How To Add A Basket To Any Bike (A Very Practical Guide)

Bikes are not only for personal enjoyment.  In some cities, bikes are the preferred method of transportation.  With the versatile use of bikes, the question must be asked, how can you carry all of your stuff?  Baskets are the solution to this dilemma.

Baskets can be added to the front of the bike using leather straps.  If your basket does not come equipped with leather straps, zip ties can be used.  Attach front baskets to handlebars and back baskets to the seat and bar and back frame.

Basket Installation is an Easy Process

Think of securing a basket to your bike similar to putting your seatbelt on.  Wrap, clip, secure.

  • On one side of the basket, pull the strap through
  • Repeat on the other side of the basket
  • Hold the basket to your handlebars and wrap the open strap around the handlebars to fasten snugly on both sides.

Simple as 1,2,3 DONE.  To attach a basket on the back of your bike you will want to use the tools that came with the basket.  

  • Fasten the basket attachment to the seat frame
  • Fasten the basket attachment to the rear frame of the bike
  • Fasten the basket to both attachments securely

If the basket does not come with conventional attachments, you can use:

  • Belts
  • Bungee cords
  • Rope
  • Zip ties

Anything that will allow you to securely circle around the basket and bike is okay to use.  Attaching Baskets can make a great accessory for any bike.  Handlebar shapes and sizes can influence how baskets attach to your bike as well as how it looks. 

Attaching Baskets to Different Handlebar Styles

Not all handlebars are the same and where you grip the handle can make a difference on where you attach your basket.  Adjusting a few inches in either direction usually resolves any issue.

There are bike adventure hobbyists cycling for fun and fitness, bike commuters, and those that cycle for personal enjoyment or all of the above.  With so many brands of bikes and types of bikes among those brands, you must be wondering if you can join the revolution and add a basket to your bike.  Here are a few pointers:

Bikes with Curved Handlebars

Bikes with curved handlebars, such as utility bikes or cruiser bikes, can accommodate nearly any basket with a well-placed zip tie.  Curved handlebars allow for sitting both upright and are a bit more prone to ease. They have comfort levels on short and long rides.

Bikes with Straight Handlebars

Bikes with straight handlebars, such as mountain bikes, require a bit more support.  Most mountain bike baskets come with self-support systems.  The basket you choose will depend on the type of bike and what you intend to carry in the basket.

Securing Items in Your Bike Basket

Now that you are ready to carry your stuff, how are you going to make sure the stuff stays in the basket on the wild ride home?  There are several solutions that easily remedy the challenge of making sure everything stays intact if your basket does not have a lid.

Bungee Cords

Bungee cords easily secure items.  Simply clip one end of the bungee cord to one corner and then the opposite corner.  Repeat on the remaining corners so your bungee cords from an X over the items.  This should keep everything snug and secure in your basket.

Zip Ties

Zip ties rival duct tape in frequency of use.  These small, fairly indestructible miracles can easily tie from one end to the other securing both your basket and the items within it.  To secure your items just weave the zip ties through the basket and over the items and pull tight to secure them.

Can You Add A Basket to Any Bike?

The choice of adding a basket to your bike really comes down to, how do you spend time on your bike?  There are several types of bikes, what is easier to focus on are the handlebars of those bikes as this is common placement for a basket.  What doesn’t snugly fit on the front can be reevaluated for a basket that is attached to the rear of the bike.

There are many varieties of baskets both in front and back that will fit most bikes.  Baskets come with instructions and additional hardware if any is needed.  Fun fact, most baskets don’t require any tools to attach the basket.  You don’t have to be a master mechanic to equip your bike with a basket.

Front Loading Baskets

In the world of bikes, there are basically three types of handlebars:

  • Mountain Bike
  • Road Bike
  • Tourist Bike

Most front-loading baskets can hold about 13 lbs.  The additional weight is fairly easy to maneuver, and you barely notice you have added additional weight to your bike.  Such is the magic of baskets.  Several baskets prove to be ideal for all three: 

Pet Weave BasketWhy do a pet basket?  Because it is adorbs.  Not only is this basket sturdy but the country look of weaved baskets really compliment a bike.  This basket not only holds pets securely, but it can hold groceries as well.
Removable Front LoadIf you are making a lot of deliveries and need to carry the basket back and forth, this is a viable solution. The generous size and easily removed and reattached.
Collapsible Commuter BagThis bag is collapsible and has plenty of room to house a trip to the grocery store.  The convenience of being collapsible is the bag is easily stored when not in use.
Insulation and iPhone Bag/BasketThis bag makes it possible to sift see and control your phone, keep the cold things cold, and the hot things hot with insulated panels.  These features prove ideal for day trips.
Lightweight Lift OffThis basket features a lightweight design to hold a good amount of goods and easily lift the basket off the bike with built-in handles.  Easy to use and appealing to the eye.
Bolt-on BasketThis wire basket is sturdy and holds fast to the handlebars by bolting onto them.  The design allows for basket liners to give it an additional unique look. 
Sun guarded Mesh BasketThis basket features a depth and the bottom is shielded from the sun to protect belongings.  The basket is easily removed and reattached making it a convenient addition to your bike.

Front-loading baskets certainly have their advantages.  You can see what you are carrying.  Highly recommended for pet travel.  However, rear-loading baskets have appeal because the weight is not distributed on the handlebars.

Front baskets don’t always come with liners, but if you want to add a bit of personal flair, several basket liners to match your personality are available such as the Cruiser Candy basket liner that comes in several colors and patterns to enhance the look of your bike.

Rear Loading Baskets

Rear-hanging baskets have become quite popular with bikes of every shape and size.  We step away from the handlebars and instead focus on the type of bike.  Bike baskets strapped to a bike that ride across campus would carry different items than baskets for mountain trail riders.  Keeping that in mind, the following rear-hanging baskets may be more practical:

Large Loading Basket16 x 13 x 8 this basket sits large and in charge and can carry practically anything from books to groceries.  The steel frame allows it to handle all the bumps on the road and then some.
Split Loading BasketIf you have a vintage bike and like the look or you need to stay organized by splitting your load for different deliveries.  This durable basket may be more to your liking.
Folding BasketThis basket folds neatly out of the way so it doesn’t give your bike a bulky look when not in use.  Strong design coupled with stow away ability is a win-win.
Removable BasketNeed to take your basket with you?  No problem with this basket.  You can remove the basket and easily reattach it.
Weave BasketIf you’re into the nostalgic timeless look, then this is the basket for you.  The design is eloquent yet sturdy.
Bushwhacker BasketThis large basket fits on either side of your tire and has a split loading system.  The mesh design gives for a slick look and protects items in a cozy nest.  The baskets are deep so there is very little need to strap anything down.

There are several choices to add a basket to any bike without sacrificing the overall feel of your ride.  Baskets are a cost-effective solution to carry anything you need adding yet more reasons why bikes are a preferred way to travel.

Strap in And Let’s Roll

The hard part of installing a basket is finding a basket that matches your style and taste.  Once you have that figured out, you can adorn any bike with the basket you choose. 

Attaching a basket to your bike requires little effort and yet yields a large return.  Baskets allow you to go more places that require you to carry items and to look forward to doing so.