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Old 09-30-13, 02:09 PM   #1
WebFootFreak
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3 kids to tow...

One of my pet projects over the winter is to get us set up to go on family picnic rides. I've been trying to figure out the logistics of 2 adults and 4 kids. Me, my wife and our son (14 today!) will be able to ride with no problem. Our 7-yr old daughter is still on trainers, and really doesn't have the stamina for a long ride. Our 4-yr and 15-month old daughters need to go in a trailer.

My idea is to pull the 7-yr old on a trail-a-bike with a trailer hooked to it for the other 2. I've looked for 3-kid trailers and haven't found any. The only real monkey wrench I can see is that I'd like to pull them on a trike. This would allow (I think) balance without having to move. Also putting a cargo box on the back of the trike would allow the picnic supplies to be hauled as well. What I don't know is that if a trail-a-bike or similar product can be used with a trike. I'm not overly worried about if I can pull it. The gearing can always be worked out. Hauling won't be an issue either as I'm installing a hitch on the back of our van and will pull the bikes on a trailer.

Oh, one more thing. I'm not planning on purchasing a trike. When I get my new bike around the beginning of the year, I plan to acquire a conversion kit for the junker I'm on now because I think that'd be more fun .

So after reading all this, lol, does anyone know if a trail-a-bike will work on a trike?
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Old 09-30-13, 02:27 PM   #2
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Old 09-30-13, 02:42 PM   #3
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That is so wrong on so many levels it's absolutely awesome!
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Old 09-30-13, 02:57 PM   #4
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Trail-a-bike mounts to a seat post. So the rear cargo box/basket might not work - maybe you can put picnic supplies in the trailer? Some of them have dedicated storage space. Or put a front rack?
The wheels interfering should not be a problem with a tadpole trike but in a tight turn with delta trike, depending on the wheel distance there might be a problem.
With a delta trike you might need to skip rear basket/cargo box - maybe you can put picnic supplies in the trailer? Another (small) concern would be non leaning in turns for TAB, but I'm assuming you are going to take it slow.

Good luck
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Old 09-30-13, 02:58 PM   #5
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I would see a problem turning with a trail a bike attached to a trike. Most that attach to the seat post don't have much clearance. Now the Burly Piccolo could work since it attaches to the top of its proprietary rack and if your converting a two wheeler to a three wheeler, it should work. Why not have one adult pull the trail a bike and the other pull the trailer?

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Old 09-30-13, 05:24 PM   #6
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I would enjoy pulling the train much more than she would enjoy pulling anything.
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Old 10-01-13, 08:56 AM   #7
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Burley Piccolo is an an excellent (but pricey) idea.
I wish Piccolos (or Kazoos) were readily available on used market, alas here they are not.
I can get a dime and dozen Adam's Trail-a-bike or Trek Pathfinders or Instep Hitch-hikers on the Craigslist for about $60, but no Piccolos or Kazoos.
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Old 10-03-13, 06:51 PM   #8
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Not really answering your question, but I pulled a 2 kid trailer attached to a trail a bike, which attached to the seat post of my mountain bike. It worked for me and was honestly easier to pull that everyone we saw while riding thought it was. Biggest hazard is simply the length of the "train", you really have to be careful making tight turns (or any turns).

Our trailer had room behind the kid seat to stow the picnic gear.

That was a lot of fun. The kids I pulled won't fit the trailer anymore, but we all had a good time and some good memories from it. Make it happen, it's fun to laugh about later on.
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Old 10-05-13, 05:52 AM   #9
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I have pulled my three kids in all of these configurations. A trail a bike with trailer behind it worked well, but a rear rack would not sit in the mix. our set up now is that I pull a trailer behind my xtracycle. That means two kids could be on the xtracycle deck, two in the trailer.

Works well. Lots of fun.
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Old 10-05-13, 10:39 AM   #10
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Neoz, if it wasn't for your location I would wonder if you're the dude I passed on our local Arkansas MUP! I was riding along at my normal (dismal) 10 MPH and this guy on a mountain bike pulling a tag-a-long with one kid on it and a trailer behind it with 2 kids in it. He passed me on a slight incline like I was standing still. I have no idea how it cornered around the somewhat tight turns on a few of the section of MUP, I couldn't keep up with him, he was a freight train!
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Old 10-08-13, 01:33 PM   #11
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Neoz, if it wasn't for your location I would wonder if you're the dude I passed on our local Arkansas MUP! I was riding along at my normal (dismal) 10 MPH and this guy on a mountain bike pulling a tag-a-long with one kid on it and a trailer behind it with 2 kids in it. He passed me on a slight incline like I was standing still. I have no idea how it cornered around the somewhat tight turns on a few of the section of MUP, I couldn't keep up with him, he was a freight train!

mass + additional pedal power = speed
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Old 10-08-13, 01:45 PM   #12
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You seem to be all set OP, but just a thought... I too am not aware of any 3 kid trailers, but some of the Copenhagen cargo type bikes like the one pictured above (long wheelbase, box in front of rider) might be large enough for 3 kids. They come in trike configuration too, if you need the extra stability.

One of the US trailer manufacturers used to make a sidecar for bikes. I forget which manufacturer, and the contraption would probably not be street legal where I ride anyway, but it would give even more options.

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Old 10-09-13, 07:25 PM   #13
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One of the US trailer manufacturers used to make a sidecar for bikes. I forget which manufacturer, and the contraption would probably not be street legal where I ride anyway, but it would give even more options.

--J
My 3-kid rig uses the Chariot Sidecarrier side car. I ride it on the road all the time; Chariot says total width is the same as most 2 seat trailers. Anyway, I've never had any trouble...or considered it wasn't street legal for some reason.

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Old 10-09-13, 07:54 PM   #14
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Old 10-09-13, 08:04 PM   #15
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weehoo makes a double now.. and then you can add a single trailer. The older ones can go on the weehoo. The 7 year old eventually rides and the 2 younger ones go on the weehoo and you drop the trailer. I only have 1 kid , who can sort of ride, but not any distance.. so the weehoo gets lots of use.
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Old 10-10-13, 07:14 PM   #16
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Hey chaadster, what kind of trailer is that blue one in your photos?
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Old 10-10-13, 07:31 PM   #17
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Hey chaadster, what kind of trailer is that blue one in your photos?
It's a Tanjor Aero, once made in small quantities in St. Cloud, MN, but out of production since mid-late '90s, IIRC.
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Old 10-22-13, 06:53 PM   #18
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Adams used to make a tandem (2 seater) TAB that I see for sale used on ebay a few times a year. That might work into the mix somehow...

http://www.tandem-bicycle-central.co...s/img_8066.jpg
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Old 10-22-13, 07:33 PM   #19
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The babysitter?
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Old 11-24-13, 05:58 PM   #20
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I'm a bit late for the picnic here, but my wife and I have a pair of Xtracycles. Mine has the Flightdeck with a modified "seat post" mount that we use with my daughter's trail-a-bike. Took some trial and error riding to get a good mounting spot that was forward enough to balance the bike, but far back enough to clear the tow bar of the TAB. Her TAB also has a trailer attachment for when we have "extras" that cant ride solo or for grocery runs (our primary use for the bikes). We also use this setup for the Trail-Gator that adapts a standard bike into a TAB. We only use that on trail rides, but its an option.
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