Blackburn's EX1 rear rack is a bit of a touring classic designed to be a one size fits all load-lugging solution. This has certainly been my experience, it's easy to fit too, have had no trouble installing on a number of 700c and 26in wheeled bikes.
My only one major gripe is that the 3mm hex bolts that come with it appear to be made of cheese. The heads round very easily which makes taking the rack off at home tricky and a roadside repair nigh on impossible. I own a couple of older Blackburn racks and they suffer from the same flaw – it would have been nice to see some improvement.
The rack is pretty stable under load, and you’d expect no less from a four point rack advertised as “made of aircraft quality aluminum for uncompromising strength during extended touring and off-road riding”. The weight, at 570g, is very reasonable too and compares favourably with some more expensive racks on the market.
Fitting my Ortlieb sport packer classics (front panniers) was a doddle and there was no sway, perfect. My old Karrimor rear panniers are a bit more flexible and for them I'd prefer Blackburn's EX-2 rack – basically the EX1 with extra pannier rails.
I did notice that after the usual commute from Bath to Bristol and back, the finish of the rack was showing visible wear. I personally wouldn't be fussed about this, but it's worth knowing.
If you’re looking for a rack for fast touring, Audaxing or commuting and you're not rolling in it, look no further. If you’re off on a tour where you’re carrying a tent and its associated paraphernalia, I’d go for the EX-2.
No-nonsense rack that does the job
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Make and model: Blackburn EX1+ rear rack
Size tested: n/a
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 32 Height: 1.78m Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: All of them! My best bike is: Cervelo Dual
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, touring, club rides, fixed/singlespeed, Audax