There’s a definite theme to this week’s ‘Random stuff people were searching for when they landed here trivia!’… funny how that happens.
Yes, this week we’ve had some gems as:
- BOB Nutz Surly
- twin wheel transporter trailer weight empty
- BOB trailer with horizontal dropouts
- I’m starting to live in my cargo trailer (my personal favourite)
Yes, this week it’s all about the humble cargo trailer and the somewhat eccentric people who own and love them… it almost feels like I should be narrating a late night TV show on Channel 4.
As you can see, I’m no stranger to bicycle trailers and I’ve put my time in with both of the main types; single wheel and twin wheel. I’ve ridden with them on road, off road, along dedicated cycle routes and through busy city traffic. I’ve had them loaded up with everything from scrumped apples to camping gear & clothes to a new wheelset to a vintage bike.
I’ve towed a trailer in relentless heat, freezing cold, pouring rain and strong winds. I’ve towed on the flat, up hills and down dales. Heck, I’ve even been known to take my trailer to work on my morning commute.
So, which is best? Well, very much like my thoughts on DMR Moto vs Halo Twin Rail tyres, I think it really comes down to the kind of riding you want to do:
- Find yourself mainly cycling on nice, flat surfaces with plenty of room around you? Not too worried about the contents of your trailer coming into contact with the elements? No obstacles too narrow to navigate on your ride?
- If you’ve answered “yes” to most of these, chances are you’re a fairly relaxed cyclist and you use your trailer mainly for pootling down to the supermarket or taking a picnic to the park.
- For you, I am recommending the twin wheel type trailer. This is because they’re relatively cheap, don’t require any particularly complex hardware to fit to your bike and really don’t affect the handling of the bike too much.
- There are some cons, however; by way of their design, they are naturally wider than your bike which means you need to take care when navigating narrow passages etc. Also, the trailer will want to cut in when you turn so a little extra turning circle is required.
- Oh, and the one I used was just about as waterproof as your average colander so you’ll need to be OK with your belongings getting wet should it rain.
- After a trailer to use on a regular basis, be it for your business, touring around the world, or just carrying stuff and things from here to there?
- If so, I’m recommending for you the single wheel type trailer, like my BOB Yak.
- Thanks to their design, most single wheel trailers are not much (if any) wider than the bike you’re towing them with. Mounting hardware normally comes in the shape of a replacement quick release skewer or axle nuts so fitting really shouldn’t be too difficult.
- The major benefits for me are the aerodynamic advantage you get from the trailer hiding behind the bike (a huge advantage over panniers too, by the way) and the fact the trailer simply follows the bike in an arc so you don’t need to worry about your turning circle at all.
- There are cons, of course. This type of trailer is not cheap… mine came in around the £350 mark but it did come with all the fittings I needed, a waterproof sack and the peace of mind that it’ll hold its value should I ever decide to sell it on.
There are plenty of other considerations too… riding off road really sucks with a twin wheel trailer and, because the single wheel ones mount from both sides of the rear axle, they do tend to have a steering effect on the bike.
Also, there’s the push-me-pull-you that comes with having any kind of weight hanging off the back of the bike and what we shall refer to today simply as ‘The Redditch Incident’… more on that another time.
This year, I’ll be touring not with my trailer but front & rear panniers so keep your eyes peeled for a direct comparison of the 2 options; in the meantime, I think this picture best explains the love / hate relationship I have with my Yak.