Upgraded OMM Sherpa Rack…

26 07 2011

Old Sherpa on left and new OMM Sherpa on right...

I love Old Man Mountain [OMM] racks and have them on almost all my bikes that use racks:

I’ve tried the other contenders in the rack department [Tubus Cargo, Surly Nice rack, etc…] and prefer to use OMM products. I’m coming up on 10yrs of Old Man Mountain rack use with no failures, no hassles and all smiles…=-)

New rack on bottom...

One thing I like about OMM is that they don’t churn out new improved products every year that aren’t any better than last year’s version just to get people to buy the latest greatest gizmo. My very first set of OMM Cold Springs racks looks pretty much the same as what you can buy today 10yrs later. To me that’s a solid design that performs and doesn’t need hype to sell. So I was interested when I heard that OMM had come up with some changes to their Sherpa rack design after all these years.

You can see a comparison between old and new Sherpa racks in these photos:

  • the main rack tubes have been increased from 10mm to 12mm
  • the top rails remain at 10mm for pannier compatibility, but on the new rack the top rail is one unit and is welded on to the larger lower 12mm portion of the rack
  • the new rack platform is 2cm longer than the old one
  • picking them up I can’t detect any weight difference by hand although I assume the new one is a few grams heavier

New rack is on bottom...

The new rack retains the same high quality made in the USA construction OMM is famous for and uses the same modular mounting hardware that can be customized to fit any bike. I really like that my 10yr old OMM rack will fit just about any touring bike I care to throw it on – disc brakes?…no problem….lack of rack braze ons?…no problem, bizarre full suspension frame?….no problem, etc…

Another view of new on left and old on right...

To be honest I never felt that the old Sherpa rack was in need of being more beefy or stiff. I tend to carry moderate loads so perhaps I am not at the far end of the rack abuse spectrum, but I do ride rough dirt roads/tracks with my loaded bikes and that takes it’s toll on gear. I’ll be using the new OMM SHerpa rear rack on my 26″ LHT build so I’ll be reviewing it as I ride that bike, but OMM products kinda suck for blogging purposes because they just work and provide no drama to report on – that get’s boring!



14 responses

26 07 2011

should i say ‘nice rack’? :-p

26 07 2011

Tubus fan here, but then haven’t tried OMM racks. Which model do you use on your front suspension bike(s) if any? Looking at the Tubus Swing at present, but open to suggestions.

26 07 2011

Aushiker – Tubus makes fine racks. I put my Cargo on my GF’s commuter and she likes it. The OMM Cold Spring or Sherpa rack will work with a suspension. I’ve only used the Cold Spring in that application.

26 07 2011

Thanks. Did it have any impact on the performance of the shocks? Also have you tried mounting a light off the rack? I am looking at a Busch & Mueller Lumotec IQ Cyo. Anyway will add them to the research list. Thanks for the heads-up.

27 07 2011

@Aushiker – the suspension is not affected, but you are increasing the unsprung weight in the system depending on how much you are carrying. Presumably you aren’t trying to ride the hardest MTB trails with 4 fully loaded panniers…cruising a dirt track would be no problem.

Here is a link to my OMM Cold Springs rack with a B&M light attached:


27 07 2011


I’m french and I like to follow your blog. Today, I have a question after this post.

Do you already mount a tail light (like this ; http://ecom1.planetbike.com/3108.html) on the Sherpa rack ? If yes, do you have some pictures of this mounting ? Thanks

I don’t know if it’s possible.

27 07 2011

I’ve never mounted a tail light to a Sherpa rack. You could by simply wrapping the rear rack struts with rubber until they are big enough for your light mount. The other option is to bent a piece of metal and bolt it to the rack to give you a mounting spot in the rear of the rack.

27 07 2011
Gerco van Vulpen

@ Amiralbibi On the link you provided there is a picture where they used an extra bracket to mount the light to the horizontal plate. There is allready a pre-drilled hole in the Sherpa rack that you could use.

27 07 2011


I hadn’t see this picture.

27 07 2011
Andrew Priest

Thanks kind sir. I currently ride the MTB pulling a BOB Ibex but found I need to shift some weight to the front hence the hunt for a rack. There is some mean single track on the Munda Biddi but they do after a “touring” diversion in some parts. Always can walk if necessary of course :). Thanks for photo link too.

27 07 2011

Do you know if the 40 lb weight capacity has been increased with the new design?

28 07 2011

@Dave the packaging still says 40lbs, but that may not have been updated. Certainly I can’t see any reason the rating wouldn’t be the same as the Cold Springs rack at 50lbs.

31 07 2011

Sarah’s been running the new rear sherpa disc for about 3500km through the central american back roads from Guatemala to Panamá, and all is well. There is loss of paint despite sacrificial electrical tape at all contact points. She’s running Ortlieb Roller Pluses, but not really carrying all that much as we travel pretty light. Will comment in due course when we get to Ushuaia…

15 09 2013
Paul S.

I had the Sherpa front rack and loved it but I always have this incurable tendency to upgrade so bought the new Pioneer. It is burly but not sure I did the right thing. It does have 2 rails but the top one is 14mm which rules out my Jannd bags since they are only good for 10mm or 3/8. Also, it sits MUCH further forward than the Sherpa in order to accommodate steep HTAs which probably helps you if you have a MTB but not a touring bike with slacker HTAs. It slows the steering a bit but like most bike characteristics, you simply get used to it after a few kms. I am considering selling it and getting another Sherpa since it sits closer to the fork blades and looks better. I know, pretty cheesy reason.

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