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Thread: trailer vs seat

  1. #1
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    trailer vs seat

    So I'm completely car free. And I'm also a single father. So I also have to transport a 30# toddler. Currently I have a roadmaster from Walmart with a Walmart car seat thing that bolts behind the seat.

    Tomorrow I'm getting a trek 8.3 ds, and I'm thinking of getting a trailer in place of the seat. I'll eventually need it anyways.

    My question is, is one going to be easier than the other physically? Cause I've noticed with him on the back of this garbage bike, it's a workout.

  2. #2
    Senior Member skycomag's Avatar
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    when my daughter was a toddler I use a trailer. i think they are much safer than seat mounted to the frame. what is a child to do if you have a accident, no protection.
    at least with a good trailer, not the wheel barrow type, there they have a swerval joint that allow the trailer to remain upright in case you fall. look for one with a 5 pt. seat belt system{nascar style** and a full protection cover to keep your child from "baking" in the sun. if possible a low center of gravity. these are a few features I like about trailers.
    also to keep your child occupied bring some to play with in the trailer.my kid would always take a knap.
    best of luck on your search

  3. #3
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    The seat on the rear rack raises your center of gravity. To me, it seemed to put a bit of strain on my lower back. But when climbing hills, the seat on the rack is easier than a trailer.

    The trailer, for me, was safer to fasten my child in by myself than was the rack seat. The child can move about more in the trailer without disturbing the bike's/rider's balance. One thing that you do need to get used to with the trailer is being aware of where your outside wheel is in terms of curb and drain grill clearance. And when you hit a steep hill, you definitely notice the weight/drag of the trailer.

  4. #4
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    I'll be the dissenting voice and say that I hate trailers. They create a ton of drag, and distance you from your child. I feel they are more dangerous, because they are wider--pushing you farther out into the road, less maneuverable, and they aren't visible to oncoming traffic (so if you or the oncoming car is turning, they might not see the trailer behind you). Their only advantage is in wet or cold weather situations.

    You can get rear seats that are usable up to 77 lbs. I currently carry my 6.5 year old 50 lb daughter on the back of my mixte bike in a Qibbel junior seat. Obviously if she thrashes around I can feel it, but otherwise I don't feel much of a difference in speed or efficiency with her on the back vs. pedaling by myself. I can't imagine pulling that weight in a trailer. I will say that I think rear seats work better with steel/cro-moly bikes with a longer wheelbase and a lower bottom bracket. The 8.3 DS doesn't meet those criteria.

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