Since 2009, Seasucker bike racks have been innovating the idea of what it takes to transport your ride. The products use vacuum mounting technology to hold one, two, or three bikes to the top or back of your vehicle depending on the device that you choose.
This commercial makes them seem like the best piece of equipment you could ever invest in:
But many riders are too nervous to trust hanging up their expensive investments on what is essentially a super-powered suction cup. Can the strength of the vacuum seal be trusted, or will you have to be constantly stopping the car to make sure that nothing has come loose?
Many bikers have wondered the same thing. This review will cover the concept, durability, functionality, and potential problems that may affect three different bike racks from Seasucker. Products covered will include the Talon, Mini Bomber, and Hornet.
I Have A Bike Rack; Why Try Seasuckers?
The traditional design of a bike rack is big, bulky, and hard to move between cars. For families with more than one vehicle, moving equipment around constantly can get very annoying, but the Seasucker is easy to reposition in just a few minutes.
There are also some cars that have no roof bars available that will fit their car. For sports car owners, travelers, or those who are renting a car, Seasuckers can make carrying your ride much easier.
Additionally, it has a much lower profile than traditional designs, which reduces the mileage degradation caused by air drag when the product is not in use. While to some the traditional design may be enough, forward-thinking riders who are thinking about versatility, saving money, and unique inventions may enjoy the updated options that the Seasucker systems give them.
The Talon Seasucker bike rack is a system made to carry one bike on the top or back of a car. It has 3 vacuum mounts with a fork mount to attach the front of the bike, and one mount to keep the back wheel in place. The front wheel must be removed to use this mount unless you also buy an add-on front wheel holder.
Thanks to the small size of this system, it’s very versatile and easy to use no matter what size car you have. The Talon is made to be mounted on the front windshield and roof of your car, but can also be used on the roof only, on the back, and in pretty much any location where it fits. Since the Talon is so small, you can get very creative with where you place it.
The system is very stable and durable, even when traveling at high speeds, in crosswinds, or in other conditions that might make you nervous. Plenty of riders have shared how stable the bike stays even in these conditions!
While you might fear the mounts popping off your car, they will not, provided that you follow the instructions properly. The pressure can be checked easily on the Seasuckers, and the vacuum is simple to seal into place for a durable, reliable hold on your bike. Each mount is rated to hold 200 pounds, making the system very reliable.
One problem that owners had with the Talon system was the fact that it can cause some damage to the paint on the roof of the car if you do not clean the car very well before sealing the cups into place. While it’s possible to avoid this issue by putting in extra cleaning time, this can be a big drawback to owners who don’t want to risk any paint damage on their car.
Another issue for some users is that the system has no warning method to let you know that the suction has come undone, so you have to check it periodically. Thankfully, each front mount on the Talon has three vacuum mounts. Even if one of them fails, the other two will hold everything in place.
Overall, this is a great choice for riders looking for a versatile system that can hold one bike on any car. While you might have to deal with some paint damage, this can still be a better solution for many than a permanent set of roof bars that will need to be installed.
In some ways, the Minibomber system is like a double Talon. This vacuum mount is made to hold two bikes rather than one, and it is twice the size of a Talon! It has four vacuum mounts and two heavy-duty fork clamps on the long front piece, which can secure to the top of any sedan, coupe, SUV, and more! The system comes with two separate rear wheel mounts.
Like the Talon, this system can stay vacuumed for long periods of time without any cause for concern. Each mount is rated to hold up to 200 pounds. You can use the system with one or two bikes (http://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=125045) attached.
Whether you have a curved or flat roof, the mounting system can fit the car since the vacuum seal levels it out and keep things in place. Depending on where you mount the Minibomber, you might find that it causes some wind noise because of the front mount design, which can be a downside for some drivers.
Because this system is bigger than others from Seasucker, it might be more difficult to find a good position to use it in. If you have extra large bikes and a small car, it might not be possible to find an arrangement that keeps the bikes stable without risking any damage to your car.
Some users have found that the Minibomber system can cause some bending on the car roof if not positioned well, so this could also be a big concern. As mentioned in the Talon review, the mounts themselves can leave rings behind, but these can be cleaned with a microfiber towel in most cases.
Additionally, you have to be careful about securing the pedals so that they do not cause any scratches on the roof of your car, but there is a learning curve to using any roof rack system. Once figured out, this will no longer be a problem.
If you want to be able to easily carry two bikes on any of your vehicles, the Minibomber Seasucker system is a great choice that will fit many roofs. Finding the right configuration to keep things stable may take a few tries, but everything will be smooth sailing afterward.
The Hornet has been advertised as the “smallest bike rack in the world” and it certainly is small. The entire system is made up of two of Seasucker’s 120-lb rated suction mounts. Each cup has ladder plastic straps on them to hold the bike in place by the handlebars. There is also an optional safety strap that can be used in hatchbacks to secure everything one more time.
One great thing about the Hornet is that you do not have to remove the front wheel to use the mount. This is the first design from Seasucker that allows you to keep the front wheel in place, so it’s a favorite among those who do not like the added steps required to remove and reattach this wheel.
Another aspect that many riders find appealing about this system is its small size. The two suction mounts are incredibly compact, making them easy to store and carry when not in use. The total dimensions are 9.5″x7″x3″ when packed in the provided carrying case.
The Hornet can only be used on the back window of any hatchback, SUV or minivan. While great for owners of these vehicles, it will not be functional for those with sports cars, coupes, or other smaller vehicles. If this mount does not fit your car, it will not work without causing damage to the car.
Not only is this tiny mount more finicky about what type of car it can fit than the other mounts from Seasucker, but it also may not work with all bicycle types. If you have specialty handlebars or aerobars, it will be difficult to use. If possible, give Seasucker a call and ask them about your specific bike dimensions before giving it a try.
If you have a large vehicle with a hatchback, this is a good option to carry your bike. (http://singletrackworld.com/forum/topic/how-are-people-getting-on-with-seasuckers) While it will keep your bike stable, the first front-wheel-on carrier from Seasucker still has some work to be done before it will become the top seller. While great for some riders, the design excludes anyone with a big bike or a small car, so consider it cautiously.
There are two problems that all Seasucker bike racks have. First, they may leave rings behind if you do not clean the car carefully before attaching them. Using a microfiber towel to wipe the area where you attach the mounts before and after use can help to prevent this problem, but different paint types were affected differently.
Secondly, the systems can be stolen fairly easily, but Seasucker also has cable anchors available that will help to prevent this from happening.
Still, the Seasucker is a great choice for those who want a non-permanent bike rack solution that is simple to install and very versatile. These systems are not perfect – but what bike rack is?
Another great way to maintain these systems is to clean them from time to time:
If the only thing you fear about Seasucker mounts is their strength, go ahead and give them a try. You’ll be surprised by the power of the mounts, and the versatility provided is great for travelers, unconventionally sized cars, and the curious!