The new Compass UD-1 front rack is a “universal” rack intended for bikes where our other racks don’t fit. It’s an especially good choice for bikes with disc brakes. Like all our racks, it is made by Nitto in Japan to Compass specifications. At 221 g, it’s remarkably light for an adjustable rack, yet it’s strong enough to pass Nitto’s most stringent testing.
The UD-1 is so simple that you’ll wonder why nobody has made racks like this before. (Actually, a similar rack design was offered by Goëland in the 1950s.) At the top, it attaches to the hole in the fork crown. The U-shaped tube (see top photo) provides maximum stiffness and strength here. The main part of the rack is made from ultra-strong and ultralight Cromoly tubing. It incorporates an attachment for the fender at the front.
The diagonal struts are adjustable at the top, so you can fit this rack on a multitude of bikes. The struts are cut to size after you have figured out how to mount the rack. The struts are made from aluminum, so cutting them is easy. The struts attach to the inside of the tabs, making the rack much more elegant than similar racks where the struts attach to the outside. We enlarged the rack platform slightly to make the shape come together aesthetically. Racks look much better if the rack stays slant outward a bit as they go up from the fork to the platform.
The Compass UD-1 rack fits on many bikes. It’s specifically designed to work with the mid-fork eyelets used by Nitto Campee or Haulin Colin Porteur racks. We offer optional extra-long struts tbat reach the mid-fork low-rider eyelets of production touring bikes like the Surly Long-Haul Trucker.
We designed the new Compass light mount specifically to fit the UD-1 rack. (The light mount also works on our other racks.) In designing our first adjustable rack, we made sure it has all the functionality and reliability of our other racks.
From the first drawings to the finished racks, the UD-1 took almost two years to design. It’s deceptively simple, but it took a surprising number of prototypes until we got the proportions of the top platform “just right”. And the diagonal stays required several redesigns until they passed the fatigue tests. Few companies fatigue-test their racks, but Compass and Nitto insist on it. We don’t want our customers to be the first to test our new products!
The end result is a rack that fits many bikes, looks great, works well, and will be extremely reliable in the long run. Click here for more information about Compass racks.