Car Rack Accessories – Thule 518 Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier

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The current Thule 518 Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier Information:

The ultimate in fork mounts

The Thule Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier is the top-of-the-line in Thule’s fork mounted carrier series. It is designed to provide maximum stability and protection via a variety of valuable features including: a durable all-metal head, a stiff double-wall tray and an equalized twin cam self-adjusting clamp that automatically adjusts to fit a variety of fork dropout thicknesses. Additional features include: a stainless steel skewer with oversized lever for secure loading and unloading of front forks, an adjustable rear wheel strap, compatibility with wheelbases up to 48 inches and tire widths up to 2.6 inches and more.

The Thule Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier mounted on a car rack

The ultimate in fork mount technology that’s also ultra easy to install and use.
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The Top-of-the-Line in Thule Fork Mount Technology

The ultimate in fork mounts, the Thule 518 Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier raises the bar on fork mounts with its new, improved ETC (Equalized Twin Cam) clamping system. The Echelon features a centrally-located cam lever, and a new ergonomic adjustment knob that allows rapid loading and unloading of bicycle, for the ultimate in ease of use. The Echelon fork-mount rooftop bike carrier fits all disc and suspension combinations with standard 9mm axles. This bike carrier has a dual-lock design that locks both the bike to the carrier, and the carrier to your rooftop rack. The wheel tray fits tires up to 2.6 inches wide with high-profile rims, and carries bicycles with wheelbases up to 48 inches. This system fits both Thule and Yakima load bars, and is Thule One-Key System compatible so you can easily keep it locked and secure without a bunch of extra keys. Please note, locks are not included.

The self-adjusting fork dropout clamp and head assembly of the Thule Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier

Self-adjusting clamp automatically adjusts to fit a variety of fork dropout thicknesses for a secure hold.
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Side view of an isolated Thule Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier

Corrosion resistant double-wall aluminum tray provides maximum strength and rigidity.
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The wheel tray of the Thule Echelon Fork Mount Rooftop Bicycle Carrier shown with the wheel strap and road bike adapter

Ratcheting wheel strap, with included adapter for road bikes, secures rear wheel to wheel tray.
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Installation and Use

The Echelon comes nearly fully assembled, requiring only the included hex wrench and your own two hands to easily assemble in little time. Installation begins with the combined Echelon head assembly / wheel tray which provide the base for securing a bike’s forks (head assembly) and a stable mounting platform for you back tire (wheel tray). Following some simple preassembly to these components, users have just to attach the head section and wheel tray to their rack’s load bar with the hex wrench and included knobs as well as the included mounting plates and other hardware that allows for square or rounded cross bars. The Echelon is now ready for your bike.

To load your bike remove the front wheel and stow it in your vehicle. Next, open the head assembly cover/clamp exposing the pressure dial at the tip of the assembly. Loosening this dial creates initial space along the skewer running through the head assembly that your front fork’s dropouts connect to. Now, place your bike’s fork dropouts onto the skewer ends evenly on both sides. Adjust the pressure dial to ensure a firm but not overly tight hold on your dropouts, then close the cover/clamp partially. Correct clamping pressure occurs automatically when half way down the cover/clamp’s arc you feel resistance. If you feel this, everything should be aligned correctly and you can fully close the cover/clamp. If not, repeat for the best results. At this point Echelon owners who have opted for a One-Key lock, sold separately and installed into the head assembly, can lock their bike to the carrier and the carrier to the rack simultaneously. A ratcheting wheel strap is provided to secure the rear wheel to the wheel tray and includes an adapter for use with road bike wheels. To remove your bike simply remove the wheel strap you installed, unlock the lock on the head assembly (if installed), lift the cover/clamp and remove your bike.

Key Features

  • The Equalized Twin Cam self-adjusting clamp automatically adjusts to fit a variety of fork dropout thicknesses for a secure hold.
  • Versatile design fits most disc brake and suspension combinations with standard 9mm axles.
  • Precise ergonomic pressure dial optimizes force on dropouts increasing hold, and eliminating damage to fork.
  • Aerodynamic, durable die-cast metal head for increased security and product life.
  • Ratcheting wheel strap quickly secures back wheel to tray.
  • Carries bikes with wheelbases up to 48 inches and tire widths up to 2.6 inches. Even works with high profile rims.
  • Corrosion resistant double-wall aluminum tray provides maximum strength and rigidity.
  • 1 One-Key lock cylinder (sold separately) locks the bike to carrier and carrier to rack.
  • Fits Thule rack systems or other round bars.
  • Factory rack compatible with Thule Ride-On Adapter (sold separately).

Specifications

  • Load Capacity (bikes) – 1
  • Fits Tire Dimensions (in) – 2.6 inches
  • Fits Thule Aero Profile – Yes (adapter required)
  • Fits Square Bar – Yes
  • Fits Most Bikes with Disc Brakes – Yes
  • One Key System Compatible (locks sold separately) – Yes
  • For Tandem Bikes – No
  • Fork Dropout Compatibility – Between 4mm and 10mm thick; dropouts must be 100mm apart

What’s in the Box

Thule Echelon Fork Mount Bike Carrier, all the necessary mounting hardware, and instruction guide/warranty card.

Limited Lifetime Warranty

Thule will warranty all Thule brand car rack systems and its accessories manufactured by Thule during the time that an original retail purchaser owns the product. This warranty terminates if a purchaser transfers the product to any other person. No warranty is given for defects caused by normal wear and tear, cosmetic rust, scratches, accidents, unlawful vehicle operation, or modification of, or any types of repair of a load carrier system other than those authorized by Thule.

About Thule

Thule was founded in 1942 by the Thulin family, when Eric Thulin, a true lover of the outdoors, put the Thule name on a pike trap he designed and began to sell in Scandinavia. It wasn’t long before he added other practical items to the company’s portfolio. By the 1960s, the company began to concentrate on car-related products, including its first roof rack. The Thulin family sold Thule to the publicly listed company Eldon in 1979, and it has continued to grow both organically and through acquisitions ever since. The Thule Group is a world leader in providing transport solutions for an active life.

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