For starters, I don’t remove the wings anymore like I said I did in my previous article on Carver Surfboard racks. Instead I loosen the four bolts clamping the rack to the seat post, remove the seat post and slip off the racks. Takes about 1 minute to fit or remove.
In the previous article I complained about the rack hitting the back of my legs every peddle stroke. I’ve compromised my riding position somewhat to accommodate the racks, pushing my seat forward on the rails a couple cms. The back of my leg lightly touches the racks now. It’s acceptable and I can ride comfortably and unhindered. A week in the saddle and the new position stopped feeling weird and cramped.
|What’s wrong with this image? Yes, it’s the stupid looking bike. Image courtesy of the Carver website.
The other day I used the Carver Surfboard racks to haul Dead Mans down to the beach. Dead Mans is an 80s-style 7ft gun board, which I was using as a mini-mal in the horrible 1ft swell. At 7ft its up near the top end of what this rack can handle. The Carver website says 8ft. With Dead Mans onboard the racks had a noticeable wobble but it’s not unlike having a heavy pannier fitted. I used to get around Melbourne with all kinds of stuff crammed into some terrible cheap panniers that flayed from side to side on loose elastic bungies, and the experience of riding with the Carver surfboard racks is certainly no worse than that. What you could do with my cheapo panniers and you can’t with the Carver Surfboard racks (to any large degree) is get out of the saddle and pump. You’ve got a long lever attached to your bike (the board) and the amplitude of the peddle strokes seems to feed into it and start up a healthy springing effect that has you back in the saddle before it gets out of control.
I reckon I was 50/50 on whether I kept the Carver surfboard racks or not after my initial tests. Now I’ve lived with them for a while (and have compromised the bike position…and adjusted to it, so it’s a non-issue) I’d say they’re definitely keepers. While not perfect I know of no better way to get a board to the beach and back. On a normal trip to the beach I hook the booger in, stuff the fins in and ride. It’s 10mins from Labrador to Main Beach. Add another 10 if I’m going to The Spit. Makes you wonder why anyone would drive a car.