Re: Bike locker designs
From: Fred H Olson (
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2005 09:05:38 -0800 (PST)
On Nov 15, 2005 Amy Dwyer wrote:

> I highly recommend setting aside enough secure space for bikes from the 
> get go. A relatively neat and efficient way to organize bikes is to hang 
> them on hooks by their wheel.  In such a system, bikes are alternated 
> handlebar up/down, hooks are marked with the proper orientation, and 
> hooks need to be spaced about 14in minimum w/ 14in on each end of the
> hooks. The hooks need a minimum 14in distance setaway from a back wall.  
> Hooks need to be placed in a secure beam with a minimum dimension (if 
> wood) of 1in for every 1ft of span (a 6 ft span, capable of holding 4 
> bikes, would require a 2x6 beam). Hope that helps!
But Eris at FrogSOng wrote
> We have a similar system and it is NOT working for us very well.
> Bikes with baby seats on the back or touring handlesbars take up more 
> than the alloted width; kids bikes and stroller tend to accumulate in 
> FRONT of the hung-up bikes; some people don't have the strength to 
> lift their bikes that high; the alternate spaces don't get used because 
> of the width issue; etc.

> It works OK as STORAGE but if you use your bike every day it is a job to
> move others out of the way and wrestle your out.

I've used 3 similar hooks on the side of my garage for bike parking (I use
my bike fairly often) for several years and like them.  However 14" apart
seems too close (mine are 15" and 17" apart and when possible I use only
the outer two.)  Wider spacing would be easier to use.  The light rail
trains in Minneapolis have similar racks and work fairly well tho I don't
know the spacing tho they are wider maybe 24" (?).

I can not imagine hanging a bike from the rear wheel for "parking" /
frequent use; it requires too much lifting.  But putting "typical" bikes
on a rack hung by the front wheel is fairly easy and requires little

By "typical" I mean a bike with 26-27" wheels, with working hand brakes on
the rear wheel and no rear fender or other extension off the back beyond
the wheel. Simply apply the brakes and pull back and slightly up and the
bike pivots on the rear wheel.  In this position it is easy to move the
bike around tight corners and "roll" up the wall a couple inches and a bit
of turn of the front wheel can put it on the hook.  Note the need of a bit
of "wall" below the hook to roll up.

As to the problem of things parked in front of the hooks and bikes that
are not "typical" or people who can not reasonably use "hooks", I think
alternatives must be provided.  If there is no other space for them, there
will be a problem.  If there is an alternative, get the cooperation of the
users of these other things in using the alternative space and not the
space in front of the hooks.

Another system I'd consider backs the bikes into a diagonal "slot" which
holds the rear wheel (below a possible fender) . An upper level having a
channel for the wheels with a "slot" at the back will store more bikes.  
This could be assigned to people capable of lifting their bike.
Some bike shops use a system like this.

Having enough space is key.  And as bike use increases (as I expect as 
"peak oil" will encourage), more space will be needed and I'd 
encourage planning  for it (with an interim use now?).

BTW here is a link to a picture of the Jernstoberiet bicycle room
in Denmark:
I don't suggest a rack that holds bikes by the front wheel like they have 
tho it does organize things some. 

Fardknappen cohousing in central Stockholm which is built like a big 
apartment building has a bike room with an entrance directly off the 

Fred who often bikes for trips up to 5-6 miles, when the temperature is 20
     degrees (F) or higher and the streets are dry.

Loose Lips Deserve Pink Slips. Fire Karl Rove.  
Fred H. Olson  Minneapolis,MN 55411  USA        (near north Mpls)
Communications for Justice - My new listserv org.       UU, Linux
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fholson at   612-588-9532   (7am-10pm Central time)

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