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Bike trailers

Barney24Barney24 Posts: 9
edited September 2011 in Tour & expedition
HIi,

I'm planning a LEJOG trip next June and am doing a few weekends trial rides at the mo.

I'm doing a solo trip and camping so have a fair amount of kit. Currently I have 2 waterproof vaude panniers and a dry bag but it's very heavy on the back wheel.

I was just about to buy a front rack and bags to even the weight but saw the bob yak or the carry freedom y frame.

Has anyone any experience with the trailers?

Thanks

Tom

Posts

  • ride_wheneverride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    The bob's are pretty good, avoid the carry-freedoms if you want to fold it, they really don't fold well at all.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    Checkout the weight of the trailers before you put anything into them.

    Unless you are planning on carrying a lot of stuff and/or your wheels are very flimsy I wouldn't have thought you would have any problems.

    If you are concerned about the strength of the wheels and you have the money why not invest in a pair of decent handbuilt wheels from a specialist (eg Spa Cycles or Harry Rowland)?

    Or consider a pair of front panniers?
  • nwallacenwallace Posts: 1,465
    The guy I went to the Western Isles with never wants to use his trailer again.

    Ok fair enough we don't know if it was all the trailers resistance that was his problem, but we did a quick bike swap and he said he was much mroe comfortable riding my bike which must have been about 50kg with front and back panniers than towing the trailer. TBH I didn't notice the trailer but it was a short distance.

    He would just dissappear on the hills and after a few days once I got to a point where stopping wasn't a great idea unless I actually wanted/needed to he just got left between junctions.
    Do Nellyphants count?

    Commuter: FCN 9
    Cheapo Roadie: FCN 5
    Off Road: FCN 11

    +1 when I don't get round to shaving for x days
  • Cheers for the advice, i think i'll prob just get front panniers instead.

    Thanks

    Tom
  • team47bteam47b Posts: 6,424
    Hi
    I have used a BOB style trailer for about 5 years, using it for everyday trips including shopping instead of owning a car. I use the Revolution Cargo Load Trailer from Edinburgh bicycle co-operative, it's about half the price of a bob (about £125) made of steel so very tough, weighs 8.5 kilos and comes with an enormous waterproof bag, My girlfriend and I have just been on a trip to the most westerly point of the Algarve (not really a long trip as we live in the middle of the algarve!) about 217K we both took a trailer with our camping equipment weighing 22kilos each. As long as you distribute the weight evenly you don't notice the extra weight. If you carry a case of beer back from the supermarket you have to position it in the middle or you will find your steering is all over the place, even before drinking the beer!. No idea what it is like in the rain but it is scary on loose stoney tracks as you have virtually no weight on the front wheel. Need to allow a big turning circle or it will jacknife. They come with an extra long replacement QR skewer so once swapped over the trailer simply clicks on or off. Probably cheeper than a set of panniers. Hope this helps, buy one and sell the car and spend all the money on more bike stuff.
    my isetta is a 300cc bike
  • ohara227ohara227 Posts: 225
    Hi

    Myself and 3 friends bought one of these:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Adventure-Ct2-T ... 36&sr=8-31

    Not used it as yet but it appears to be a sturdy bit of kit, and in the grand scale of things for the money its light. Took ages to figure out where the flag goes, but there is a sleeve the pole slides into on the waterproof bag. We cycling from Amsterdam to Brugge at the end of Sept, and we thought sharing this would be cheaper than panniers. You can get a spare connector from wiggle or chain reaction for about £9.

    Hope it goes well, if I use it soon ill post a review.
    'The hills are alive with the sounds of panting'

    Rides:

    MTB - Giant 2008 Trance X2
    Road - Giant 2010 Defy 2
    Hybrid - Giant Escape 2011 City 2
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    team47b wrote:
    Hi
    I have used a BOB style trailer for about 5 years, using it for everyday trips including shopping instead of owning a car. I use the Revolution Cargo Load Trailer from Edinburgh bicycle co-operative, it's about half the price of a bob (about £125) made of steel so very tough, weighs 8.5 kilos and comes with an enormous waterproof bag, My girlfriend and I have just been on a trip to the most westerly point of the Algarve (not really a long trip as we live in the middle of the algarve!) about 217K we both took a trailer with our camping equipment weighing 22kilos each. As long as you distribute the weight evenly you don't notice the extra weight...

    Trailers are great if you have a lot of stuff to carry - eg a big monthly shop, or lots of camping gear.

    I think most people would notice 8.5 kilos of extra weight behind them - at least going up hill.
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    If you need a trailer or even more than 2 panniers for LEJOG then you've got too much stuff. Travel light.
    More problems but still living....
  • I used a Bob Yak for a recent 5 day excursion to Brittany during Le Tour carrying tent etc and found it to be great. Had no problems with bike handling including 40 mph descent down the Mur de Bretagne and climbing was fine up the same hill a day or two later. Just accept the fact that you will be slower than usual and take in the scenery. Probably the one area where I was at a disadvantage to my companion who was using panniers was getting on and off trains. This was particularly apparent on one journey when the platform was jammed and there was a bit of a scramble onto the train for seats etc.

    All in all, more pros than cons I would say.
  • Thanks for all the advice. i called up edinburgh co op but they've stopped making the bob copy. Have found a second hand carry freedom one so will go with that. HAVE GOT A 6 day tour round wales so should be a good enough test.

    Cheers
  • Hi,
    I hope it is not too late to throw in my 5 pence worth! I will try and keep it short. (but I know I won't succeed)

    The best advice given so far is to keep the weight you are carrying as low as possible. I recently met a guy at the tail-end of a a long hike. He had been on the trail for 26 days and his pack weight was 8kg. Be very critical of everything you take. Do you need it? what would happen if you did not have it? Can you take something else which weighs less?

    In terms of trailers I have used the Bob Yak and it is good as the single wheel tracks the bike better than any two-wheeled trailer. It attaches securely to the rear axel which is better (for handling) than anything attaching higher up such as the seatpost. The sack which you get with the Yak is great as it is as tough as old boots, waterproof and the rollover seal keeps it waterproof. The wheel is 16" in diameter and almost indestructable - but make sure you have a decent tyre and a spare tube with you.

    There are downsides to the Yak many of which apply to other alternatives. Firstly the Yak is a single container. It is a good idea to have something separate to stow things you may need in a hurry (e.g. waterproofs). Having all or most of your gear in one big bag requires orgainising. Best to organise in internal stuff bags - e.g. one for cooking, one for clean clothes etc. Do not put anything wet into the sack. If your tent is stowed wet then pack it away in its bag and lash on top. If you stow a wet tent (or similar you will probably find everything horribly damp when you stop for the night.)

    The main downside to the Yak and the sack is that their capacity is too great for most requirements. You can fill them with everything from your toothbrush to the kitchen sink and then find you can't lift the bag and/or that you cannot cycle up any hill! Pushing that kind of load is also not easy!

    The final thing I would say is that you need practice to haul touring loads. Local rides to get used to the handling and then longer rides to get some strength and stamina. At the very least you need to get a bit of a taste for the real thing. Finally, try to do as many 'shakedown' trips as you can. Overnight and/or weekend trips to a campsite will give you the experience to you need with your kit.

    Now if I had followed all my own good advice before my recent trip I would not have needed to stop after a couple of days of herculean effort. At that point I a) threw some excess kit away (expensive) and b) posted heavier/more valuable stuff back home (also expensive). Once I had gotten rid of a lot of the weight I had a great time!

    Whichever option you go for and however you tour - just make sure you have a great time. :D
  • Hi

    No not to late at all, great advice. The spare tube (seems obvious) was something I was thinking about, so ill need to try and get the right one. There are 4 of us, and all our stuff will need to go in the one trailer so it will only be essentials, but to be honest I do fancy my own chamious cream just for hygene!

    8kg for 26 days, wow that guy must have been very good at cutting back - good on him!

    Thankfully we are doing hostels, so no tent and although the bag is waterproof we are going to use dry bags inside - as they compress also. I fancy a weekend or local campsite in time, but I think we are going in at the deep end as we have 3 weeks to go! Not too worried, taking our own pace and 4 of us to share the trailer so it should be a laugh.

    Cheers
    'The hills are alive with the sounds of panting'

    Rides:

    MTB - Giant 2008 Trance X2
    Road - Giant 2010 Defy 2
    Hybrid - Giant Escape 2011 City 2
  • One small but important point regarding tyre/tube for the trailer. Make sure you get the correct size. Sounds obvious but I made that mistake when I ordered a 16" tyre for the Yak - without realising there are two wildly different sizes of 16" wheel. When I came to fit it I found the diameter was too big - by several inches! When I figured out what had happened I felt like a complete numpty but fortunately SJSC were very understanding and sorted it out for me. :oops: :oops:

    I am now playing with Google Earth to figure out where I want to go next. :D


    Best of luck with the trip - I am sure you will have a great time.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    Kenjaja1 wrote:
    The main downside to the Yak and the sack is that their capacity is too great for most requirements. You can fill them with everything from your toothbrush to the kitchen sink and then find you can't lift the bag and/or that you cannot cycle up any hill! Pushing that kind of load is also not easy.

    When I was in Spain last year I saw a newspaper reort (with pi ures) of a Latin American guy who was travelling the world with two Bob trailers.
  • Dos Bobs! ¡Dios mío!
    or
    Bi Bobs! Nire Jainkoa!
    :shock:
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