Thursday, June 14, 2018

Carry your bicycles and gear safely with Thule car racks and cargo boxes

The summer vacation season is upon us! Whether you're just heading to your local park, or a day-long drive to your getaway destination, you want to arrive safely with your bicycles intact. For families, space inside the vehicle can be precious, so you might want to look for ways to carry more gear.

Century Cycles carries a full line of Thule bicycle racks for cars, SUVs, and trucks in all three of our stores (Medina, Peninsula, and Rocky River). Thule (pronounce it "TOO-lee") is a company based in Sweden, but all of their bike racks sold in the USA are also made right here in the USA, in one of their factories located in Connecticut or Colorado.

You can purchase your bicycle rack worry-free from Century Cycles, because we'll do the research to make sure we pick the right rack that fits your vehicle, we'll assemble it free of charge, and also install it free of charge--all while showing you how to properly install and use it so you can be sure it's safe every time.

Trunk Racks

A "trunk rack" is a bicycle carrier that straps to the rear of your vehicle. Most models will work with most cars, SUVs, vans, and some pickup trucks. The entry-level Thule Passage 910XT holds one or two bicycles for only $149.99. A three-bike version (Thule Passage 911XT) is available for $169.99.
Thule Passage 910XT 2-bike trunk rack
The Thule Raceway Pro trunk racks (available in 2-bike 9001PRO $349.99 or 3-bike 9002PRO $379.99 versions) give you better ease of use and security, with a built-in cable lock and locking steel attachment straps.
Thule Raceway Pro 2-bike trunk rack
Got a spare tire on the back of your vehicle? Thule has an answer for that, too! The Thule Spare Me Pro 963PRO ($249.99) holds one or two bikes, and locks securely to your spare tire (if there's a cover over your spare tire, you'll have to remove it).
Thule Spare Me Pro spare tire bike 2-bike rack
Hitch Racks

A hitch-mounted bicycle rack attaches to a towing receiver hitch on the rear of your vehicle. If you don't have a receiver hitch, check at your local camper center or towing supply shop (see our Local Resources web page for our suggestions), and they can usually install them on most vehicles for a reasonable price. Hitch receivers come in a width of either 1.25 inches or 2 inches. Some hitch racks work with both sizes, but some are made for a specific size hitch. Most hitch racks have a feature that allows the rack to tilt down so you can access your trunk.

The Thule Vertex is an economical hitch rack available in three versions; all include a built-in hide-away cable lock:

All of these racks use a threaded hitch pin, so that the rack is held solidly in your vehicle's hitch, without any unwanted wobbling! For added security, you can separately purchase the Thule Snug-Tite Receiver Lock STL2 $59.99 to lock the bike rack to your vehicle's hitch.
Thule Vertex 2-bike hitch rack
Step up to the Thule Helium Aero series, and you get a rack with aluminum construction that's nearly half the weight of comparable racks. You also get the Auto-Attach hitch that slides into your 1.25" or 2" receiver and locks in place without any tools.

Thule Heluim Aero 3-bike hitch rack
The Thule Doubletrack Pro Hitch Rack 9054 ($349.99) holds two bikes, and features a lower-to-the-ground design that's much easier to load, and works much better with cruiser bikes, ladie's bikes, and other bicycles with non-standard frames. It includes all of the locks and keys needed to secure the rack to your vehicle and the bikes to the rack. Works with both 1.25" and 2" hitches.
Thule Doubletrack Pro 2-bike hitch rack
The Thule T2 Pro XT is a top-of-the-line hitch rack for cyclists who want the ultimate in security and ease of use. Out of the box, it holds any bike, with wheels sizes from 20 inches up 29 inches in diameter, including fat bikes with tires up to 5 inches wide! Also features the Auto-Attach system for quick tool-free installation and removal.
All of the Thule T2 Pro XT models listed above are Black. They can be special-ordered in Silver (9035XTS/9034XTS/9036XTS).

The Thule EasyFold Hitch Rack 9032 ($699.99) delivers solid bike transportation in a convenient, foldable package. The high load capacity (132 pounds) gives the EasyFold plenty of muscle to handle the weight of nearly any bike, including electric bikes. And, there's a removable ramp that makes it easy to load your bikes into position.
Thule EasyFold 2-bike hitch rack
Cargo Boxes

Cargo boxes provide extra storage space on top of your vehicle to carry luggage, skis, or snowboards. They come in a variety of sizes to fit your needs! Most are in stock in our Medina store, some in Rocky River. Call us for pickup in Peninsula!

The Thule Force offers value and space with key conveniences, including tool-free Quick-Grip mounting system that works on Thule roof rack systems with square or aerodynamic load bars, round load bars, and most factory load bars. They can be opened and loaded from both the left or right sides. Currently in stock (call us to verify availability):
  • Thule Force M 624 $519.99 - 13 cubic feet of cargo capacity.
  • Thule Force XL 625 $589.99 - 17 cubic feet of cargo capacity, 6 to 8 pair of skis or 4 to 6 snowboards (max 198cm in length)
  • Thule Force XXL 626 $629.99 - 21 cubic feet of cargo capacity, 5 to 7 pair of skis or 3 to 5 snowboards (max 22cm in length)
The Thule Sonic features tool-free AcuTight mounting that works on Thule roof rack systems with square or aerodynamic load bars, round load bars, and most factory load bars. They can be opened and loaded from both the left or right sides. Currently in stock (call us to verify availability):
The Thule Motion XT provides stylish and spacious roof-mounted cargo storage, optimized for ease of use. It's easy to open and close in all conditions due to grip-friendly outer handles and supporting lid lifters. Full trunk access with minimal risk of contact with the cargo box, thanks to its forward position on the vehicle roof. The SlideLock system with separate locking and opening functions automatically locks the lid in place and indicates when the box is closed securely. Easy to mount thanks to the extra-wide PowerClick quick-mount system. The integrated torque indicator "clicks" when it’s properly mounted, ensuring fast and secure fitting. Currently in stock (call us to verify availability):

Roof Racks

All of Thule's cargo boxes and many of their roof-mounted bicycle carriers can attach directly to a vehicle's factory load bars. If your vehicle does not have factory load bars on the roof, we can outfit you with a Thule roof rack system. In most cases, parts for a roof rack system are special-order, so plan ahead. An installation charge of $60 per hour will apply; most installations take 1 to 2 hours.

Some roof-mounted bike carriers require removal of your front wheel, some do not. Some work better with road bikes; others are recommended for mountain bikes. Stop in and talk to us about the various options!

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