4 bike rack from Hollywood racks w/ a hitch installed for about that price.
  • 2 0
 why do people leave their hitch mount racks in the down position in parking lots? make me want to hit them on purpose.
  • 1 0
 Front wheel comes off and back seat folds up bike either goes there or in the bed of my truck
  • 7 7
 Those are some sarisly cool racks.
  • 6 1
 damn you got me racking my mind for a funny pun...
  • 5 0
 I think you guys are way too hitched to puns
  • 2 2
 Do you think that a rider that rides a 29"fatbike goes to heaven?
  • 1 1
 1UP USA is the only rack anyone needs. End of story.
  • 1 2
 I sur(e)ly like it







Copyright © 2000 - 2024. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv65 0.031403
Mobile Version of Website