smitten by саша
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Eugene, OR
Bikes: Salsa La Cruz with Rohloff; mutt parts
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why would trailering your daughter preclude disc brakes? i trailer my daughter with a cx bike (i.e., 29er) with discs, and let me say that braking safety is much much better.
i use a ball-and-socket hitch through the rear axle (a Chariot in my setup); it has zero impact on the disc brake.
in any case, there are 29ers that have dual brake options, so that you can run a rim brake on the rear (30% braking), and a disc up front (70% braking). personally, for the $500-800 range i'd hit CL, and then add parts as necessary. You can build/tweak a pretty sweet bike for that price range. As for new bikes, look to your LBS since that same price range is open for entry-level among all of the major brands, component variation will be fairly minor, and the best way to tell what you'll like is to go and try out a few.