Bike Trailer Blog:

All hail the bike cargo trailer!

Bike cargo trailers are amazing tools for getting more out of a bicycle -- and keeping you a out of your car. In all their variety, bike cargo trailers are the perfect tools for hauling stuff by bike.

We cover touring, commuting, errands, and generally doing more by bike -- so we don't leave out cargo bikes and conversions.

The topics of bike child trailers and trailer-cycles are covered in our Family Cycling section.

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Photos help to spread ideas, and stimulate discussion. It doesn't matter if you bought from one of our shops or not -- Bike Trailer Shop, Bike Bag Shop and Bike Kid Shop. Your photos and the stories behind them want to be seen and heard.

Monthly Archives: October 2008

Fitting BOB Trailer Parts on a Yakima Big Tow

For about 5 or 6 years, Yakima was manufacturing what I consider to be a “knock-off” version of the BOB Trailer. This trailer, named the Big Tow, utilized a trailer-to-bike mounting system with feature very similar to BOB Trailer’s patented mounting system. Yakima agreed to pay a royalty to BOB Trailers to use this system.

While the Big Tow might be dismissed as a “knock off product”, it did offer several distinctions from the BOB Trailer. The most noticeable difference is the black plastic fairing around the front of the Big Tow’s cargo area. This fairing distinguishes the look of the trailer and offers protection from spray, mud and rocks as well as some degree of containment for items inside the trailer. Other than this, the other differences between the Big Tow and BOB Trailer are more stylistic. The tubing of the Big Tow’s cargo area swoops back into the trailer’s wheel mount rather than butting off at the rear corners. And the Big Tow sported a wide molded plastic fender.

Spoke and Word

Spoke and Word.comLike you, we’re all avid bike blog readers here. I personally read as many as I can find, big and small. If someone took the time to write about it, it gets added to my Google reader. Of course, I have almost 1,000 unread messages and over 40 blogs in there, but that doesn’t stop me from adding more. Sometimes, though, the well read blogs tend to be a little incestuous, referring to each other over and over in a constant link-feeding frenzy, which can make it hard to find some of the new voices out there.

We wanted a way to make it easier to find those new voices, so we’ve done something about it. Starting now, there’s a new content sharing site out there: Spoke and Word! Just like the bigger sites of its ilk, like Digg, Spoke and Word lets users submit and vote on stories, but it’s better. “Why?”, you ask. Because it’s just for bike-related content, you pedal-pusher, you!

Beware Being Doored: Broken Bones & Bicycling Blues

Cyclists beware, this is a rough season. It’s that time of year again here in Flagstaff, Arizona. Fall, that hazy season in between summer and winter. Chilly in the mornings and warm during the day with the occasional wind advisory. All bicyclists know to be cautious when riding alongside cars in busy areas. Riding as if no one sees you (because they don’t) is important, along with trying to make yourself seen by using lights and reflective gear. Drivers are getting more comfortable being in their cars because it’s colder outside, but precipitation has not yet sprinkled the land as to add cautionary measures to motorists’ driving consciousness. With the days getting shorter, added measures should be taken to be seen before riding.

However, traffic is not the only cause of broken bones. Whether biking off-road or commuting in heavy traffic, broken bones are a part of the avid bicyclists lifestyle. It’s a matter of chance. The Bike Trailer Shop has been struck with a case of bicycling blues in the month of September due to broken bones. Here is how we have been coping with temporarily being out of the saddle.

Light up Your Trailer, the mLite Sale

The days are getting shorter and its much easier to get caught out after dark on the commute home or with that afternoon ride. If you’ve got a cargo or child trailer in tow, we’ve got a clever light that will mount on your bike trailer’s safety flag for extra high up visibility. We’re celebrating this great, bike-trailer-specific light with a sale at the BikeTrailerShop.com. You can also get a free one with the purchase of many of our trailers.

This pic is from our recent tour in the UK looking back past the 2 mLites on our flag at the steep climb we’d just completed.

Along with lights for winter riding, its time to look into getting set up with some good cold weather cycling attire, perhaps something from the Neolithic era…

I should also mention that the long awaited Burley Nomad and Burley Flatbed are back in stock after about 3 months of back order status. We had our largest shipping day ever today as we got over 50 bike cargo trailers underway to our soon to be happy customers.

Review of the Carry Freedom City Trailer

My girlfriend and I went on a bike tour through Northern England and Scotland last month. We had the opportunity to test out an Orbit touring tandem from JD Cycles. With somewhat complicated travel plans, we decided that the Carry Freedom City trailer would make for the easiest overall travel experience.

Our Plans:
1: Fly into London for a day
2: Take a train to Northern England
3: Take our tandem tour from there to Glasgow
4: Ship the bike back to Northern England
5: Fly back from Glasgow to London for a few days
6: Fly back home

For our flight from Las Vegas to London, we packed the City trailer inside of an Ortlieb Big Zip. We first packed in the contents of the City bag (sleeping bags, pads and tent) as well as the City bag itself as padding around the bottom and sides of the bag. Then I folded the trailer up, handle in and wheels in, and slid it inside the bag. We were carrying the remainder of our gear, clothes, maps, toiletries, etc. in an Ortlieb RackPack XL. Additionally, we had a handlebar bag for valuables, tools, snacks and the like.

Broken Bones and other stuff Clogging our Blogging

It’s been a hectic few weeks here at the Bike Trailer Shop thus the lack of new posts. But what’s kept us away has all been good fodder for Bike Trailer Blogging, so look out for forthcoming content.

On Sept 10th, I took off for an 8 day bike touring holiday riding from Ilklely in Northern England to Glasgow. Upon arriving back, I met up with the rest of our staff for a 3 day scouring of the halls of Interbike, looking for exciting new bike trailer, bag and related bike cargo products.

Finally, arriving back at base after Interbike, a strange spat of injuries came down upon us. On our first day back, Megan was out doing errands and got doored. Knocked off her bike about 15ft, the only real injury she sustained was a broken finger. However, it would seem that she took the entire impact in her finger, as it was a compound break that required surgery and has immobilized her right hand for around 6 weeks. 2 days later, Jeff was on his 12 mile commute home when, as he was dodging traffic cones, his left pannier clipped one and lodged it under his cranks, sending him down hard. Jeff is now recovering from the surgery plating his shattered collar bone back together.

Megan and Jeff will be reporting in on their injuries once they are back up to typing speed. Additionally, we will have a Interbike bike trailer extravaganza and I will be reviewing the Carry Freedom City as well as thought on Tandem bike touring with a trailer from my recent travels.