SeaSucker Talon Bike Rack Review
SeaSucker Talon Bike Rack Review
Right now, the options on bike carriers on the market are aplenty. In fact, it comes down to personal preferences and given circumstances. Out of the clutter, Seasucker attracted my interest. I was interested in their unconventional way of carrying bikes and goods. The Seasucker Talon is the best selling bike carrier in Seasucker’s portfolio.
My race mates were fussing around with all kinds of complicated, even though established, bike carrying brands. I fixed my bike on the Seasucker Talon in no time, in comparison. Attaching and detaching the bike once the rack is in place takes much less time. The Talon’s carrying capacity is limited down to 20kg. It is a weight limit that a normal car glass can carry easily. I didn’t make use of a the optional brackets for 15mm or 20mm thru-axles application, but it’s good to have them as an option. You can also buy security plates that fix in your boot lid or window to attach a lock and secure your bike.
The Talon carries only one bike, so if you need to attach more bikes, you can use an additional Talon or checkout Seasucker’s other fixing solutions. You can also fit pretty much any bike as long as it’s under the weight limit. You can either get the correct axle fitment attached to the baseplate. Or if you have more than one bike with different fork fitments, you can get adapters which will allow you to quickly swap from one bike to the next.
First I educated myself about the working principles of the Talon. Basically the Seasucker uses a high strength vacuum cup. The cups are made of flexible rubber in order to adapt to the curves of the car surfaces. Basically you need to push down hard enough to create a first seal. Then just pump the plunger until it sucks out all the air from inside the cup. This way it creates the desired vacuum that holds it in place. The front wheel gets fastened to the front metal bracket whereas the rear wheel is secured with a thick Velcro band.
To make sure the cup is attached sturdy enough, the plunger needs to stay inside its recess. The plunger serves as a safety gauge: In case the vacuum lessens, the plunger moves out a bit. I double checked it after 15min and subsequently after my first highway stop. But really, a frequent checking isn’t needed. The mechanism is bomb-proof. Except, and this is only my experience, we attached a super heavy DH bike to it and drove on mild off-roads. The plunger popped minimally.
It was a no-brainer to attach the Seasucker Talon on both metal, as well as glass surfaces of the vehicle. In case your car doesn’t have roof bars the Talon turns out to be even more useful. We tested it mostly on hatchbacks but it was equally a fuss free process to put it on a sedan, minivan, and on one occasion a coupe. For demonstration purposes we tried it on a targa too, but I got paranoid about losing my precious bike down the road. The whole thing is a matter of trust though. One of my team mates, for instance would never use it for lack of trust, others were totally enthusiastic for the above listed practicality.
During the test period neither the bikes nor the car were damaged. However we paid attention to check the plunger periodically as the Talon served us oftentimes during stage races. Our team car SUV had to drive very quickly from one feed station to the next. On those jeep-tracks and fire roads we were better advised to double check the plunges and Velcro. Also, I would recommend to fasten the cranks to prevent accidental bouncing. I zip-tied them for good measure to prevent the car from paint damage.
Does the Seasucker Talon substitute for standard, well established bike carriers? As for the handling and ease of use, definitely. I would opt for the Seasucker for its neat look too. The Talon is also very versatile. For example I was experimenting in terms of fuel consumption to find out the most optimal place on the car. After a while the paranoia about losing the bikes has gone. I hadn’t any problem to speed up on German highways with confidence.
As for the quality, the Talon is greatly executed. I guess it boils down to its simplistic construction. It indicates a long term, issue free use. I would recommend the Talon for users that are dealing with limited options of bike carrying. But it provides way more [above mentioned benefits] than just that – in my books anyway. The purchase price of the Seasucker racks are higher in comparison. That said it is hard to compare for lack of similar solutions the market place.
To keep its long term durability, some preventative maintenance is definitely needed. They are equipped with protective covers, and a spare cover is delivered too, but in case they get lost or damaged, the functionality is negatively influenced. Thus far its performance hasn’t lessened.
To wrap it up: I was looking for a less space-consuming solution that is easy to install and light weight. Simultaneously it had to hold the bike firm enough on and off-road, and at high speed too. The Seasucker Talon fulfilled my expectation just about completely. Yes the cranks needed to be fastened separately, moreover extra attention is needed during installation and the way you attach the bike in order to avoid a car’s paint damage.
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