For bikes with no option to mount traditional full-length mudguards, the Crud Roadracer MK3s are a great option for when the going gets wet. However, if you like riding on quiet muddy lanes don’t expect a spotless bike at the end of your ride
The Crud Roadracer MK3s are clip-on mudguards for bikes that don’t have proper mounts on the frame. While touring bikes, and some gravel bikes and endurance bikes, are likely to have mudguard eyelets, many performance-focused bikes don’t.
However, with Crud’s mudguards, as long as your bike has 700c wheels and tyres no wider than 38mm, you’re in luck. This includes both disc and rim brake bikes.
Where traditional mudguards are typically attached to the bike via the seatstay bridge and eyelets on the frame, Crud’s mudguards boast a tool-free setup and can be removed fairly easily – ideal if you want to winterproof your road bike.
Fitting Crud Roadracer MK3 mudguards
It pays to give yourself plenty of time when fitting the mudguards because there are no spare parts in the box. However, should you cut something a little short, Crud offers spares on its website with same-day dispatch. That said, I would also recommend installing the mudguards a few days before you plan to ride so you can fine-tune the fit.
The Roadracer mudguards require sticking exceptionally strong Velcro-like patches (called Duotech) onto your frame, which then allow the ‘guards to be securely attached to the bike.
Crud says the assembly process must be done in a warm room at a temperature above 15 degrees Celsius. This is to make sure the glue on the Duotech strips sticks to the frame with the best possible adhesion.
I wasn’t sure how well the glue would hold the narrow, rounded stays of my bike, but after a winter of solid use, the strips are exactly where I originally affixed them.
The anti-vibration dampeners (soft, rounded stickers) are designed to stick onto the mudguard blades to help reduce noise when contact is made with the fork. Also included are “pilestrips”, designed to soften the impact between the mudguards and the tyre or rim, further reducing noise from vibrations.
I have the mudguards installed on a Lauf Anywhere gravel bike (pictured), which has frame clearance for tyres up to 2.1in wide, and have been running a pair of WTB Exposure 32mm tyres for winter road riding.
Once the main blades are attached to the bike, the two separate nosepieces can then be fixed into place for the front and rear mudguards.
The front nosepiece is attached to the main blade using double-sided tape. Crud recommends pushing down hard on the joint for 20 seconds in order to get a secure hold. Unfortunately, the nosepiece fell off on one of my rides, but more on that later.
The second nosepiece attaches to the rear mudguard and provides protection for the bottom bracket area, so is shaped to cover a wider area on the driveside of the bike. It’s held in place by a small plastic screw and a reusable cable tie, but I also used a strip of electrical tape on the frame to avoid scratching.
Crud Roadracer MK3 mudguards impressions
My first proper ride while testing the Roadracers was, in fact, the longest ride I have ever done – a 300km audax starting at 10pm, which I finished almost 20 hours later.
It was surely a good test of all my gear and, with rain coming in overnight and an unpaved section on the route, I was very grateful for the protection the Roadracers gave me.
If you are used to full-length mudguards, however, these won’t quite offer the same level of protection. Thankfully, the bike came off worse than the rider, and the Roadracers do a good job of preventing road spray and muck from hitting you. On my setup, the mud on the bike was likely sneaking past the relatively narrow (in relation to the 32mm tyres) mudguard profile.
The front nose section is particularly narrow, resulting in the head tube and fork taking a hit of the mucky stuff. In terms of rear road spray, the mudguard body does a better job than the front and should keep fellow riders on all but the strictest of club runs happy. You could always add a homemade mud flap, if you want more protection.
A little extra care is needed when riding over gravel or if you like the odd off-road excursion, as I found out when the front nosepiece fell off somewhere down the trail. Unfortunately, I realised too late and never found it, but the part is available as a spare on the Crud website.
Anyway, this perhaps shouldn’t be a surprise because they are “Roadracers” after all, but the fact the ‘guards are rated for tyres up to 38mm wide means they are likely to be subjected to the odd gravel ride, if that’s your thing.
That aside, and after some initial fettling, riding with the Crud Roadracer MK3 mudguards has largely been a silent and uneventful experience. Only riding on gravel or hitting the odd pothole gives the game away, with the slight buzz of the tyre contacting the mudguards.
There is a bit of movement from the mudguard blades as you ride but, with the dampeners fitted correctly, it doesn’t pose a significant problem and is inevitable really on ‘guards like these, paired with fairly wide road bike tyres.
The Duotech strips are rock solid both in terms of the hook and loop design and adhesion to the frame. Once the blades are properly set in place without rubbing, I didn’t have to adjust them, but they are quick to remove if you are dialling in the fit or removing a wheel for transport.
On that note, taking off the ‘guards is a quick job – especially handy if you have to remove the wheels of your bike when transporting it in the car. By whipping off the mudguards, I could remove the wheels without leaving the blades exposed and vulnerable to bending or damage.
Crud Roadracer MK3 mudguards overall
Fitting mudguards to your “race” bike might be seen as a crime, but the relatively unobtrusive Roadracer MK3s provide the confidence and comfort to ride whatever the weather. The fact they work with rim or disc brake bikes, and with wide tyres, means the Roadracers are for more than just race bikes, too.
They might not provide as much coverage as full-length ‘guards, but you do have the convenience of fitting them to almost any bike with 700c wheels, without the need for mudguard eyelets.
With time and patience, the Roadracers are relatively easy to fit – it’s just not a job to rush. They could benefit from a little modification if you plan to ride off-road regularly, but there are also mudguards designed for the rigours of gravel.
However, for road bikes without mudguard mounts, or all-road bikes that only dabble in light rough stuff, the Crud Roadracer MK3s are likely to be a welcome addition to your steed in poor weather.