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Do you live in a small apartment? Are you constantly on the road with your bike? Are you that person that always helps the unlucky cyclist in the parking lot with their messed-up shifting?
If you answered yes to any of those questions, then a portable bike stand will be right up your alley.
I recently tested out the Altangle Hangar Connect and, as someone who can’t stay put in one place for more than a few months (or weeks…), it’s perfect for my on-the-go two-wheeled-loving lifestyle.
From trailhead maintenance to international biking trips, the Hangar Connect makes it easy to keep bikes tuned up and ready to go no matter where your two wheels take you.
In this post, I share my thoughts on Altangle Hangar Connect including what I love about it, what could be better, and tips on how to use it correctly.
I received a free Altangle Hangar Connect in exchange for this blog post. All words and opinions are my own.
Altangle Hangar connect
- Dimensions: 14″x 6″x 2″
- Weight: 3 lbs
- Weight limit: 55 lbs
- Jaw opening: 3″
- Max structure diameter: 2.75″ (ideal is 1-2″)
- MSRP: $225
Where to shop:
Why a portable bike stand?
Traditional bike stands are great for your home bike shop or garage, but they aren’t ideal when you want to travel. They’re heavy (the lightest one I could find was 12 lb, but most are closer to 20 lbs or more), awkward to set up and fold down, and not ideal for frequent travel.
Enter a portable bike stand.
Portable bike stands like the Altangle Hangar Connect are great for:
See the Hangar Connect in action
What I like about the hangar connect
The Hangar Connect is really cleverly designed to maximize versatility while still being relatively lightweight and compact.
Here are a few ways that make the Hangar Connect versatile:
- 3″ jaw opening: Each jaw head opens 3 inches wide, which means you can (potentially) attach it to something that has up to a 2.75″ diameter or width. That being said, the Hangar works best attached to something with a 1-2″ diameter.
- Proprietary jaw/clamp design: Attach the clamps to any stable round, square, or rectangular structure like fence posts, railings, street signs, RV/van ladders, etc…
- Dual position clamp heads: Both jaw heads can rotate 90° to accommodate a variety of attachment angles whether they are vertical or horizontal.
Its solid construction
Even though the Hangar Connect is meant to be lightweight and portable, it still feels very solid and well-made. There are no cheap plastic parts or low-quality components.
It’s also really strong! Check out one of the founders demonstrating (to the haters…) how strong the Hangar Connect is:
The ratcheting handles
Both sides of the Hangar Connect have handles to open and close the clamps. These handles can be ratcheted by using the top buttons to get a really snug grip. The ratcheting feature is also great when using the Hangar in tight spaces.
Altangle offers a 30-day no questions asked return policy. If you don’t like the Hangar Connect or it doesn’t work for your situation, you can get a full refund!
The story behind the brand
I like a brand with a story. I feel like so much of what we buy these days is generic crap with no narrative other than serving a purpose. Right?
Altangle is a small start-up company in Arkansas that was started by two bike-loving brothers. You can learn more about them and their mission here.
What could be better
Overall, I’m really impressed with the Altangle Hangar Connect portable bike stand. It’s really well made and designed and a great option for cyclists on the go.
Every product has its pros and cons, though. Here are a few things to consider before purchasing a Hangar Connect:
No mechanical stopping point
My biggest issue with the Hangar Connect is that there is no integrated stopping mechanism when opening the clamp jaws.
If you open the jaws too far, the rod becomes unthreaded from the cylindrical pin at the bottom and it’s really annoying (but not impossible) to put the clamp back together. If this happens, it’s also easy to lose the small washer and/or the cylindrical pin.
The founders of Altangle are aware of this issue and when I mentioned it, they gave me a visual tip for knowing when to stop opening the clamp: stop opening when the rear edge of the top clamp becomes vertical with the rear edge of the bottom clamp.
The visual clue does work, but you have to pay attention. I do hope they figure out a way to integrate a mechanical stopping point for future models.
Heavy bikes can be tricky
The Hangar Connect can be used with heavier mountain bikes and potentially even e-bikes, but I did find that my Santa Cruz Bronson, which weighs ~33 lbs, made it much harder to get a good grip.
I had to really tighten the clamps to prevent the arm (and my bike) from sagging toward the ground.
If you have heavy mountain bikes or an e-bike, it’s best to attach it to a structure that is within the 1-2″ diameter range. Anything larger will probably result in sagging.
I have found that if you attach the stand to a solid vertical structure, it’s stronger than attaching the clamp to a horizontal structure, like the photo below.
No quick release
Most traditional bike stands have a quick-release mechanism that allows you to quickly and easily remove your bike from the clamp.
The Hangar Connect does not have a quick release, so you will need to hold your bike up while tightening the clamp.
Not the end of the world, but it doesn’t require some arm strength depending on how heavy your bike is.
Flying with the Hangar Connect
One of the reasons I was really stoked about trying the Hangar Connect was so I could bring it with me when I fly with my bike.
If you’ve traveled with your bike in a bike bag, you know how annoying it can be to put your bike back together without a bike stand. It’s not impossible, but it’s not ideal either.
At 3 lbs, the Hangar Connect isn’t heavy, but it’s not light either, especially if you’re trying to stay under a specific weight limit (which is hard enough with bikes).
I took the Hangar Connect to Costa Rica with me but had to pack it in a separate checked luggage bag (which I had planned to take anyway).
Unless you’re flying with a lightweight road or gravel bike, you probably won’t be able to pack the Hangar Connect in your bike bag without risking hefty overweight fees.
One final thing to consider about flying with the Hangar Connect is that you may not be able to find something to attach to at your destination. I actually wasn’t able to use it at the hotel in Costa Rica because I couldn’t find a suitable structure to hang it from.
Tips for using your hangar connect
There is a bit of a learning curve to using the Hangar Connect. If you’re familiar with standard bike stands, you’ll most likely figure it out pretty quickly, but it might take a few times to really get the hang (pun intended!) of it.
Here are a few tips to help you get started:
Altangle Hangar vs the Hangar Connect
Altangle has another portable bike stand called the Hangar, which is designed to be used inside doorways. Here’s how they compare:
Where to use: Doorways
Weight: 7 lbs
Max bike weight: 50 lbs
Jaw opening: 3″
Where to use: Anywhere!
Weight: 3 lbs
Max bike weight: 55 lbs
Jaw opening: 3″
As someone who is constantly on the go with my bikes, I’ve found the Altangle Hangar Connect portable bike stand to be really clever and a great addition to my minimalistic and nomadic lifestyle.
It’s really well built and designed and sturdy enough to hold my moderately heavy mountain bikes (a Santa Cruz Bronson and Juliana Joplin). I have found that you really need to tighten the clamp significantly to prevent heavier bikes from sagging, though.
If you’re looking for a way to work on your bikes while out on the road or traveling, I definitely recommend giving the Hangar Connect a try. It is expensive, but if you’re not happy with it, you can send it back in 30 days for a full refund.
Is the Hangar Connect something you’d like to try out? What questions do you still have? What is your favorite portable bike stand? Leave a comment below!