A bicycle stand
,also called a bike
, is a device to which bicycles may be securely
attached. It may be free standing or securely attached to the
ground or some stationary object such as a building. Indoor bike
racks are commonly used for private bicycle parking, while outdoor
bike racks are often used in commercial areas. General styles of
racks include the Inverted U, Serpentine, Bollard
, Grid, & Decorative.How to Buy a Bike
Rack | Buying Guide." Belson Outdoors | Your Outdoor
Ed. Belson Outdoors. 1993. Web. 4 Sept. 2009.
/www.belson.com>. The most effective and secure bike racks, with
the exception of the bike locker, are those that can secure both
wheel and frame of the bicycle, using a standard U-lock
Bike racks can be constructed from a number of different materials.
Durability, weather resistance, appearance, and functionality are
extremely important when considering the material of the bike rack.
Construction materials include stainless
, recycled plastic, or
. Each material has
advantages and disadvantages, and each is unique in appearance from
The visibility of the bike rack, adequate spacing for parking and
pedestrian traffic, weather coverage, and proximity to areas of
interest are all important factors determining usefulness of a
bicycle rack. These factors will help increase usage of the bike
rack, and assure cyclists their bike is securely parked. Pedestrian
and Bicycle Information Center. "Bicycle Parking."
U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration. Web. 4 Sept. 2009.
Ladder type in Germany
Early models tend to offer a means of securing one wheel: these can
be a grooved piece of concrete
ground, a forked piece of metal into which a wheel of the bicycle
is pushed, or a horizontal ladder providing positions for the front
wheel of many bicycles. These are not very effective, since a thief
need only detach the wheel in question from the bicycle to free the
rest of the bicycle. They also do not offer much support, and a row
of bicycles in this type of stand are susceptible to all being
toppled in a domino effect
types of stand are known as "wheel benders" among cyclists.
version is known as the "Sheffield rack" or "Sheffield stand",
after Sheffield in England where these were pioneered.
consist of a thick metal bar shaped like a square arch. The top
part is about level with the top bar of the bicycle frame, and thus
supports the bicycle and allows the frame to be secured.
High-quality versions feature a second, lower horizontal bar to
support smaller bikes (this version is also known as “A stand”),
and are coated to reduce their surface hardness
and not scratch paint.
the City of
Toronto has installed post and ring bicycle racks
consisting of a steel post topped by a cast aluminium ring.
In August 2006, it became publicly known that these stands could be
defeated by prying the ring off with a two-by-four 
Amsterdam two-tiered bicycle stands are ubiquitous.
Bikes can be parked in a smaller area as the handlebars
(the widest part of the bicycle) of
every other one is at a different height (either high or low).
These racks are made of steel and have a large bar to which the
frame may be easily locked. Most Dutch bicycles have a rear wheel
lock, so that wheel need not be locked.
Bike parking needs vary from environment to environment. Some areas
require Class I standards are followed, also more commonly referred
to as long-term bike parking. Class I parking regulations are
implemented when bicycles will be parked for hours at a time.
Examples of these environments are office buildings, elementary
schools, libraries, etc. When implementing Class I bike racks,
installers should also incorporate some form of weather protection
for the racks and bikes.
More commonly seen in public areas are Class II bike racks. These
bike racks are needed when cyclists will be leaving their bikes
unattended for less than two hours. Weather protection is not as
important for this class, however distance from main attractions
should be considered to encourage usage. Class II bike racks can be
implemented near fast food restaurants, parks, picnic areas, or
other similar places.Victoria Transport Policy Institute. "Bicycle
Parking: Bicycle Parking, Storage, and Changing Facilities."
Victoria Transport Policy Institute
(VTPI), 27 Aug. 2007. Web. 4 Sept. 2009.
Inverted U Rack
There are many different styles of bike racks available to match
any environment. Specific details such as bolt size, tubing
diameter, tubing style (square or round), height, length, and many
other things vary with manufacturer, but typically, there are six
general styles of commercial bike racks.
Wave/Serpentine Bike Rack
- U Racks: A simple design, the inverted U Rack
is the most basic bike rack present in commercial areas today. It
is conveniently used in urban areas because it can be placed along
sidewalks without taking too much space away from pedestrians, and
also has a clean appearance that blends in well with other urban
traffic structures. Palmer Group. The path to great parking for
your unique destination. Palmer Group, 1995. Web. 4 Sept.
- Wave/Serpentine: The wave design of this bike
rack is essentially an extension of the U Rack. The waves allow for
the storage and securing of more bicycles than the single U Rack,
while keeping it simple for bike riders to use. The familiar shape
of this bike rack is identifiable to most cyclists, and does not
take up a lot of room.
- Bollard Style: Bollards
are short vertical posts most commonly used as traffic or parking
barriers. Bollard style bike racks utilize this function and double
its utility by adding one or two arms to secure bikes to. This
style rack is beneficial if you’re trying to monitor pedestrian or
driving traffic, or if you’re trying to compliment an urban
aesthetic with other parking signs, barriers, or traffic
Triton - Innovative Bike Rack
- Grid Style: The fence style bike racks are
primarily used for high volume bike storage situations. This style
bike rack was more commonly used in the past, and is currently
viewed as only appropriate for short-term bike parking where your
bike remains in sight at all times. While it is useful in solving
space issues, this bike rack does not allow both the wheel and
frame of the bike to be locked, allowing for potential theft of the
- Innovative: Straying away from conventional
bike rack designs, innovative designs incorporate both utility and
style into its purpose. Many bike rack engineers have made small
alterations to basic bike racks to improve functionality and
- Decorative: Due to the unique nature of some
commercial areas, some environments require a more decorative bike
rack. For example, a public aquarium or zoo may prefer a shark
shaped bike rack over a traditional fence style bike rack. While
these bike racks may be interesting, it is important to keep in
mind security and functionality of these designs.
Bike staple - In-ground Mount
Bike racks can be mounted to a surface in a number of different
- In-ground: The base of the bike rack is
planted into the ground, and secured by a perpendicular anchor pin
for stability. These stable mounts are most secure from theft or
- Surface: Flanges
extending outwards from the base of the bike rack are secured into
existing concrete with lag bolts. For added support, surface mounts
can also include triangular brackets, also referred to as gusset plates, to reinforce the connection
between the flange and tubing. Surface mounts with this extra
support are called gusset mounts. Surface and gusset mounts are
used to secure a bike rack into an existing piece of concrete.
- Rail mounts: Some bike rack units can be
connected with rails. This type allows using single bike racks,
while limiting the number of mounts be implemented. Rail mounts are
mostly used to connect multiple ‘U’ Racks so each rack need not be
mounted, saving labor costs and limiting the number of holes in the
- Wall Mounts: Certain bike racks are designed
to be mounted to the wall using bolts to connect flanges of the
rack onto existing walls. These conserve floor space and are most
useful for long-term storage.
Galvanized Wave/Serpentine Bike
Commercial bike racks can be constructed with a variety of
different materials. Some of the most important factors to consider
when choosing a finishing material are the weather conditions the
bike rack will need to endure, the overall style and look of the
atmosphere, the volume of bikes the rack will be holding, and
Galvanized bike racks are the best value finish. They are
inexpensive, and provide a thin layer of zinc for corrosion
protection. The appearance is a dull gray color, with little to no
This finish is usually available in a wide range of colors. It is
achieved by a dry-powder coat that provides a durable outer layer
that has a high gloss appearance and excellent weather
Powder-Coated Wave/Serpentine Bike
- Thermoplastic-coated: This polyethylene matte finish is usually available
in a wide range of colors as well. The powder coating is applied
for corrosion protection, is great for matching existing
surroundings, and creates a finish without runs or
drips."Thermoplastic Powder for Outdoor Furniture." PF
Online. Ed. Steven R. Kline. Gardner Publications, Inc, 2009.
Web. 4 Sept. 2009. /www.pfonline.com/>.
Plastic: Recycled plastic bike racks are composed for
96% recycled materials. It does not splinter or crack, is more fire
safe than wood, and does not emit harmful chemicals into the
environment.American Recycled Plastic Inc. "The Plastic Recycling
Process." American Recycled Plastic, Inc. Webmaster -
firstname.lastname@example.org, 2006. Web. 4 Sept. 2009.
Steel: Stainless steel is the most durable material a
bike rack can be constructed from. It has maximum corrosion
protection, is antimicrobial, and has a glossy appearance that is
easy to clean and maintain. Speciality Steel Industry of North
America. "Stainless Steel Overview: Features & Benefits."
The Stainless Steel Information Center. SSINA. Web. 4
Sept. 2009. /www.ssina.com>.
- eSteel: The eSteel finish is a
state-of-the-art process that produces an extremely durable and
uniform finish. The entire process is environmentally friendly, and
is [[Occupational Safety and Health Administration] and U.S.
Protection Agency compliant.
Where a bike rack is installed is just as important as how safe and
useful it is. The better the location, the more use the bike rack
will encourage. Bike racks should be installed in an area that is
highly visible to the public. By avoiding isolated areas and hidden
spaces, cyclists will feel safe enough to lock their bikes there.
Crowded locations will also deter bike thieves from stealing
bicycles. Also, by placing bike racks in a highly visible area, the
location will most likely be near common places of interest, making
it more convenient for people to ride their bike to their
However, while a bike rack should be implemented in a visible area,
it is important that the bike rack have adequate spacing away from
pedestrians and other traffic. Bike riders will need ample space to
maneuver their bike around and into the rack, without hitting other
parked bikes, cars, or people. It is also important to place bike
racks far enough away from doorways, sidewalks, or paths where it
may obstruct traffic flow.
Another important factor to consider is weather protection. If bike
racks are being used for long-term parking, the bike rack should be
placed under some form of weather protection. This will not only
help protect the bike rack from corrosion, but also encourage bike
riders to store their bikes there for extended periods of