You can definitely put a basket on a mountain bike. The installation process is simple, so anyone can do it. This post is all about how you can add a basket to your mountain bike.
Many people use bicycles as their choice of transportation. Most times, the bikes are mountain bikes because of their sleek design and speed. However, while trying to have a minimal sporty design, most mountain bikes don’t have space for the rider’s belongings.
This is where bike additions come in. A bike basket is inexpensive and can carry all your needs. You may install a basket in front or at the back of your bike. The attachment style of the baskets might seem complex at first, but we have broken it down into simple forms for your better understanding.
If you are wondering how to carry your backpack or groceries on your bike, you are in the right place.
Let’s get started.
How to Put a Basket in a Mountain Bike?
Firstly, you must decide what type of basket you will attach to a mountain bike. All basket types might not be the best fit for your bike. Things like area, depth, and style play a role.
After you’ve chosen the type of basket you’re going to install, you will need a few pieces of equipment for the installation part. Don’t worry; you should have most of the tools at home.
Things you’ll need for the installment of a basket:
- Few screws
- Zip ties, rope, etc.
Now that you’ve got your equipment, you can quickly put a basket on a mountain bike by following the steps below.
Installing a basket at the front
This is the most used place for baskets. Besides, it takes less effort to install at the front. If you have an old MTB, you might have to put some work in for the installation, but we promise it’s not that hard.
Most front baskets attach to the bike by handlebar (handlebar style has two ways of placement) and fork. If you’re on a long journey, try lowering the basket placement.
You should attach your basket to the fork if it has struts. If it’s an average basket, you can use zip ties.
Installing a basket at the back
Rear baskets are rare these days. For convenience reasons, most prefer the front part. You can install it at the back if you want to step out of the crowd.
Remember that baskets at the back might affect your bicycle’s speed if the basket is too heavy. Rear baskets come with mounts, so it’s pretty easy to install, almost like plug-and-play.
If your mountain bike is two-seated, try to get a basket that attaches perfectly to the seat.
Basket Attachment System on a Mountain Bike
As mentioned earlier, there are different attachment systems on mountain bikes. They are:
- Quick release to handlebars
- Support struts
- Baskets in front
These three attachment systems are commonly used on mountain bikes regarding baskets. Below is a detailed explanation of each to find what works best for you.
Quick release to handlebars
Quick-release baskets attach to the handlebars or the stems of your bike. They have a technology built in them that helps to compress and expand when needed. It’s one of the popular ways of using a basket without adding weight to a bike and risking its style.
- Easy to carry
- Great for traveling long distance
- Can avoid external attachments
- Can’t carry heavy things
- If it only connects to the handlebar’s stem, it won’t fit a threadless mountain bike.
- They make a lot of noise.
- Their placement is higher in front, which might block the driver’s view of the road.
Support struts have a very straightforward attachment style. You can wire them directly to your MTB; bonus point if your bike is retro. Retro mountain bikes come with cushioned eyelets that help in the struts adjustment.
If your bike is modern, there’s no need to worry because you can always add clamps for struts installment.
- Substantial placement
- High weight carrying capacity
- Support struts don’t favor clamps as much
- Doesn’t have much mobility
- These baskets can’t be used on bikes with a fork attachment
Baskets in front racks
Front racks are a flexible way to attach baskets to your mountain bike. You need to do is install a front rack, and then you can put a basket nicely. Front racks usually are connected to the bike’s fork. However, there are a few bikes that come with built-in adjustments.
The installation of front racks is more straightforward than the ones mentioned above. You can put a basket on the front frame and secure its position using zip ties, rope, or screws.
- Can carry a lot of weight (up to 9kg/ 20lbs)
- Placement is strong
- Installment is simple
- The rack is heavy as it’s made out of metal
- It isn’t customizable with many modern mountain bikes
Attaching Baskets vs. Bags to Your Mountain Bike
If you’re carrying a lot of cargo, you should consider attaching a bag to your basket to increase weight capacity. For further convenience, you may also get a bag to connect to the handlebar.
Or you can also attach a bag instead of a basket to your mountain bike. It’s lighter and doesn’t affect your MTB’s design. Besides, bags are lightweight and won’t hurt the cargo inside. Baskets might damage the goodies if you’re speeding and carrying sensitive things.
Considering most baskets are made of metal, baskets are heavier too. Almost any mountain bike will go with bags. Not to mention, you can adjust your bag however you like on a bike.
But a good basket will always have a higher weight capacity than any bag, regardless of its strength.
Our favorite handlebar bag is the Helix Handlebar Bag, and it’s affordable and water resistant with a weight of only 280 grams. The bag’s design is lowkey and attaches to your handlebar nicely.
Can I Put a Basket on a Mountain Bike?
Yes, you can put a basket on a mountain bike. Depending on your needs, you may install a basket on either the front or back.
Most mountain bikes allow space for a basket, considering you’re attaching it to the handlebar or at the rear. However, your basket-attaching options are limited if you have a suspension mountain bike.
How Much Weight Can Bike Baskets Hold?
An average bike basket can hold up to 50 kg of cargo. We’re talking about a maxed-out load.
However, the average bike basket can hold up to 16 kg or 35 lbs of stuff. Nevertheless, the weight depends on the basket you are using. Different baskets have different capacities.
Unfortunately, rear mountain bike baskets have a lower weight capacity (20 to 50 lbs), as carrying more things at the back can affect the bike’s speed. It also affects the driver’s riding style. That’s why we recommend not taking too much in your rear basket.
The Bottom Line
Bikes are the primary means of transportation for a lot of people. And everyone has their baggage (no pun intended); therefore, having a basket always helps with the kinds of stuff you need to carry.
Besides, you’ll eventually have to carry your things at your back if you don’t have a basket, which will affect your body and health in the long run. So, a bike basket can not only ease your travels but could potentially save your life.
The installation of a bike basket is straightforward, and it should be easier if you have followed the mentioned steps above.