Did you know that the Dero staff are a bunch of bike parking nerds? It’s true. Whenever we’re out riding, we constantly look for ways to improve the existing bicycling infrastructure we use every day. So how does that translate to the racks, shelters, and bike repair in our product line? In this first edition of “Notes from a Bike Parking Nerd,” we discuss the application and decision-making process that goes into choosing the best finish for your project.
Before jumping into details, let’s strip away the multitude of finish options, and talk about what, exactly, is in our bike racks. We’re proud of the fact that nearly all of our racks contain at least 83% post-consumer recycled steel. On top of that, we try our hardest to source steel that’s been milled in close proximity to our fab shop. Much like the principles behind farm-to-table, we take into consideration how our bike racks and public bike repair products are brought from mill-to-street. While our mild steel products are all harvested in our neighboring state, Iowa, all the steel in our Recycle Rack line are harvested right next door in St. Paul, MN. Even better? We guarantee that all our bike racks are 100% gluten free!
For some, the choice of what finish will work best for a project will come down to one question: Will this fit in with my building/company/brand aesthetic? If yours is a custom project, opting for one of the 250 custom powder coat colors offers the most creative freedom for your design. Both our PVC rubber dip and thermoplastic coat offer durable options for projects in high-traffic areas or on busy city streets. For eye-catching racks, stainless steel is also an option for most of our product line. Galvanized rounds out our finish options, and it provides incredible durability for an attractive price point. Below, we’ll weigh durability and upkeep for different installation conditions for each finish type.
POWDER COAT // While our powder coat finishes are very durable, they are susceptible to scratches. Road salt, heavy rains, and potential damage from street-cleaners or snow removal can take their toll on your rack’s finish (and this applies to all bike parking). Fear not, we are happy to provide touch-up paint should the need arise!
THERMOPLASTIC // Our thermoplastic coating offers less color choices than powder coat, but it is much more robust, typically being 8-10 mils thicker. Its additional thickness offers superior impact resistance over powder coating. And even if chips or scratches appear on your rack, the galvanized coating beneath the thermoplastic prevents rust from forming.
STAINLESS // What can we say? Stainless steel finish is our most beautiful and durable option, but it costs a premium. We use 304 grade stainless steel which will retain its like-new radiance for many years. Occasionally, steel from bikes or locks rubs onto a stainless rack’s surface, thus causing rust to appear. We want your stainless racks to stay pristine, so we now offer Rack Renewal, our new stainless steel cleaner.
GALVANIZED// Galvanized steel is both extremely durable and cost-efficient. It requires the least amount of upkeep and the galvanized finish doesn’t chip, scratch, or flake from regular use. For projects where you desire minimal upkeep but require maximum durability, galvanized is an excellent option.
PVC DIP // Our black PVC dip finish is one of the most resilient options that protects the rack from abrasions, impacts, and corrosion. It is UV-stabilized, and its rubbery exterior provides a slightly softer surface for bikes to lock up. PVC dip is optimized for smaller rack sizes such as our Hoop Rack and Swerve Rack.