I recently purchased a 2015 Salsa Vaya 3 and am mostly using it for commuting. I can't seem to find any reliable source of information that explicitly says if I can or cannot support a kickstand. Does anybody know if this is possible?
There are at least four different places you can mount a kickstand.
From left to right:
- Orange arrow: Rear axle kickstand. These come in one-sided and two-sided varieties. The one sided are not that stable and since your bike has what looks like a child carrier, I wouldn't recommended it. Axle mount kickstands are very popular on children's bicycles:
The two sided are very heavy but are very stable. These are very cheap but don't fit on many derailleur bikes as they foul the rear derailleur. They are popular with IGH cargo bikes and so-called "mom bikes" (in Japan) as they will not tip over under load:
- Lime-green arrow: Chainstay mount are inexpensive but not that stable - although better than rear-axle. They look much like the rear-axle mounts. The most important thing to match is the diameter of your chainstay (the horizontal bar that my limegreen arrow is pointing to) and the clamp of the mount. However, in your case you have a rear disc brake and you need to make sure your chainstay mount won't interfere with the brake cable (the brake cable should be able to pass over your kickstand mount bracket without problem, but a particularly thick mounting bracket might interfer). Better chainstay kickstands also mount to the seat stay as that provides more leverage against the kickstand torquing or rotating on just the chainstay or bending the chainstay under weight. Note this design also allows a passthru for the rear disc brake cable. However, there are more fit issues if you have nonstandard chainstays or seatstays or rear triangle design, which can lead to complications if you have rear suspension for example.
- Red-arrow: Chainstay-bottom bracket bridge mount: This is the traditional kickstand mounting place for many bikes -- and many bikes have a welded bracket for a kickstand here (the photo here is taken of the bottom of the bike):
Without a bracket, you have to be sure that there's enough space behind your bottom bracket (where your pedals attach) and the tire for the kickstand. Most if not all kickstands will come with bridge mounting plates/clamps and you do need to observe the mounting bolt torque limits as too little torque will cause the kickstand to slip while too much can crush the chainstays. And you should avoid the clamps if you have a carbon frame bike (your Vaya isn't carbon fiber so you have nothing to worry about).
There are both singlesided and double-sided bridge mount kickstand varieties. As usual, the double-sided kickstands are more stable than singlesided:
- Blue arrow: Trekking bikes or bikes carrying trailers will occasionally use top-tube stands. These are not very useful for commuting. While trekking, many people will just use sticks or their hiking poles.
Fine print: One thing to note about almost all kickstands is that they will clank around if you hop curbs or take jumps. Bridge and chainstay kickstands can also get in the way of your pedal or feet if you don't check clearances, as well as hit curbs and other obstacles if you're not careful. My bridgemount double folding kickstand almost hits my disk brake rotor on my folding ebike and will limit my ability to move to a larger rotor. Larger double sided axle mount stands can affect your cornering ability. Your mileage may vary, buy from a store that'll let you return it if it doesn't fit.
to;dr: The best option for your particular bike varies on what your needs are. If you're carrying kids on a rear seat, you may want a double-sided axle mount or bridge mount. If you're commuting, you may want the simplicity of a single-sided bridge or chainstay mount kickstand.
There are a wide variety of kickstands available, my guess is you would likely be able to find one that would fit. If the frame doesn't have a crossbar and hole behind the bottom bracket for a center mount kickstand, you could likely use an adjustable rear mount, they make some that are compatible with disc brakes and this is likely what you would need.
Here is an image of one that is adjustable in length and made to be compatible with disc brakes. This particular one attaches to both the chain stay and the seat stay bars and has a curve in the mounts which is intended to clear the disc brake caliper. The leg also extends to work with several different wheel sizes.
I have also seen one or two that were described as axle mount but do not know much about them, although that sounds a little sketchy to me.
I will also add that most "serious" cyclists tend to remove kickstand if the bike comes with them as they are rarely used and add extra weigh, in addition to being prone to coming loose and or snagging on road/trail debris.